A cross between a shortbread cookie and a bite of pecan pie, a pecan tassie is the kind of bite-size dessert that offers just the right amount of decadence in an adorable package. The dough that surrounds the filling is made out of a simple blend of butter, cream cheese, flour, and ground pecans. Because there’s no sugar in the dough, it’s entirely savory—buttery, nutty, and slightly tangy from the cream cheese—making a rich base that complements the sweet pecan filling.
Cream cheese in the dough also makes the pastry itself very soft. Just like a pecan pie, the pastry supporting the sweet filling of these cookies is made to be a savory contrast so the dessert isn’t overwhelming. As for the components that comprise the filling, it’s a scrumptious mix of brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, and bourbon. These robust ingredients mingle into a cocktail of flavors perfect for the unmistakable richness of toasted pecans.
The maple syrup lends a unique edge that isn’t common in pecan pie, but it’s this addition that gives the pecan tassie it’s unique taste, distinguishing it from other pecan-based desserts. Perfect to keep around the house or to serve at a party, bake these pecan tassies for a treat that’s as simple as a cookie and as decadent as a pie.
- Active Time: 25 mins
- Total Time: 1 hrs 50 mins
- Yield: 24 pecan tassies
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 large egg
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon bourbon, optional
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted
- Make Dough: Place 1/2 cup pecans in a food processor and blitz until finely ground. Set aside. In a bowl, beat together butter and cream cheese until fully incorporated. Add flour and ground pecans and mix until a shaggy dough forms. Use your hands to press the dough into a solid mass. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a 24-cup mini muffin pan with cooking spray. Scoop 1 tablespoon of dough into each muffin cup. Use your fingers to evenly press dough into the bottom and up the sides of each muffin cup. Transfer muffin tin to freezer while making the Filling.
- Make Filling: Whisk together egg, brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, salt, and bourbon until sugar is dissolved and mixture is homogenous. Remove muffin tray from freezer. Place 1 teaspoon of chopped pecans in each of the muffin cups. Pour the Filling over the pecans until it almost completely fills the pastry cups. Bake until the filling has puffed and the pastry has lightly browned, 20 to 24 minutes. Allow to cool before removing pecan tassies from muffin pan with an offset spatula.