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3.61 from 169 votes

Ina Garten's Pecan Squares

Soft shortbread topped with rich caramel and pecans.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 20
Author: Jess Smith via Inquiring Chef

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 2 1/2 cups Unsalted Butter, room temperature (this is 5 sticks of butter or 1.25 lbs)
  • 3/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 3 Eggs, large
  • 3/4 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 4 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt

Topping:

  • 2 cups Unsalted Butter (this is 4 sticks of butter or 1 lb)
  • 1 cup Honey
  • 3 cups Light Brown Sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon Grated Lemon Zest
  • 1 teaspoon Grated Orange Zest
  • 1/4 cup Heavy Cream
  • 2 pounds Chopped Pecans

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Make the crust: Beat the butter and granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, until light, approximately 3 minutes.
  • Add the eggs and the vanilla and mix well.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • Mix the dry ingredients into the batter with the mixer on low speed until just combined. Press the dough evenly into an ungreased 18 by 12 by 1-inch baking sheet, making an edge around the outside. (Note: The crust dough will be very sticky. To make it easier to work with, dust your hands and the dough with some flour as you work.)
  • Bake for 15 minutes, until the crust is set but not browned. Allow to cool.
  • Make the filling: Combine the butter, honey, brown sugar, and zests in a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over low heat until the butter is melted, using a wooden spoon to stir. Raise the heat and boil for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  • Stir in the heavy cream and pecans.
  • Pour the filling over the crust, trying not to get the filling between the crust and the pan.
  • Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until the filling is set. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold.
  • Cut into bars and serve.

Notes

Recipe adapted a bit from the original by Ina Garten, shared at FoodNetwork.com.