This pecan tart recipe is the more lavish, decadent cousin of a classic pecan pie. The pecans are enveloped in a rich, chewy caramel filling. A blanket of velvety smooth chocolate ganache covers the top of the tart, lending it major candy bar vibes with a touch of sophistication. The rye flour in the crust elevates the nutty flavor, but a simple swap of all-purpose flour will also complete the tart beautifully.
On a lightly floured surface, roll the crust to a 9" x 13" rectangle (for the rectangular pan) or an 11" round that’s about 1/8" thick (for the round pan). Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of the pan.
Use a sharp paring knife to trim any excess crust overhanging the edges; the crust edge should be flush with the side of the pan.
Prick (dock) the crust all over with a fork and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
To bake the crust: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line the crust with parchment or foil and fill to the brim with pie weights (or dried beans, rice, or granulated sugar).
Bake the crust for 15 to 20 minutes, until it feels dry and set and the parchment no longer sticks to the dough.
Remove the weights and parchment (or foil) and return the crust to the oven to bake for another 3 to 5 minutes, until golden brown.
Remove the crust from the oven and let it cool on a rack while you make the filling.
To make the filling: In a medium saucepan (with at least a 2-quart capacity), combine the sugar and water. Swirl the pan to ensure all of the sugar is covered by water; do not stir.
Place the saucepot over medium heat and cook, without stirring, until the sugar becomes medium amber in color, about 7 to 10 minutes depending on the level of heat.
Turn off the heat and slowly stir the cream into the caramel a few tablespoons at a time. The mixture will bubble up as you add the cream.
Add the butter and stir until melted, then add the pecans, vanilla, and salt.
Pour the caramel mixture into the tart crust and spread evenly to the edges; a small offset spatula is a helpful tool here. Set aside and allow the caramel to set, about 30 to 45 minutes.
To make the glaze: Combine the chocolate and cream in a small, microwave-safe bowl. Heat in 20-second increments, at 50% power, and stir until smooth. (See “tips,” below to make the glaze on the stovetop.) Stir the bourbon into the melted chocolate, if using.
Once the caramel has fully set, pour the glaze over the top of the tart and spread evenly to the edges.
Allow the chocolate to fully set (either at room temperature for 2 to 4 hours or in the refrigerator for 1 hour) before slicing. (A hot chef’s knife will get you the cleanest slices.) Serve at room temperature with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt on each slice, if desired.
Storage information: Store any leftover pecan tart, covered, at room temperature for several days; freeze for longer storage.
Tips from our Bakers
To make the glaze on the stovetop: Place the chocolate in a heat-proof bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until just below a simmer. Pour the hot cream immediately over the chocolate. Allow the mixture to rest for at least 1 minute and then whisk until homogenous and smooth. Add the bourbon, if using.