Cranberry Pecan Pumpkin Tart

Dessert, Fall Recipes, Holiday Recipes, Pies and Tarts, Seasonal Recipes, Thanksgiving Recipes, Winter Recipes | 25 comments

This year our Thanksgiving was pretty laid back. We stayed home, just the four of us. So even though I enjoy cooking for a crowd, it was nice to not have any of that pressure. And because of that, I decided to take a few liberties with a couple of recipes. The kitchen was just a little quieter, definitely less crowded, and a bit more relaxed.

pumpkin cranberry pecan tart

With the kids and Eric busy decorating the Christmas Tree and breaking out the decor for the next holiday to come around, I decided to experiment a bit. I took my very favorite Pumpkin Pie with Caramel Pecan Topping and switched it up a bit.

At first I was just going to bake it as a tart instead of pie, but at the last minute I decided to add some fresh cranberries to the topping. That was a smart move! I increased the cinnamon and a couple other spices and added some cardamom too. I like this pie (or tart) even better than before, which I didn’t think was possible.

cinnamon sticks, cranberries, and pumpkin pie

Eric and I both agreed that not only is this version even tastier, but it’s also beautifully festive. As trite as it may sound, this tart was, in a word, perfection. It barely lasted a full 24 hours in our home. And nothing stopped me from eating a slice for breakfast the next day.

Served with a dollop of vanilla cinnamon whipped cream, I don’t know how it could get any better. It’s simple to make the vanilla cinnamon whipped cream: I just made whipped cream like usual, adding some vanilla extract and a few dashes of cinnamon.

cranberry pecan pumpkin tart

Just because Thanksgiving is over doesn’t mean baking with pumpkin has to be over too! This is certainly a pie I wouldn’t mind having another slice of before winter is over…and we have a ways before that happens. What pumpkin recipes will you still be making even though Thanksgiving is over? Do you have year-round favorites?

Don’t forget to head over to the Recipe Exchange: Chocolate Gingerbread post to vote for your favorite chocolate recipe. Didn’t get to submit a chocolate recipe last week? This Wednesday’s theme is also chocolate!

Cranberry Pecan Pumpkin Tart

a goodLife{eats} creation
makes 1 - 11 inch tart

Print Save Recipe


For the Pie or Tart:
15 oz can pumpkin
3 slightly beaten eggs
1/3 cup half-and-half or heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon tsp vanilla
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp orange zest
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/8 tsp cloves
1/8 teaspoon cardamom
1 single pie or tart crust

For the Cranberry Pecan Topping:
4 ounces fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
4 teaspoons all-purpose flour
2/3 cup chopped pecans
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons cold butter


In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, zest, salt, and all of the spices (nutmeg through cardamom). In a separate bowl, combine the pumpkin, eggs, half-and-half or cream, and vanilla.

Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and lightly beat by hand until well combined. Pour the pumpkin mixture into a pastry-lined tart plate. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the brown sugar, flour, and salt, and butter to a small food processor and chop until it resembles a coarse mixture. Stir in the chopped cranberries and pecans.

Remove tart from the oven and sprinkle the cranberry mixture on top. Return the tart to the oven and bake for 10-20 minutes, or until the tart is set, topping is golden and bubbly, and the crust is golden.

Cool on a wire rack. Cover and refrigerate within 2 hours.

TIP: It's easier to remove the first slice of pie from the plate if you cut the first piece and then cut the second before removing the first.

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    Estela @ Weekly Bite - December 06, 2010 @ 6:15 am

    I love this! My favorite is the burst of tartness that cranberries add to a dessert :)


  • 2
    Heather (Heather's Dish) - December 06, 2010 @ 6:43 am

    i’m pretty sure you just made the most perfect Thanksgiving dessert known to man…you combined all of the best things into one!


  • 3
    Liz @ Blog is the New Black - December 06, 2010 @ 6:46 am

    Wow- that looks like a gorgeous dessert. All those things are great individually, but together? WOW!


  • 4
    Suzi - December 06, 2010 @ 7:17 am

    Heard a funny story about a similar pie on NPR (national public radio) a few weeks ago. The subject was pet caused holiday disaster. Well, it seems, as told by her husband many years later, this young housewife made a beautiful Cranberry Pecan pie for the family Thanksgiving Day dinner. After taking it from the oven, she placed it on the kitchen table to cool. Alittle while later her husband walked into the kitchen to find their cat sitting in the middle of the pie, licking his paws. The moral of the story – even kitty likes a good pie.


