In The Kitchen/ recipe/ tart

Coconut Cream Tarts

These Coconut Cream Tarts with a Shortbread Cookie Crust are simple to make, and are SO delicious! This recipe makes 6 – 3 inch tarts, or 1 -10 inch tart.

Tart.  I love that word.  Just say it out loud.  Tart.  Tart. I just hear the word and I need one.  Stat.  And that’s likely the reason I don’t make them very often, because if I do, I have to eat one.  I mean you can’t just let a tart sit there looking all tarty.  And if there’s a coconut cream tart…oh man…I don’t stand a chance against a coconut cream tart.

Me + coconut = true love.

I made some this past weekend and they didn’t last more than 2 minutes.  Devoured in absolute silence, with oohs and ahhs and finger licking…I even saw my son lick his plate.  These tarts are amazing. You should make some.  I promise they’re not hard.  Don’t be fooled by how long the recipe looks – they really are easy, I promise. And besides, a coconut cream tart is worth your efforts!  😉



Coconut Cream Tarts

This recipe makes 6 – 3 inch tarts, or 1 -10 inch tart.

  • Author: Jo-Anna Rooney
  • Total Time: 120 minutes
  • Yield: 6 , 3 inch tarts OR 1, 10 inch tart 1x



The Shortbread Crust:

  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup butter (cut into chunks)
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 6, 3 inch mini tart pans (or 1 large 10 inch tart pan)

The Coconut Cream:

  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 cup cream of coconut
  • 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/2 vanilla bean (split)
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 pinch of salt

The Topping:

  • whipping cream


The Crust:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a food processor, process the flour, sugar and salt for about 10 seconds.
  3. Then add the chunks of butter and process until the mixture looks like coarse crumbs.
  4. Add the egg yolk and process again until the egg is thoroughly combined.
  5. If you are making mini tarts (tartlets), separate the mixture into 6 – 3 inch tart pans, and press the dough into the molds, making the sides slightly higher than the centre. Bake for 12-15 minutes, making sure to prick them with a fork several times, as the dough tends to puff up. Watch them carefully, as they go from not done to overcooked very quickly!
  6. If you are making one large tart, press the mixture into a 10 inch tart pan (making the sides slightly higher than the centre) and bake for about 15-18 minutes. Again make sure to prick the tart with a fork several times while baking, and watch it carefully.

The Coconut Cream:

  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, bring the milk, cream of coconut, coconut, and the vanilla bean to a simmer.
  2. Remove from heat, an let sit for 1 hour.
  3. In a mixer, beat together the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt.
  4. Beat together until thick and pale yellow.
  5. After the milk mixture has sat for the 1 hour, reheat it until it is hot again.
  6. Once the milk mixture is hot, slowly pour it into the mixer, while the mixer is going at medium speed.
  7. Once the cream is mixed thoroughly, transfer it to a saucepan and cook it over medium heat, whisking constantly, until boiling, and the mixture thickens.
  8. You can strain the cream through a sieve to remove the shredded coconut, but I like to leave it in the cream. It’s delicious!
  9. Let the coconut cream cool completely before adding it to your tarts.
  10. Make sure to stir the cream well before using.

Putting the Tarts Together:

  1. Once the tarts and coconut cream have cooled completely, fill the centre of the tarts with a scoop of the cream.
  2. Top with whipping cream.


If you want your tarts to look extra special, you can sprinkle on some toasted coconut after you have assembled them. To do that, spread about 1/4 cup of sweet shredded coconut onto a baking sheet, and put it in a 350 degree oven for about 2-3 minutes. Just watch the coconut closely, as it turns brown very quickly. (Note: do not put your tarts in the oven, you are just toasting the coconut to put on top.)

Keywords: coconut cream tart, tart recipe

Crust recipe from the Joy of Cooking, Coconut Cream recipe from Martha Stewart

More Delicious Tart Recipes:


Have a delicious day!

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  • Reply
    Barbara Hurst
    May 30, 2013 at 9:06 AM

    Thank you for the recipe, one of my favorite deserts.

  • Reply
    Angie@Echoes of Laughter
    May 30, 2013 at 9:27 AM

    They look so good Jo-Anna! We love anything coconut at your house! Angie xo

  • Reply
    May 30, 2013 at 9:33 AM

    Deliciousness! and, oh my… your photo is stunning!!

