Note: Toasting the pecans, cooking the caramel and preparing the crust can all be done simultaneously. This dessert can be prepared in 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350 and toast the pecans for 8-12 minutes until they are lightly browned. Let cool completely. Chop and place into a medium bowl.
Spray a 9x9 inch square pan with baking spray and cut a piece of parchment long enough to fit the bottom exactly but hang over two opposite sides.
Prepare the Caramel: Measure the first 4 ingredients together in a small pot or saucepan and whisk over medium heat until combined. Bring it to a boil. Watch the heat carefully and turn it down just as the caramel mixture begins to crawl up the sides of the pot. You want the mixture boiling enough that it will get thick, but not so much that it will boil over and make a mess of the stove. Just watch it for a minute and adjust the heat up and down until you find the sweet spot. Remember, it needs to be simmering pretty quickly, but not moving up the sides of the pot. Let the mixture cook for 20 minutes. Take the low carb caramel off of the heat and whisk in the 2 ounces of salted butter, sifted powdered sweetener, stevia glycerite, Brandy and vanilla until incorporated.
Make the Shortbread Crust: While the pecans are toasting and the caramel is cooking, measure all of the dry ingredients into a smallish mixing bowl. Mix thoroughly with a whisk. Melt the butter and add it to the dry ingredients. Stir and press the mixture with a large spoon or rubber spatula until the butter is incorporated. Squeeze a small amount in your hand to test if it will hold together nicely. If not, add 1-2 more tablespoons of melted butter. Press very firmly into the prepared pan by laying a piece of waxed paper over the crust and pressing firmly with a flat bottomed glass.
Assemble and Bake: Pour the caramel into the chopped pecans and mix together. Pour the mixture on top of the shortbread crust and gently spread it evenly over the crust. Tilt the pan a bit to distribute the caramel. Preheat the oven to 350 and position the rack at the bottom position. Bake the Caramel Pecan Pie Squares for 25 minutes. Remove and cool completely.
Serve: Run a thin sharp knife around the inside of the pan. Pull the whole recipe of pecan bars out of the pan by pulling on the overhanging parchment. It will take a little bit of coaxing. Lay flat and cut into 16 squares. Refrigerate or serve.
These bars become firm upon refrigeration.
Low Carb Pecan Pie Bars
Amount Per Serving
Calories 362Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat 11g69%
Polyunsaturated Fat 5g
Monounsaturated Fat 16g
Vitamin A 600IU12%
Vitamin C 0.8mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.