Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée (Sweet Tart Dough)

This recipe is a gluten free version of the classic French pastry, Pâté Sucrée. The tart dough has a short, sweet crust and due to the high percentage of fat it has a tender texture that bakes into a beautiful golden tart. Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée can be used to make a variety of different desserts and tarts. It especially works well with fillings that don’t require any baking and that aren’t overly sweet.

Close up overhead view of baked Gluten free pate sucree in tart pan

Using a few professional pastry chef tips and tricks, this recipe will walk you through step-by-step on how to make this Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée (sweet tart dough). This recipe is so good that not even a French pastry chef would know it’s gluten free. Je n’arrive pas à le croire

Gluten free pate sucree in tart pan before baking.

What Makes This Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée the Best?

  1. The texture of this tart dough is more cookie-like and holds its shape really well. Because of the shortbread texture, it is the perfect vessel for fillings that don’t require baking or liquid fillings. Think fresh fruit, custard, curd, and cream fillings.
  2. This Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée dough is smooth and rolls out so effortlessly. Making it super easy to line tart pans and make bakery-worthy looking tarts and desserts.
  3. The tart dough bakes up sweet, golden and crisp. It’s like if a sugar cookie and a shortbread cookie had a baby.
overhead view of rolled gluten free pate sucree on plastic wrap

What Can You Make with Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée?

Traditionally this French sweet tart crust was used for fresh fruit fillings, but It’s become a workhorse in many pastry kitchens because it’s the perfect base for almost any sweet filling that doesn’t require baking. Fillings such as custard, cream, mousse, chocolate ganache and caramel are some of the common fillings used with Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée.

Tips for Making Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

Converting a classic French pastry like Pâté Sucrée to gluten free may seem intimidating but it’s actually much easier than you might think. Traditional wheat-based Pâté Sucrée generally calls for a combination of both all-purpose flour and pastry (cake) flour. This is because the lower gluten development in pastry flour helps to achieve the crumbly shortbready texture found in this sweet tart dough.

Close up overhead view of baked gluten free pate sucree

Find more tips and information about how to make the best gluten free tart doughs as well as the perfect working temperatures for gluten free pastry dough here.

With just a few tips you will be making bakery-worthy Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée at home.

  1. Quality Ingredients. This dough gets most of its flavour from the butter and eggs so do your best and use high quality ingredients. Try to find an unsalted butter with a fat percentage of at least 82% and choose to buy eggs from happy chickens that are organic and free-range.
  2. Use soft butter. When making laminated pastry we are so used to including very cold butter as this is what creates all the flaky layers. But for pâté sucrée the butter needs to be soft enough so we can rub it until the flour, creating sandy texture.
  3. Chill the dough. Pâté sucrée needs to rest in the fridge for a minimum of 2 hour. It will be very soft when you first make the dough and it needs time to firm up. I often make my dough the day before I need it so it can rest overnight. This not only creates a firmer dough that you can easily roll and shape, but it also reduces shrinkage.
  4. Let the dough warm up. Allow the dough to rest on the counter for about 10-15 minutes before you roll it out. This slight increase in temperature will make it much easier to roll out and prevent cracking. If need be, you can knead the dough slightly, making it more pliable and easier to roll.
  5. Use plastic wrap. When rolling out this Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée, place the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap. This will keep the dough from sticking to the rolling pin and your work surface. you can then lift the plastic wrap from the bottom to transfer the rolled dough to the tart pan without any tears.
  6. Freeze the crust. To ensure the dough holds its shape and doesn’t shrink, the crust needs to be frozen before baking. Once the dough is rolled out, transferred it to a tart pan and freeze for a minimum of 2 hours before baking.
  7. Bake at a high temperature. Blind baking the Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée at a slightly higher temperature will help set the fat and sugar. Decreasing any chance of it shrinking.

Tips for Rolling Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

side view of rolled gluten free pate sucree on plastic wrap

Below is a step-by-step guide for rolling Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée. 

  1. Remove the chilled gluten free pâté sucrée from the fridge. Allow it to rest at room temperature for 5-10 minutes. If you try to roll out the dough straight from the fridge it will be too firm and crack.
  2. Line your work surface with a sheet of plastic wrap.
  3. Lightly dust the plastic wrap with gluten free flour.  I use sorghum flour or tapioca starch to dust my worksurface but feel free to use whatever gluten free flour blend you have.
  4. Place your gluten free pâté sucrée in the centre of the plastic wrap. Place another sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper on top of the pastry. Begin rolling the dough into a circle using a light rolling motion.
  5. If the dough becomes sticky, dust it lightly with gluten free flour but try not to add too much as we don’t want to dry out the dough.
  6. Continue to roll the gluten free pastry dough until you’ve reached the desired thickness. Tart dough is best rolled to a thickness of 1/8 inch or 0.3cm

NOTE: If you think the dough is becoming too warm, slide it onto a baking sheet and place it back in the fridge for a few minutes to cool.

