This mandarin orange tart is a fun twist on the classic lemon tart. It's less sour and tastes just like an orange creamsicle. It's also vegan, dairy free and egg free.
What to expect from this tart
This tart uses only 7 ingredients and features a:
1. Simple buttery shortcrust pastry
2. Easy creamy custard-like filling packed with around 10 MANDARINS! Compared to a lemon tart or lemon bars, the filling is less sour and sharp but more sweet and delicate.
Ingredients you'll need
To make the shortcrust base, you'll need flour, butter, powdered sugar and a dash of water. To make the filling, you'll need a lot of mandarins, thick coconut cream, corn starch and sugar.
As always, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of this post for quantities of ingredients and full instructions!
If you would like to make this tart refined sugar-free, simply use coconut sugar in the base and rice malt syrup or maple syrup in the filling.
For a gluten-free orange tart, refer to the amounts in the recipe card below.
Best way to make mandarin juice
If you don't have a juicer, the most efficient way to make mandarin juice is by using a blender and sieve. This will allow you to get as much juice as possible from the little fruits!
I tried using a hand-held lemon squeezer to extract the juice but it's messy and doesn't produce much mandarin juice.
Simply, blend all the mandarin segments (or use a stick blender) until it forms a puree. Pour the mixture into a sieve with a bowl or jug underneath. Stir the puree with a spoon to encourage the juice to separate from the pulp.
In your bowl or jug, you'll eventually have a beautiful, bubbly and bright orange mandarin juice! The pulp can be eaten as is, saved for another recipe or discarded.
Alternatively, you can actually skip the sieve and use the puree (with the pulp) in the mandarin curd. It'll just make a textured custard which is not necessarily a bad thing.
Making the mandarin curd
This mandarin curd filling is basically a vegan custard flavored with mandarin juice. It's creamy yet the tanginess of the mandarin juice makes it a little lighter!
The main ingredient is coconut cream which is high in natural fat and has a creamy rich mouthfeel. It mimics the role of eggs and dairy in traditional custard and curd.
Instead of eggs, corn starch is used to thicken the cream and mandarin juice.
Making the curd is super easy. Simply add the mandarin juice and rest of the ingredients to a saucepan and heat until thickened.
Decorating the tart
You can enjoy your tart as is or decorate the tart with:
- macerated mandarin segments (recipe below)
- fresh mandarins
- whipped coconut cream
- dusted icing sugar
- other fruit as desired
I hope you enjoy this recipe!
Mandarin Curd Tart
- 1 ¼ cups (155g) all-purpose plain flour, (note 1)
- ⅓ cup (75g) vegan butter or margarine, or solid coconut oil
- 3 tablespoons (20g) powdered sugar / icing sugar, or coconut sugar
- 1 tablespoon (15g) water, as needed
- 8-10 small to medium size mandarins, peeled and as many seeds as possible removed
- 1 cup (240g) thick scoopable canned coconut cream
- ⅓ cup (35g) corn starch / corn flour
- ⅓ cup (65g) granulated sugar, or light-coloured liquid sweetener to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, optional for a more sour/tart filling
To decorate (optional)
- ~4 small size mandarins, peeled
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon orange or yellow-coloured jam, optional
To make the pastry:
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Grease or line a 20 cm (8 inch) loose-bottom tart tin.
- Mix all the pastry ingredients in a medium size bowl or food processor. If the mixture is too crumbly, add some extra water and mix until it becomes a pliable dough. If the mixture is too wet, add a little more flour and mix again.
- Transfer the pastry to the tart tin and press it against the base and sides to form an evenly thick crust. Prick the bottom with a fork to let hot air escape when baking.
- Bake the crust for 10-15 minutes, or until the pastry is slightly golden. Allow the pastry to cool in the tart tin.
To make the filling:
- First, we need to make the mandarin juice. Add all the peeled mandarins to a blender (or use a stick blender) and blend until it forms a puree. Pour the puree in a strainer to seperate the juice from the pulp. Discard or use the pulp for another recipe. We need 1 ¼ cups (300g) of mandarin juice for this recipe!
- Add the mandarin juice and rest of the filling ingredients to a medium-size saucepan. Mix to disperse the corn flour.
- Bring to medium-high heat for 5-10 minutes while whisking constantly. The mixture should thicken quickly and coat the back of a spatula. If there are any lumps in the mixture, blend using a stick blender.
- Quickly pour the mixture into your baked tart shell and smooth the top if necessary. Allow the tart to set in the fridge for at least 3 hours.
To prepare the topping (optional):
- The easiest way to decorate your tart is to top it with fresh mandarin segments. Alternatively, you can cook half (or all) of your mandarin segments as follows.
- Add the segments of 2 mandarins, water, sugar and jam to a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat for 5 minutes or until the mandarins have slightly softened and the sugar has dissolved.
- Top the mandarin tart with the cooked and fresh mandarin segments. Serve immediately or store until needed.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
- For a gluten free mandarin tart, use ⅔ cup (65g) almond meal/flour and ⅔ cup (105g) gluten-free flour blend which has xantham gum.
This recipe was originally published in 2018 and updated a few times since then for simplicity.
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Celia Salazar says
I had so out of curiosity could I make mini forms of this by using a muffin pan instead of making as one whole tart? And if so then any tips/suggestions?
Yes that will work! You may need a little more pastry (say, 25% more) but the rest of the recipe will be the same.
What can i use instead of thick coconut cream?
Any dairy-free cream will work, though I'd recommend cooking the mixture until it's a pudding/thick custard consistency to make sure it sets. Alternatively, you can replace it with firm silken tofu and dairy-free milk (equal amounts of each). You'll need to blend the mixture and cook it until it's thick, similar to above.
Oh yum and I have so many wonderful mandarins on my tree.
How long would the curd last if I just made it to spread on bread (toast)?
Your presentation as usual is so lovely - another very pretty creation : ) Thank you again.
How perfect!! I think the curd will last up to 1 week (and longer if you freeze it). If you're using it as a spread, maybe use just 1-2 tbsp of corn flour :).
Koren Sagie says
Looks beautiful and delicious! Can I use Lemon juice instead of Mandarin’s?
Thank you! Also yes you can sub it with lemon juice. I'm developing a recipe for a vegan lemon tart as we speak so stay tuned!
Koren Sagie says
Thank you so much! I will definitely wait for it
Could i subtitute coconut cream with silken tofu? Just wondering.
No because the natural oils in the cream are needed to set the filling
thankyou. i will try this recipe
Made it for a dinner party with friends and it was super well received! Very tasty! I sub date sugar for the cane sugar in the crust, so mine was a little darker in color and not as sweet and for the oil, I used avocado oil as that is what I had on hand. I also added some orange juice to the tangerine juice to get to the right quantity called for in the recipe. Beautiful and so tasty!!!! It was surprisingly fast to make.
Sooooo glad to hear Federica and thanks for your lovely comment! It's great that you were able to use date sugar and avocado oil instead! Glad you and your guests enjoyed it 🙂
Ashley Varran says
Can I use those little clementines called cuties?
We don't have cuties in Australia but a very similar clementine/mandarin - I'd say they'd be perfect!