We’re talking 8 ingredient simplicity here. This easy bakewell tart is a classic for good reason. A moist and flavourful almond filling with jam and the most buttery, crispy pastry and it’s all homemade.

The bakewell tart is a very close cousin of the French frangipane tart like this pear almond tart and this strawberry almond tart.  

A bakewell tart, with a slice cut out, sitting on a white cake platter.

What is bakewell tart

This classic English tart is essentially a tart crust filled with raspberry jam and a thick frangipane topping. The cherry bakewell is a variation that includes an iced topping and cherries on top. It’s delicious and here’s why I know you’ll love it.

  • Crisp, buttery pastry: Though you could use store-bought shortcrust, I urge you to make your own pastry as I have here. This sweet shortcrust pastry/pie crust is buttery, perfectly crisp and easier than you might think. buttery and perfectly crisp and easier than you might think.
  • Jam: Traditonally made with raspberry jam, I used strawberry here and it works perfectly.
  • Almond topping: The spongey but moist almond topping is rich and incredibly delicious. It also takes just minutes to make.

Typically a traditional bakewell tart is topped with flaked almonds as well and they do add a satisfying crunch if you want to add them.

Ingredients you’ll need

You only need 8 ingredients and I bet you already have most (if not all) of them.  

Ingredients for bakewell tart on a white marble surface.

Detailed quantities and instructions in the recipe card below.

  • Flour: Just plain (all purpose) flour is all you need.
  • Butter: This is in both the pastry and the almond filling and gives loads of lovely buttery flavour.
  • Eggs: Also used in both the pastry and the almond filling, these add richness and bind everything together.
  • Sugar: Regular white sugar is perfect for the filling, while icing sugar (powdered sugar) is best for the tart shell.
  • Vanilla: This adds a little flavour to the filling
  • Jam: Traditionally raspberry, I’ve used strawberry but you could use your favourite or what you have on hand.
  • Almond meal / almond flour: This is finely ground almonds and makes up a large part of the filling. It adds moisture and wonderful flavour.

How to make bakewell tart

Homemade bakewell tart is actually very simple to make, even with 3 layers. You’ll spend the most time on the pastry but I promise it’s worth it. You could even make a double batch while you’re at it and freeze half for the next time you feel like a bakewell.

A collage showing how to make and form the pastry.

Detailed quantities and instructions in the recipe card below.

  1. Make the pastry: Start by beating together butter and sugar, then add the egg (photo 1) and beat to combine. Add the flour (photo 2) and beat through until combined and beginning to clump together (photo 3).
  2. Make the tart shell: Shape the dough into a smooth dish and roll it out immediately (photo 4) on a lightly floured surface then lay it into your tart tin (photo 5). Press it down into the corners gently with your fingertips and leave the edges standing up (photo 6). Chill the tart shell for at least 2 hours.
A collage showing how to prep the shell and make the filling.
  1. Blind bake the shell: After the pastry has chilled, dock the centre (prick all over with a fork), then run a knife flat along the edge (photo 7) all the way round to cut away the excess pastry. Line the shell with baking paper, the fill with pie weights (or rice) (photo 8). Par-bake the shell.
  2. Make the almond filling: First cream together butter and sugar, then add eggs and vanilla (photo 9) and beat it all together. Mix in some flour and the almond flour.
  3. Assembling: Spread jam over the pastry crust base, then spread the almond filling over the top (photo 10). Now just bake a little longer and it’s ready.

Ideas to get ahead

Homemade bakewell tart can be made a day or two ahead. Serve it at room temperature with a little icing sugar dusted over the top and maybe a dollop of cream on the side.

You can make the pastry ahead and either refrigerate or freeze, depending on when you need it. If you freeze the dough, make sure to wrap it really well in plastic wrap and freeze for 2 months.

You can even make the tart shell up to the point right before the first bake and freeze it in the tart tin for up to 2 months. Wrap it well and keep it protected so that it doesn’t get damaged in the freezer. You can blind bake it from frozen but give it an extra 5 minutes.

A slice of bakewell tart sitting on a white dessert plate.

