French apple tart cut up on a surface

Need a simple dessert that’s still impressive? This easy French apple tart recipe is where it’s at! A homemade rough puff pastry dough bakes up to flaky, buttery perfection with a sweet, thin-sliced fresh apple topping. Brush on an apricot glaze, dust with powdered sugar and anticipate all the compliments (trust me, they’re coming).


French Apple Tart on a surface

French Apple Tart

It’s Thursday! We’ve made it to weekend’s eve. I don’t know about you, but this week has been a blur and I am truly shocked we are almost to the weekend already, not to mention the fact that it’s nearing the end of September (WHAT, HOW).

Part of the chaos of this week stems from that Elliott and I are getting ready to go on vacation for a week to the Caribbean. We are going on a cruise for seven nights to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary (which was in June) and I CANNOT WAIT. I am already dreaming of blue-green waters and soft sand and all the drinks with umbrellas in them.

But, I’m also very happy about the fall situation we’re experiencing at home. While this week in particular in Minneapolis has been steamy and hot, the leaves are still changing colors and some of the nights have been cool and breezy and I could not love it more. I haven’t brought myself to order a PSL yet, but trust, it’s happening soon.

This French apple tart is yet another celebration of all things fall in dessert form. If you saw my recent post on how to make Rough Puff Pastry Dough from scratch, you knew this recipe was coming. It’s by far the simplest treat you can make with homemade puff pastry, and you won’t be disappointed. Every bite is flaky, buttery and sweet, all the flavors playing together oh so nicely.

a hand removing a slice of French apple tart on a surface

How to Make a French Apple Tart

So how do you make this tasty treat, exactly? First, make the pastry dough — which as you know, comes together in just 30 minutes. While the dough chills, prep the apples. Roll out the chilled dough into a rectangle or square, top it with the apples, then sprinkle sugar and cold butter on top.

Bake everything until the pastry is puffy and flaky and golden and the apples are soft, then brush the top with apricot or apple jelly for a pretty presentation and added flavor. Dust with powdered sugar, if you want, and serve the tart in slices, warm or at room temperature. It’s really that easy! I just love it when that happens.

a slice of French apple tart on a plate

Tips for the Best French Apple Tart

I’ve laid out several tips in the Notes section of the recipe below, but to give you a preview:

1. Use any apple you love that bakes well. Examples include Granny Smith (which I used here), Honeycrisp, Pink Lady or Braeburn. Never, ever use Red Delicious apples (just, ew).

2. If you’re not feeling the homemade rough puff pastry dough route, feel free to use a pre-made frozen puff pastry sheet from the store!

3. Swap the powdered sugar topping for cinnamon or apple pie spice for extra flavor. YUM.

4. I do not recommend storing this tart after it’s been made, so be sure to gobble it up day-of for best results.

slices of French apple tart on plates

On that note, I’m off to set sail in a couple of days! And once I’m back in town, you can bet your bottom dollar I’ll be baking this tart again to celebrate all the gloriousness that is fall.

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French apple tart cut up on a surface

Easy French Apple Tart

  • Author: Stephanie
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 9 servings 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Bake
  • Cuisine: French

Description

The simplest recipe for an easy French apple tart with rough puff pastry dough, fresh apples, sugar, butter and a jelly glaze. This is the perfect dessert to whip up for a dinner party or a date night in!


Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 recipe Rough Puff Pastry Dough
  • 4 to 5 small apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 cup apricot or apple jelly
  • 1 tablespoon water or rum
  • Powdered sugar, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  1. Heat oven to 400°F. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out puff pastry dough to a rough 10×14-inch rectangle or 12×12-inch square, depending on the look you want to achieve. Use a ruler and a small knife or pizza cutter to trim edges straight. Carefully transfer dough to prepared baking sheet.
  3. Arrange apples decoratively (or rustically, if that’s more your style) in a single layer on top of pastry, overlapping slightly. Sprinkle sugar evenly over apples; top evenly with cubed butter.
  4. Bake 35 to 45 minutes or until pastry is puffy and golden brown and apples are tender and beginning to brown on the edges. Use a spatula to carefully transfer tart to a serving plate.
  5. In a small bowl, heat apricot jelly and water (either in microwave or on the stove) until just warm; whisk until smooth. Brush mixture in a thin, even layer over top of tart. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature. Tart is best served the day it is made.

Notes

  • The best apples for this recipe are any that hold their shape well for baking. For a milder, less sweet flavor, use Granny Smith; for more intense sweetness, choose Honeycrisp.
  • You can swap the rough puff pastry dough for 1 sheet of frozen store-bought puff pastry dough, thawed per package directions.
  • If one side of pastry starts to puff up significantly during baking, poke a small slit with a knife to let the air out.
  • The apple juices will likely burn on the edges of the baking sheet, but don’t worry! The tart itself will be just fine.
  • This recipe is adapted from queen Ina Garten.

Keywords: apple puff pastry, apple pastry, apple danish, rough puff pastry crust, puff pastry crust