Pear and Almond Tart

Pear Almond Tart
Pear Almond Tart

It’s late Thanksgiving morning, those special someones are coming over for dinner, and you’ve been slaving over a delicious vegan meal from the moment you got home yesterday afternoon. Everything looks amazing, but you still want to kick yourself. Because you forgot dessert.

Well maybe you’re different, but that often happens to me. I usually leave dessert for the very end in my meal planning because there’s always the possibility of making it optional. Or serving up some fresh fruit. All well and good, except, honestly, you simply cannot do that on Thanksgiving.Pear Almond Tart

No, Thanksgiving is the day for stuffing yourself and your guests without any excuses, and even if you’ve just served up a meal everyone will remember a year after, there is no way you can wriggle out of serving up a slice of pie.

Well, this Pear and Almond Tart is the perfect recipe for a day so special. It’s easy as pie to make, looks perfectly elegant, and is incredibly delicious with the warmth of nutmeg-kissed pears in a biscuity, almondy, part whole-wheat crust.

I add some Amaretto, an almond liqueur, to add more almond flavor to this tart, but if you would rather not, use a little almond extract instead. You could also try mixing some slivered almonds in with the filling– they’d be perfect in here.

Enjoy the recipe, all!

Pear Almond Tart
Pear and Almond Tart
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 8
  • For the crust:
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup almond butter
  • ¼ cup vegetable shortening
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • Ice-cold water
  • For the filling:
  • 3 pears, cut into halves, then thinly sliced horizontally (there's no need to peel them-- the skins melt in the mouth when baked)
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ tsp nutmeg (use cardamom for a delicious variation)
  • 1 tbsp Amaretto (almond liqueur). Use ½ tsp almond extract if you'd rather not use the liqueur.
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp all-purpose flour
  1. Toss the pears and other ingredients together gently (the pears will break easily, so be careful)
  2. Set aside for 15 minutes
  3. Mix the two flours, salt and sugar in a bowl and then, using a pastry cutter or two forks, cut in the almond butter and shortening until they are evenly dispersed through the flour. The shortening should be in little pieces, about the size of peas.
  4. Using a fork to mix the flour, drizzle in the ice cold water, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough comes together in a ball.
  5. Place the dough in plastic wrap, shape into a disk, wrap tightly, and place in the refrigerator for three hours or overnight. You can even make this a few days ahead and freeze it, then thaw it ovenight in the refrigerator. Remember to keep the dough cold at all times.
  6. Assemble the tart:
  7. Take the refrigerated dough and, on a floured surface, roll it into a disc about 12 inches in diameter (most tart pans are 10 inches in diameter, and you want to give another inch or so to cover the sides. When rolling any pie dough keep rotating the dough and flouring the surface and rolling pin to ensure it is not sticking to the surface.
  8. Fold the disc in half, then lift it into the tart pan. Open it to cover the tart pan. Very gently, with your fingers, push the dough into the corners so that the dough fits evenly into the tart pan. Use a rolling pin to roll over the edges of the tart pan and cut off the excess dough.
  9. Refrigerate the tart pan with the dough inside for 10 minutes.
  10. Working quickly, arrange the pear slices in the pan in concentric circles, overlapping them. You can try any design you like, or even go free-form, but this simple design I made is an easy one and doesn't take any time at all. If you have broken pear pieces, put them at the bottom and use the good ones on top.
  11. Pour any juice at the bottom of the bowl into the tart pan.
  12. Place on a baking sheet and bake 55-60 minutes in a preheated 375-degree oven. The filling will be mostly set but might appear slightly jiggly in parts, which is okay.
  13. Cool thoroughly on a rack before serving, which gives the filling time to thicken and solidify.
  14. Eat.
Pear Almond Tart


You’ve likely already noticed the Thanksgiving Recipes tab at the top of this page, but if you haven’t I put it there to make Thanksgiving planning a little easier for you. There’s a mix there of recipes traditional and not-so-traditional, and ones that I make in my kitchen on this very special day. I hope you will find it useful.

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.


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  1. Anonymous says

    Hi Vaishali,
    I’ve been reading your blog for a while but this is the first time I am leaving a comment. I just wanted to thank you for the simply WONDERFUL job you’re doing here. Reading each recipe is a real treat and its so pleasing to see how many ways you’ve provided for eating a meatless diet. Kudos to you and keep up the good work. I’m really glad I found your blog.

  2. says

    This was simply amazing. I am a fan of cardamom, so I used that as well as nutmeg in here, and added some crystallized ginger to the crust. I’m a newbie vegan, and I’ve been reading your recipes for days, picking out a few at a time to try. Thank you so much! I have also wanted to learn how to cook Indian food and I’m learning so much just from reading here…I can’t wait to keep cooking!

  3. Anonymous says

    could other fruit spreads that say buter be used like apple, pumpkin, or other nuts instead of the almond butter?

  4. nadja says

    This is one of my favorite pies! I have made it 3 x in the past month. Your recipes haven’t disappointed me :) Question, would you know how to substitute eggs in a pie recipe that ask for eggs to make a custard like pie filling? I would like to veganize a recipe for Orange maple walnut pie from the book “Year of Pies : A Seasonal Tour of Home Baked Pies” but I’m new to this, and can’t think of what to use instead.
    I could type the recipe (if you ever wanted to try something like this) since I can’t find it online.

  5. trish says

    Hey there,

    Have tried quite a few of your recipes and LOVE them. Making your beet burgers with the chipotle chili sauce this week. What is almond butter? This tart looks amazing but I’m unsure where to find or how to make almond butter. If you’ve already answered this question before I apologize. Thanks so much for a great website!


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