Tips for Lining Tart Pans with Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

gluten free pate sucree in tart pan with plastic wrap

Below is a step-by-step guide for lining a tart pan with Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée. 

  1. Gently remove the top layer of plastic wrap or parchment paper from the rolled gluten free pâté sucrée dough (if using). 
  2. Lift the tart dough from underneath the plastic wrap and place it dough-side down inside the tart pan. The plastic wrap makes it much easier to lift up and centre the dough. 
  3. With the plastic wrap still in place, gently press and mold the dough against the bottom and the sides on the pan.
  4. Slowly peel off the plastic wrap.
  5. Run a knife or small offset spatula around the edge of the tart pan to cut away any excess dough.
  6. Place the tart in the fridge or freezer to set before baking.

When Do You Blind Bake Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée?

Baking weights and parchment in Gluten free pate sucree in tart pan

The purpose of blind baking or par baking (partially baking) is to give the tart dough a head start on baking and to prevent any shrinkage or bubbles forming. Depending on the tart filling, blind baking and par-baking will also save the tart from an underbaked or soggy bottom.

When it comes to whether you blind baking or par baking gluten free pâté sucrée it essentially comes down to the type of filling you will be using.

Par baking (partially or half baking). For fillings that are very liquid or have a custard base, such as a pumpkin pie or baked custard, you will need to partially bake the crust otherwise the tart dough will likely be underbaked and the moisture from the custard filling would soak into the pastry.

Blind baking (fully baking). This is used when the filling doesn’t require any baking. Fillings such as mousse, pudding, ganache or curd. Think French lemon tart, chocolate ganache tart, custard tart or fresh fruit tart.

How to make Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée…Like a Pastry Chef

Docking gluten free pate sucree with a fork before blind baking

Lets get baking! (Step-by-Step Instructions)

Mis en Place

Going back to the Kira Bakes Gluten Free Pastry Principals, this is always our first step when baking as it not only helps ensure accuracy during the mixing process, but it also makes the whole baking process a lot more relaxing and enjoyable. It’s a win/win!

If I’ve said it 100 times, I’ll say it again. Measuring ingredients by weight not volume is the magic sauce to gluten free baking! I always do my best to provide the cup (volume) measurements where possible. If you are going to measure by volume, click this link for tips on the correct way to measure by volume.

Scale the following ingredients

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée Ingredients:

Note: This recipe yields enough Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée for two 9″ pie tart shells

235g or 1 3/4 cup Gluten Free Flour Blend with xanthan gum (This recipe is tested with Cup4Cup and Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour)

1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum

1/4 tsp Kosher Salt

1 Lemon (Zest Only) OPTIONAL

150g Unsalted Butter (Soft/Cubed)

85g or 1/2 cup Icing Sugar (Confectioners Sugar)

1 Large Whole Egg + 1 Egg Yolk

Prepare the equipment

  • Large mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Fork
  • Parchment paper
  • Cling film (plastic wrap)

Method

Making Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée Step-by-Step

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, xanthan gum, salt and lemon zest (if using).
  2. Add the cubbed butter and press it between your fingertips and the flour. Keep rubbing the butter into the flour into it begins to look like course sand.
  3. Whisk in the sifted icing sugar.
  4. Using the back of your hand, create a well in the centre of the flour mixture. Add the eggs and mix with a fork until the dough starts to come together.
  5. Turn the dough out onto the counter and gently knead until it forms a soft, smooth ball.
  6. Shape the gluten free pate sucree dough into two disks and wrap in plastic wrap.
  7. Chill the dough in the fridge for 2-4 hours or overnight. Allow the dough to rest on the counter for 5-10 minutes before rolling. 

Storing Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée that has been blind baked or partially baked will keep at room temperature for 1 day.

Refrigerating Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

You can store Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée in the fridge for up to 3 days. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap.

Freezing Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

Frozen Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée will keep in the freezer for up to 2 months. I recommend wrapping the dough in plastic wrap. Then wrapping it in either aluminum foil or placing it in a resealable freezer bag.

Before using the dough, allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge.

Gluten free pate sucree in tart pan before baking.

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée Q&A

Question: What if the gluten free pâté sucrée breaks or tears when I’m lining my tart pan?

This happens to the best of us and luckily it will have zero effect on how your tart turns out after baking. First finish molding the dough into the tart pan. Then simply use some of the dough scraps that you cut away from the edges to mend the cracks. Use your fingers to gently smooth the dough patches into place.

Question: Why did my gluten free pâté sucrée shrink down after baking?

This likely happened because the dough didn’t have enough time to rest and chill before baking. The key to a gluten free pâté sucrée that doesn’t shrink is allowing the dry ingredients enough time to absorb all the moisture and for the fat to become fully set and chilled. Next time you can double check by pressing your index finger against the chilled dough. If its firm to the touch and your finger didn’t leave an indent then its ready to be baked.

Question: There are cracks in my gluten free pâté sucrée after blind baking. what can I do?

