I was born and raised in Charleston, South Carolina. Us tried and true Southern gals love our pecans, especially when they are in pralines.
I always love going down to the Charleston Market or to Savannah’s Candy Kitchen to get some fresh pecan pralines. But, since I recently moved out of Charleston, I needed a good excuse to learn to make my own pecan pralines!
Being the healthy conscious person I am, I also wanted to make pecan pralines that weren’t as bad for me as what I’d find in a candy shop. So, here they are. I hope you love these decadent southern pecan pralines as much as my family and I do!
They take a bit of patience and you absolutely must have a candy thermometer to pull them off. The temperature is a science!
So, this National Praline Day (June 23rd), celebrate with some of these lighter pecan pralines!
slightly adapted from Chocolate & Carrots
- 3 cups natural cane sugar
- 1 cup reduced fat milk
- 3 tablespoons buttermilk powder (I use Organic Valley)
- 3 tablespoons light-colored corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups of pecan halves or pieces
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- In a metal large pot, combine the first 5 ingredients.
- Over medium-low heat stirring occasionally, until the sugar dissolves.
- Continue to cook over medium-low heat until your candy thermometer reads 234°F (This takes about 15 minutes), stirring occasionally.The sugar mixture will also bubble up to a little more than quadruple the size. Also, be very careful. The hot candy can pop up and burn you.
- Meanwhile, combine the pecans, butter and vanilla in a small bowl. Set aside. Also set out at least two baking sheets covered with silpat mats or parchment paper.
- Once the thermometer has reached the 234°F, remove from the heat and let it stand for 5 minutes.
- Stir in the nuts, butter and vanilla and stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture begins to lose its shine (about 6 minutes).
- Working quickly, drop by the tablespoon onto the baking sheet.
- Let them stand for 20 minute or until set.
Servings: about 30 pralines
Note: Store pralines in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.