Don’t you just love it when the stars align and a dish just seems meant to be?  Take this strawberry cream cheese tart, for example.  The first sign – we received two pounds of beautiful organic strawberries in our produce bin.  One pound is game for just being eaten straight in our house, but a second pound begs to be made into some wonderful dessert.  Second – my best friend Amanda and her husband were coming over for dinner, and this dessert happens to be one of her favorites.  Third, this tart is an old recipe from my early days of blogging that deserved some tweaking as well as an updated photo.

I swapped out the original tart dough for this version from Baking Illustrated, which has become my go-to recipe.  It is buttery and tender, and perfectly compliments whatever fillings you choose to top it with.  It is rare for the crust to be the star of a tart or pie, but the last time I made this fruit tart, it was the crust everyone was raving about the most.  The original version called for a layer of plain melted chocolate in the bottom of the tart crust.  While tasty, the hardened chocolate made for extremely awkward slicing and even more awkward eating.  This time around I replaced the chocolate layer with dark chocolate ganache which was much easier to cut and to eat.  So here you go – an old favorite made even better.  Enjoy!


For the crust:
1 large egg yolk
1 tbsp. heavy cream
½ tsp. vanilla extract
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
¼ tsp. salt
8 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes

For the ganache:
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
¼ cup heavy cream
1 tbsp. unsalted butter, at room temperature

For the filling:
8 oz. cream cheese, softened
½ cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
½ tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. milk or cream

For topping:
Fresh strawberries, sliced (approximately 12 oz.)
Melted bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, for drizzling (optional)


  • 01

    To make the tart shell, whisk together the egg yolk, cream and vanilla in a small bowl; set aside.  Place the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor.  Process briefly to combine.  Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture; process to cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about fifteen 1-second pulses.  With the machine running, add the egg mixture and process until the dough just comes together, about 12 seconds.  Turn the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a 6-inch disc.  Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 48 hours.

  • 02

    Remove the dough from the refrigerator.  (If refrigerated for more than an hour, let stand at room temperature until malleable.)  Unwrap and roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a 13-inch round.  Transfer the dough to a 9-inch tart pan.  Mold the dough to the sides of the tart pan and remove the excess off the top.  Set the dough-lined tart pan on a large plate and freeze for 30 minutes.

  • 03

    Meanwhile, adjust an oven rack to middle position.  Preheat the oven to 375° F.  Set the dough-lined tart pan on a baking sheet, press a 12-inch square of foil into the frozen shell and over the edge, and fill with pie weights.  Bake for 30 minutes, rotating halfway through the baking time.  Remove from the oven and carefully remove the foil and weights.  Continue to bake until deep golden brown, 5-8 minutes longer.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

  • 04

    To make the ganache, place the chocolate in a heatproof bowl.  Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan.  Remove from the heat and pour over the chocolate.  Let sit 1-2 minutes to melt the chocolate.  Whisk together until a smooth ganache forms.  If there are still bits of unmelted chocolate, microwave in 10 second intervals, whisking in between, until the ganache is completely smooth.  Whisk in the butter.  Spread the ganache in a thin even layer over the bottom of the cooled tart shell.  Allow the ganache to set before proceeding.

  • 05

    To make the filling, beat together the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar in a bowl on medium-high speed until smooth.  Blend in the vanilla and milk or cream.  Spread the cream cheese mixture over the cooled ganache in the tart shell.  Starting from the outside and working toward the center, place the sliced strawberries in concentric circles slightly overlapping each other.  Gently press the berries into the cream cheese mixture to help keep them in place.  Drizzle with melted chocolate, if desired.  Chill until ready to serve.


  • A splendid tart! A great way of eating strawberries.



  • What a gorgeous tart! It sounds absolutely delicious and the presentation is fabulous.

  • Kristin

    Looks delicious! Do you think you will return to posting 5 days per week when you return to work from maternity leave? Or will you continue with M,W,F posting? I absolutely love your recipes!

  • This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try it.

  • Tembo

    I’ve been refreshing this page alll arvo waiting to see what dessert you’d post tonight and WOWZA was I blown away tonight. Your photography is smashing and that dessert is off the charts gorgeous. Putting it on my list – thanks for a great to start to the weekend:) it’s pouring with rain in Perth and perrrrfect baking weather!

  • Annie

    Nope, I’m sticking with MWF. I only want to post things that are really great, not just good, and posting MWF ensures that I’m not just making something so I have something to post, you know?

  • Laurel

    Annie- you are heaven sent! I have been looking for a strawberry tart recipe for the past couple of days and I nearly jumped for joy when I pulled up your blog this morning. Thank you!

  • What a great way to start off Spring with dessert! Yum :)

  • Holly

    I absolutely LOVE this one! I just ordered some gluten-free flour because I cannot pass up trying this one!! Hope it works out and thanks for the recipe and beautiful pictures.

  • Love this tart. Much easier and faster than other versions and most of all I like the fact that the filling is not with cream made from eggs :-) Easy, faster, and great looking tart :-)

  • This looks so delicious! I’ve been looking for a good tart recipe.

    My food processor is currently out of commission. Can I use a pastry blender to make the tart shell?

  • Hilary

    Holy Moley. That looks amazing. however, now that it is FINALLY warm here in the midwest (just east of you in the ‘nati), I’m going to attempt your strawberry ice cream this weekend or next. I can’t wait!

  • Gorgeous as always! And I’m sure equally tasty. :)

  • Annie

    Please see the FAQ page.

  • This is a beautiful dessert! I loved seeing the picture of this tart in my google reader first thing this morning. :) Thanks for another gorgeous and delicious recipe!

  • Heidi

    oooh! perfect! I was wondering what I was going to do with the last of the 4lb tub of berries I got. I’ve making and freezing your strawberry scones until there is no room left in the freezer and eating them for lunch with yogurt. This will be a perfect way to finish them off tonight!

  • I love the addition of the ganache!! Unexpected, in my opinion, in a strawberry cream cheese tart. A good unexpected, though. It’s like an added bonus! lol

  • Absolutely stunning! Almost too pretty to eat…almost.

  • Gorgeous pictures!

  • This tart looks amazing. I’m so glad you featured it again and I REALLY hope I get a chance to make it this spring/summer.

  • That looks fantastic! I must try it as I love chocolate dipped strawberries and then when there is cream cheese, bingo.

  • Barb Brown

    Are you able to slide the tart out of the pan once it is competely filled and decorated or do you do it once the crust has baked?

  • Laurel

    Hey Annie- you’re tart looks beautiful. Did you have a problem with the strawberry juice “bleeding” onto the cream cheese filling? I was thinking of incorporating this recipe into mini tarts for a bridal shower and I would have to make them a day in advance. Thanks!

  • Annie

    You could do it either way. I usually assemble the whole thing and then remove it from the pan.

  • Annie

    I wouldn’t recommend assembling them in advance, the texture just won’t be the same. You could bake the crusts and add the ganache though.

  • I’m so excited for strawberry season! I wish there were a self-pick farm nearby cause I love picking my own fruit. Oh and this looks delicious!

  • Wow, your tart looks amazing! Really gorgeous photos. I’d love to try making this. First, I need to buy a tart pan though :)

  • Heather

    I think I may be making my first tart after seeing this! It looks and sounds perfect.

  • Another beautiful and mouthwatering dessert!

  • This tart in gorgeous and that crust looks amazing!

  • This is just beautiful. And delicious too, I’m sure. What a perfect dessert for spring and summer!

  • Annie, your tart is gorgeous!! Love the chocolate drizzle.

  • Such a gorgeous tart, and I bet it tastes even better! Love the combination of cream cheese, strawberries, and chocolate. I can’t wait to test out the crust for myself!

  • June

    I read the instructions for the crust a couple of times, each time wondering why you put it in a 6 inch dish–did you mean to say disc? I can’t imagine how you cope with a toddler and a new baby, and still manage to make such wonderful things, and write great posts. You’re a talented woman, and I’m so glad I found your blog!

