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Pecan Sticky Buns

January 27, 2011

Day 2 and I’ve realized two things:

1. I think I’m really enjoying this 🙂

2. Baking takes a whole lot longer when you are taking pictures of every step and you are not a photographer by any stretch of the imagination….I’m going to have to work on that one 🙂

I will also try to keep the gratuitous use of smiley’s “:)” to a minimum, sticky buns just make me smile.

Once upon a time my mom was a baker.  We have video proof of her rolling out pie dough at Christmas-time and vague memories of standing on a chair in the kitchen mixing and eating a bowl of chocolate chip cookie dough.  Somewhere along the line of six children the baking ended…I think it had something to do with time (one of the many reasons I will never have six children).  However the baking memory that has stuck with me longest is her sticky buns.  Ooey-gooey, buttery, sugary, pecan smothered buns baked all snug in a pan that gave off the heavenly scent of cinnamon and nuts.  The last time she made them was 1993 when my Dad had just shattered his ankle (yes, that is how much of an impact these treats made).  I’ve carried that memory with me until I finally had enough baking know-how to re-create them.  And, it’s a good thing they take about 4 hours to make because I would indulge much more frequently if they didn’t 🙂

Thank you for enduring my nostalgic tale this long, I promise you’ll forget everything the moment you take a bite…

Pecan Sticky Buns

1. Warm milk, sugar, butter and salt together and let cool










2. Combine yeast and sugar, let them hang out a bit with some warm water.

3. Mix the yeast, milk mixture, eggs and flour together

4. Mix just until combined

5. Place fully kneaded dough in an oiled bowl covered in plastic wrap and let the yeast do its thing

6. Melt butter and brown sugar together. Savor the deliciousness.

7. Mix together more pure awesomeness

8. Create the buttery, sugary, pecan packed base

9. Roll out dough, bathe in butter, add sugar coating, roll and bathe in more butter (I feel like Paula Deen!)

10. Place cut side down

11. Bake until golden brown

12. Flip the pan over to create the ooey-gooey-ness

You know you wanted to see that again…all up close and personal


While these are best eaten fresh (but you shouldn’t really eat 12 of them….at one time…) they are still good for breakfast the next day.  Just pop in the microwave for 20 seconds or so and you have a scrumptious treat and a sugar rush to get you through the day.

So please, pull up a chair, here’s your cup of coffee, and let’s enjoy these sticky buns 🙂

Photo Courtesy of Elle Decor: January 2011

Oh yes, and here’s the recipe:

Pecan Sticky Buns


1 package active dry yeast

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)

1/2 cup milk

1/4 white sugar

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1 teaspoon salt

2 eggs, beaten (and at room temperature)

1 1/2 cup all purpose flour

2 1/2 cup bread flour

1 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, divided

1 cup salted butter divided

2 cups pecans, divided

1 tablespoon ground cinnamon


1. Warm the milk in a small saucepan just until it begins to bubble, then remove from heat.  Add 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup unsalted butter and salt; stir until melted and let cool to lukewarm.

2. In a small bowl, dissolve 1 teaspoon sugar and yeast in 1/2 cup warm water.  Let stand until fully dissolved and creamy, about 10 minutes.

3.  In the bowl of a standing mixer, combine yeast mixture, milk mixture, eggs, and 1 1/2 cup ap flour.  Mix with paddle attachment just until combined.  With the mixer on medium-slow speed add remaining 2 1/2 cup bread flour, 1/2 cup at a time, making sure each addition is fully combined.

4. Switch attachment to dough hook and knead on medium to medium-high speed for about 8 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic.

5. Move dough to a lightly oiled bowl, and turn to coat in oil.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in volume, anywhere from 1-2 hours (it normally takes mine 2 full hours).

6. While dough is rising, melt 3/4 cup salted butter in a small saucepan over medium heat (ok I know you’re pretty much always supposed to use unsalted butter so feel free but for some reason I like the slight salty-ness the regular butter adds). Remove from heat and whisk in 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar until smooth (go ahead and taste it…carefully-don’t burn yourself! Add a few vitamins and I could live off the stuff 🙂 ) Set aside.

7. In a small bowl combine remaining 3/4 cup dark brown sugar, 1/2 cup pecans, finely chopped, and cinnamon.  Set aside this as well.

8. Lightly grease a 9×13 glass baking pan with butter and cut a sheet of parchment paper to fit the bottom, add a little more butter on top of that as well (one can never be too sure).  Pour in the melted butter/brown sugar mix and then sprinkle with about 1 1/2 cup pecans.  note: you can use as little or as many pecans here, I leave them whole but you can chop them and fellow ocd’ers, don’t ocd it too much because when you pour this over the top of the buns at the end, all of your well placed pecan hard work will come to naught.

9. Punch down your dough (thats just for fun) and let it rest for a minute.  Then turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and roll into a 12×18 inch rectangle.  Melt the remaining 1/4 cup salted butter and brush the dough with 2 tablespoons of that.  Sprinkle, generously, with the brown sugar/pecan/cinnamon mixture.  Starting with shorter side, tightly roll up, pinching the seam to seal.  Brush with remaining 2 tablespoons butter.

10.  With a serrated knife, cut into 12, 1 inch, pieces and place cut side down in pan (in 3 rows of 4 buns).  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until almost doubled about 30-45 minutes.  While it is rising, preheat oven to 375 degrees.

11.  Take the plastic wrap off (so you don’t remember a few minutes into it and go sprinting across the house to see what damage you’ve created…because I’ve never done that…) Bake in preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.  Let cool in pan for 3 minutes (roughly-don’t time yourself).  While it’s cooling you can lay a sheet of parchment or wax paper on a baking sheet that has sides.

12.  Invert buns onto sheet and scrape remaining filing from the pan onto the rolls.

Thank me profusely for a new obsession and send me pictures of your own 🙂  (there that wasn’t too many smiley’s, right?!)

16 Comments leave one →
  1. January 28, 2011 1:09 pm

    WOW, I can smell that right through the screen (or maybe i am imagining lol). Either way, these look beyond delicious 🙂 Great job!!!

  2. shavahn permalink
    January 28, 2011 1:36 pm

    Amazing! I got really excited when I saw you were doing a blog.

  3. fred bottcher permalink
    January 29, 2011 3:37 pm

    oh my god they look sooooooo good

  4. September 29, 2011 4:46 am

    thanks for bringing these out of your archives! They look so tasty and loaded with cinnamon and brown sugar-just the way I like them. Yum!

  5. September 29, 2011 7:22 am

    Sticky buns make me smile too. Just be careful, dont get flour all over your fancy camera. These sure would be good for breakfast right now. Thanks for sharing.

  6. September 29, 2011 7:42 pm

    That’s funny – I just made my mother’s cinnamon buns earlier today! It’s probably been just as long since she made hers. I defintely got my love of baking from her though. Enjoy the fruits of your hard labor!

  7. September 30, 2011 7:27 am

    Mmmm that large photo towards the end with all of the buns in the pan….. wow! They look so amazingly beautiful and delicious!

  8. October 7, 2011 1:10 pm

    these look wonderfully gooey and tasty!

  9. January 1, 2012 2:07 am

    Oh My My… this is something I must try,…. though we dont get pecans in India (easily), i think i can replace with some other nuts like toasted almonds or even walnuts.

  10. I luv sweets permalink
    June 22, 2013 3:05 pm



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