  • 5
    Shaina - December 06, 2010 @ 7:41 am

    I’m still jealous you ate all of it. Really, you should be sending gifts like this to your friends. :-p


    • Katie Goodman

      Katie replied: — December 6th, 2010 @ 7:43 AM

      I don’t think this would survive a trip to Minnesota! You’ll just have to come here. ;)

    • Shaina replied: — December 6th, 2010 @ 10:01 AM

      Excuses, excuses.

  • 6
    Mark Scarbrough - December 06, 2010 @ 8:21 am

    I think taking Thanksgiving down a notch in terms of its pressure is about the smartest thing imaginable. I almost went into a panic this year, what with all the posts, articles, and videos about making “the most perfect Thanksgiving ever.” And once the pressure is off, you can make innovative, wonderful desserts like this one. Lovely. Just lovely.


  • 7
    Lauren - December 06, 2010 @ 9:55 am

    This tart sounds delicious, and the photos are absolutely gorgeous! I love the idea of a cranberry pecan topping to pumpkin pie – so many wonderful flavors!


  • 8
    Cookbook Queen - December 06, 2010 @ 9:56 am

    Girl…I’m so with you on the laid back Thanksgiving!! That is my favorite kind!!

    This tart looks great!!


  • 9
    naomi - December 06, 2010 @ 10:30 am

    I love the cranberry topping touch. It makes it so suitable for Christmas day dessert!


  • 10
    Wenderly - December 06, 2010 @ 2:19 pm

    Love the pop of red that the cranberries add!


  • 11
    Stanislav - December 06, 2010 @ 2:35 pm

    What on earth have you done? These are beyond acceptable in the indulgence factor. And now I can’t think about anything else. These cookies with good tea:) jummy jummy


  • 12
    Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets - December 06, 2010 @ 3:30 pm

    This looks delicious. I love the tartness of cranberries. Great lighting in your photos, too.


  • 13
    Cathy B. @ Bright Bakes - December 06, 2010 @ 6:18 pm

    wow, this is beautiful! And all my favorite fall/winter flavors..pecans, check. cranberries, check, pumpkin, check. Can’t wait to bake!
    cathy b. @ brightbakes


  • 14
    alex at a moderate life - December 06, 2010 @ 8:25 pm

    Hi Katie! I followed an entry in the november recipe exchange contest to your lovely site! I am now following your tweet, facebook and grabbed your rss feed. This thanksgiivng my mother made pumpkin pie, I made apple pie from scratch with a lard/butter crust (yes, I rendered my own leaf lard!), and my sister made a cranberry tart. We had all three together with vanilla bean ice cream. I happened to have the cranberry and pumpkin side by side and remarked to my mother, “gee, this tastes so good together! gotta figure out how to make a combo pie.” Wish granted! Will be trying this for Christmas! all the best, Alex@amoderatelife


  • 15
    Jun - December 06, 2010 @ 8:57 pm

    I don’t know cranberry can go with pumpkin. Have to try this soon.


  • 16
    HappyWhenNotHungry - December 07, 2010 @ 7:11 am

    This pie looks delicious and so festive too. Thanks for sharing!


  • 17
    Kristen - December 07, 2010 @ 7:51 am

    What an interesting combination! Looks good, for sure!


  • 18
    Renee - December 07, 2010 @ 4:02 pm

    I still make Pumpkin Corn Muffins to go with soups and chilis.


  • 19
    Mage - December 07, 2010 @ 10:27 pm

    WoW! This is one perfect match. I never thought of mixing cranberry with our very traditional pumpkin, tis’ very refreshing to know. Would certainly enjoy making this one at home. Enjoy the season!


  • 20
    Tickled Red - December 09, 2010 @ 6:11 am

    Oooo…yum! I’m going to have to make this for my dad. He is the pie expert in our family.


  • 21
    @pril - November 17, 2011 @ 5:08 pm

    I shared this on my blog with a link back for the recipe:



  • 22
    Rachel - November 02, 2014 @ 7:53 pm

    This looks fantastic! I might make a big batch of it for a community meal at my local food pantry…do you think I could use the filling and topping for individual pies using gingersnaps as the crust?


    • Katie Goodman

      Katie Goodman replied: — November 6th, 2014 @ 7:47 AM

      That would probably be fine

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