What can I substitute for corn syrup in pecan pie?

What can I substitute for corn syrup in pecan pie?

Pecan Recipes Blog


What can I substitute for corn syrup in pecan pie? Pecan pie recipes typically call for using a decent amount of corn syrup, however, there are alternatives you can use. The combination of how you use the corn syrup substitute will impact the sweetness of the pecan pie. Do not worry, even with the different options, your pecan pie will still be just as delicious. 


Corn Syrup Alternatives


  • Maple Syrup
    • When substituting pancake syrup such as maple syrup for corn syrup, it is best to use a one-to-one ratio. For every one cup of corn syrup that the recipe calls for, use one cup of maple syrup instead. 
    • The great thing about maple syrup is it has some nutritional benefits. Maple syrup contains antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, such as Vitamin B6, calcium, niacin, potassium, and riboflavin. 
    • If you are concerned with the change in flavor, your pecan pie will still be sweet, however, maple syrup does tend to have a more earthy flavor. If you already expect that taste change, then enjoy this substitute for corn syrup in pecan pie.
  • Cane Syrup
    • Most cane syrup is produced from organically grown sugar cane. Since it is made from sugar cane, it will be just as sweet, if not, sweeter than using standard corn syrup. 
    • Cane syrup is made from boiling sugar cane juice until it develops a molasses-like consistency. It will also have a slight molasses-like taste to it. 
    • When substituting, use a one-to-one ratio, with one cup of cane syrup for every one cup of corn syrup. 
  • Honey
    • Honey will tend to have a more distinct flavor and can be used in equal amounts to corn syrup. This means you can use one cup of honey for every one cup of corn syrup the recipe calls for. 
    • This alternative is healthier than corn syrup and is packed with antioxidants. The darker the honey is, the more antioxidants it will have.
    • When it comes to flavor, the lighter the honey the more mild-tasting it is. The darker the honey, the more bold the flavor is.  
  • Brown Rice Syrup
    • This is made by using the liquid from fermented brown rice. It is heated until the liquid thickens. 
    • The taste is sweet, usually carrying a cooked brown rice flavor with strong nutty hints. 
    • There are also health benefits of using brown rice syrup. Not only does it contain fiber, but there is also at least three percent of your daily sodium and potassium intake. The longer the body takes to absorb these sugars, the less likely you will be slammed with a sugar crash. 
    • Use a one-to-one ratio when measuring, this means one cup of brown rice syrup for every one cup of corn syrup. 
  • Agave Nectar
    • Agave Nectar is a sweetener from Mexico. It comes from the tequila plant. 
    • Because agave nectar is sweeter than corn syrups or sugar, it is best to substitute ¾ cup of agave nectar for every one cup of corn syrup. 


When focused on making a pecan-rich pie, experimenting with the alternatives to corn syrup is the best practice. If you are not sure whether the pie will taste just as good, why not prepare several versions? For a nutty or earthy flavor, consider substituting maple syrup or brown rice syrup instead of corn syrup. If you want something sweeter, try out the agave nectar or cane syrup. Regardless of which syrup alternative you use, remember to use the maximum amount of pecan nuts to get the full spectrum of pecan flavors in your pie. 

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