Classic Apple Tarte Tatin

Apple tarte Tatin is a classic French dessert that is great for any occasion. The apples are cooked and coated in a wonderful caramel like syrup. The only problem with the recipe is that there just isn’t enough!

Apples and puff pastry seem to be a match made in heaven. I learned to make this dish because this is one of my father’s favorite dishes and one that he would request from me. There is a cool wow factor if you are making this for a group of people at home. When you flip the tarte onto a plate or platter. 

In this recipe

This recipe calls for about 1/4 of my puff pastry recipe. However you can use store bought puff pastry if in a pinch. Only one sheet is needed and it is important to let it thaw before rolling. If it has thawed before the apple are ready then place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to roll. This will preserve the lamination. 

Ingredients for apple tarte tatin on a wooden cutting board
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Cut the apples the day before

You will find that the apples with release a lot of water while they cook. This can end up causing you to have a very runny sauce at that end and when you invert the pan it runs out everywhere instead of staying on the tarte. The best way to get around this is to cut the apples the day before and place them in the refrigerator overnight. They will be brown but that is ok since you will be cooking them. However this will also dry them out some so they don’t release as much water and you have a nice thick caramel like sauce at the end. 

Sauce for apple tarte tatin in a pan
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Apples cooking a pan
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Cooked apples in a pan
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Puff pastry on top of cooked apples
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Don't go halvsies

Most recipes you will for apple tarte Tatin will say cut the apples in half. I find those portions to be too big unless you are working with really little apples. Plus aesthetically the tarte will look better because you can nestle the apples closer together. If they are on the larger side like some Honeycrisp apples can get cut them into quarters like the recipe. It makes is easy to line them up better in the pan before baking. Check out my apple pie recipe for ideas for great apples to use for baking. 

Removing a slice of apple tarte tatin
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Making apple tarte tatin

One of the challenges you can face is arranging the apples so they all fit. I have found when I start cooking the apples it is hard to get them all in the pan. Once they start to cook down and get softer you can start moving them into a position that will allow them to nestle next to each other neatly. You do want to make sure that the outside of the apple are touching the bottom of the pan as they will be the part that you see at the end.

When you go to invert it if the pan is too cool then heat it up for a couple of minutes to loosen the sauce and everything should come out easily. If there are a couple of apples still left in the pan gently place them back on the tarte. 

Two slices of apple tarte tatin
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Looking for other apple recipes?

A slice of apple tarte tatin
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Classic Apple Tarte Tatin

Baked apples with a puff pastry crust
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 8 servings
Calories 433 kcal


  • 10 inch sauté pan
  • Potato peeler
  • Rolling Pin


  • pounds apples peeled, quartered
  • ½ pound puff pastry
  • cup brown sugar packed
  • ½ cup butter unsalted
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ teaspoon salt kosher


  • Using the potato peeler peel and quarter apples. Remove the core.
  • In a sauté pan on medium high heat melt butter and sugar. Add the lemon juice, salt and vanilla. Then add the apples. Cook for 15-20 minutes or until the sauce reduces by half.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F or gas mark 5. Roll out the puff pastry to make circle 11 inches in diameter.
  • If using 2 pans grease the second pan liberally. Take a fork to move the apple quarters from one pan to the next and arrange with the outer edge of the apples touching the pan. Working from the outside in overlap the apples until all fit. Cover with the puff pastry and tuck the edges down the side of the pan.
  • Bake for 45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
  • Allow to cool for at 45 minutes this will allow he sauce the cool and thicken. Cover with a plate or platter and invert the pan toe release the tarte Tatin. If any apples stick place them back on the tarte.


Serving: 1sliceCalories: 433kcalCarbohydrates: 58gProtein: 3gFat: 23gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 122mgPotassium: 262mgFiber: 5gSugar: 39gVitamin A: 462IUVitamin C: 11mgCalcium: 34mgIron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer*
Keyword Apples, Brown Sugar, One Pan Meal, Puff pastry, Stove top to oven
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
apple tarte tatin pinterest pin
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2 thoughts on “Classic Apple Tarte Tatin”

5 from 5 votes (3 ratings without comment)

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