This recipe was submitted to us many years ago – it was originally known as maple pralines. But these dairy-free maple pecans are in a class all their own. According to The Noshery, praline pecans have a caramel-like coating of brown sugar, butter, and cream. Candied pecans on the other hand are made with sugar and egg white, while glazed pecans are made with brown sugar, corn syrup, and butter. These vegan maple pecans are a bit like glazed pecans, but without the butter or refined sugars. And they set, kind of like candied pecans, only without the sugary crisp finish.
No matter what you call them, these dairy-free maple pecans are delicious out of hand, sprinkled on dairy-free ice cream, or used as a recipe garnish. In fact, these vegan maple pecans were originally created to top this Vegan Frosted Pumpkin Pie Cake. And here are a few more options, should you need them!
- Other Nuts: You can substitute walnuts for the pecans, if desired. Almonds might be nice, too! Or use up whatever you have left in your pantry and make it a nut blend.
- Sweet & Salty: If you like a little contrast, sprinkle on some slightly coarse sea salt before or after baking.
- Pie Spice: You can use Pumpkin Pie Spice instead of cinnamon if you want to add holiday flair. You can even swap a couple tablespoons of molasses for some of the maple for a gingerbread flavor.
Special Diet Notes: Vegan Maple Pecans
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, vegetarian, and paleo-friendly.
- 1 cup pecans, optionally chopped
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
- Place the pecans in a pie pan in a single layer and bake for 5 to 7 minutes or until fragrant and lightly toasted. Use caution and watch closely, as nuts can go from lightly toasted to burnt very quickly.
- Add the maple syrup and cinnamon to a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, and boil for 1 minute. Add the toasted pecans, stir well to thoroughly coat, and continue to cook for an additional 1 to 2 minutes, while stirring constantly.
- Transfer the pecans back to the pie pan, spread out in a single layer, and set aside to cool completely.
- When cooled, loosen the pecans from the pan, breaking into small clusters, and store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.