Chocolate, Pecan, and Pretzel Slab Pie with Vanilla Whipped Cream

SERVES 1 pie (quarter sheet pan)

A cross between a sheet cake and a traditional pie, this rich, chocolate, pecan, and pretzel slab pie checks all the boxes. Its size and “serve-ability” will appeal to the masses, while easy prep and minimal bake times appeal to the cook. Most importantly, the flavor profile is sweet, salty, crunchy, and chewy, making this a great dessert to put in your rotation of sweet treats this season.

  1. Prepare the Crust. Grease the quarter sheet pan (9.5” x 13”). In a medium-sized bowl, place the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt, and espresso powder, and mix to combine. Add the butter cubes and use your hands to press the cubes with the flour to coat them. Gradually add the ice water and knead the dough until it just comes together into a shaggy dough ball. Press the dough into the base and into the edges of a quarter sheet pan until evenly distributed. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, until the crust is cooked completely through, and the center is firm. Remove from the oven and set aside.
  3. Prepare the Filling. In a stand mixer on medium speed, lightly beat the eggs. Add the corn syrup, brown sugar, butter, vanilla, nutmeg, and cayenne until incorporated. Fold in the chocolate chips and chopped pecans, then pour the filling into the baked crust. Top with pecan halves and mini pretzels in what ever pattern you desire. Press them into the filling lightly with the back of a spatula.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or until the top is brown, the sides start to bubble, and the inside is only slightly jiggly. Check halfway through and cover with aluminum foil tent if the top or edges are getting too brown. Sprinkle with flake salt and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  5. Meanwhile, in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, add the whipping cream and vanilla. Whip on high speed, slowly adding the sugar one tablespoon at a time. Continue to whip until soft peaks form. Do not over whip.
  6. Serve the pie with a dollop of whipped cream. Sprinkle with more cocoa powder and flake salt as a garnish.
Dark Chocolate Pie Crust Ingredients:
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon espresso powde
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cubed
  • 4 tablespoons ice water
Chocolate Pecan Filling Ingredients:
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne
  • 10 oz. semisweet chocolate baking chips
  • 1 cup chopped pecan halves, plus some intact halves for the top of the pie
  • 1/4 cup whole mini pretzels, for the top of the pie
  • 1 teaspoon flake salt for sprinkling
Vanilla Whipped Cream Ingredients:
  • 1-1/2 cups cold heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar