Peanut Butter and Jelly Tart

Peanut Butter and Jelly Tart

salted peanut shortbread crust:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 3/4 cup finely ground peanuts
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt (use just 1/2 teaspoon salt if the peanuts are also salted)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1 egg yolk


  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter, room temperature
  • 1 pound (two 8-ounce boxes) low-fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

strawberry sauce:

  • 2 pounds strawberries (hull and chop 1 pound, and reserve the other pound, the prettiest ones, to garnish the top)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 cup of flour, ground peanuts (grind them in a food processor until crumbly, but don't go too far or you'll get peanut butter), powdered sugar and salt.  Sprinkle the pieces of butter over the dry ingredients and use a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour, until you have coarse crumbs with visible chunks of butter showing.

Add the egg yolk and incorporate into the mixture with your fingers until it moistens and holds together, but is still a little crumbly.  Add 1-2 teaspoons of ice water if you need a little extra moisture.  Gather the dough into a ball.  If not using immediately, wrap in plastic and refrigerate until ready to use.

Thoroughly spray the bottom and sides of a 9-inch tart pan (with a removable bottom) with non-stick spray, or grease with butter.  You can roll the dough out between two pieces of wax paper, but this dough does not roll out as easily as pie crust since shortbread crusts are more crumbly, so I find it much easier to just press it into the pan.  Take half the dough and press it against the sides, all the way up to the top edge.  Press the other half evenly against the bottom, sealing all the edges.

Place pan in the freezer and freeze for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350.  Place the pan with the frozen crust on a baking sheet.  Prick the bottom of the crust a few times to prevent it from puffing up.  Spray a piece of foil with non-stick spray, and fit the foil against the crust, greased side against the dough, so that none of the crust should be exposed.  Fill the foil-lined crust with dry beans (or pie weights).  Bake the crust at 350 for 15 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven, and remove the foil and the dry beans.  Sprinkle the bottom of the crust with the remaining tablespoon of flour (to prevent it from getting soggy) before pouring in the filling.

Reduce the oven temperature to 325.


While the crust is baking, prepare your filling.  In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the peanut butter, cream cheese, sour cream and sugar for 4-5 minutes, until light and fluffy.  Scrape the bowl down a few times as it's mixing.  Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating for a full minute each.  Beat in the vanilla.

Pour filling into the prebaked crust and smooth out the top.

Bake at 325 for 30 minutes.  If you need to, place a pie shield on top of the crust to prevent it from over-browning.  After 30 minutes, the surface of the filling should appear slightly dry and a little cracked, but still a little jiggly underneath.


While the tart is baking, prepare the sauce.  In a medium saucepan, combine the 1 pound chopped strawberries, sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, then boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, mashing the berries as you cook them.  Stir in the vanilla.

At this point, you could leave the sauce as a chunky jam and it would be just fine, but I decided I wanted a smoother sauce for a more elegant look.  For a sauce, puree the jam using a blender or an immersion blender.  Cook for an additional 5 minutes over medium heat, stirring constantly, until very thick.  Pour through a mesh strainer to strain out the seeds and set aside.

After the tart has baked for 30 minutes, remove from the oven.  Pour about 1/2 cup of the strawberry sauce over the top, spreading it out to the edges with a spatula; it should be thick enough that it doesn't run everywhere.  Return tart to the oven and bake for 5 more minutes, just to set the sauce a little.

Set tart on a wire rack on the counter and cool for 30 minutes.

To finish, garnish the top with whole (or sliced) strawberries, and brush the berries with 1/4 cup of the remaining sauce.  Refrigerate for 4 hours before serving.

If you have any leftover sauce, serve it on the side with the tart, or make strawberry popsicles (see below).  :)

Yields 8-10 servings

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen

Strawberry Popsicles

  • 3/4 cup strawberry sauce (above)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced
  • 4 popsicle molds

If you have leftover strawberry sauce, you can make some quick and easy popsicles.  Whisk together the sauce with the water to thin it out a little.  Place the strawberry slices into the popsicle molds and pour the sauce into the molds.

Insert a popsicle stick into each and freeze until firm, about 2-3 hours.

Yields 4 popsicles

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen