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How to make tart crust for 6 tartlets (mini tart shells)

Tart crust recipe for 6 tartlets (mini tart shells) or 9.5 inch tart pan

This is a basic sweet tart dough recipe. It makes a great flaky sweet crust for 6 small tartlets (mini tart shells), which are 3 inches diameter each.  Great recipe for making individual fruit desserts or small savory appetizers. This recipe will also work for one 9.5 inch diameter tart pan.
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 323kcal
Author Julia


  • 1 ½ cups flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoons butter cold unsalted
  • 1 egg yolks
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract


Prepare tart dough:

  • Using food processor, pulse the flour, sugar, salt to combine thoroughly.
  • Cut cold butter into small cubes. Add the butter into the food processor and pulse butter, flour, sugar and salt until the consistency becomes that of a coarse meal.
  • In a small cup, combine the egg yolk, ice water and vanilla and stir well together. Add the egg mixture to the food processor and pulse to combine. Shape the dough into a ball, wrap it with a plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours.

How to cook tart dough after it’s been refrigerated for 2 hours:

  • Preheat an oven to 350 F.
  • Divide the dough into 6 parts and roll each into a ball.
  • Grease each tartlet well. Flour the working surface, and roll each ball into a disk larger in a diameter than a well of your tart pan, then place the round into a greased well. Because rolling each ball into a disk and placing it into a well usually takes time, I keep the rest of the balls in the refrigerator and take each one out to work on one ball at a time. This way, the dough is kept cold, which will help the crust be soft and flaky. Also, after I shape 2 disks and place them into a tart pan, I put a tart pan in the freezer and shape the other 2 disks. Then, I take the tart pan out of the freezer, place the 2 disks in and repeat. Once you filled all of the tart pans (or all wells in a tart pan), place the tart pan(s) in the freezer for 5 minutes before baking.
  • Prick the bottom of each tart with a fork 2 or 3 times. Bake the shells for 25 minutes until golden brown, not dark. Rotate the tart pan 180 degrees halfway through the baking time.
  • Remove the tartlets from the oven and let them cool completely.


Refer to step-by-step photos above the recipe box.  
The recipe is adapted from the cover for the tartlet molds I purchased at Williams-Sonoma.  


Calories: 323kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 217mg | Potassium: 33mg | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 625IU | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1.5mg