Sally’s Baking Addiction: These Mini Pecan Pies Are the Dessert Your Thanksgiving Menu Deserves

11/19/2015 at 10:34 AM ET

Sally's Baking Mini Pecan Pies
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn; Inset: Jen Woodruff

Baking enthusiast Sally McKenney Quinn is the author of the popular blog and cookbook Sally’s Baking Addiction as well as a food blogger for PEOPLE.com. Check back each month for her latest easy-to-follow recipes! You can order her new cookbook, Sally’s Candy Addiction, hereWarning: Don’t read when hungry. 

I bet you’re feeling pretty overwhelmed with Thanksgiving recipe ideas at the moment? Or, at least, overwhelmed knowing Thanksgiving is right around the corner! Every year it seems like November goes by quicker and quicker — and there is never enough time to plan the perfect menu.

Hopefully I can ease your worries with a crowd-pleasing, yet completely simple Thanksgiving dessert recipe. I made these mini pecan pies as a test run the other week and passed them out to friends and family.

RELATED: Sally’s Baking Addiction: Celebrate the Season with This Autumn Sangria

Nearly everyone commented on how incredible the filling was (we have the addition of cinnamon to thank for that!), but not one single person left my house without complimenting the best part of the recipe. The spiked whipped cream.

These mini pecan pies are downright fabulous as they are, but the addition of boozy vanilla whipped cream completely puts them over the top! The whipped cream is laughably simple; all you do is beat chilled cream, a touch of sugar, vanilla, and bourbon together until thick and creamy. Top each mini pie with its deliciousness and you have one unforgettable dessert.

RELATED: 15 Thanksgiving Pies That Will Make You Sigh with Happiness

To make things easy, use store-bought pie crust. Happy Thanksgiving season!

Sally's Baking Mini Pecan Pies
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn

Sally's Baking Mini Pecan Pies
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn

Sally's Baking Mini Pecan Pies
Courtesy Sally McKenney Quinn

Mini Pecan Pies with Boozy Whipped Cream
Makes 24-30 mini pies

For pie:
Store-bought pie crust or ½ recipe homemade pie dough
2 tbsp. unsalted butter
½ cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1 tbsp. dark corn syrup
½ tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. ground cinnamon
1 cup chopped pecans

For boozy whipped cream:
1 cup heavy cream, chilled
1 tbsp. bourbon
1 tsp. sugar
½ tsp. vanilla extract

1. Prepare homemade pie dough. Once chilled, or if using store-bought, place the dough onto a floured work surface. Roll into a large 12-inch circle. From the circle, cut 24-30 rounds using a 2.5 inch cookie cutter. I used my 1/3 cup measuring cup, which is about 2.5 inches in diameter. Re-roll scraps and continue cutting until you have 24-30 circles.

2. Grease one or two 24-count mini muffin pans (depending how many dough rounds you have). Press the dough rounds flat into the bottom of the cups and up the sides. Chill the pan of dough rounds in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

4. Prepare the filling by melting the butter in a small bowl in the microwave or using a stovetop. Allow to slightly cool for a few minutes. Whisk the brown sugar, egg, corn syrup, vanilla, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl. Whisk in the melted butter, then stir in the pecans.

5. Spoon 1-2 teaspoons of the filling into each of the chilled dough rounds.

6. Bake the mini pies for 14-16 minutes. Once you see the crust begin to slightly brown after about 15 minutes, the tarts are done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing. Use a spoon to help remove the pies from the pan.

7. Make the whipped cream by beating the whipped cream ingredients together on high speed in a medium bowl. Once softly whipped, spoon onto each mini pie and serve. Cover any leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator.

Prep: 2 hours
Total: 2 hours, 30 minutes

RELATED: Alex Guarnaschelli: My 3 Favorite Thanksgiving Vegetable Side Dishes

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms
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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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