    • Reply
      May 23, 2020 at 7:04 AM

      The recipe looks delicious and quite simple to make. The cream coconut your talking about is it in a can? Cannot.wait to try ?

      • Reply
        Jo-Anna Rooney
        May 23, 2020 at 9:50 PM

        Hi Rhonda! The coconut cream does sometimes come in a can, but it’s not to be confused with coconut milk. Cream of coconut is thick and very sweet, and commonly used in mixed drinks. Hope that helps!

  • Reply
    May 30, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    I love coconut too and a coconut cream tart sounds like the perfect thing right about now! Can’t wait to try! 🙂

  • Reply
    Lisa Hains @ HeartInspirations
    May 30, 2013 at 7:35 PM

    Fabulous looking recipe—thank you!!! What is coconut cream, though?

    I’m saving this to a special folder and look forward to making it soon!!!

    Some days just need a little treat and I think this one will do the job with lots of taste and very little sugar….this week has been a heavy one for us,…we learned my husband has a lung tumor–that’s probably cancerous–and needing surgery….I think I’ll make this recipe for him….and nurture him with love and lots of prayers…and…tarts!

    Thanks for all you give through your blog!!
    Great job!!
    Love it!!

  • Reply
    May 31, 2013 at 6:08 PM

    Shortbread and coconut? Yes please! These look so yummy!

  • Reply
    Trish - Mom On Timeout
    May 31, 2013 at 6:20 PM

    These tarts are just gorgeous Jo-Anna! Pinned!

  • Reply
    Cindy Eikenberg
    May 31, 2013 at 6:26 PM

    Hi Jo-Anna, visiting from the party at Tatertots and Jello – these looks simply beautiful! I love Coconut Cream anything and wish I could just grab one right now! 🙂 So pinning these beauties and thank you for sharing the recipe. Have a wonderful weekend!

  • Reply
    Madonna/aka/Ms. Lemon
    June 1, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    I pinned this. I have not had this for a very long time. I do not know why since it is one of my favorites.

  • Reply
    June 1, 2013 at 6:14 AM

    These look absolutely delightful! Pinned it and new follower from the Weekend Wrap-up!

  • Reply
    Amy @ swiss miss in the kitchen
    June 1, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    These tarts are soooo pretty!!! and they look extremely tasty 🙂 What an amazing recipe!

  • Reply
    June 3, 2013 at 5:05 AM

    hi wanted to know how can i replace the egg yolks and egg in this recipe as I am a lacto vegan..

  • Reply
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    Laurel Stephens
    June 14, 2013 at 7:05 AM

    I’m so looking forward to making these tarts! Your photo is gorgeous. No wonder they didn’t last long! I’ve featured them on Friday Finds today. Thanks for sharing the recipe and enjoy your weekend.

  • Reply
    June 27, 2013 at 5:05 AM

    these tarts are perfect and delicious. greetings from Spain

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  • Reply
    August 5, 2015 at 3:37 PM

    Plan to make these ASAP, but would you kindly provide the diameter of the “large” tart pan you mention as an alternative to the small, individual tart pans? 8-inch, 9-inch, larger?

    Thank you very much for the fabulous recipe!


    • Reply
      August 21, 2015 at 2:27 PM

      Hi! Sorry for the late response! I always use an 8 inch tart pan.

      • Reply
        August 25, 2015 at 1:05 PM

        Thanks very much for the pan size info. After I sent my originall email, I noticed that at the top of the recipe, a 10-inch pan was called for if not using the smaller pans. I just got a new 8″ tart pan, so I’m going to make this tart today. I’ve always had the French tinned tart pans with removable bottoms, but I just discovered the Fat Daddio tart pans, which I much prefer. They’re much sturdier, the fluting is a bit more shallow, and the flute width is a bit wider, making it easier to fit pastry in the pan, while still providing plenty of flute definition when the tart is removed. They’re also a snap to clean, so I’m a Fat Daddio convert now!

        Looking forward to making this lovely tart in my new tart pan!

        Thanks again!

  • Reply
    August 18, 2016 at 6:37 PM

    Does this need to stay refrigerated?

  • Reply
    December 23, 2016 at 7:58 AM

    Do you think I could use Almond Milk in place of the 2 cups whole milk (maybe half and half). I know in some recipes such as puddings, it wont set.

