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This rustic French apple tart features thinly sliced apples layered over a generous bed of apple sauce, all baked in a flaky pie crust. It’s a simple and affordable Fall dessert that will surely be a hit with the entire family!

Sliced apple tart with vanilla bean.

⭐️ Why You Should Try It

  • A simple and quick dessert. With only 20 minutes of prep time and a simple process, this apple tart is within everyone’s reach! It makes a delicious last-minute dessert that can be enjoyed either warm or chilled. Plus, there is no parbaking required!
  • A contrast of texture. Tender apples meet crispy and buttery crust to create a cozy and tasty dessert! It is super fruity, not overly sweet, and packed with apple flavor.
  • An eye-catching dessert. Despite its simplicity, this apple tart is an elegant dessert that is great for any family gathering.

📘 What Is Apple Tart

Apple tart is a classic dessert that consists of a pastry crust filled with sliced apples. This dessert is popular during Fall and Winter when apples are in season.

Apple tart recipes vary across countries, each having its unique twist. Here, we will make a French-inspired apple tart (Tarte aux pommes) that features thinly sliced apples layered on top of a pie crust known as “pâte brisée.”

Ingredients like flour, apples, applesauce, and sugar.

🍎 Ingredient Notes

This apple tart recipe requires 6 simple ingredients that are cheap and easy to find. Here is what you will need:

  • Apples – Use a variety of apples that maintain their shape during baking, such as Gala, Fuji, Golden Delicious, or Jonagold. I advise against using Granny Smith as they would be too sour for this recipe.
  • Applesauce – You have the option to either use unsweetened applesauce and sweeten it or simply use sweetened applesauce.
  • Flour – I went with regular all-purpose flour here, but a 1:1 gluten-free flour mix will also give you good results.
  • Butter – Opt for store-bought vegan butter or homemade vegan butter. Both options work great.
  • Vanilla – For a hint of freshness. Use store-bought high-quality vanilla extract or homemade vanilla extract.
  • Sugar – To sweeten the tart. I highly recommend using granulated white sugar, as other options, such as coconut sugar or brown sugar, would alter both the flavor and appearance of the tart.

🥣 How to Make It

Make the pie crust

  1. Knead the dough. Add the flour, softened butter, sugar, water, and salt to a stand mixer or large mixing bowl. Knead on low, using the paddle attachment for 30-50 seconds or until it forms a dough.
  2. Flatten the dough. Shape the dough into a ball and place it on a layer of parchment paper. Top with another layer of parchment paper and flatten the dough into a 10-inch round using a pastry roller.
  3. Press into a pie pan. Lightly grease an 8-inch pie pan with butter. Transfer the flattened dough to the pie pan and press it into it. Cut off the excess dough. Prick the bottom of the dough multiple times with a fork.

Add the filling and bake

  1. Prepare the apples. Peel and core the apples. Slice them into 1/4-inch thick slices. Set aside.
  2. Spread the applesauce. Combine the applesauce with the tablespoon of sugar. Pour the sweetened applesauce into the pie crust and spread it into an even layer.
  1. Arrange the apples. Starting from the outside, layer the apple slices in a concentric circle over the apple sauce. Try to layer them tightly, as they will shrink a bit during baking.
  2. Top with sugar and butter. Generously sprinkle with granulated sugar and add small butter cubes on top of the apples. First, this will sweeten the apples and give them a delicious buttery flavor, and second, it will help them slightly caramelize on the edges.
  3. Bake. Finally, bake the apple tart for 40-45 minutes in the bottom rack of your oven.

📔 Tips

  • Use a metal pan. After trying this recipe in both, a ceramic and a metal pan, I highly recommend using the latter. It results in a crispier, more golden-brown crust, as metal is a better conductor of heat than glass or ceramic.
  • Bake in the bottom of the oven. Since this recipe doesn’t require any pre-baking, placing the tart on the lower rack of your oven is essential. This will ensure the crust gets a golden-brown finish.
  • Add a shiny finish. Looking to give your tart that French patisserie look? Brush it with apricot jam or simple syrup for a glossy finish! To do so, reheat the apricot jam over medium heat until warm. Next, use a pastry brush to brush the top of the baked apple tart.
  • Let it cool completely. Straight out of the oven, the filling will appear very soft. It will thicken and set as it cools.

🍫 Variations

Looking for variations on the traditional apple tart? Here are a few ideas:

  • Chocolate apple tart: Instead of spreading applesauce over the bottom of the pie crust, spread a thin layer of vegan Nutella or your favorite chocolate spread!
  • Apple frangipane tart: Replace the applesauce with frangipane for an almond flavor.
  • Spiced apple tart: Coat the apple slices with either cinnamon or apple pie spice before arranging them into the pan.

🍨 What to Serve It With

You can serve this apple tart as is or top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and/or a drizzle of caramel sauce for a more decadent dessert!

To garnish, you can top it with sliced almonds and a sprinkle of cinnamon!