Pro tips and tricks

  • Room temp ingredients: Have the butter and eggs at room temperature so they combine easily and smoothly.
  • Chill the dough: There is just one chilling time in the recipe, and this is really important – don’t skip it. It helps the pastry bake up crispy and lessens the amount it shrinks in the tin. If you want to save time, the dough can be made ahead. See my tips above.
  • If your pastry is shrinking back as you roll it, stop and chill it a little longer. That elasticity is caused by gluten and will toughen the pastry if you continue rolling it out this way. It needs a little more time to relax the gluten.

Variations

  • Other jams: If you don’t feel like making your bakewell tart traditional, then don’t. Use whatever jam you like most or what you have on hand. Apricot jam is another classic one.
  • Add almonds: Sprinkle some flaked almonds over the top before baking.
  • Like a stronger almond flavour? Just add a little almond extract, maybe ½ teaspoon, to the pastry dough or to the filling.

Storage

  • Store any leftover bakewell tart in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days.
  • The tarts also freezes well, for up to 2 months.
  • Thaw at room temperature.
  • It’s best eaten at room temperature.
A slice of bakewell tart sitting on a white dessert plate with a forkful to the side.

If you try easy bakewell tart recipe, please take a moment to leave a rating and comment below. I love hearing from you and it helps other readers too!

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A bakewell tart cut into slices on a white marble cake platter.

Easy Bakewell Tart Recipe

4.9 from 8 ratings
With gorgeous, crispy pastry, a layer of jam and a simple almond topping, this is easy bakewell tart recipe is an absolute British classic. So easy to make and so delicious, it’s the perfect afternoon tea treat.

Ingredients

FOR THE SWEET SHORTCRUST PASTRY SHELL

  • 100 g unsalted butter, softened (7 tablespoons / 3.5oz)
  • 40 g icing sugar (powdered sugar / confectioners sugar) (⅓ cup / 1.4oz)
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 225 g plain flour (all purpose flour) (1 ¾ cups / 8oz) (notes 2)

FOR THE FRANGIPANE FILLING

  • ½ cup white granulated sugar
  • 113 g unsalted butter, softened (½ cup / 1 stick)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons plain (all-purp) flour (notes 1)
  • 1 cup almond meal (ground almonds) (95g / 3oz)
  • cup strawberry jam (160ml)

Equipment

Instructions
 

  • FOR THE PASTRY:
    In the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment, add the butter and icing sugar. Beat on medium until fully combined and smooth (1 – 2 minutes).
  • Add the egg and beat on low until smooth. Add the flour and beat just until large clumps are forming.
  • Turn the dough out and pull it together into a smooth ball with your hands (making sure not to handle it too much) then press it out into a 1 inch thick disk.
  • Place it onto a lightly floured work surface and dust the top with just a little flour too. Gently and gradually roll the pastry out, turning it often, to about 4-5mm thick or about 11 inches in diameter.
  • Place the rolling pin in the middle of the dough and fold one side of the pastry over the top. Lift the rolling pin so the pastry is hanging over it, and lightly dust off any excess flour from underneath. Carefully lay it into a 9 inch round tart pan with removeable base.
  • Press the dough down in to the corners all the way round, then press it into the scalloped sides. Leave the overhang standing upright and place the tart pan into the fridge to chill for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight. If your freezer has space you can place it in there.
  • PAR BAKE THE TART SHELL:
    Preheat the oven to 180C (160C fan) / 350F.
  • Use a fork to prick the pastry base all over. Use a small sharp knife to trim off the excess pastry.
  • Line the tart shell with a sheet of baking paper and fill with pie weights or rice. Fill it quite full and making sure it’s pressed up tight against the edges.
  • Bake for 15 minutes then carefully remove the paper and pie weights and bake a further 5 minutes.
    You can proceed with making the filling while it bakes.
  • FOR THE FRANGIPANE FILLING:
    In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat well. Finally, mix in the flour and almond meal.
  • Spread the jam over the base of the tart shell, then dollop over the filling mixture. Spread it out evenly.
  • Bake for 45-50 minutes, turning the tray half way through, until golden and springy on top.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature with a little icing sugar dusted over the top.
  • Please take a moment to leave a comment & rating. It's appreciated and so helpful.

Notes

  1. I use a standard Australian 20ml tablespoon (= 4 teaspoons)
  2. For best results, you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
  3. All ovens are different, test for doneness 3-5 minutes before for the pastry blind bake and 5-10 minutes before for the end.

More Information

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MORE PIES AND TARTS!
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