    • Reply
      December 23, 2016 at 10:17 AM

      Hi Rebecca! I’m not sure how it would work…I’ve never tried to make custard with almond milk before. If you try it, let me know how it goes!

      Happy Holidays!

  • Reply
    March 31, 2017 at 3:13 AM

    Does this recipe make enough custard for a 9″ deep dish pie? I would like to try this coconut custard recipe, but instead of making a tart I want to make a coconut cream pie with a sky high meringue.

  • Reply
    December 4, 2017 at 4:12 PM

    Hey Jo-Anna, I have made this recipe twice and both times the custard did not set, remained milk like. Perhaps I used the wrong coconut cream? What kind do you use?

    • Reply
      December 5, 2017 at 10:23 AM

      Hi Mary! Oh I’m sorry to hear that! I’ve used Thai Kitchen and Grace brands for these tarts…make sure it’s the coconut cream, not coconut milk. Also, if the filling is not setting, you could try adding more cornstarch.

      • Reply
        December 5, 2017 at 7:50 PM

        Thanks Jo-Anna, my husband made it with me again tonight because the taste is so yummy . He found that cooking the mixture in the final step until it thickens instead of just to the boiling point makes all the difference. Thanks for the yummy recipe. It will be taken to a party this weekend and I know it will be a hit. Mary

        • Reply
          December 6, 2017 at 12:25 PM

          Oh I’m so happy to hear that! I’ll update the recipe to include that, in case others have had the same experience! Thank you so much for connecting with me! 🙂

  • Reply
    October 7, 2018 at 9:27 AM

    Can I use vanilla extract instead of vanilla bean.

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      October 7, 2018 at 11:49 AM

      Hi Lisa! You definitely can…I would use 1/2 tsp of vanilla.

  • Reply
    January 11, 2020 at 4:23 PM

    This looks so good! Do you use this crust recipe in any other recipes?

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      January 12, 2020 at 12:11 PM

      Hi Suzanne! I’ve used this same crust in several recipes including my Raspberry Vanilla Tarts, Maple Cream Tarts and my Lemon Tart. It’s so versatile!

  • Reply
    January 11, 2020 at 4:23 PM

    Thanks for sharing! How far ahead of time can I make them?

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      January 12, 2020 at 12:11 PM

      Hi Vanessa! I would make them no more than a day ahead of time…I would only just be concerned about the crust getting a bit too soggy.

      • Reply
        May 15, 2021 at 4:18 PM

        One way to avoid a soggy tart crust is to brush melted white chocolate on the bottom of the tarts before filling. It acts as a barrier between the crust and custard. Tarts are delicious. Although it takes a bit of waiting time until you can enjoy them, the elements are all easy to put together. For. anyone who loves coconut, they will love these!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2020 at 10:22 AM

    Hi Jo-Anna – Can I use Vanilla Extract instead Vanilla Bean for this recipe ‘Coconut Cream Tart’

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      February 5, 2020 at 11:15 AM

      Hi Linda! Absolutely you can…I would add a 1/4 tsp. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    February 6, 2021 at 11:06 AM

    5 stars
    Awesome recipe …just finished making 6 tarts. The filling is so flavourful with the cream of coconut. Must leave the coconut pieces in the filling if you’re a fan of coconut. Thanks for sharing and now I must share recipe with my family and friends. Next time I will try making one huge flan tart. Have you ever tried it with a regular pie dough crust?

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      February 8, 2021 at 11:29 AM

      I’m so happy you enjoyed this recipe Sherry! I’ve never actually tried it with regular pie crust, but I bet it would be delicious!

  • Reply
    February 14, 2021 at 6:08 PM

    5 stars
    It’s me again Sherry lol….. I just made coconut cream tart recipe using a regular pie crust dough and it turned it great. You must try it one day 🙂

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      February 16, 2021 at 11:16 AM

      Oh that is so great to hear! Thank you for letting me know, I’d love to try it!

  • Reply
    April 20, 2021 at 12:00 AM

    Would I be able to freeze these? Looking forward to making them this weekend

    • Reply
      Jo-Anna Rooney
      April 20, 2021 at 11:27 AM

      Hi Treva! No, the coconut cream part would not freeze well.

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