If you’re a fan of strawberries, or tarts, or just dessert in general – you need to make this gluten free strawberry tart. With a buttery gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry, luxurious vanilla pastry cream and luscious, vibrant strawberries, this easy strawberry tart is the perfect summer dessert.
We’ve blinked, and it’s nearing the end of May. Which is insane, because it feels like April was only just yesterday and where is the time going? Lately, I feel like I’m always in a hurry, too busy to think, always chasing after things that need doing, while adding another few to my bullet-pointed, highlighter-exhausted to-do list.
But time running aways from us has at least one upside: summer is almost here, and berries are (or will soon be) in season. Berries of all sorts, with their shiny colours and juicy taste and smell of sunshine. To celebrate, let’s make this gluten free strawberry tart.
It’s simple and refined, easy to make and ridiculously impressive. But most importantly, it allows the strawberries to be the star of the show – with the buttery gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry and the silky creaminess of the vanilla pastry cream in (excellent, delicious, mouthwatering) supporting roles.
We’ve made the gluten free pastry before, remember? In the decadently delicious chocolate tart, and in the cheerful berry mini tartlets. It’s simple, reliable and perfect for this gluten free strawberry tart. No fuss, no fancy ingredients – and delicious, buttery, sweet results every time.
The vanilla pastry cream is equally easy to make. Milk, eggs, sugar, cornstarch and vanilla – with a pinch of lemon zest, because nothing says summer like that aromatic, golden yellow lemony goodness.
And then… the strawberries. Halved and arranged (more or less) neatly on top of the pastry cream, and then brushed with strawberry jam that gives them the appearance of precious gems, all sparkly and luxurious.
You don’t need anything else. No whipped cream, no chocolate ganache, no powdered sugar, no mint leaves as a “garnish”. The gluten free strawberry tart, with its shiny glaze and vibrant red strawberries, is perfect – just as it is.
And when you taste that first bite… prepare to be blown away.
There’s the gentle buttery sweetness of the shortcrust pastry with its crumbly texture.
Then, you get a hit of creaminess and vanilla from the pastry cream.
And finally, the fresh, juicy sweetness of the strawberries, just to remind you what this dessert is all about.
If you’re a fan of strawberries, or tarts, or just dessert in general – you need to make this gluten free strawberry tart. Make it all summer long, and celebrate the joy that are strawberries, in all their vibrant, juicy glory.
If you like what you’re seeing, subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date on the latest recipes and tips!
Gluten Free Strawberry Tart
For gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry:
- 2 cups (250 g) plain gluten free flour blend (I've used a simple store-bought blend of rice, potato and maize flour with no added xanthan gum)
- 7/8 cup (100 g) powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
- pinch of salt
- 1 stick + 1 tbsp (125 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 2 egg yolks
- 3 - 4 tbsp cold water
For vanilla pastry cream:
- 1 3/4 cup + 2 1/2 tbsp (450 mL) milk
- 5 egg yolks
- 2/3 cup (125 g) granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla paste (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
- 1/4 cup (30 g) cornstarch
- zest of 2 lemons (optional)
You will also need:
- 15 - 18 large (or 20 - 25 medium) ripe strawberries, halved
- 3 tbsp strawberry jam, mixed with 1 tbsp lemon juice and 1 tbsp water
- 9 inch (23 cm) round baking pan with a loose base
For the gluten free sweet shortcrust pastry:
- In a bowl, sift together the gluten free flour, powdered sugar, xanthan gum and salt.
- Add the cubed cold unsalted butter, and use your fingers to rub the flour and butter together until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Add the egg yolks and mix together with the fork.
- Add the cold water, 1 tbsp at a time, stirring well with a fork after each addition. After you've added about 3 - 4 tbsp of water, use your hands to bring the dough together in a ball. Knead it together briefly to get a smooth shortcrust pastry dough – if there are too many dried bits, sprinkle with a bit of cold water and briefly knead again.
- Wrap the finished pastry dough into cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- Pre-heat the oven to 355 ºF (180 ºC) and get a 9 inch (23 cm) round baking pan with a loose base ready.
- Roll out the pastry dough into a circle about 4 - 5 mm thin.
- Carefully transfer the dough into the baking pan and ensure that it's snug with the sides of the baking pan. Leave any excess pastry hanging over the sides – this will ensure that the pastry doesn't slide down the sides of the baking pan during baking.
- Prick the dough all over with a fork.
- Line the dough with a large piece of baking/greaseproof paper. (To make this easier, scrunch up the baking paper beforehand, but make sure to mark which is the greased/"non-stick" side beforehand!) Press the paper into the edges of the dough. Fill the paper with baking beans (or some rice, if you don't have those on hand). Chill in the fridge for about 15 minutes.
- Blind bake the tart for 15 minutes at 355 ºF (180 ºC), then carefully remove the baking beans and paper, and bake for a further 15 minutes at the same temperature.
- Immediately after removing the baked pastry shell from the oven, trim away the excess pastry. (It makes an excellent sweet snack!)
- Allow to cool, then carefully remove the pastry shell from the baking pan.
For vanilla pastry cream:
- In a saucepan, bring the milk to the boil.Make sure you're using a saucepan that isn't sensitive to scratching – you'll use the same saucepan to make the cream filling, and you'll have to whisk it. So a non-stick saucepan isn't suitable – go for something like stainless steel!
- In the mean time, in a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, granulated sugar and vanilla paste until pale. Add the cornstarch and lemon zest and mix well.
- Slowly pour the boiling hot milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. Don't add the milk too quickly, or your eggs will scramble!
- Return the mixture to the saucepan and start cooking it on medium heat with constant stirring. At this beginning stage, when the mixture is still runny, don't use a whisk! Using a whisk will lead to a foam forming, and that foam is a pain to get rid of.Once the pastry cream has started thickening (after about 2 - 3 minutes), switch to a whisk and whisk well until the cream has thickened completely (a further 2 - 3 minutes).
- Transfer the pastry cream into a heat-proof bowl and allow it to cool to room temperature. Stir occasionally to prevent "skin" formation.
- Transfer the cooled pastry cream into the cooled pastry shell and smooth out the top. The pastry cream should fill the pastry shell up to ~1/3 - 3/4 inch (1 - 2 cm) below the edge of the pastry, so as to allow enough space for the strawberries.
- Arrange the halved strawberries on top of the pastry cream (see pictures in text) and brush the tops of the strawberries with the strawberry jam + lemon juice mixture.If the strawberry juice is too thick for brushing it on top of the strawberries, warm it slightly on medium-low heat, or add another tbsp of water.
- Chill for at least 2 hours before serving, and enjoy!
- The gluten free strawberry tart keeps well in a closed container in the fridge for 3 - 4 days.
Looking for more delicious gluten free desserts? You’re in the right place!