Pecan Fingers – A vintage recipe that earned “Keeper” status decades ago!

A few weeks ago, mom cookie pie bars made these for the Schuermann Family. She made them because she knew they were one of Ken and Alice’s favorite. As I took the first bite, I remembered how delicious these treats are and thought to myself “Why haven’t I made these??”. That mental whisper was quickly followed by a directive: “You will be making these and sharing them with the world ((via Food for a Year – however small that world may be)). Because, what the world needs now is this cookie bar perfection.”


This recipe came from mom’s vintage 1960’s Original Betty Crocker’s Cookbook, entitled “Pecan Fingers”. It also happens to be in my “New and Revisied” 1979 edition.


Now in my edition, if I didn’t know what I should be looking for, I may have overlooked this treasure because it is buried under “Coconut Chews” ((which sounds mouthwateringly yummy)) as a recipe alternative entitled “Pecan Chews”. 

Oh yes. Sweet, gooey, a hint of salt, a perfect sweet and buttery “press and bake” crust – and, the very top layer of the Pecan Finger has a crispness that delights every sense as you bite through to the oozy brown sugar pecan filling. Heaven. A bite of heaven.


It is important to start this recipe by lining and prepping ((flouring and greasing)) an 11½” x 8′ x 2″ baking dish. The recipe actually calls for a 9″ x 13″, but mom made the with the smaller pan and I loved to more. The crust is thicker, the filling is thicker ((and slightly runny in the center)) and the overall product is simply delightful.


Speaking of the crust, it is the simplest crust I have ever made, a “Press & Bake” style ((as I like to call it)).


Simply fork together flour, powdered sugar, butter & shortening.


Dump it into the lined baking dish. 


Then press and bake. 


 While the crusts bakes for 12 to 15 minutes, prepare the filling. 


Blend the ingredients together.


As you can imagine, the brown sugar ((along with the pecans)) is the key to this filling. 


Pour the filling into the baked crust.


Return the bars to the oven and finish off the baking.


Next, try hard not to eat them all in one sitting. I had to wrap these babies up and freeze them – or else I would have eaten every last one of them. True.

Pecan Fingers
Yields 24
A wonderfully simple & delicious pecan bar cookie. The brown sugar pecan filling layer atop the sweet buttery crust...who could ask for anything more?
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
35 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
35 min
  1. 3/4 c powdered sugar
  2. 3/4 c shortening (or half butter & half shortening, softened*)
  3. 1 1/2 c flour
Pecan Finger Filling
  1. 2 eggs
  2. 1 c brown sugar, packed
  3. 2 T Flour
  4. 1/2 t salt
  5. 1 t vanilla
  6. 1 c chopped pecans
  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  1. Mix powdered sugar and shortening/butter blend. Stir in 1 1/2 c flour, combining until a sandy, well blended texture has been formed. Press in prepared pan. Bake crust until golden brown, 12-15 minutes.
  1. Mix remaining ingredients. Spread over baked crust. Bake 20 minutes; cool. Cut into bars.
  2. Serves 24
  1. *I used a shortening butter combination and it worked wonderfully.
Adapted from Betty Crocker's Cookbook, 1979
Food for a Year:

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