  • Annie

    Thank you for catching that! It has been corrected.

  • The first time I visit and this is what I see? Sold! And did I see in your about you section that your a doctor? And a mom? And you have this awesome site? Do you sleep?

  • Oh, boy! This sounds amaaaaaaaazing! Just picked the first berries from our garden! I can’t wait to try this tart!

  • That strawberry tart looks amazing!

  • I want this so bad right now. Beautiful tart!

  • It’s beautiful, i made one a few weeks ago, but it’s not as pretty as yours!!

  • Looks delicious! Love the little touch of the chocolate ganache :)

  • Wow! What a gorgeous seasonal strawberry tart. The colors are so vibrant and inviting. I’m going to have to try your crust recipe. Beautifully done! =)

  • That looks delicious! I’m not sure what I love most…the tart crust, the strawberries, the cream cheese, or the chocolate. Tough call!

  • Delicious! Strawberries are super and your tart looks so tasty!

  • What a fabulous looking tart! The crust looks simply divine!

  • Annie, I just found you through Foodbuzz and i am so glad i did!!! i am absolutely loving your blog and this strawberry tart…mmmmm will be trying it out this week for sure!

  • What a beautiful tart! Love that strawberry season is in full swing. Congrats on the Top 9 today!!

  • Oh my gosh I think my tastebuds just went to foodie heaven! Delicious

  • What a sensational tart! It looks just wonderful.

  • Amanda

    Yumm!!! My birthday is Wednesday and I will definatly be making this for myself!

  • Michelle

    OMG! Looks totally delicious!

  • Sarah

    Made this tart tonight – so beautiful! Can’t wait to dig in :)

  • Thanks for the giveaway!! I look for good (true) pictures and vegetarian recipes!

  • Oh just gorgeous – my kind of dessert. Would love a piece now.

  • I love strawberries.! The tart looks absolutely delicious.

  • Wow, that is one beautiful tart! I love, love, love the presentation. I’ll be stealing that look for sure! :) I make something similar to this from time to time, but not recently. Time to fix that!

  • I have been meaning to tell you that I’m so excited you are using Green Bean Delivery — isn’t it great? This tart looks wonderful. I am constantly amazed at the beautiful sweets you create!

  • Annie

    Yes, I LOVE it! I wish I had tried it so much sooner.

  • Beautiful as usual, I love strawberries…and seeing them beautifully cut and slightly drizzled in chocolate…yum!

  • Thank you Annie for sharing this awesome strawberry cream cheese tart. It has me salivating :)

  • Looks awesome!! I love strawberries.

  • Gorgeous. Enjoying getting to know you today :-)

  • Laurel

    Annie- I used this recipe to make tartlets and I have to say my life will never be the same. Honestly, I think I may have had some sort of spiritual experience. This is one of your most delicious dishes! Please consider this recipe for your “Best of 2011” post. OMG! Thank you.

  • I made this for dessert tonight (it’s my first dessert in a week as I have been dieting) and it was delicious! I had quite a bit of leftover cream cheese frosting from some of your red velvet cupcakes that I made for my husbands’ work so I used that instead of the filling, just spread it very thinly as I’m sure it is a little richer than the recipe’s filling. Wow! With the ganache, the cream cheese and the strawberries, all atop that phenomenal crust…. Let’s just say, it was a party in my mouth! I think I better send the rest on to work with my husband tomorrow or it will be calling my name all day!

  • Amy

    i made this over the weekend, too! i found the crust very hard to get into the tart pan without ripping or falling apart. my thought was it got too warm too quickly (it was probably 80 some in our kitchen at the time). i ended up rolling it out on a silicon mat and putting it in the freezer for 10 minutes or so. that helped. any other tips? did you find it was hard to get into the pan without ripping? (probably not – you’re amazing!)

  • Annie

    I’m guessing the warm temp was the problem. 80 is pretty hot! I have a tutorial on pie crust on the blog. You might want to look at that and see how I move the dough from work surface to pan. The method is the same for tarts. I hope that helps!

