This recipe is sponsored by the American Pecan Council. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Growing up in the south I’ve had my fair share of pecan pralines. I feel like it’s basically a staple recipe most families have their own variation of. I’m beyond excited to share my take on the classic. Showcasing the minimal beauty using rich and buttery pecans. Something about pecans brings me pure joy. I grew up eating Texas sheet cake and pecan chocolate chip cookies and local pecans were always in both. I’ve loved them since I was little. Having something so deeply rooted in my family’s recipes makes it a very special ingredient to use in my own cooking. I truly hope you enjoy my rendition of these pecan pralines with a twist.
Did you know pecans are actually packed with good monounsaturated fats and plant protein? Along with a plethora of vitamins and minerals. Pecans don’t just taste great, they’re super nutrient dense and great for you! An interesting fact I never knew until now, pecans are also the lowest in carbs and highest in dietary fiber per serving when compared to other tree nuts. You should definitely incorporate them into your diet more often.
To keep this recipe refined sugar-free, I opted to use coconut sugar instead. Which gives these a deeper caramel flavor I think everyone can appreciate. I prefer using coconut sugar because it’s lower glycemic and overall tastes richer. I haven’t tested this out using any other sugar replacement. If you wish to experiment with that, do so at your own risk.
In my notes I discuss the best method for testing to see if your sugar mixture is ready to set up. Please be sure to read over that a couple of times before making this recipe. I did want to share though, worst case scenario, if you did under cook it and you’re mixing and mixing but it’s not thickening. You can try one more time and place the pan back on medium heat. It should only take 3-4 minutes max to get it right. Test again with a cup of water nearby to see. Again, once it’s at the soft ball stage remove it from the heat and stir until it’s just thick enough to slowly pour. You’ll have about a minute to drop portioned out spoonfuls before it sets up too much to work with. I prefer using a silicone spatula for this process. You can effectively scrape the pan and easily drop serving sized portions on parchment. If the shape bothers you, it’s also great to help reshape each praline quickly before they harden.
By reheating you will yield a slightly deeper flavored praline. It’s best to get the mixture right on the first go for the best possible taste and texture, but I wanted to offer a solution to avoid throwing anything out. If your base should ever get to a point that it’s bitter or burnt tasting, it was overcooked. Taste before it sets up. It should be a rich caramel flavor.
If you happen to give these pecan pralines a try be sure to also snap a photo and tag me @PlantPhilosophy on Instagram using #PlantPhilosophy so I don’t miss seeing your post. I love to leave a comment and reshare my favorite recreations. Thank you very much for taking the time to follow along with my content and make my recipes!
Vegan Refined Sugar-Free Pecan Pralines
Yield 8 servings
This recipe is sponsored by the American Pecan Council.
- 1 cup Coconut Sugar
- 5 tbsp Coconut Cream*
- ½ cup Pecan pieces or halves
- Add coconut sugar and coconut cream to a small saucepan over medium heat.
- Stirring constantly until it reaches the softball stage* of candy making. Roughly 8-9 minutes. Read below on how to test for that beforehand.
- Remove from the heat and combine with the pecan pieces. Fold together until evenly distributed. Stirring until the mixture becomes opaque, about 2 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when it becomes thick and harder to mix.
- Quickly drop spoonfuls of praline mixture on a parchment lined baking sheet.
- Allow to fully cool before eating, about 10 minutes.
You can use either pecan halves or pieces, depending on the size you would prefer in each praline. I like to use pecan halves and leave quite a few in their full size so you get a big bite of pecan throughout. It comes down to preference, pecan pieces are more affordable.
Coconut cream is the solid fat in coconut milk. If you place a full fat can of coconut milk in the fridge overnight you should be able to scrape out enough of the hardened cream (saving the liquid for smoothies) for one batch of pralines. Alternatively you can buy coconut cream if that’s available near you. Which will be a can of mostly solid cream that requires no refrigeration beforehand.
Softball stage of candy making simply means that if you took the sugar mixture and placed a drop of it in a cup of water it would create a soft ball shape. It’s not quite ready if the sugar mixture forms a thread. If it creates a hard ball then it was cooked too long. Using an electric stove and non-stick ceramic pan it took about 9 minutes to achieve this stage. Then an additional 1-2 minutes of stirring to become opaque and thickened.