Candied Pecan Cheese Braid
Candied Pecan Cheese Braid – a beautifully golden cheese braid created with puff pastry, a cream cheese filling, and candied pecans.
Several years ago I was asked to create an original recipe using Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry. Just creating a recipe using their wonderful products sounded like lots of fun, but the best part of this challenge for me was that they requested I use an ingredient indigenous to Georgia!
Now, I know that when anyone thinks of Georgia they immediately think of peaches. But peaches are just one of our many food crops. Did you know that Georgia ranks first in the nation in the production of broiler chickens, peanuts and pecans?
We rank second in production of cotton and rye, and third in production of peaches and tomatoes. Just a little Georgia trivia for you.
Actually, when I think of Georgia crops I always think of peanuts first and pecans second. That’s probably because I grew up in a region where those crops were especially important. And so, I chose Georgia pecans as the indigenous product for my recipe development.
This is really two recipes in one. A recipe for candied pecans and a second recipe for a cheese braid using those delicious candied pecans. I’d typically serve this braid warm for breakfast, but it’s also delicious for dessert with a nice cup of coffee.
How to Make Candied Pecan Cheese Braid
Make the Candied Pecans
Start by making the candied pecans. You can do this step several days in advance and store the pecans in a tightly covered container until you’re ready to use them.
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Beat one egg white until stiff peaks form. Stir in the brown sugar and vanilla extract. Your mixture should look similar to the photo above. Pour in the pecans and stir to coat them well.
Spread the pecan mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes or until the pecans are browned and no longer shiny.
Let them cool completely on the baking sheet on a wire rack. Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the candied pecans for the filling and save the rest for another use.
Make the Cheese Braid
Now to make the cheese braids – begin by defrosting a package of Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry sheets. When the pastry sheets are ready to use, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
Beat the cream cheese and sugar on low speed until the mixture is smooth. Add an egg and vanilla extract and beat until just combined. Set aside for now.
Unfold one of the pastry sheets on a lightly floured surface. Roll the sheet into a 10-inch square.
Place the pastry on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread half the cream cheese mixture down the center of the pastry square.
Sprinkle 3/4 cup of the candied pecans over the cream cheese.
How to “Braid” the Pastry
Cut slits 1 inch apart from the two sides of the pastry to within 1/2 inch of the filling. Starting at one end, fold the pastry strips over the filling, alternating sides, to cover filling and form a braid. Repeat with the remaining pastry sheet.
Beat together the remaining egg and water in a small bowl. Brush pastries with egg wash. Bake for 20 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown. Let pastries cool on the baking sheets on wire racks for 10 minutes.
Makes 16 servings.
🧾 More Recipes You’ll Like
- Puff Pastry Cheese Straws
- Cream Cheese Filled Crescent Roll Pastries
- Classic Southern Pecan Pie
- Crescent Roll Breakfast Stacks
- Sausage-Pineapple Rollups
HAVE YOU TRIED THIS RECIPE?
I’d LOVE to know what you thought!
Leave a rating below in the comments and let me know how you liked it!
WE’RE ON FACEBOOK, TOO!
If you’d like to hang out with lots of other Southern Comfort Food lovers, make sure to join my FREE PRIVATE Facebook group.
Candied Pecan Cheese Braid
- 1 egg white
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 4 cups pecan halves
- 8 oz cream cheese softened
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 package 17.3 oz Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry sheets, thawed
- 1 tblsp. water
- Begin by making the candied pecans.
- Heat the oven to 275°F.
- Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Beat the egg white in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until stiff peaks form.
- Gently stir in the brown sugar and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract. Add the pecans and stir to coat.
- Spread the pecan mixture on the baking sheet.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until the pecans are browned and no longer shiny. Let the pecans cool completely on the baking sheet on a wire rack. Reserve 1 1/2 cups candied pecans for the filling and save the rest for another use.
To make the cheese braid:
- Thaw one package of Pepperidge Farm Pastry Sheets.
