Not only is this Vegan Pecan Pie so damn delicious, but it’s also Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and made from only 8 healthy ingredients!
For some reason, I decided that I wanted to make a Vegan Pecan Pie this year. Don’t ask me why, because I don’t really like baking to begin with. I’ve already made my take on a Pumpkin Pie for the blog, so I guess I just wanted to switch things up?
Well, friends, let’s just say I’m pretty damn proud of my efforts. It took several rounds of testing, but I’m happy to say that this Pecan Pie is not only Vegan, but also Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and Oil-Free. Shall we?
My first obstacle came when I looked up the typical ingredients for Pecan Pie – Butter, Refined Sugar, and Eggs? Oh cool, I use just about none of those in my recipes.
That’s okay, though. Well, it’s now okay after several (read: several) recipe tests, because I have *successfully* come up with a plant-based pie that’s as close to the real deal as it’s going to get! An added bonus? It’s made from only 8 plant-based ingredients (including the crust), and they’re all pretty dang good for you too.
Each ingredient is important and serves a purpose, so no substitutions, please! Here’s a little more about a few of them:
- Full-Fat Coconut Milk and Coconut Sugar make up the bulk of the Pie filling and give that deep and creamy caramel flavor of traditional Pecan Pie, without the Butter or Sugar
- Arrowroot Powder works as a thickener and Egg Substitute in this recipe. I would not suggest substituting it in this recipe – it blends more evenly than Cornstarch (so better for baking), and Tapioca Flour will be too gummy. You just gotta trust me on this one!
I originally tried to make this recipe using only Coconut Milk, Sugar, and a thickener, but the pie was too flat and not thick enough. Then my boyfriend (who I am begrudgingly giving credit to) suggested that I try adding some Sweet Potato to the mix for extra volume and texture. It worked like a charm, so I guess I’ll just hang up my baking apron and let him take over from here on out.
Kidding, kidding 😉 but the Sweet Potato is essential to this recipe. I’m sorry to say it, but you’ll have to be a little nitpicky here with your spud prep too:
- I recommend using a White Sweet Potato over an Orange Yam, as it has more starch and density to it. Also, the White will not affect the final Pie color like the Orange hue would!
- You NEED to roast your Sweet Potato, then mash it. Do not steam it. Do not microwave it. ROAST it! This, again, removes most of the moisture from the potato. Plus, it allows the natural sugars in it to caramelize and contribute to the sweetness of this Pie without adding an insane amount of Sugar.
One final note – while I would consider this Pie healthy-er, I still would not condone eating a slice for breakfast or replacing your green juice with it. But hey, it’s the holidays! Food is meant to be shared and enjoyed, not obsessed over. So cut yourself a slice of this better-for-you Vegan Pecan Pie, top it with a little ice cream, and enjoy 🙂
A Few Final Thoughts:
- The pie filling will “puff up” in the oven as it bakes, but don’t be alarmed! It will deflate and thicken as it cools, and you should let it set for a few hours after baking for optimal results.
- I used my 3-Ingredient Pie Crust for this recipe to keep things Gluten and Grain Free, but you can sub with a different variety if you’d like.
- If you’re looking for more cozy and healthy Dessert recipes, you’ll also love these Sweet Potato Pie Bars and this Pecan & Pumpkin Custard Pie!
Not only is this Vegan Pecan Pie so dang delicious, but it’s also Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, and made from only 8 healthy ingredients!
- If you haven’t pre-roasted your Sweet Potato, do so now. I like to wash mine, poke a few holes in it with a knife, and bake it at 400F for 45-60 minutes until soft and tender. Carefully remove the skin of the Potato, mash, and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Add the Coconut Milk, 1 cup of Coconut Sugar, Sweet Potato, Vanilla, Arrowroot, and Salt to a high-speed blender. Blend for 30-60 seconds on high, until smooth and thick.
- Pour the Pie filling into a 9″ pie tin (with the pre-baked pie crust) and smooth the top off evenly with a spatula. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tbsp of Coconut Sugar evenly over the top, then sprinkle the Pecans over the pie as well. Gently press the Pecans into the Pie, so they slightly sink into the filling.
- Bake for 30 minutes, and let the Pie cool completely before slicing and serving (preferably overnight). Serve as desired! Leftovers will keep at room temperature for up to 4 days, or store in the fridge for up to 8. This pie can also be frozen and re-heated as necessary.
- The Pie Crust in this recipe may be substituted with another pre-baked pie crust of your choice
- Full-Fat Coconut Milk cannot be replaced with Light Coconut Milk; I have tested both, and you need the fat for this recipe to work. You can try to make your own super-creamy Nut Milk at home if you have a Coconut aversion/allergy and using that, but I have not tested this.
- Coconut Sugar may be substituted for Brown Sugar.
- If a substitution is not listed, I do not recommend it. I have tested this recipe way more times than I would care to admit and believe that this combination of ingredients is the best option. Experiment at your own risk!
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