Have you ever had issues with the tart crust but haven’t been able to figure out why?? You are not alone! Everybody faces these issues at some point. (including myself!)
That is why I made this tutorial trying to explain the most common problems most people face and give all of the tips to solve them.
🧡 I love this tart crust because:
- There is no need to blind-bake the tart crust. You can bake it so quickly!
- It is lightly crunchy and is not overly hard.
- The dough is so simple and easy to make.
- It's less sticky than a lot of the other tart dough which makes it easier to roll.
- It can hold the shapes pretty well in the oven.
- I use the recipe to make cookies such as cookie boxes, sugar cookies, icing cookies, etc!
In this post, you'll learn essential baking tips such as:
- How to make the dough with "sablage method" (and what that is.)
- Tips to roll the dough
- How to use different tart tools (and what difference they make)
- Why the dough shrinks in the oven and how to prevent it
- + all the other troubleshooting
📌 How To Make The Tart Dough
Let's start by making the dough.
Step 1: Add all the dried ingredients.
First, add all the dried ingredients to a bowl. Which is, all-purpose flour, almond flour, powdered sugar, and salt.
Not a crucial part but I like to mix them with a mixing pedal after they are added.
Tip: By adding almond flour, the crust gets lighter crunchiness (Due to less amount of gluten from all-purpose flour and oil from the almond) and a very pleasant flavor!
You can sift the flour in advance but honestly, the lumps of them disappear through the process. So it is not a must!
Step 2: Add butter and mix until everything looks sandy.
Next, add butter and mix with a pedal until they look sandy.
Tips for Butter:
- Make sure that the butter is very cold for the process to work properly.
- Cut butter into smaller pieces so that it blends easier.
When it's done, it should look very sandy like in the image below.
It kind of looks like very fine almond flour. This means the butter is coated all around the flour evenly. And this process is called sablage in French. "Sablage" means "like sands". And the method is often called the sablage method.
By doing that, you can create a lighter, flakier texture.
But why?? :
Why do we do the process "sablage" when we make tart dough?
When you mix liquids and flour, they bond together and create protein webs called gluten. You may hear of it before for bread making, but it makes the crust crunchier for tart making.
By coating butter all around the flour, the oil creates a barrier from liquids (egg). - As you know, liquids and oil do not get along so well! That means the liquid (egg) and flour can not bold too much which results in creating less gluten. ...Which leads to a lighter texture!
Step 3: Add egg and mix until everything looks even.
Finally, add the beaten egg and mix until they look nice and even.
Step 4: Chill in a fridge.
When it's just made, you'll feel the dough is still too soft to roll. Chill in a fridge for at least one hour before rolling it.
You can make it the day before and let it rest overnight. Or, you can also freeze it when you are in rush!
I like to wrap the dough and roll it into a wide rectangle shape so that it'll be easier for me to cut and roll it neatly later.
For one batch of this recipe, I like to divide it into 2 wraps sometimes depending on what I am making.
📌 Which Baking Tools To Use
Before we start rolling the dough, let me share a variety of tools you can use to bake tart and how you can choose the right one for you.
Parchment paper or silicone mat?
To bake the crust with rings, we need to place parchment paper or a silicone mat on top of a tray. Without them, the crust may stick to the tray.
Parchment paper might be the most common option. With that, the bottom of the tart crust is not going to be super flat. You'll see small air bumps here and there. But that's not a big issue for most occasions.
With the typical silicone mat, the bottom of the crust gets flatter than the one with parchment paper but is not perfectly flat.
Silicone mesh mat
With a silicone mesh mat, the bottom gets completely flat and it adds a pretty pattern. If you want to make it look very neat and professional for your work or special occasions, this is the way to go!
Types of tart pans/rings
There are many types of tart/tartlet pans and rings you can pick from but today, I categorized them into 3 types:
- Tart/tartlet pan
- Tart/tartlet ring
- Tart/tartlet perforated ring
Although, perforated rings are a type of tart ring, let me categorize them separately today since the character is very unique.
This is the most common and classic form. Some of them have ruffle patterns on the side, some others don't. With these pans, you do not need to lay parchment paper or a silicone mat on top of a tray. That is a great benefit!
This is the type I use most often. I love the tart with straight, 90 degrees side.
Perforated tart/tartlet ring
And this one came out most recently, the ring has lots of tiny holes all around the side. The steam in the dough gets out from the holes as it is baked in the oven and that creates a flat, beautiful-looking crust with no air bumps.
There is no right or wrong, or better or worse. You can use whichever pans and rings you like for your occasions!
📌 How To Roll The Tart Dough
Now the dough is completely chilled and rested. Let's roll it!
Step 1: Dust flour all over.
Before you start rolling the dough, it is very important to dust flour on the working surface, a rolling pin, the dough itself, or whatever the dough is touching directly so that they are not sticking together.
Add flour as needed because this dough can stick to them when four is not applied enough.