  • Christiana

    This is just beyond beautiful! The strawberries look like a red hibiscus or a bright red star. THIS one is definitely a master piece!

  • Annie, just wanted to let you know that I made this tart over the weekend to bring to a friend’s barbecue and it was a HUGE success! Nobody could believe I had made this — they all thought it was store bought! We have a housewarming to go to this weekend, and I’m thinking of making it again, this time with white chocolate ganache, lemon zest mixed into the cream cheese layer, and blueberries on top instead of strawberries. I feel like the possibilities are endless!

  • Alexandra

    I made this for my dad’s birthday, and I loved it! I probably should have chilled the dough for longer because when I rolled it out, I wasn’t able to lift it off the counter. Instead, I just plopped down the dough into the pan and shaped it in there. It turned out a bit too hard because I probably over-handled it, but still delicious! I doubled the cream cheese filling too because I love that stuff so much :)

    One question: do you use a piping bag to drizzle the melted chocolate? I can never get such perfect swirls with a spoon.

  • Annie

    I just put it in a plastic baggie and cut off the tip :)

  • Hi Annie. I just stumbled upon your blog and it’s really amazing. I love that you kept the pictures from the beginning of your blog in the archives; I just started blogging and it inspired me to see that your pictures weren’t always this gorgeous.

    This tart looks so delicious. If I wasn’t suppose to be studying for exams, I would make it! :D

  • I LOVED this recipe (and so did my husband)!! I really wish I had read some more of the comments, because I had the same problem with the dough as most of the other commenters. Trial and error, now I know! This is the first time I’ve made one of your recipes, but I’ve been drooling over them for quite a long time now. Thanks for sharing your recipes with the world!

  • Susana

    Hi, Annie,
    Could I use this tart crust in recipes that don’t call for blind baking first? Have you tried it?
    Thanks and congrats on a wonderful blog!

  • Annie

    I don’t think I have tried it with this particular crust but it should work fine. Enjoy!

  • Neera

    Made this today. So so so yummy (and beautiful)! Thanks for another great recipe!

  • I made this tonight for my husband’s 47th birthday. My step son said he thought it looked beautiful, like it should be on food network…even though he declined to try it because he is a self-proclaimed “meat-a-tarian”. It is an involved recipe, with many steps. I liked the flavor, but maybe not the “best” based on the time spent making it (sorry…) But beautiful to look at- that is for sure. I took photos- just to remember it :)

  • What a gorgeous tart! I am definitely going to have to try this one soon. Such a great combination of flavors.

  • Clkbaxter

    Do you need pie weights to make the crust? I don’t have them and was wondering if I could pull it off without them… This looks so good! Hope I can make it look as beautiful as you did!

  • Anonymous

    You can also use dried beans or rice to have the same effect, but you do need to use something to weigh it down so that it keeps its shape. Enjoy!

  • Lovell

    I have tried baking these strawberry cream cheese tarts! They tasted really yummy but the crust was a little too hard, such that I could barely take them out of the tin (evenly though they were very well-greased). The only modification that I have made was to bake them in smaller tart tins (3″ diameter). Could the reason for such hard tart crusts be due to over-baking? Do you have any recommendation on the baking time/temperature before taking over the foil to bake again?

    Thank you.

  • annieseats

    Yep, sounds like they were over baked. I would go for a shorter time next time. Good luck.

  • Amina

    Hi I tried making this today and the tart shell when in the oven went very watery and it got all burnt ! what do u think went wrong as i used all the ingrediants listed but the egg yolk i used wasn’t large it was just a normal standard egg do u think that’s why it went wrong?

  • annieseats

    I have no idea what might have happened. Please see the FAQ page re: what went wrong. Sorry you didn’t have better luck!

  • Mahvish

    Hi Annie,
    Can this tart be assembled ahead of time – such as a day before? Or will there be any issues with the layers?
    Looking forward to trying this recipe soon :)

  • annieseats

    Probably best assembled close to when it will be served.