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Brown Butter Chocolate Pecan Bars

These Brown Butter Chocolate Pecan Bars have a layer of salted shortbread, followed by a layer of rich (also salted!) chocolate filling and are topped off with a bourbon-infused brown butter pecan filling. Rich and delicious! 

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword pecan bars, pecan pie bars, chocolate pecan pie bars
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 16 small bars or 9 large
Calories 412 kcal
Author Nicole

Ingredients

Shortbread Crust

  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 tsp flaked sea salt, plus more for garnish
  • 2 Cups All purpose flour

Chocolate Layer

  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 large egg
  • 3/4 tsp flaked sea salt

Brown Butter Pecan Filling

  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp bourbon
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 8 oz pecans, chopped
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease an 9x9 inch square baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Line with parchment paper. 

  2. Add softened butter and sugar to the bottom of a stand mixer. Beat on high until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add almond extract, beat until combined. Add flour and salt. Turn the mixer on low and add flour. Mix on slow, then medium until combined. 

  3. Press the dough into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 15 minutes or until shortbread is just starting to turn a very pale brown. Remove from oven and cool slightly

  4. While the shortbread bakes and cools, make the pecan and chocolate filling. For the chocolate: Add heavy cream to a small saucepan. Heat until simmering. Remove from heat and add chocolate. Whisk until combined. Cool slightly. (I make the pecan filling while the chocolate cools.) Whisk in egg, then add in salt, gently whisk in.

  5. Add 1/2 stick butter to a small skillet. Turn the heat on medium-high and melt butter. When the butter starts to turn brown and smell nutty, swirl the pan. Continue to swirl the pan until the butter is a deep brown color. Transfer to a small bowl to cool slightly. 

  6. For the pecan filling: Add corn syrup, brown sugar, bourbon, eggs and vanilla to a medium bowl. Whisk to combine. Add melted brown butter. Whisk to combine. Add pecans and pinch of salt. Toss to combine. 

  7. Once crust has cooled slightly. Pour chocolate layer into the crust. Use a spatula to smooth over. Pour pecan mixture on top. Smooth over. It's ok if the two layers mix together slightly. Place in the oven and bake for 40 minutes or until the top is set and a toothpick inserted into the bars comes out mostly clean (there of course, will be a little bit of chocolate attached). 

  8. Cool completely. Lift bars out of the pan and use a very sharp knife to cut into 9 squares. Garnish with more flaked sea salt. 

Nutrition Facts
Brown Butter Chocolate Pecan Bars
Amount Per Serving (1 small bar)
Calories 412 Calories from Fat 261
% Daily Value*
Fat 29g45%
Saturated Fat 12g75%
Cholesterol 86mg29%
Sodium 139mg6%
Potassium 138mg4%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 20g22%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 582IU12%
Vitamin C 1mg1%
Calcium 38mg4%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.