Use bread flour for this since the size of bread flour is bigger than cake flour or all-purpose flour. Because of that, the dough does not absorb it as much as others. - the curst gets crunchier by absorbing more flour!
Step 2: Push the dough and make it softer.
When you just took out the dough from a fridge, it is hard because the butter inside is set. That is why it cracks easily by trying to roll it right away.
To soften it gently, push the dough evenly. (Just like tapping a shoulder to wake up someone!)
Push evenly upward or downward with even pressures so that you can get the same thickness.
The dough can crack when you push too hard.
Next, turn it 90 degrees and repeat the same process until you feel the dough is soft enough to roll.
Step 3: Roll the dough.
Once the dough is soft enough, it's time to roll the dough.
Before you start rolling, spread more flour if you feel the dough might stick.
When you roll the dough, there are a couple of key points you need to be mindful of to make the process easier and more successful:
Key tips to roll a tart dough:
- Add the same pressures from your right and left hands to get an even thickness.
- Move as quickly as possible so that the dough does not get too soft.
Nobody can roll fast at the beginning. So don't pressure yourself too much about speed. You'll get used to it each time you practice!
How to roll the dough:
- Roll the dough from the middle toward up.
- Roll the dough from the middle toward down.
- Turn the dough 90 degrees. ( Add more flour if needed.)
- Repeat 1-3 until it gets to the ideal thickness.
The dough scraper is very handy to move the dough without touching it directly. Especially if your hands are warm, try not to touch your dough as much and instead, use the scraper as one of your hands to move it around.
I said it already but applying flours frequently is very crucial paint. If you don't, you'll feel the dough stick easily on a working surface or a rolling pin.
You can roll into your ideal thickness. I LOVE very thin delicate crunchiness for tart crusts, so I roll into about 2-3mm | 0.08-0.1inch thickness.
When it is 2-3mm thick, you'll see through the color of your table or dough scraper slightly like in the image below.
Now, if you feel the dough is getting too soft to handle while you are rolling the dough or after you finish rolling, go ahead and put it back in the fridge again to make it firmer.
You can also roll the dough on top of parchment paper to transfer it easier. Lay something under so that it does not slide when you roll.
📌 How To Set The Dough In Tart Molds
Now, let's set the dough into tart pans or rings! I'll share how you can do so with all the shapes and sizes. Let's start with a classic tart pan.
1. Tartlet pan
First, cut the dough with a cookie cutter that is big enough to cover all the way up to the edge of the pan.
You can also cut with a knife or pie roller as well.
And place it on top of the pan. When you do that, make sure the length of the dough that is over the edge of the pan is completely even to cover the side of the pan all around later.
Next, let all the edge sinks into the pan as you turn it. Just like in the image below.
Next, let the dough completely fit in the pan by pushing with a thumb.
When you do that, push it down a bit to make sure the dough is in all the way down to the corner. We do not want any gaps there! Because the dough slides down a lot as it bakes when the dough is not fit in all the way down to the corner.
Add firm pressure to let the dough sticks to a pan. But do not push too hard so that the dough is not getting squished.
After that, cut the edge with a knife or a dough scraper. This creates a nice shape edge. Or you can also pinch the edge or try other ways as well!
Finally, poke the bottom with a fork so that the dough is not going to rise as it bakes in the oven.
You can also use a pie roller to make holes before you set the dough in pans/rings.
And chill the dough completely before baking.
2. Large tart pan
You can do the same way with larger tart pans.
3. Tartlet ring
For the tart ring, dust some bread flour on the bottom so that the dough is not sticking to the working surface.
Everything else is basically the same as a tart pan.
4. Large tart ring
Do it the same way as the smaller tart ring.
You can either use one or two thumbs to let the dough fit in a ring. Whichever works better for you! For me, I often use one thumb for pans and two thumbs for rings. That is easier for me!
5. Perforated tartlet ring
For perforated rings, you could do the same way as regular tart rings but it is a little bit trickier since the dough sometimes goes in the holes too much that way.
So here, I am showing a different way you can try.
First, cut the dough with the ring. We'll use this as the bottom.
And next, cut stripes for the side.
Push with a thumb and make sure that the dough is fit to the side completely.
Do not push very hard here since the dough goes into the holes too much and it'll be very difficult to take out the crust from the ring after it's baked.
And push the dough in the corner well so that you won't get any gap between them.
When you do not press the corner enough, you'll see big gaps after the dough is baked like in the image below.
Now, cut off the excess dough on the side and push with a thumb to connect them.
And finally, cut off the excess dough on top.
You don't need to poke the bottom with a fork when you use a mesh silicone mat. As I mentioned earlier in the section, the bottom stays perfectly flat with that mesh mat.
6. Large perforated tartlet ring
Do it the same way as the small perforated ring.
📌 How To Bake The Tart Crust
Chill the dough before you bake.
After you set the dough in pans/rings, chill the dough completely before baking them. And this is extremely important!
When you bake them while they are soft (That means the butter got soft in room temperature.), the dough slides down a lot more in the oven before the dough gets cooked and set. ...which results in more uneven-looking tart crusts.
