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Melt-in-your-mouth Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake is a moist, rich, and delicious cake recipe with the texture of classic pound cake and crunch from buttered pecans.

Melt-in-your-mouth Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake

Butter pecan is popular in the U.S. particularly in the South where pecans are the nuts of choice. The flavor ‘Butter Pecan’ is the combination of roasted pecans, butter, and vanilla flavoring. Most people think of butter pecan flavor as being reserved for ice cream. However, the flavor combination is good in desserts from ice cream, cookies, and cakes.

The flavor of my Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake is rich and complex. It’s buttery, nutty, with a hint of caramel. The texture is soft and tender. I made a butter pecan glaze and poured it onto the hot cake. This glaze seeps into the cake making it moist and decadent.

Please hop over and read How to Bake the Perfect Pound Cake. I share a lot of helpful tips. You may also enjoy some of the other pound cakes in my Pound Cake Series. Below are a few of the pound cake recipes that I’ve shared.

Additionally, a glaze is optional, but I highly recommend it. For me, it really adds that extra something special to this Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake.

This bundt pan worked well on the Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake. Typically, I prefer and use this tube pan. Since I wanted the glaze to soak into the cake, I found a bundt pan worked better.


Butter Pecan Pound Cake

Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake

  1. I used buttermilk as the liquid in my Southern Butter Pecan Cake. Buttermilk is amazing in cakes and pound cakes. As a result, it makes the baked good soft, springy, and tender while the texture has the perfect density and fluffiness. It’s unparalleled to any other dairy in cakes. Substitute for buttermilk: For each cup of buttermilk, you can use 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice plus enough milk to measure 1 cup. Stir, then let stand for 5 minutes. You can also use 1 cup of plain yogurt or 1-3/4 teaspoons cream of tartar plus 1 cup milk.
  2. For the pecans: I pulsed the pecans in my mini-food processor so that they were approximately the size of a sunflower seed (not the hull, the seed). They were small but not ground fine or like flour. Most noteworthy, the pecans I used as a garnish in the photos are larger than the pecans I stirred into the cake. Pecans gave a nice texture and crunch to the cake.
  3. Use real butter. No substitutions.
  4. Furthermore, I also recommend real vanilla extract. The tastes in real versus imitation is evident. Consequently, real vanilla extract is more expensive, but you only use about one tablespoon per recipe. Another note, store your vanilla extract in an airtight jar, in a cool, dark place. Your kitchen cupboard is usually an ideal place. Primarily keep it away from your stove or another heat source.
  5. As well, a good rule of thumb when baking pound cakes is to always leave 2 inches from the batter to the top of the pan to allow for the cake to rise. If you find you have too much batter, use the extra to make cupcakes. In particular, my Old Fashioned Blue Ribbon Pound Cake and my Mile High Pound Cake are very large cakes with more batter than normal.
  6. Finally, always place your baking pan on a cookie sheet to catch any overflows.

Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake

Printable Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake Recipe below! Enjoy!

Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake

Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake

Made with buttermilk, Southern Butter Pecan Pound Cake is soft and moist. It has a nice caramel flavor from butter and brown sugar and crunch from pecans. 
Author: Paula
4.79 from 32 votes
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Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 50 minutes
Servings: 16 slices
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  • 1 cup butter at room temperature
  • 1 and ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 and ½ cups brown sugar firmly packed
  • 6 large eggs at room temperature
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour sifted and measured correctly
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup buttermilk at room temperature
  • 2 tablespoons butter  
  • 1 and ½ cups pecans finely chopped


  • ½ cup butter
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • See the narrative above for substitutions.



  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F
  • Grease and flour (or sugar) a 10-inch tube pan.
  • Melt 2 tablespoons real butter and toast pecans until fragrant. Cool
  • Mix butter until smooth. Add granulated sugar and brown sugar and mix until smooth and fluffy.
  • Add eggs one at a time, mixing until the yolk is incorporated before adding the next egg.
  • Combine flour, salt, and baking powder in a bowl. 
  • Combine vanilla and buttermilk.
  • Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk mixture to mixture, beginning and ending with flour.
  • Fold in toasted pecans by hand.
  • Spoon batter into prepared tube pan. 
  • Bake at 325 degrees F for 65 to 70 minutes. Test with a wooden pick. The cake is done with no crumbs or dry crumbs remain on the pick.
  • Cool 20 minutes on a wire rack.
  • While the cake is cool, make the glaze. 


  • On medium-low heat, add butter, sugar, and water to a small pan. Heat and stir until the sugar is dissolved, but do not boil the mixture. When the sugar is dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
  • Pour hot mixture over the cake (that's still in the bundt pan). You can poke holes in the cake if desired so the cake soaks up more of the glaze. 
  • Allow the cake to sit 10 more minutes to absorb the glaze before inverting on a serving tray.
  • Serve warm or room temperature. It's great with vanilla ice cream. 
  • Store up to 5 days in an airtight container. Can be stored up to 9 days in the refrigerator.


Recipe from Paula All images and content are copyright protected. 


Calories: 546kcal | Carbohydrates: 69g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 130mg | Sodium: 290mg | Potassium: 169mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 720IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 2mg
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  1. 5 stars
    I just made this. Per your extra comments I also had extra batter to make a small Bundt cake. It has been ages since I made a cake from scratch and never a pound cake. They both turned out great. I messed up the glaze as overcooked it slightly but still used it. Recipe is very explicit and the comments before recipe also extremely helpful. I left cakes in pan and put glaze in. Worked well for me.

  2. 5 stars
    Just made this following directions exactly EXCEPT did not top with nuts. Recipe delivers as promised, and is indeed moist, rich and delicious. Pinned and will be making again! Yum! 🙂

  3. 4 stars
    I was disappointed with this one. It was not so terrible to make. I love the process anyway. It came out beautiful. The disappointing part…IT WAS SO DRY! I watched it so close so this would not happen. I started on the low end of the timer. The only thing I did different from my normal cake baking routine was leaving the cake in the pan to cool as suggested. I may try it again, but I will be removing the cake from the pan immediately. It had a good flavor!

  4. Do you ever pour the glaze over the cake after removing it from the pan?

    1. Yes, I typically remove it to make sure it isn’t stuck in any areas, put it back in, poke holes in it and pour the sauce over and let it soak 20ish minutes

4.79 from 32 votes (25 ratings without comment)

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