Pecan Pralines are a traditional Southern with crunchy pecans and a soft, buttery-sweet base. And they’re only 5 ingredients!

A stack of pecan pralines on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Pecan Pralines have a similar texture to fudge, but studded with crunchy pecans. The result is a cluster candy that is sweet and delicious, a classic New Orlean’s confection that is most popular at the holidays.

If you love the flavor of brown sugar and butter together, these are for you! They are pretty enough for a homemade food gift, too, stored in a pretty box or Christmas tin tied with a bow.

Table of Contents
  1. Recipe ingredients
  2. Ingredient notes
  3. Step-by-step instructions
  4. Recipe tips and variations
  5. Recipe FAQs
  6. Pecan Pralines Recipe

Recipe ingredients

Labeled ingredients for pecan pralines.

Ingredient notes

  • Pecans: Or substitute walnuts for Walnut Pralines, almonds for Almond Pralines, or peanuts for Peanut Pralines.

Step-by-step instructions

  1. Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat, combine sugar, brown sugar, butter, half-and-half, and pecans. Cook until sugar dissolves, about 2-3 minutes, stirring gently. Increase heat to medium and cover.
Pecan praline mixture in a silver pan with a wooden spoon resting in it.
  1. Cook until sugar dissolves from the side of the pan, about 2-3 minutes longer. Uncover and cook until praline reaches soft ball stage, 235 degrees on a digital thermometer, while stirring constantly.
Pecan praline mixture being temped in a silver pan with a wooden spoon resting in it.
  1. Remove from heat. Using a wooden spoon, beat the mixture until it begins to thicken. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheet, and allow to stand at room temperature until firm.
Pecan pralines on a parchment paper lined baking sheeet.

Recipe tips and variations

  • Yield: This recipe makes about 24 Pecan Pralines.
  • Storage: Store pralines covered at room temperature for up to 2 weeks.
  • Freezer: Arrange cooled pralines on a plate or tray and freeze until solid, then transfer to a freezer safe plastic bag or container and freeze up to 2 months.
A stack of pecan pralines on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.

Recipe FAQs

What is the difference between candied pecans and pralines?

Candied pecans are pecans coated in egg whites, sugar, and spices, then baked until crispy. Pralines are a drop-candy with a caramel-like base and crunchy pecans mixed in.

How do you determine soft ball stage?

Drop a small amount of candy mixture in a bowl of cold water. If it can easily be molded into a ball, and then falls flat out of water, you have reached the soft ball stage.

Pecan pralines in a small silver tin.

Candied Pecans

Candied Pecans are deliciously crunchy and decadent thanks to brown sugar, cinnamon, and a few other holiday spices. This recipe is lightning fast, kid-friendly, and a snap to make for a last-minute gifts or bake…

35 minutes
View Recipe

More nutty confections

A stack of pecan pralines on a baking sheet.

Pecan Pralines

Pecan Pralines are a traditional Southern with crunchy pecans and a soft, buttery-sweet base. And they're only 5 ingredients!
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Resting time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Servings 24 pralines
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 150

Ingredients 

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 brown sugar firmly packed
  • 1/4 plus 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup half-and-half
  • 2 cups pecan halves

Instructions 

  • Line a baking sheet with waxed paper. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat, combine sugar, brown sugar, butter, half-and-half, and pecans.
  • Cook until sugar dissolves, about 2-3 minutes, stirring gently. Increase heat to medium and cover. Cook until sugar dissolves from the side of the pan, about 2-3 minutes longer.
  • Uncover and cook until praline reaches soft ball stage, 235 degrees on a digital thermometer, while stirring constantly.
  • Remove from heat. Using a wooden spoon, beat the mixture until it begins to thicken. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheet, and allow to stand at room temperature until firm.

Notes

  1. If the praline mixture becomes hard in the pan, hot water a teaspoon at a time and stir until loose enough to scoop.

Nutrition

Serving: 1pieceCalories: 150kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 1gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 3mgPotassium: 54mgFiber: 1gSugar: 17gVitamin A: 30IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 15mgIron: 1mg
Tried this Recipe? Pin it for Later!Mention @CulinaryHill or tag #CulinaryHill!
Culinary School Secrets
Pro-level tricks to transform your cooking!

Meggan Hill

I’m the Executive Chef and head of the Culinary Hill Test Kitchen. Every recipe is developed, tested, and approved just for you.

You May Also Like

Questions and Comments

Thank you for your comments! Please allow 1-2 business days for a reply. Our business hours are Monday through Friday, 9:00 am PST to 5:00 pm PST, excluding holidays. Comments are moderated to prevent spam and profanity.

Your email address will not be published.

Recipe Rating




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.