This luscious gluten-free fruit tart recipe with vanilla pastry cream filling is made with an easy press-in graham cracker crust. It's topped with fresh seasonal berries or fruit. So pretty, so delicious and so easy to make with a gluten-free crust!
Here's a classic fruit tart like you'd find in a French pastry shop, now made with a gluten-free graham cracker crust!
❤️ Why you'll love this gluten-free fruit tart recipe
- a showstopper dessert: It has beautiful bright colours and textures from fresh fruit, sweet pastry cream and a crisp and crunchy crust.
- an easy press-in crust: No rolling or fussing with pastry, puff pastry or pie weights! You won't even need gluten-free flour. Simply use store-bought gluten-free graham cracker crumbs to keep this recipe free of gluten.
- make ahead: You can make both the crust and the vanilla pastry cream ahead of time, store them separately, then assemble the tart when you need it!
🛒 Ingredients and substitutions
You'll find a complete list of ingredients with amounts in the recipe card below. But before we get to the full recipe for this fruit tart, here are a few notes about some of the key ingredients.
crust: I like to make this recipe with a gluten-free graham cracker crust, but a regular graham cracker crust will, of course, work equally as well. You could also use the reliable shortbread-like almond flour crust recipe I use for my Gluten-Free Lemon Curd Tart with Berries or this almond flour coconut crust in my Gluten-free Mango Tart recipe.
filling: The filling is a vanilla pastry cream, made with milk (or unsweetened plant-based milk like oat milk, cashew or almond milk), egg yolks, vanilla extract and sugar, and it's thickened with cornstarch.
topping: Use fresh berries or your favourite fruits, brushed with thinned apricot preserves or jam as a glaze. Try raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, kiwi fruit, mango, pineapple, starfruit, peaches, nectarines or other fruit in season!
Here's an overview of what you'll do to make this gluten-free fresh fruit tart recipe perfectly. You'll find complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post.
You'll start by combining the crust ingredients to make the graham cracker crust, pressing it into the baking pan and baking it for ten minutes. The easiest way to form the crust is to press the crumbs into the side of the pan first, then fill in the middle. Press it firmly. I often press it with the base of a drinking glass.
While it's baking, you can prepare the homemade vanilla pastry cream filling on the stovetop. You'll have to allow an hour or two for it to chill before filling the cooled crust. Use an offset spatula to spread it evenly in the crust.
Next comes the fun part! Unleash your creativity and decorate the top of your tart with fresh berries or sliced fruit.
And finally, you'll add a thin glaze of thinned apricot jam by brushing it on the fruit.
Use a sharp knife to slice and a pie lifter to serve. Enjoy every luscious bite of your stunning dessert!
👍🏼 Tips for making this fresh fruit tart recipe
Save the egg whites. This recipe for vanilla pastry cream filling is deliciously creamy! It uses six egg yolks. Don't throw out the whites! There are lots of ways to use extra egg whites. Make egg white omelets, or pavlova, macaroons, or meringues to use in this recipe for traditional Strawberry Eton Mess.
Chill the tart. Be sure to chill this fruit tart thoroughly before slicing. The pastry cream does not contain gelatin, so it will not be as firm as a gelatin dessert or a cheesecake.
Make ahead. You can make the crust a day or two in advance and the pastry cream up to 4 days in advance. Store them separately and assemble the tart on the day you want to serve it.
Make mini tarts! Follow my recipe for Strawberry Tartlets with Vanilla Pastry Cream and make individual tarts with a gluten-free graham cracker crust and your favourite berries or fruit!
Tempering is a technique used in cooking to stabilize an ingredient. In this recipe, tempering is used to prevent the eggs from clumping together and scrambling when they're added to the hot milk of the vanilla pastry cream.
There are three reasons to glaze a fruit tart. The glaze gives the fruit an appealing shine. It also helps to keep the fruit moist and prevent it from discolouring when exposed to the air.
You'll need a 9-inch baking dish. I like to use a 9-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom.
You'll also need a medium saucepan and a medium bowl and a whisk.
This fruit tart recipe makes a perfect dessert for a summer party, for Mother's Day, Father's Day or a baby shower. In the fall or winter, use a variety of fruits available where you live. Guaranteed to perk up the gloomiest day!
⏰ Storage Instructions
This fruit tart is best served on the day it's assembled. You can store leftover slices in the fridge in a covered container for up to 3 days.
Vanilla pastry cream will not freeze well.
🗒 More gluten-free tarts and pies
Looking for more gluten-free dessert ideas? Here are a few of my favourites. You'll find over 80 dessert recipes in my dessert category!
When you make this fresh fruit tart recipe, please leave a comment and a rating below. I love hearing from you! Thanks in advance. Subscribe to my newsletter and receive new recipes delivered straight to your inbox once a week.
Gluten-free Fresh Fruit Tart with Vanilla Pastry Cream
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs, gluten-free, if necessary
- 2 - 3 tablespoons sugar
- 6 tablespoons butter, melted
Pastry Cream Filling
- 2 cups whole milk, or plant-based milk, unsweetened
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 6 large egg yolks
- ⅔ cup sugar
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 3 cups assorted berries, or fresh fruit of your choice
- ¼ cup apricot jam, thinned with 1 - 2 tablespoons water
Graham Cracker Crust
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl.
- Press the crumbs up the sides and botttom of a 9-inch baking pan.
- Bake at 350°F. for 10 minutes. Remove from the oven to cool.
Pastry Cream Filling
- In a medium saucepan, heat the milk and vanilla over medium heat until it begins to boil.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until light yellow and fluffy.
- Sift the cornstarch into the egg yolk mixture a little at a time and whisk until no lumps remain.
- Temper the eggs: Pour ¼ cup of the hot milk mixture into the bowl with the egg mixture and whisk quickly until well incorporated.
- Gradually whisk in the remaining milk mixture.
- Pour the mixture through a strainer back into the saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, whisking constantly until it comes to a boil and is thickened.
- Remove the pan from the heat, transfer the mixture back into the bowl and stir in the butter. Let it cool for 5 minutes, then press a piece of plastic wrap on the surface to prevent a skin from forming.
- Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Assembling the tart
- Spread the chilled pastry cream filling into the cooled crust, smoothing to the edges.
- Top however you like with an assortment of berries or sliced fruit. Arrange in rows, in concentric circles, or randomly. Unleash your creative self!
- Brush with apricot glaze and chill until serving time.