If you notice that your tart shell has a few cracks or holes after par baking or blind baking, there are three things you can do to fix this. Brush the inside of the tart shell with lightly beaten egg whites. Then return the tart shell back to the oven for a few minutes until set and shiny. Alternatively once the tart shell has cooled completely. Brush the inside with melted white chocolate or dark chocolate and place in the fridge to set. Then you can proceed with your filling of choice.

Print
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overhead view of blind baked Gluten free pate sucree in tart pan

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée (Sweet Tart Dough)


  • Author: Kira McMullan
  • Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 x 9″ tart shells 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

This recipe is a gluten free version of the classic French pastry, Pâté Sucrée. The tart dough has a short, sweet crust and bakes into a beautiful golden crisp crust.


Ingredients

Scale

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée Ingredients:

235g or 1 3/4 cup Gluten Free Flour Blend (This recipe is tested with Cup4Cup and Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour)

1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum

1/4 tsp Kosher Salt

1 Lemon (Zest Only) OPTIONAL

150g Unsalted Butter (Soft/Cubed)

85g or 1/2 cup Icing Sugar (Confectioners Sugar)

1 Large Whole Egg + 1 Egg Yolk


Instructions

Making the Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée dough

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the gluten free flour, xanthan gum, salt and lemon zest (if using).
  2. Add the cubbed butter and press it between your fingertips and the flour. Keep rubbing the butter into the flour into it begins to look like course sand.
  3. Whisk in the sifted icing sugar.
  4. Using the back of your hand, create a well in the centre of the flour mixture. Add the eggs and mix with a fork until the dough starts to come together.
  5. Turn the dough out onto the counter and gently knead until it forms a soft, smooth ball.
  6. Shape the gluten free pate sucree dough into two disks and wrap in plastic wrap.
  7. Chill the dough in the fridge for 2-4 hours or overnight. Allow the dough to rest on the counter for 5-10 minutes before rolling.

Rolling the Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée Dough

  1. Remove the chilled Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée from the fridge. Allow it to rest at room temperature for 5-10 minutes. If you try to roll out the dough straight from the fridge it will be too firm and crack.
  2. Line your work surface with one to two sheets of plastic wrap.
  3. Lightly dust the plastic wrap with gluten free flour.  I use sorghum flour or tapioca starch to dust my worksurface but feel free to use whatever gluten free flour blend you have.
  4. Place your Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée in the centre of the plastic wrap. Place another sheet of plastic wrap or parchment paper on top of the pastry. Begin rolling the dough into a circle using a light rolling motion.
  5. If the dough becomes sticky, dust it lightly with gluten free flour but try not to add too much as we don’t want to dry out the dough.
  6. Continue to roll the gluten free pastry dough until you’ve reached the desired thickness. Tart dough is best rolled to a thickness of 1/8 inch or 0.3cm.

Lining the Tart Pan

  1. Gently remove the top layer of plastic wrap or parchment paper from the rolled Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée dough (if using). 
  2. Lift the tart dough from underneath the plastic wrap and place it dough-side down inside the tart pan. The plastic wrap makes it much easier to lift up and centre the dough. 
  3. With the plastic wrap still in place, gently press and mold the dough against the bottom and the sides on the pan.
  4. Slowly peel off the plastic wrap.
  5. Run a knife or small offset spatula around the edge of the tart pan to cut away any excess dough.
  6. Place the tart in the fridge or freezer to set before baking.

Follow Only if Blind Baking or Partially Baking

Remove the tart dough from the freezer and prick the base of the tart with a fork (approx 10-15 times). Line with parchment paper or aluminum foil, leaving some overhang. Pour in the baking weights (dried beans and uncooked rice works as well), making sure the weights are evenly distributed around the tart pan. Bake for 15 minutes or until tart shell is just starting to brown. Carefully remove the parchment and weights. Place the tart shell back in the oven for 15-20 minutes or until the edges are evenly golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool.

Storing Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée that has been blind baked or partially baked will keep at room temperature for 1 day.

Refrigerating Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

You can store Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée in the fridge for up to 3 days. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap.

Freezing Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée

Frozen Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée will keep in the freezer for up to 2 months. I recommend wrapping the dough in plastic wrap. Then wrapping it in either aluminum foil or placing it in a resealable freezer bag.

Before using the dough, allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge.

Notes

Note: This recipe yields enough Gluten Free Pâté Sucrée for one 9 inch tart crust.

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Rest Time: 2 hours

Keywords: gluten free pastry, gluten free pate sucree recipe, gluten free sweet tart dough recipe, gluten free tart recipe, gluten free cookie crust recipe, gluten free recipe

Recipe questions? I’d love to help!

Connect with me @kirabakesglutenfree or info@kirabakesglutenfree.com

Gluten Free Pastry Chef Kira McMullan, eating slice of cake

Ready to try another Gluten Free Recipe? Why not bake my Gluten Free Butterscotch Pecan Tarts or The Best Gluten Free Flaky Pie Crust.



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