- When the pastry sheets are ready to use, preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Beat the cream cheese and granulated sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until the mixture is smooth. Add 1 egg and the remaining vanilla extract and beat until just combined.
- Beat the remaining egg and water in a small bowl with a fork. Unfold 1 pastry sheet, roll into a 10-inch square and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Spread half the cream cheese mixture down the center of the pastry square. Sprinkle the cheese mixture with 3/4 cup reserved pecans.
- Cut slits 1 inch apart from the 2 sides of the pastry to within 1/2 inch of the filling. Starting at one end, fold the pastry strips over the filling, alternating sides, to cover the filling. Repeat with the remaining pastry sheet. Place the filled pastries onto 2 baking sheets. Brush the pastries with the egg mixture.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the pastries are golden brown. Let the pastries cool on the baking sheets on wire racks for 10 minutes.
Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.
This post was originally sponsored by Pepperidge Farm.
More Braided Pastry Recipes …
- Apple Danish Braid from Natasha’s Kitchen
- Easy Breakfast Braid from Gimme Some Oven
- Harvest Breakfast Braid from Kevin and Amanda
- Lemon Cream Cheese Braid from Cookies and Cups
Very good taste combo great with a cup of tea. However, I would definitely chop the pecans after candying them.
This looks amazing. I’ll happily finish off those extra candied pecans for you ;)
Lana- How great for them to contact you to come up with a recipe. I bet that was fun. That braid looks like the perfect meal for a family breakfast. Yummy!
This looks ridiculously delicious!! omg
so beautiful Lana – i have yet to try a braided bread – am afeared!!!
Looks absolutely fabulous. If I had energy, I would make that. Right now. It will have to wait a day or so. But, I’m sure it will be more than worth the wait.
greetings i was wondering why is does the recipe make so much if it isn’t even going to be used? why not adjust the ingredients?
That’s a good question, Raja. The way I originally wrote this was as two separate recipes – one for the Candied Pecans and one for the Pecan Cheese Braid. The candied pecan recipe uses 1 egg white and 4 cups of pecans among other ingredients to make 4 cups of candied pecans. That’s the smallest amount you can make with 1 egg white which would be difficult to divide. We usually make the candied pecans around Christmas time when we serve them on their own as a holiday candy.
Because I was being compensated for developing this recipe by Pepperidge Farm, it had to undergo testing in their kitchens and the professionals there re-wrote it as one recipe as you see it in the post. My suggestion is to make the recipe for Candied Pecans, take out the amount needed for the Pecan Cheese Braid, and serve the remaining candied pecans to be eaten out of hand. Or package them in pretty bags and share with friends and neighbors!
great suggestion thanx!
Small world! I was the chef in the home of John Dorrance (whose father invented condensed soup in his little soup factory in Camden, NJ, Campbell’s Soup)…He lived in Gladwyn Pa…His heirs still own the company. Mr. Dorrance’s company also own Pepperidge Farm and Godiva Chocolates. Our connection here? Pepperidge farm…we are more connected that you thought!!! Mr. Dorrance was also co-owner of Horseshoe Plantation where I was his “cook”! He later moved us to PA to cook in his home. Dianne
This belongs on my table immediately. :)
This is gorgeous and I think I could eat the entire thing by myself! Cream cheese, puff pastry and candied pecans, oh my goodness.
That’s a beautiful braid!
Great job as always!!! This looks so yummy, I might have to try it right away. Love U
wow is this ever gorgeous …. great job!
Beautiful braid! I love the idea of candying the pecans first. I bet it was so tasty.
What a great idea! I adore using puff pastry and this is another recipe to add to my list.
oh yum! and not too difficult either!
Beautiful, Lana, and these are flavors close to my heart. I spent a pretty good part of my childhood shelling pecans, since my grandparents grew them, they arrived at our house in 50-pound sacks, and my thrifty parents always thought of plenty of uses for them. To me they are still the nut against which all others are judged. Can’t wait to try this yummy recipe.