This decadent chocolate caramel tart is a show-stopper (you can also make it in a pie plate)! As delicious as it is pretty, I promise it is surprisingly easy to make…you don’t even need a candy thermometer for the homemade caramel layer!
I kind of feel like I just need to let the pictures do the talking with this insanely decadent chocolate caramel tart recipe.
But you know me. I always have something to say. So the pictures are going to have to be ok with me blabbing for a second, too.
This caramel tart.
It is the dessert dreams are made of. The dessert people lose their minds over.
The dessert that will change lives and make you very, very, very popular (prepare yourself).
The best news? It is honestly quite simple, and I promise I’m not just saying that.
Months ago my brother and I were talking about a really popular caramel tart-pie thingie circulating on Pinterest.
He took one for the team, made it…and was really underwhelmed.
But we both knew we couldn’t live a full, productive life until we had a successful chocolate/caramel dessert combo in front of us.
Fast forward several months, and this decadent chocolate caramel tart number (with a tasty little chocolate cookie crust) has become one of the most defining desserts of my life.
I’ve made it at least eight times since September, and it is almost embarrassing (and kind of funny) how crazy this dessert makes people.
At first, I worried about having that much caramel in one place.
Would it be overwhelming? Too caramelly? Sickeningly sweet?
Oh me of little faith. What was I thinking?
It’s none of those things.
It is PERFECT.
Sandwiched in between that delightful, light crust and the velvety chocolate ganache, the soft, creamy caramel is exactly what this tart needs to be complete.
And. That luxurious caramel layer is homemade (which means it is crazy delicious)
Wait, wait, don’t panic!
If homemade caramel has you running for the storebought hills, you have to trust me that this caramel is so easy and so doable.
You don’t even need a candy thermometer. You just need eyeballs.
And, I’ve included a quick picture tutorial to show you exactly when to pull that caramel off the stove (you’re looking for a medium-dark amber color).
If you undercook it a bit, life will still plug along, and your caramel tart might be slightly softer. No biggie.
If you overcook it a little, again, there’s a good chance it will work out (with a slightly firmer consistency).
There’s a little wiggle room here (however, please avoid smoke, strong burned smells, fire, and breaking people’s teeth out, thanks).
And making homemade caramel for this tart will undoubtedly make you feel like a rock star that can accomplish anything life throws at you!
Flat tire? Bad hair day? Bickering children?
Ha! None of those challenges stand a chance in the face of one who can make a homemade chocolate caramel tart.
Basically, you’re getting a new lease on life with this chocolate caramel tart recipe.
I won’t go so far as to say it’ll solve all your problems.
But goodness, just look at it? It certainly won’t hurt, will it?
Feel free to ask any questions about the recipe in the comments!
This is the perfect dessert for your holiday table (or just to drop off on a friend’s doorstep who needs it – instant therapy and love right there).
The advantage of a tart pan is that the removeable bottom makes for easier slicing and a prettier presentation.
One Year Ago: Peppermint Bark White Chocolate Mousse Cheesecake
Two Years Ago: Soft Sour Cream Sugar Cookies
Three Years Ago: Soft and Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
Four Years Ago: Salty Sweet Granola and Coconut Yogurt
Five Years Ago: Killer Crunch Brownies
Chocolate Caramel Tart
- 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons, 4 ounces) butter, softened to room temperature
- 1/3 cup (1.25 ounces) powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup (1 ounce) natural, unsweetened cocoa powder
- Pinch of salt
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup (5 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 2 cups (15 ounces) granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup corn syrup
- 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons, 4 ounces) butter, cut into 4-5 pieces
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 ounces (1/2 cup) semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped (can use good-quality chocolate chips)
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- Fleur de sel, for sprinkling (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- For the crust, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a bowl using a handheld electric mixer (or just mixing by hand), combine the butter, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, salt, egg yolk, vanilla and flour. Mix until combined (it may be crumbly but will hold together when pressed).
- Crumble the mixture over the bottom of a 9.5- or 10-inch tart pan (can also use a 9-inch pie plate). Press evenly up the sides first all the way around the edges and then press the remaining crust mixture evenly over the bottom.
- Place on a baking sheet and bake for 18-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.
- For the caramel, in a heavy bottomed saucepan (important so that the heat conducts evenly!), combine the sugar, water and corn syrup (try not to splash the mixture up on the sides of the pan). Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for 10-12 minutes, until the mixture is a medium-dark amber color, tilting the pan just slightly every couple of minutes to swirl the mixture – don’t swirl or tilt the pan too quickly or get the caramel mixture up high on the sides of the pan. The exact cooking time will depend on how high/low the heat is on the stove.
- Immediately remove the pan from the heat and carefully add the butter, cream and vanilla. The hot mixture will bubble vigorously. Stir to combine (don’t go too crazy scraping down the sides of the pan).
- Pour the caramel over the baked crust. Refrigerate until the caramel is set and no longer warm, 1-2 hours (make sure you set the tart on a really flat surface in the fridge or else it will set up tilted or uneven).
- For the ganache, place the chocolate in a small or medium bowl. Heat the cream (in the microwave or on the stove) until simmering. Pour the cream over the chocolate. Let the mixture sit for 1-2 minutes. Stir to combine until the chocolate is glossy and smooth. Spread the ganache evenly over the caramel. Chill until the chocolate is set and is no longer melty/soft. Sprinkle with a tiny bit of fleur de sel, if desired.
- Keep refrigerated until serving. For neat, even slices, I run my long chef’s knife under hot water, wipe dry and slice (repeating as needed to get clean slices).
This recipe calls for a 9-inch tart pan, but a 9-inch pie plate should work pretty well (the advantage to the tart pan is the removeable bottom which makes presentation and slicing nicer/easier/prettier).
Follow @melskitchencafe on Instagram and show me the recipes you are making from my blog using the hashtag #melskitchencafe. I love seeing all the goodness you are whipping up in your kitchens!
Recipe Source: adapted from this NYT’s recipe