A refrigerator works fine but I like to chill them in a freezer to get the best result!
Once they are completely chilled, it's time to bake! Put it in an oven right away.
BAKE(Preheated) AT 350F / 175 C for 10-20 mins depending on the size until they are golden brown.
* Rotate the position toward the end if needed to color them evenly.
Let them cool down before you use them.
How much you should bake depends on how crispy you want it to get. I like a very toasty and crispy texture, so I bake until the color gets nice golden brown all around. Adjust the time as you like!
📌 Uses For Tart Crust
You can use this recipe for any of your sweet tarts or even cookies! Check out this post to see how I used this dough to bake delicious 10 fall cookies. Chocolate cookie, nuts cookie... etc, all from this one dough!
📌 Frequently Asked Questions
You can replace the same amount with any other flour such as all-purpose flour, cake flour, cornstarch, etc.
Yes! You can wrap it tightly and freeze it for up to a few months.
You can store it in a refrigerator for up to 5 days or in a freezer for up to a few months.
📌 VIDEO: Tart Crust
To see all the steps visually and get a better understanding of all, check out the video tutorial as well:
If you made this at home and enjoyed it, please share your feedback in the comment section under the video! I appreciate it if you can also leave a review on this recipe.
📌 Printable Recipe
Perfect Tart Crust From Scratch
- Stand mixer with a pedal or food processor
- Dough scraper
- Petty knife
- Rolling Pin
- Tart rings or molds
- Silicon (mesh) mat or parchment paper
- Folk optional
- 12.3 oz All-purpose flour
- 1.8 oz Almond flour
- 5.3 oz Powdered sugar
- 6.3 oz Unsalted butter cold, cut in small cubes
- 2.5 oz Egg
To roll it:
- Bread flour Use all-purpose flour if you can't get it.
- Add all the dried ingredients in a bowl.12.3 oz All-purpose flour, 1.8 oz Almond flour, 5.3 oz Powdered sugar, Salt
- Add cold butter (cut into small cubes) and mix with a pedal until it gets powdery like almond flour.6.3 oz Unsalted butter
- Edd egg and mix until the dough looks even.2.5 oz Egg
- Wrap and chill in a fridge. (1 hour - )
Roll it and bake!
- Dust bread flour on the working surface and the dough.Bread flour
- Push it to soften.
- Roll and spread the dough thinly.
- Set in tart pans/rings.
- Chill the dough completely. (Freeze it preferably.)
- BAKE (Preheated) AT 350 F | 175 C for 10-20 mins depending on the size until they are golden brown.*Adjust the time and temperature accordingly.
How to store the dough:Wrap tightly and store them in a refrigerator for up to 5 days or for up to a few months in a freezer.
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Go back to the top of this post.
Good recipe, thank you 🙏♥️
Thank you for trying the recipe and sharing it! I'm so glad you liked it.
Great detail. How do you prevent the dough from shrinking down the sides of the tart pan during baking - I often seem to have that problem?
Thank you!! The crust shrinks a little bit because of the gluten inside the flour mainly. But we can minimize it by chilling the dough completely until right before baking. The dough can hold its shape better in the oven especially when you freeze them.
By chilling the dough, gluten gets rested and that also helps too!
If that doesn't help, it might be because the dough is not attached to the side of tart rings or molds so well. Try pressing the dough with a little bit more pressure and see if it fixes the issue!
Best recipe I’ve tried and love the buttery and nutty flavor ! I didn’t press hard enough on some so the bottoms were coming off hehe but I’ll try and better them next time but they did come out beautiful 😄
Thank you so much!! I'm so glad you liked it😊
Hi Aya, I recently discovered your channel and blog and love exploring your recipes. Question- I have a nut allergy and cannot use the almond flour that I commonly see in tart recipes. Can I substitute with any flour with low gluten like oat or chickpea flour? Thank you!
Hi Jessica! I'm so glad you found my channel and blog!! You can alternate it with all-purpose flour or cake flour. Just know that with them, the crust gets a little bit crunchier and the dough shrinks slightly more in the oven. - You can reduce the amount a little bit if you like.
I've never tried it with oat or chickpea flour. I should try it! Let me know if you did in the future and were successful 😉
Sarah Maddox says
Thank you for all of this; very descriptive and helpful. I have a ridiculous question. I had blind-baked a tart with sugar to weigh it down, then added the filling and cooked it again. Can I do that with the tarts made with perforated tarts? Or are they better used with a filling that needs to be chilled? I hope that makes sense. I want to make an ITALIAN LEMON MASCARPONE TART but use a perforated tart ring first, I guess I want to know do I remove the perforated pan and then fill and bake again.
Thank you so much.
Hi Sarah! I'm glad they are helpful to you. Yes, you can! You don't need to take it out until the filling cooks through especially if the crust is not fully cooked yet.
You can grease a thin layer of butter on the pan before setting the dough in so that it comes off easier.
I hope I answered your question, let me know if I didn't!