An overhead photo showing chocolate pecan sorbet and a chocolate pecan rye pie

Steve McHugh, James Beard Award-nominated chef and owner of Cured in San Antonio, makes an effort to include a lot of Texas ingredients, including pecans, on his menu. This decadent pie features the addition of rye whiskey (McHugh uses Rittenhouse), which adds a hint of spice and complexity. The use of pecan oil in the sorbet produces a rich, satiny texture. Yields approximately 6 slices.

Pie Ingredients:

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • ¼ cup cane syrup
  • 1 tablespoon rye whiskey
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup pecans, chopped
  • ½ cup chocolate chips or chunks
  • 1 pinch ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 9-inch pie shell, homemade or store-bought

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Preheat oven to 425 F. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar and cornstarch. Add the syrups, rye whiskey, and eggs. Whisk thoroughly.

Fold in pecans and chocolate. Season with a pinch of cinnamon and nutmeg. Pour the mixture into the pie shell and bake for 10 minutes on the center rack of the oven. Reduce the temperature to 375 F and bake for 35 more minutes. Remove and allow to cool at room temperature, preferably overnight.

Serve topped with a scoop of sorbet, if desired.

Sorbet Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups glucose syrup
  • ½ cup hot water
  • ¾ cup cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup pecan oil (available from


Combine all ingredients in a blender. Press through a fine strainer and process in an ice cream maker.

This recipe originally appeared in “In Praise of Pecans, Texas’ Favorite Nut” from the October 2020 issue.

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