Sticky pecan rolls are a tradition in my family, a holiday classic we enjoy sharing around the table at Thanksgiving and Christmas with one unspoken rule – leftover rolls always become breakfast the next morning. Here I’ve taken the family classic and dialed down the sweetness a bit in favor of my favorite fall flavors: maple and pecan.
Dark amber maple syrup stands in for the usual corn syrup, and maple sugar gives the sticky delicious topping a double hit of maple. The golden, pecan-studded pillows are impossible to resist fresh out of the oven, or really any time at all. Served up warm with a side of steaming coffee, these sweet rolls are a fall delight, and all too easy to become habit-forming.
- 3 1/2 cups (490 g) flour, divided
- 1 package Red Star PLATINUM Yeast
- 1/4 cup (48 g) sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1 cup (240 g) low-fat milk
- 1/4 cup (56 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 6 Tbsp (84 g) unsalted butter, cubed
- 6 Tbsp (72 g) maple sugar (see note below)
- 1/4 cup (82 g) dark amber maple syrup
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup (60 g) pecans
- 2 Tbsp (28 g) unsalted butter, melted
- 1/4 cup (48 g) sugar
- 3/4 tsp cinnamon
- Combine 2 cups (280 g) flour, yeast, sugar, and salt in a large mixer bowl; mix on low speed until incorporated. Heat milk in a microwave-safe measuring cup for 45 seconds to 1 minute, until very warm (120-130°F). Add warm milk, butter, and egg to flour mixture and mix until combined; mix in remaining 1 1/2 cups (210 g) flour. Switch out the flat beater for a dough hook, and knead dough for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic. The dough is ready when it feels tacky but doesn’t stick to your fingers (if necessary, add additional flour 1 tablespoon at a time while kneading).
- Place dough in a large bowl coated with nonstick spray and cover with plastic. Let the dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 40 minutes. To check if dough has doubled, lightly flour two fingers and press them down into center of dough. If indentations remain, dough has risen enough.
- When the dough is ready, gently press down dough; cover and let rest 5 minutes. Spray a 13 x 9-inch baking dish (or two 9-inch round pans) with nonstick spray. For the sticky topping, combine butter, maple sugar, maple syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil and cook for 1 minute while stirring constantly. Pour mixture into prepared baking dish; let cool slightly before arranging pecan halves over topping.
- Turn dough out on a lightly floured board and roll into an 18 x 12-inch rectangle. Brush dough with melted butter, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over dough. Carefully roll dough up into a tight log and pinch edges to seal. Trim off uneven ends and score dough into 18 equal slices. Use unflavored dental floss to slice dough crosswise (slip a long slice of floss under log of dough and cross on top to cut slices cleanly). Place rolls cut side up into prepared baking dish. Cover loosely with plastic and let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
- While the rolls rise, preheat oven to 350°F. Bake rolls for about 30 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool for 3 minutes before carefully inverting onto rack – let pan stand 1 minute so that the sticky topping drizzles down over the rolls. Wrap leftover rolls well and warm before serving, or wrap well and freeze for longer storage.
Maple sugar is available online; you can also make your own at home. If you don’t have access to maple sugar, you may substitute dark or light brown sugar – keep in mind that a substitution will impact the flavor.
- Calories: 238
- Carbohydrates: 32