DessertPies & TartsProvencal RecipesTasha PowellTaste

Apple Tarte Tatin a Classic French Dessert

The culinary origin of the apple Tarte Tatin (aux pommes) is rooted in Lamotte-Beuvron, a small town France’s Loire Valley. The two Tatin sisters, Stéphanie and Caroline, owned and operated the Hôtel Tatin. and served meals. Legend and fact are blurred, but the result is a delicious upside-down tart, sometimes called tarte des demoiselle Tatin. The pie is considered a sweet, culinary mistake that occurred when Stéphanie, who did most of the cooking, put the ingredients in pan in the wrong order. Regardless, the delightful combination of caramelized apples over a crisp pastry crust is hard to turn down.

The Tarte Tatin aux pommes gained notoriety once it appeared on the menu at Maxim’s in Paris (read more here). Although this recipe is not traditionally Provencal, apple tarte Tatin features on many dessert menus in the region. Enjoy!

Apple Tarte Tatin Dessert Finished

Apple Tarte Tatin aux Pommes

This variation of Tarte tatin uses puff pastry. Alternatively, you can make your own shortcrust pastry.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 6 people


  • 1 sheet Puff Pastry thawed
  • 6-8 Apples preferably Honeycrisp or Granny Smith
  • 6 tbsp Water
  • 1 cup (225 g) Sugar
  • 4 oz (115 g) Unsalted Butter
  • Vanilla Ice Cream for serving (optional)


  • Using a 9-inch flat-sided cake pan as a template, cut a circle out from the puff pastry. Using a fork, poke holes all over to provide ventilation. Set aside.
  • Peel and quarter the apples, using a spoon or melon baller to remove the cores.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, distribute the water and sugar evenly and cook until light amber in colour, stirring to help melt any lumps, 5-7 minutes. Add the butter, stirring constantly until the colour is a creamy light brown. Add the apples, stirring until they are coated in a thick layer of caramel.
  • Cook for about 15-20 minutes, turning the apples constantly so that they bathe in the caramel. Remove from the heat when the caramel has reduced and little remains in the bottom of the pan. Be careful not to burn the caramel, tasting it from time to time to ensure it does not taste bitter.
  • Arrange the apple slices in concentric circles on the bottom of the cake pan (or springform pan). Press the apples tightly against each other, then pour the remaining caramel over the top.
  • Lay the circle of puff pastry on top. Tuck the puff pastry down the sides of the pan.
  • Bake for 45-50 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and firm. Cool for about 1 hour, then invert onto a plate.
  • Slice and serve with vanilla ice cream.


It's ok to peel and quarter apples in advance and store in the fridge - it will eliminate some of the moisture and the apples will brown more quickly.
Equipment: melon baller, chef knife, paring knife, cake pan springform pan (as an option), parchment paper, saucepan.
Keyword Apples, Tartes, Tarts
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recipe for Desserts with Fruit:

Quince Almond Tarte Tatin

Stuffed Poached Pears with Berry Purée

Plum Tart

Apple Beignet with Caramel Ice Cream

Apple Tarts – Tartes aux Pommes

Classic French Apple Tart


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Tasha Powell

Tasha Powell is a food stylist and writer who specializes in working with celebrity chefs and leaders in the hospitality industry. She cooks and styles for monographs, cookbooks and Satellite Media Tours, working between North America and Europe. Take a look at her mouthwatering photos on Cooking with a French Twist. Since July 2020, she has offered themed Zoom cooking classes influenced by her travels in France and Morocco. Here are a few:

• Fusion Vegetarian Menu: Cheese Soufflé, Grilled Vegetable Kabobs, Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Lime Crème Fraiche & Floating Islands
• Fall in Provence: Carrot Soup, Seared Duck Breast and Chocolate & Pear Tarte
• 3-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Panisse, Grilled Shrimp & Chocolate Towers with Michelin Star plating techniques
• Food Styling Tips: Apéro Dînatoire, presentation & plating
• 4-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce, Zucchini Rollups, Roasted Leek Salad & Chocolate Lava Cakes, Michelin Star plating techniques
• Just Stuffed! Stuffed Aubergines, Tomatoes & Zucchini
• Provençal Cuisine: Baked Ratatouille Tian & Tarte du Soleil
• Add Sparkle, Shimmer, Silver and Gold to Your Culinary Presentations! By Lynn Neuberg of Easy Leaf Products and Chef Tasha Powell

Class listings can be found at Chef Tasha Events

Tasha also arranges culinary tours with Barbara Pitcher in Provence, France, in Marrakech, Morocco, in Sicily, Italy and in Parry Sound, Canada under Pitcher and Powell Cuisine and Culture.

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