Coconut Fruit Tarts Recipe

Butler College Prep Pi Day


Looking for a fun dessert recipe to make over the long weekend? Try this recipe for Coconut Fruit Tarts! We recommend using your favorite late summer fruit to make it your own! You could try this recipe with stone fruit, blueberries, raspberries, apples, your favorite melon, tropical fruit, or even your own combination! Find this recipe on our blog at the link below.

And because we are always thinking about how food is connected to what students might be learning in upcoming math lessons, we thought we would throw it back to a delicious food experience with this very recipe from last March in Pilot Light Fellow Marria Rahim’s Geometry classroom. Students at Butler College Prep celebrated Pi Day by measuring and looking for circumference and area in their daily lives, calculating it for their individual pies, and then building and plating their own pies.

Coconut Fruit Tarts

Serves 8 (5 inch) tarts or 1 large (10 inch) tart

Tart Dough:

  • ½ c unsalted butter
  • ½ c sugar
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 ¾ c all-purpose flour

Coconut Pastry Cream:

  • 1 c coconut cream
  • 1 c milk (preferably whole)
  • ½ c sugar
  • 3 T cornstarch
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ c butter, cut into cubes
  • ⅛ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp. vanilla

Fruit Topping:

  • ½ papaya, seeded and cubed
  • ½ pineapple, cut in triangles
  • 2 bananas, sliced
  • ½ c blackberries, sliced in half
  • ½ c blueberries
  • 1 kiwi, peeled and sliced
  • 1 orange (any type), segmented
  • 1/3 c unsweetened coconut, toasted (to garnish)


  • Equipment: Range (burner), oven, tart pans (or metal disposables)
  • Tools: Sauce pot, mixing bowls (2), whisk, wooden spoon, fork, and wire rack


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Cream butter, sugar, and salt until smooth either in a mixer or by hand with a wooden spoon. Add egg and mix until combined.
  2. Add flour and mix until just incorporated and there are no longer any dry streaks of flour.
  3. Divide dough in half and pat to 1/2-inch thick. Wrap and chill for one hour or up to overnight.
  4. On a lightly floured work surface, roll dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut out 8 circles (or 1 if using one pan) a little larger than the tart mold. Transfer each to tart mold, pressing it gently into place.
  5. Dock the bottom of each tart shell with a fork. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown in color.
  6. Let cool to room temperature on wire rack, and meanwhile, make the coconut pastry cream.
  7. Pour coconut cream and 3/4 cup milk into a large heavy-bottomed sauce pot. Whisk together and place over medium heat. Bring it to a simmer.
  8. Meanwhile, whisk together sugar and cornstarch and add in remaining 1/4 cup milk and eggs.
  9. Reduce milk mixture to low heat. Slowly add about 1/3 cup of the hot milk mixture into the cornstarch mixture. Whisk constantly and continue to add milk and whisk until only about 1/3 of milk is left into sauce pot.
  10. Pour all of cornstarch-milk mixture back into the sauce pot. Increase to medium heat. Whisk constantly until thickened to a custard. Allow mixture to come to a boil for 15-30 seconds to remove cornstarch flavor. Remove from heat.
  11. Whisk in butter until smooth. Add in salt and vanilla and continue whisking. 12. Pour hot pastry cream into a container or spread onto a plastic-lined sheet tray to cool quickly. Cover with the surface of pastry cream directly with plastic wrap. Cool to room temperature in the fridge and cover once cooled.
  12. Once chilled, fill each tart with ¼ c pastry cream. Top with sliced fruit and arrange to your choosing.
  13. Garnish with toasted coconut and enjoy!

Recipe adapted from The Little Epicurean

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