Slice of apple tart drizzled with caramel sauce.

❄️ Storing and Reheating

  • To store: Store this tart covered with plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • To freeze: You can freeze the tart whole or in slices. Wrap it with cling film and freeze for up to 2 months. Thaw for a few hours on the counter or overnight in the refrigerator.

💬 FAQ

Can I use store-bought pastry crust?

Yes, this recipe works well with store-bought pie crust as well.

How do I know when the apple tart is baked?

The apple tart is done when the edges of the crust are golden brown, and the apples caramelize on the edges. The bottom of the crust should also be golden brown, and you should be able to lift the whole tart from the pan easily.

The bottom of the tart is still soft/soggy. What happened?

You didn’t bake it long enough or in the middle/top rack of your oven.

Can I make the tart ahead of time?

Yes, this tart tastes as good on day 4 as on day 1!

I hope you are going to love this French classic! It’s a rustic and easy-to-make dessert that is just perfect for Fall!

⭐️ Did you like this recipe? Let us know in the comments below, and tag us on Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest!

Whole apple tart on a wooden board.
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Recipe

French Apple Tart

5 from 2 votes
Author: Thomas Pagot
This rustic French apple tart features thinly sliced apples layered over a generous bed of apple sauce, all baked in a flaky pie crust. It's a simple and affordable Fall dessert that will surely be a hit with the entire family!
Prep Time : 20 minutes
Cook Time : 45 minutes
Total Time : 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 235 kcal

Ingredients
 

Pie crust

Filling

  • 2 medium apples Gala, Golden Delicious, or Jonagold
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp granulated sugar for topping
  • 1 tbsp vegan butter cut into small cubes

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350 °F (175°C).

Pie crust

  • Knead the dough. Add the flour, sugar, softened butter, salt, and 2 tablespoons of water to a stand mixer or large mixing bowl. Knead on low, using the paddle attachment for 30-50 seconds or until it forms a dough. If the dough appears too crumbly, add an extra tablespoon of water.
  • Flatten the dough. Shape the dough into a ball and place it on a layer of parchment paper. Top with another layer of parchment paper and flatten the dough into a 10-inch round using a pastry roller.
  • Press into a pie pan. Lightly grease an 8-inch pie pan with butter. Transfer the flattened dough to the pie pan and press it into it. Cut off the excess dough. Prick the bottom of the dough multiple times with a fork.

Filling

  • Prepare the apples. Peel and core the apples. Slice them into 1/4-inch thick slices. Set aside.
  • Spread the applesauce. Combine the applesauce with the tablespoon of sugar. Pour the sweetened applesauce into the pie crust and spread it into an even layer.
  • Arrange the apples. Starting from the outside, layer the apple slices in a concentric circle over the apple sauce. Try to layer them tightly, as they will shrink a bit during baking.
  • Top with sugar and butter. Generously sprinkle the apples with the granulated sugar. Add small butter cubes on top of the apples.
  • Bake. Finally, bake the apple tart for 40-45 minutes in the bottom rack of your oven.
  • Let it cool before enjoying it slightly warm, or chill it for a few hours in the refrigerator. This apple tart will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Notes

  • Use a metal pan. After trying this recipe in both, a ceramic and a metal pan, I highly recommend using the latter. It results in a crispier, more golden-brown crust, as metal is a better conductor of heat than glass or ceramic.
  • Bake in the bottom of the oven. Since this recipe doesn’t require any pre-baking, placing the tart on the lower rack of your oven is essential. This will ensure the crust gets a golden-brown finish.
  • Add a shiny finish. Looking to give your tart that French patisserie touch? Brush it with apricot jam or simple syrup for a glossy finish! To do so, reheat the apricot jam over medium heat until warm. Next, use a pastry brush to brush the top of the baked apple tart.
  • Let it cool completely. Straight out of the oven, the filling will appear very soft. It will thicken and set as it cools.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 serving | Calories: 235 kcal | Carbohydrates: 35.4 g | Protein: 2.5 g | Fat: 10.1 g | Saturated Fat: 6.2 g | Cholesterol: 26 mg | Sodium: 70 mg | Potassium: 113 mg | Fiber: 2.5 g | Sugar: 16.9 g | Calcium: 7 mg | Iron: 1 mg
Course : Dessert
Cuisine : French
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About the Author

Thomas Pagot is the founder, photographer, and recipe developer behind Full of Plants. He created the blog in 2016 as a personal cookbook for vegan recipes. Through years of recipe development, Thomas has successfully grown Full of Plants into a trusted resource for plant-based recipes.

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5 stars
Apple tart is my family favorite dessert. I must try it. Thank you Thomas.

5 stars
I can’t wait to try making it. I bet it would taste divine served with a glug of maple syrup.

Wonderful desert. I’m not big on baking and I was able to do this very easily. My guests (and I) were delighted. Thank you for sharing this apple tart which reminds me of my (French) childhood.