If you’re torn between making a pie or cake for your Thanksgiving dessert table, with this Chocolate Pecan Pie Cake you won’t have to choose! It’s three layers of a buttery, moist pecan cake glazed with maple syrup and filled with a gooey, caramel filling and chocolate ganache.
If you’ve seen my post for Maple Pecan Tarts, you know that there was a point in my life where I wasn’t the biggest fan of pecan pie. Once I found a recipe that works perfectly for me (no more mushy, too-sweet filling), I became an official fan. So, why not take a favorite pie and turn it into a cake?
The cake layers for this Chocolate Peacan Pie Cake are made with some of my favorite ingredients – butter and buttermilk, and they’re packed with roasted, chopped pecans and mini-chocolate chips. Before baking the cake layers, I poured a layer of pure maple syrup in the bottom of each greased, lined cake pan. Then I sprinkled even more roasted pecans to cover the layer of maple syrup.
The result are these gorgeous, moist on the inside and slightly crisp on the outside decadent cake layers. I could have eaten the Chocolate Pecan Pie Cake just like this.
But, sometimes I can’t help but make it just a little more decadent. And I did just that with a layer of caramel filling which tastes so much like pecan pie filling. It’s not truly caramel because the sugar isn’t actually caramelized. It’s made by cooking brown sugar, butter, cream and salt together until it reaches 200 degrees F. Real caramel or not, the one thing this caramel sauce is, is delicious.
I slathered a layer of caramel filling on each layer of this Chocolate Pecan Pie Cake, then poured over a layer of chocolate ganache. I had to use all of my willpower to not just lick the top of each cake. (Don’t worry. I’d never do that. For those of you who know me outside of the cyber-world, you know how germ-phobic and borderline obsessive I am about cleanliness.)
Eating a slice of this Chocolate Pecan Pie Cake is like having the very best parts of a pecan pie, but in a soft, fluffy cake form. The crunch from the nuts and maple syrup glaze go perfectly with the moist inside of the cake and the rich caramel sauce and decadent ganache. So why not buck the traditional pecan pie this Thanksgiving and opt for a cake version instead? I know I am 🙂
- For the Chocolate Pecan Pie Cake Layers:
- 3 cups pecans
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 5 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
- 1 tbs vanilla extract
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup mini-chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup pure maple syrup
- For the Caramel Filling:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- For the Chocolate Ganache:
- 8 ounces of chocolate chopped (I used bittersweet chocolate)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place the pecans in a single layer on a sheet pan. Bake for about 10 to 15 minutes, mixing half way through the baking.
- Allow the nuts to cool completely, then chop into small pieces. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease and line 3, 8-inch round pans.
- Pour 1/4 of a cup of the maple syrup in the bottom of each pan.
- Sprinkle 2/3 cup of chopped pecans over the maple syrup. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl sift the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes on medium speed.
- Add the egg yolks, one at a time, and beat until just combined.
- Add the vanilla and beat until just combined.
- Add the flour mixture in thirds and alternating with buttermilk mixture. Mix until combined.
- Using a spatula, stir in the remaining cup of chopped pecans and mini-chocolate chips. Mix until combined. Set aside.
- In a clean work bowl, using a whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until soft peaks.
- Fold the egg whites into the cake batter.
- Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans.
- Bake for 30 to 35 min (I baked mine for 33 minutes.) or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out with a few crumbs attached.
- Allow the cakes to cool on a cooling rack in the pans for about 10 minutes.
- Run a knife along the edges of the pan, and turn the cakes out on to the cooling racks. Allow to cool completely.
- Place all the ingredients except for the salt in a heavy bottomed sauce pan.
- Cook until boiling. Continue to cook until the sauce reaches 200 degrees F.
- Take the sauce off of the flame and mix in the salt.
- Transfer the sauce to a glass dish, and cool to thicken.
- Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl with a tight fitting lid.
- Place the cream in a sauce pan. Warm over medium heat until simmering.
- Pour the cram over the chocolate. Cover the chocolate with a tight fitting lid for about 15 min.
- Stir until thick and glossy.
- Allow the ganache to come to room temperature.
- Level each cake layer by using a serrated knife to flatten each cake layer.
- Place a layer of caramel sauce over each cake. Then pour over the ganache. Use an off-set spatula to smooth the ganache over the caramel. Layer the next cake on top, and repeat.
This post is linked to these awesome parties.