Keeping it simple but definitely not lacking in yumminess, this easy Vegan Vanilla Bean Custard Tart is the best refined sugar-free dessert that makes you feel like you’re cheating (and like you baked for hours in the kitchen but definitely didn’t)! This delicious Vanilla Bean Custard tart is made with a gluten-free, vegan, grain-free shortbread crust, filled with a creamy vegan vanilla bean custard made with coconut milk and cashews and topped with roasted strawberries for the perfect naturally sweetened, healthy dessert.
I’m gonna be honest with y’all, sometimes, and when I say sometimes I mean most always, I just want to keep things simple. This phase of my life is quite chaotic with a 3 year old boy (boy moms… you rock! lol) and a 10 month old baby girl. Mom life is definitely everything but simple, so when it comes to my recipes, I try to keep them easy and healthy, but still flavorful. This Vegan Vanilla Bean Custard Tart is the epitome of that. It’s creamy without the cream, it’s sweet without the refined sugar, it’s indulgent without the guilt, and it’s decadent without hours spent baking.
The gluten-free, vegan, grain-free “shortbread” crust is made with my new favorite flour… cassava flour! It’s sweetened with date sugar and made flaky with a combination of plant-butter and coconut oil. It’s very easy to make as you just press it into your 9-inch tart pan and bake for 20 minutes!
The creamy vegan custard filling is made with coconut milk, cashews, vanilla bean paste, maple syrup and agar agar powder (a vegan gelatin substitute to help it set up). There’s no need to bake the filling, you just fill your baked tart shell and then chill the tart in the fridge 4 hours to overnight!
This Vanilla Bean Custard Tart is great on it’s own, but I highly suggest serving with roasted strawberries, which are also easy to make! You simply wash and slice your strawberries, stir them with a little maple syrup and agar agar and then bake them in the oven for 20 minutes! YUM.
This Vanilla Bean Custard tart was created to be a delicious dessert, but I’ll be the first to admit that I enjoyed it for breakfast too! What?! It has strawberries on it! LOL This dessert-for-breakfast also took me a couple of tried to get it just right. In the first recipe, the crust was so hard I literally scooped out the filling and threw it away, ugh- y’all know I hate to throw away food! The second recipe, the filling didn’t quite set up right and it tasted… meh. The third attempt, however, was magical. Perfect flaky crust, creamy perfectly sweet custard filling, phew! I did it.
So I hope you enjoy this well-tested recipe, and if you’re into dessert for breakfast like me, be sure to also check out my BANANAS FOSTER CHIA PUDDING or my CRAN-APPLE GOJI CRISP! And don’t forget to tag me on Instagram or Facebook if you make this Vanilla Bean Custard Tart with Roasted Strawberries!
P.s. my go to vanilla extract that gives this tart all those gorgeous flecks is Taylor & Colledge Organic Vanilla Bean Paste!
- 3 cups cassava flour
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) plant-butter
- 1/2 cup date sugar
- 1/3 cup coconut oil (softened, but not melted), plus more if needed
- 1 teaspoons pure almond extract/paste
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cans full fat coconut milk
- 1 cup raw cashews, softened
- 2.5 teaspoons pure vanilla bean paste/extract
- 1/2 cup maple syrup
- 2 teaspoons agar agar powder
- pinch salt
Roasted Strawberries (make right before serving)
- 32 ounces fresh strawberries, washed and trimmed (some I left whole, some I cut in half and some in 4ths)
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla bean paste/extract
- 1/2 teaspoon agar agar powder
- pinch salt
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- First, place the cashews in a medium saucepan and cover the cashews with water. Boil your cashews for about 15 minutes until most of the water is absorbed and the cashews are softened. Let them cool while you prepare the crust.
- In a large bowl, whisk all the dry crust ingredients together, then add in the almond extract paste. Then "knead" in the plant-butter and coconut oil with your hands until your dough forms. The dough should be slightly crumbly, but should stick together between your fingers if you squeeze it. If it doesn't, add more coconut oil 1 tablespoon at a time until that happens. Spray a 9-inch tart pan with coconut oil and then press the crust into the tart pan.
*NOTE: You may have leftover crust, which you can make cookies out of (it's delicious!) Be sure not to fill the tart pan too much with dough, to leave room for the filling. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the edges start to turn slightly golden. DO NOT OVER BAKE (gluten-free crust doesn't turn the lovely golden brown to signal that it's done, so I wouldn't cook longer than 25 minute.
**NOTE: you may need to press down the crust lightly after your take it out of the oven with the back of a bowl or spoon to make a deeper well for the filling.
- While the crust is baking, make your tart filling. In a medium saucepan, heat the coconut milk over medium-high heat. Whisk in the maple syrup, and salt and let the mixture simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla bean paste and agar agar. Let the mixture cool while your crust finishes baking.
- In a high speed blender or food processor, blend the (drained and rinsed) cashews with the rest of the tart filling on high until smooth and creamy.
- Let everything cool slightly and then pour the filling into the crust. Very carefully, chill the tart in the fridge at least 4 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add all strawberries, maple syrup, vanilla, agar agar, and salt in a large bowl and stir. Pour onto a sprayed baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Let them cool before adding onto the tart. Add the strawberries to the tart and serve! Store leftover tart/slices in the fridge.
* I used Taylor & Colledge Vanilla Bean Paste and Almond Extract Paste