Bourbon Pecan Pralines

bourbon pecan pralines

Today is the last day of Mardi Gras… and it’s Fat Tuesday! I’ve been thinking a lot about New Orleans, the drinks of New Orleans, and the food of New Orleans. It makes me want to pack a bag and drive the 8-ish hours to visit. Unfortunately, I can’t just pick up and go, so instead I decided to make food that reminds me of the city.

When I was in New Orleans a few years ago, one of the things I brought back to Austin with me was a bag of pralines in different flavors. They were so good (and so sweet!), and I thought.. hey, this is a pretty easy way to bring a bag of New Orleans into our house. And apparently a VERY sweet treat.

This recipe made about 24 bourbon pecan pralines, so be forewarned.. it can be dangerous to have that many sugary treats in your house. Or it can be deliciously wonderful. Because TWO kinds of sugar. And pecans! Also bourbon. But OMG so much sugar. Seriously, these are incredibly sweet!

I definitely recommend a candy thermometer for these. It will help you know exactly when to remove the pot from the heat. I checked out a lot of recipes and 238 F seems to be the magic number!

bourbon pecan pralines


bourbon for pralines

bourbon pecan pralines

bourbon pecan pralines

I adapted the following recipe from two delicious-sounding praline recipes I found:
Pecan Pralines at Dramatic Pancake
Southern Pecan Pralines at The Marvelous Misadventures of a Foodie

Bourbon Pecan Pralines

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

24 Pralines


  • 2 cups pecans - halved
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp bourbon
  • sea salt for sprinkling


  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Spread pecan halves onto a baking sheet and toast for 6 minutes (mixing halfway through). Remove from oven and cool.
  2. Take two baking sheets and line with parchment paper. Spray lightly with cooking spray to prevent sticking.
  3. To a large pot add the brown and white sugars, butter, and milk and melt together over medium heat.
  4. Stir in pecans and heat to 238 degrees F (check that candy thermometer!), stirring frequently.
  5. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and bourbon.
  6. Continue stirring for about 3-4 minutes until thickened and creamy.
  7. Quickly drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto the baking sheets, leaving room as the mixture will spread slightly.
  8. Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
  9. Allow pralines to cool before removing from the baking sheets.

All Food, No Banjo

Hi there! You’ve just stumbled upon Food Banjo, the slightly quirky, yet oddly pedestrian cooking site. You may be unfamiliar with our original work, but consider yourself now and forever a Food Banjo-ista!

Join us as we try new things and document the process, along with our missteps (if things go bad enough you might also learn a thing or two about fire safety!). So check back regularly for step-by-step food and cocktail recipes, product reviews, videos, and more.

Keep on Food Banjoin’!

Road Trip Playlists

In our Summer issue of Food Banjo, we had a little article about taking a Road Trip. It seems like such a summer thing to do, right? Grab a car (hopefully one you own), some mix tapes (or an iPod if you want to be all modern), a map, and then take off on some random country roads.

Sure, listening to episodes of Radiolab and This American Life are great ways to pass the time on the road, but there is just something to be said for music.

Here at Food Banjo, we’ve put together our ideal Road Trip playlists for this summer.

Aimee’s Road Trip Playlist:

  • Metric – Black Sheep
  • Yeasayer – Ambling Amp
  • The Airborne Toxic Event – Does This Mean You’re Moving On?
  • The National – Conversation 16
  • Noah Gundersen – Honest Songs
  • City and Colour – The Girl
  • The Blow – True Affection
  • Tennis – Marathon
  • Freelance Whales – Hannah
  • TV On The Radio – Wolf Like Me
  • LCD Soundsystem – Someone Great
  • Vampire Weekend – Giving Up the Gun
  • Beirut – East Harlem

Josh’s Road Trip Playlist:

  • Depeche Mode – Never Let Me Down Again
  • Arcade Fire – Keep The Car Running
  • Beck – Nausea
  • The Halo Benders – Lonesome Sundown (I love this song but your co-pilot may kill you in the middle of the second playing of this song)
  • The Pixies – Havalina
  • The Talking Heads – This Must Be The Place
  • The Clash – Police & Thieves
  • Kings of Leon – Knocked Up
  • The National – Bloodbuzz Ohio
  • Tapes ‘n’ Tapes – Insistor (Play on open road where you can legally drive 85 mph)
  • Radiohead – High and Dry
  • Sugarcubes – Motorcrash
  • YACHT – Psychic City
  • Mates of State – For The Actor

Food of London

Hello Food Banjo readers! I wanted to give you a little visual taste of the (pub) food we ate in London. Yes, most of our meals out were for pub food. Our lovely hosts for the London part of our European vacation, Steph and Ryan, were lovely enough to cook for us many nights, but other than that, many of the meals we ate out were at pubs. Well.. I mean, what’s not to like? Hamburgers and other yumminess plus beer!

I (Aimee) mostly had hamburgers and fish and chips, while Josh got more adventurous with different pot pies and something called a sausage whirl! Check out the photos below. I bet you can guess which is the sausage whirl.

Cheerio! We’re Back

The Eiffel Tower

Don't believe me? Check out this photo. Can't find this pic anywhere on the Internet. can? Oh.

Photos and post by Josh Pruett

Hello to all of the lovers of food and banjos and food banjos. We want to thank all of you who took the time to check out Food Banjo since we launched a couple of weeks ago. We haven’t meant to neglect y’all, but we have only recently returned from a voyage across the Atlantic.

Immediately after launching Food Banjo (and we’re talkin’ minutes here) we departed on some cultural and culinary recreation through London, Paris and Barcelona; our first trip to those cities and luckily we had several days in each location to check out the local scene. We expect to post many of our food related pictures here over the next several days. And hopefully we can deconstruct some of these items for the blog and help you make them too.

Aimee Wenske is the real photographer of Food Banjo and you can expect some real finds from her. I must warn you that will not see her pictures in this particular post. You will see me trying to do my best using the camera on my cellphone, so please consider these pictures to be more “educational” than aesthetically pleasing.

The other thing that separates Aimee’s photography from mine is that my pics tend to be more of sweet foods, desserts, pies, candy, etc. So I apologize for that too. Unless you like that sort of thing, which in case: read on and salivate mon frére!

Giant Meringues

Chocolate and raspberry meringues from Borough Market in London

Open air markets are the pips ear (I’m pretty sure that’s a saying in London) when travelling. Borough Market – just west of London Bridge – is crazy insane with local meats, cheeses, pastries and cheese and meat stuffed pastries. For every rabbit, or wedge of cheese, or savory jam waiting to be tossed into a sack for later enjoyment there are three others ready to be devoured on the spot. And if you want to save a few quid, just about every vendor has a sample out and ready for you to try, usually with the intended results.

Borough Market, London

Duck Sandwiches and Sangria - Pulled duck slowly roasting over the second largest pan I have ever seen.

Most of our trip was spent trying to forget the pain of putting together our first issue with just a two-person team. But for the other part of it we were busy as bagels (yeah…puretty sure that’s also a phrase) gathering ideas for future issues and asking lots of questions with mouths full of food. Hopefully we might bring you something like this in future issues:

Meat Pies at Borough Market in London

These pies look nice. But if you're willing to eat a broken one you'll save a pound (a British Pound, not, like, an actual pound off of your waist, that would be silly).

That’s it for now, but I invite you to look forward to additional posts about our European trip while we work on next issue. And keep an eye out for the things that didn’t quite make it into the last issue. Cheerio!