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premade tart shells

How to Make Tart Shells

Learn how to make pre-made mini tart shells or large pie shells that you can fill with any sweet filling you like.
Course Cakes
Cuisine International
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 24
Calories 174kcal
Author Adina


  • Makes 24 cases or 2 pie shells
  • 330 g/ 11.6 oz/ 2 ¾ cups all-purpose flour
  • 100 g/ 3.5 oz/ 1 cup icing sugar
  • grated zest of ½ lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt or Kosher
  • 180 g/ 6.3 oz/ ¾ cup cold unsalted butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • extra butter for brushing the tins
  • extra flour for dusting
  • paper muffin cases or parchment paper
  • dry beans or rice for blind baking



  • The recipe makes 24 mini pie shells or 2 large pie shells.
  • Dough: Place the flour, icing sugar, lemon zest, salt, and butter in the food processor and process until you get a coarse mixture that resembles breadcrumbs; you should still have some small butter pieces visible. Add the yolk and the water and mix shortly until the dough comes together.
  • Rest: Turn the pastry onto the working surface and knead lightly for just a few seconds, to form a smooth disc. Divide the pastry into four portions, wrap each piece in plastic foil and refrigerate until needed. It will keep for a week in the fridge and a month in the freezer.
  • Tin: Brush the muffin tin with melted butter, place the tin in the fridge and leave to set for about 30 minutes.
  • Roll: Dust the working surface with very little flour. Take one portion of the wrapped pastry out of the fridge and divide it into 6 parts. Form 6 small balls and roll each one into a circle, about 2-3 mm thick and large enough to cover the bottom and the walls of the muffin tin. Repeat with another portion of pastry.
  • You can bake two batches of the pastry in one 12-mold muffin tin. Then, either bake in two batches, two muffin tins or refrigerate or freeze the remaining pastry for another occasion.


  • Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius/ 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Blind bake: Line each muffin mold with a paper muffin case, fill with dry beans or rice, and bake blind for about 25 minutes. Remove the beans/rice and the paper. The cases should be golden-brown. If they are not so yet, bake for another 5 to 10 minutes without beans and paper.
  • Cool: Let the mini muffin shells cool slightly but remove them from the muffin tin while still warm; they will slide out of the form. Place on a wire rack to cool completely, then fill.

Large pastry cases:

  • The pastry is enough for 2 pie shells of about 24-26 cm/ 9-10 inches.
  • Grease a loose-based cake tin (24-26 cm/ 9-10 inches) with melted butter and place it in the fridge for 30 minutes. Roll the dough into a circle large enough to cover the bottom and the tin walls, press it lightly in the tin, and trim the edges.
  • Alternative to rolling the pastry: Form a thick roll of dough (which should be cold, just out of the fridge), cut it lengthways into thin slices, enough of them to cover the tin and its edges, place the pieces in the tin, push them with the fingers and press them to close the cuts. Trim the edges with a sharp knife.

Bake the large pie shells:

  • Preheat the oven to 150 degrees Celsius/ 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Blind bake: Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to fit the tin, place it on top of the pie and fill with dry beans or rice. Bake blind for about 20 -30 minutes until golden brown. Remove the beans and the paper and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes if the shell doesn't have the right color yet. Let cool and fill.
  • If the filling has to be cooked as well, remove the paper and beans, fill the shells and continue cooking according to the recipe's instructions.


Always use a kitchen scale when baking, cup measuring is very unprecise.


Serving: 1mini pie shell | Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 24mg | Sodium: 24mg | Sugar: 18g