This Pumpkin Meringue Pie with Pecan Graham Crust is out-of-this-world delicious. Your Thanksgiving guests will be incredibly impressed.
Why You Should Make This Pie
If you’re looking for a unique spin on pumpkin pie, you’re in the right place. The maple-bourbon pumpkin filling goes so well with the salty, sweet pecan-graham crust. The toasted meringue just makes brings this pie over-the-top.
A recipe like this might seem a little intimidating, but it’s really not very difficult. A little time consuming, sure, but completely worth the effort.
Pumpkin puree– Aim for pure pumpkin puree, not pumpkin pie filling. You can even use freshly cooked and pureed squash, such as a sugar pumpkin, butternut squash or kabocha squash.
Pecans- Feel free to substitute with walnuts or more graham crackers if you’re allergic to nuts.
Sour cream- Full fat, Greek yogurt would work well, too!
The first step is to make the crust. Toast the pecans at 350F for about 8 minutes. Then, add the nuts, graham crackers, sugars and salt into a food processor and pulse until small crumbs form. Stir in melted butter and press the mixture into a pie plate. Prebake the crust to keep it crispier and allow it to cool while preparing the filling.
The first step in making the filling is reducing the maple syrup. Cooking down the syrup gets rid of excess water and helps concentrate the flavor. Next, simply whisk together the maple, pumpkin puree, fresh ginger, salt, spices, eggs and cream. Pour the filling into the crust and bake until it’s set.
Lastly, prepare the meringue. Before topping with meringue, the pie will need to cool to room temperature. Once the pie is completely cooled, add the egg whites, salt and sugar to the bowl of your standing mixer. Place this over a double boiler and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Transfer the bowl to your mixer and beat until stiff peaks form.
Use a large spoon to scoop dollops of meringue around the pie, push down slightly to make sure the meringue adheres. I like to use a small offset spatula to make peaks and swirls in the meringue. Then, if you have a culinary blow torch, lightly brown the outside of the meringue, making sure the flame is a few inches away from the cake. If you don’t have a torch, brown it under the boiler of your oven.
Recipe Tips and FAQs
- If you plan to bake the pie a day or two ahead of serving, store it in the fridge and wait until the day you’re serving to make the meringue. The meringue tends to weep and slip and slide off of the pie after it sits for a day or two.
- This recipe is also great without the meringue! My maple bourbon pumpkin pie and pecan crust really stands up on it’s own. If you want to save time and energy, serve it with some whipped cream instead of making a meringue.
If your pumpkin pie cracked, it is likely over-baked. The eggs tighten up the more they are cooked. The temperature of the oven may also be an issue. A high temperature may also over cook the pie of the outside before the inside is set.
To store pumpkin pie, allow it to cool completely at room temperature after baking, and then transfer it to the refrigerator. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also wrap and freeze individual slices of pie and freeze for up to 3 months. To defrost, place in the fridge overnight or on the counter for several hours.
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More Thanksgiving Recipes
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- Kale and Apple Salad with Blue Cheese and Glazed Walnuts
- Apple Crostata with Crumb Topping
- Brussels Sprouts with Pancetta
- Pear and Pomegranate Salad with Pistachios
- Spiced Orange Cranberry Sauce
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This maple-bourbon pumpkin pie goes so well with the salty, sweet pecan-graham crust. To put it over the top, add meringue and toast it up.
- ¾ cup pecans
- 6 full graham cracker sheets (~1 cup crumbs)
- 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- ¾ cup pure maple syrup
- 15oz can pumpkin puree (or 1 ¾ cups of pureed fresh pumpkin or winter squash)
- ¼ cup sour cream or plain, full-fat, Greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Pinch ground cloves
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoon bourbon, dark rum or brandy (optional)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
- 4 egg whites
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- Toast nuts: Preheat oven to 350°F. Place pecans on a parchment lined baking sheet. Toast for about 8 minutes or until lightly browned and fragrant. Cool. Keep oven on.
- Prebake crust: Add cooled pecans, graham crackers, sugars and salt to a food processor. Pulse until fine crumbs form. Drizzle in butter and pulse to combine. Pat graham mix along the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch pie plate. Prebake the crust for about 10-12 minutes or until lightly toasted. Cool on wire rack. Reduce oven to 325°F.
- Reduce maple: Add maple syrup to a small pot. Bring to a simmer and cook about 3-5 minutes to thicken slightly. You should have about ⅔ of a cup of syrup remaining.
- Mix filling: In a large bowl, whisk together pumpkin, sour cream, ginger, salt and spices. Whisk in cooled maple syrup. Whisk in eggs. Add cream, bourbon and vanilla and whisk until smooth.
- Bake: Carefully pour filling into cooled crusted. Gently knock on counter to pop any air bubbles. Bake on center rack of oven for 60-70 minutes or until mostly set with a very slight jiggle in the center. Start checking at 50 minutes, as all ovens are different. Cool on wire rack for several hours until room temperature.
- Make meringue: When pie is completely cooled, add egg whites, sugar and salt to the bowl of a standing mixer. Place on stove top over a pot filled with 2-3 inches of boiling water (like a double boiler). Make sure the water does not touch the bottom of the bowl. Whisk over heat until sugar is dissolved in egg whites, about 3 minutes. Transfer bowl to stand mixer, fitted with whisk attachment. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. Increase to high and beat until glossy, about 6 more minutes.
- Top the pie: Spoon meringue over top of pie. Using the back of a spoon, press bottom layer slightly into pie to help meringue adhere. Top with remaining meringue. Decorate using an offset spatula or tool of choice. You may also apply the meringue using a piping bag.
- Torch it: Using a culinary torch, hold on a 90° angle 3-4 inches from pie and move back and forth until all of meringue is lightly browned. Slice and enjoy!
The meringue was adapted from Martha Stewart.
The pumpkin filling was adapted from Bon Appetit.
As an alternative to torching the meringue, place pie under your broiler for a few minutes to brown, rotating if needed.
You can bake the pie 1-2 days before serving. I suggest to wait until the day you plan to serving to make the meringue topping.
Store the pie in the fridge for up to 5 days.
To freeze the pie, cut and wrap individual slices in plastic wrap. Store in a freezer bag for up to 3 months. To defrost, place the pie in the fridge overnight or on the counter for several hours.
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
- Serving Size: 1/10 of pie
- Calories: 420
- Sugar: 41g
- Sodium: 300mg
- Fat: 22g
- Saturated Fat: 9g
- Carbohydrates: 52g
- Fiber: 2g
- Protein: 7g
Keywords: pumpkin meringue pie, pumpkin pie with pecan crust, pumpkin pie, maple pumpkin pie