Here’s an easy way to tell if your pecan pie is done and ready to come out of the oven. Plus, information about how long pecan pie is good for. 

By Amy Zavatto

Pie baking is… easy as pie, right? Maybe for some that old chestnut holds true, but we’re not talking chestnuts; we’re talking pecans. When it comes to judging when pecan pie is done, the beautiful layer that those pretty little nuts form on top of your pie can make it a little hard to judge. With fruit pies, when the sweet, thick juices bubble up through the cut-outs in your nice golden crust—voila!—you can tell that your pie is ready. But with pecan pie, it’s a little less clear. How long should it cook for? How do you know when a pecan pie is done? Should it sit out? Be refrigerated? How long is pecan pie good for? Can you freeze it? All worthy questions. Luckily, there’s no nutcracker needed to get to the heart of the answer; we’ve got it all for you right here.

How to Tell if Pecan Pie Is Done

There’s an easy art to learning how to tell if pecan pie is done. It’s simply the difference between a little jiggle and a full-on wobble. When you check your pie for doneness, gently and carefully hold it by one edge, then give it a little shake back and forth. If the filling is flowing in a wavy movement from the center to the edge, your pie isn’t set quite yet. The way to tell if pecan pie is done is when the center gives you just a little jiggle—like the stable but slightly wiggly movement of Jell-O when you give it a gentle shake—but the edges are stable and set.

The other thing to look for when you want to know when pecan pie is done is this: there will be a little puffiness at the edges of the pie, near the nicely browned crust. Once you hit this sweet spot, take your slightly jiggly pecan pie out of the oven and place it on a wire cooling rack. The filling will continue to cook and fully set as the pie cools. Let your pie finish setting and cool completely for at least two hours.

What Does a Pecan Pie Look Like When It’s Done?

When a pecan pie is done, the nuts and custard combination take on a rich, medium-dark brown hue and the crust will be a gorgeous deep golden color. 

How Long Is Pecan Pie Good For?

According to the United States Department of Agriculture’s Kitchen Companion: Your Food Safe Handbook, because pecan pie contains eggs, it is not recommended that you let it sit indefinitely at room temperature after it has cooled. So how long is pecan pie good for? After covering your fully cooled pie with aluminum foil or plastic wrap, the USDA recommends refrigerating it for up to three days. Trying to get a jump start on holiday baking, or you didn’t finish the whole pie (we can’t imagine you didn’t, but just in case…)? Pop your baked pie in an airtight resealable freezer bag, and the USDA says you can safely freeze it for up to two months. To thaw and warm a frozen pecan pie, thaw it in the refrigerator or at room temperature for at least four hours, then gently warm in a low oven for 15 to 20 minutes.

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