Cranberry Brown Sugar Tart

The holidays are a crazy time of year anybody but in my family, it can be even more complicated since we all live so far apart. Plane tickets and timing phone calls so no one accidentally calls Grammy at 2:00 am. Friends, family, and pretty much anyone we find are brought into the fold. Sometimes the holidays are a smaller crowd and sometimes we don’t even fit inside the house. There is no knowing who we will have at the table but it is always a great time.  But, even though things are hectic, there are a few things that stay the same.

One past Thanksgiving, the party didn't fit in the house so we had a Thanksgiving croquet tournament while waiting for the turkey!

One past Thanksgiving, the party didn’t fit in the house so we had a Thanksgiving croquet tournament while waiting for the turkey!

One of those constants is this cranberry tart. I have been making it for Thanksgiving (and Christmas, and New Year, and pretty much anytime cranberries are available at Costco…a real rarity in Hawaii) for a few years now. It is actually a multifunction dish (a huge plus when you have so many things going on). Not only do you get the beautiful cranberry tart, I always reserve the leftover syrup and make some kind of cocktail. See? One recipe, two foods! Always a plus to have a good drink to keep everyone relaxed during the long tempting wait for dinner.

Get cooking! Make a dish that becomes a tradition but don’t be worried if it doesn’t come out quite right…sometimes it the fortunate mess ups that become your favorite new dish. You never know! It doesn’t have to be fancy or complicated. Just make sure it is something that the people at your table will enjoy. That’s all that matters!

Happy kitchen adventures! ~ Molly

Cranberry Brown Sugar Tart

  • Servings: 6 to 8
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Tart Shell:

  • 1 stick butter, softened
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 ¼ cup flour


  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 cups cranberries
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp flour
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp half & half
  • ⅛ tsp almond extract


Tart Shell:

  1. Beat butter and sugar until fluffy; add egg yolk, vanilla, and salt; beat until smooth; gradually add flour
  2. Form into a ball; wrap in plastic; chill at least 1 hour
  3. Roll or press pastry into tart pan; chill at least 10 minutes
  4. Bake at 350* until golden (approx 25 minutes)


  1. Preheat oven to 375*
  2. Heat ¼ cup water and 1 ½ cups sugar in a medium saucepan; stir until sugar is dissolved; add cranberries; cook 3 minutes; cool slightly; strain, reserve the syrup
  3. Beat eggs, brown sugar, and flour; whisk in almond extract
  4. Spread cranberries in tart shell; drizzle with 1 tbsp of the syrup (reserve the rest for another use – cranberry lime cocktails are a great choice!); pour in custard
  5. Bake until a skewer comes out clean, approximately 16 minutes
  6. Cool at least 2 hours; dust with confectioners sugar and top with whipped cream for serving

6 thoughts on “Cranberry Brown Sugar Tart

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