For as long as I can remember, my mom used to spend the weeks leading up to Christmas vacation making at least 10 different kinds of holiday cookies. It was something I looked forward to every year, both because I loved helping and because my brother and I got to sample them!

When I was younger my mom would package up the cookies beatifully in little boxes or platters and bring them around to all of my brother’s and my teachers (we went to a very small school). When I was grown and out of the house but still in college, I always missed helping make the cookies but didn’t have a big enough kitchen to make them on my own.

So when I finally was in grad school and working at my internship and therefore had a place I could actually bring the cookies, I started the same tradition of my own. I hope to continue doing it when I have kids so that they can have the same wonderful memories I have :)

I like to bake at least 8-10 different types of cookies. I make sure they’re all cookies that freeze well since I begin baking several weeks ahead of time.

Sadly this year I couldn’t make as many cookies as I normally do because I’ve been so busy, but a few different kinds did get baked up, and Nate was more than happy to sample them all.

I found this particular recipe in my mom’s recipe box. I’m pretty sure she’s made them before but I couldn’t remember. They were simple to make, and so buttery and delicious! The photos don’t do them justice, as they were taken after taking them out of the freezer. When room temperature or hot out of the oven, they’re super gooey!

Chocolate Pecan-Pie Bars
From my mom’s recipe box

Print this recipe!

makes 48

3 cups flour
2 cups sugar
1 cup unsalted butter, soft
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups Caro syrup
1 cup (6 oz) semi-sweet chocolate chips
4 eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350.

Grease bottom and sides of 15″x10″x1″ baking dish.

In bowl, at medium, beat flour, 1/2 cup sugar, butter and salt til course crumbs. Press into bottom of pan. Bake at 350 for 20 min.

In 3 quart pan, stir corn syrup and chocolate on low til melted. Remove from heat. Stir in rest of sugar, eggs, vanilla til blended. Stir in pecans.

Pour filling over hot crust. Bake at 350 for 30 min or til firm around edges but slightly soft in center. Cool on wire rack. Cut into bars.


  1. Oh, these are winners! I love pecan pie in both pie and bar form :)

    PS…my raspberry white chocolate bars are quite sturdy! I mailed 3 boxes of them and I think they survived better than cookies would have~

  2. A truly delicious cookie always makes for great memories. It is nice to continue a tradition.

  3. Those look fantastic! I like this tradition, but boy that’s a lot of dedication and planning. I mean what if you’re busy getting engaged, planning weddings and the such… oh yeah…

  4. What a great tradition to continue. Sounds like so much fun. I was the same way when I got internships then my job…finally gave me more of a reason to bake because I could give the desserts to others and they wouldn’t sit around my apartment!! These bars sound delicious, Amy. :)

  5. This is probably the last thing I needed to see right now…a delicious sounding dessert. ;-) Dieting sucks.

    • Hehe, i’m with you…I make these desserts for other people, but then of course I have to taste them to make sure they’re up to par! I’ll never lose the weight I want at this rate ;)

  6. These look seriously delicious Amy and I love that they’re tied in with Christmas baking memories from your childhood. Sounds like your mom was quite the chef and how great that you’re carrying on the tradition. I wish I could be your sampling buddy next door ;)

  7. I love recipes passed down fro mum’s, grandma’s and the like, especially when they have a story attached. These look delicious, I wish I was that organised!

    • I know, arent traditions the best? So far this has only been passed down one generation, but I hope that it will make it to my kids some day and grandkids too :)

  8. Pingback: Holiday Cookie line-up continued- Chocolate Crinkle Cookies «

  9. Pingback: Chocolate pecan pie bars, courtesy of Amy’s mom | Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

  10. Would that be white Karo or dark Karo, Amy? I’m thinking dark, but I’m also thinking maple syrup instead, which is what I put in pecan and walnut pies. Came over here from Rufus’ Guide to check out your original recipe. Looks good!

    • Hi! Thanks so much for stopping by!!! I used light corn syrup but I honestly don’t think it matters. Maple syrup would probably make the bars a bit messier because it wouldn’t be as thick. But maybe you could use a combo of corn and maple syrup but have a higher proportion of corn…I believe thats what Rufus did. I hope u make these…they will get rave reviews!

  11. I can figure out how to thicken maple syrup, Amy (boil it down, add a little cornstarch, etc. I’ll surely try some version of these eventually, but perhaps not so close to Christmas — maybe Valentine’s Day or some cold March day.

  12. I think you should rename these bars “way-better-than-pecan-pie” bars. I reposted your recipe with some adaptations under this title on my blog (of course, the credit goes to you!). Thanks for the fabulous recipe. It came out deliciously!

  13. Pingback: Way-Better-Than-Pecan-Pie Bars « Frozen Moments

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