These southern bourbon pecan pralines transport you to New Orleans! They are sugary, sweet, and have the perfect amount of bourbon flavor. They are the perfect no-bake candy to enjoy any time of the year as as special treat!
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 taste of New Orleans into our house.
This recipe for homemade southern pecan pralines 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. So yummy and delicious.
And these bourbon pecan pralines make a delicious gift and are surprisingly easy to make!
Why I love these pecan pralines
Easy and No Bake Pralines - These pecan pralines do not require any baking in the oven (other than toasting the pecans). However, you could toast the pecans on the stove if you really don't want to turn on your oven!
No corn syrup - I love sugary candy recipes. But so many use corn syrup, and I prefer to use sugar. Luckily, this is a pecan praline recipe without corn syrup. Just the delicious combination or white granulated sugar and brown sugar.
Perfect for gifts - I love fancy treats that I can enjoy myself but also gift to others. These pecan pralines are perfect to wrap up in a cute box or bag and gift to others!
What are pralines?
Pralines are a type of candy/cookie that are from the American South.
Pralines typically contain sugar, pecans, and have sort of a fudgy texture (other than the pecans!) Strolling around New Orleans, you'll see a lot of places selling these delicious sugary treats.
I definitely recommend a candy thermometer for these bourbon pecan pralines. It will help you know exactly when to remove the pot from the heat. 238 F seems to be the magic number!
- Pecan halves
- Brown sugar
- White granulated sugar
- Whole milk
- Vanilla extract
- Sea salt
- Candy thermometer - with this recipe, you're basically making a type of candy. So you will need a candy thermometer to make sure you're heating your sugar mixture to exactly the right temperature.
- Large pot
- Parchment paper or a Silpat (or Silicone) baking mat
- Measuring cups and spoons
Swap out the bourbon for some rum if preferred.
Swap out the pecans with another nut like walnuts.
How to store leftovers
Pecan pralines should be cooled completely, then can be stored in an airtight container. Store pralines between layers of wax paper or parchment paper to keep them from sticking together!
Pralines will keep for 2 weeks at room temperature.
Pecan pralines can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before enjoying.
The first step to making easy pecan pralines is to toast up the pecans in the oven.
Then combine sugar, butter, milk, and the toasted pecans and cook in a pot on the stove.
Once the praline mixture hits the magic temperature of 238 degrees F, you turn off the stove.
Next, you stir in the bourbon and vanilla and continue stirring with a wooden spoon for 3-4 minutes until thickened and creamy.
Drop spoonfuls onto a baking sheet, sprinkle with a tiny bit of salt, cool, and then these southern pecan pralines are done!
They are surprisingly easy to make and the perfect treat for Mardi Gras, for gifts, or just to bring to any fun gathering.
More dessert recipes to love
No Bake Bourbon Pecan Pralines without Corn Syrup
- Candy thermometer
- 2 cups pecans - halved
- 1 ½ cups brown sugar
- ¾ cup granulated white sugar
- 6 tablespoon butter
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon bourbon
- sea salt for sprinkling
- 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.
- Take two baking sheets and line with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Spray lightly with cooking spray to prevent sticking.
- To a large pot add the brown and white sugars, butter, and milk and melt together over medium heat.
- Stir in pecans and heat to 238 degrees F (check that candy thermometer!), stirring frequently.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and bourbon.
- Continue stirring for about 3-4 minutes until thickened and creamy.
- Quickly drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto the baking sheets, leaving room as the mixture will spread slightly.
- Sprinkle lightly with sea salt.
- Allow pralines to cool before removing from the baking sheets.
If nutrition info is shown, values are based on an online calculator and are estimates. Please verify using your own data.