Pastéis de Nata Recipe ( singular Pastel de Nata), or the famous Portuguese Custard Tarts, some heavenly delicious bites that are super easy to make at home using ready-made puff pastry and homemade egg custard. Beautifully flaky, with a silky filling, these tarts are great for any party or family gathering.
I first discovered these tarts when l was in Portugal and l just loved them. They bring back so many happy memories of my time spent there as an Erasmus student at the University of Porto.
It was my first time away from home, first Christmas and New Year spent without my family, but it was a great experience. Porto is such a beautiful city with a rich history and amazing people. I cannot recommend it enough as a travel destination.
Every time l bake these pretty little custard tarts l remember the beautiful pastélarias ( pastry shops), and although they taste fantastic, somehow it is not the same divine taste they have back in Portugal.
But they are so easy to make, l am sure you will want to give them a try. Who doesn't like custard? Or the delicate vanilla flavour? I certainly do.
You could make the puff pastry yourself, but it's so much easier to just use a ready-made one, especially the ready-rolled puff pastry, which just needs to be cut into circles, and that's your job done.
- ready-made puff pastry roll - or a block of puff pastry that you can roll
- milk - full-fat milk is the best
- egg yolks
- a whole egg
- plain flour - no need for self-raising flour
- caster sugar - or granulated sugar
- vanilla pod - or vanilla extract if you don't have a vanilla pod
Step-by-step photos and instructions
The great thing about these tarts is that the puff pastry does not require blind baking, the custard can go straight in, and they will be baked to perfection.
To make the custard:
- whisk together the egg yolks and whole egg
- add the sugar and whisk again
- in go the vanilla seeds ( or vanilla extract) and flour to get a smooth paste
- gradually pour in the milk, whisking continuously to avoid lumps forming
- transfer the mixture to a pan, and simmer on a low heat until it thickens
- remove from the heat, and allow to cool completely before adding it to the pastry
The puff pastry
- cut the puff pastry using a round cookie cutter, and fit them into the muffin holes
- divide the custard evenly, and bake for 30-35 minutes
You will see that when the tarts are ready, the custard looks like it's slightly burnt, but it's actually absolutely fine, that's how they are supposed to look. They are absolutely delicious!
It is important to allow the custard to cool, otherwise the tarts will get the much-dreaded soggy bottom.
You can make the custard in advance and refrigerate it. The custard tastes so much better when it's cold, the vanilla flavour comes through a lot better rather than if you keep them a room temperature.
One batch makes 12 tarts, with about 2 batches you are good to go, your guests will be so impressed. Some shops around here sell these custard tarts for over £1 each.
Looking for more puff pastry desserts? How about my Cremeschnitte Recipe? It's absolutely delicious, and super easy to make too.
If you’ve tried these PORTUGUESE CUSTARD TARTS - PASTEIS DE NATA RECIPE or any other recipe on the blog then don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know how you got on in the comments below, I love hearing from you! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, and PINTEREST to see more delicious food and what I’m getting up to.
Pastéis de Nata
- 1 ready-made puff pastry roll
- 400 ml milk
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 whole egg
- 2 tablespoon plain flour
- 100 g caster sugar
- 1 vanilla pod
- In a large bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and whole egg.
- Add the sugar, and whisk again.
- Sift in the flour, add the vanilla pod and pour in the milk.
- Whisk well to avoid lumps from forming.
- Transfer the mixture to a sauce pan and simmer on a low heat until it thickens.
- Remove from the heat and leave it to cool completely.
- Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius (390 Fahrenheit, 160 fan oven).
- Transfer the puff pastry roll to a working surface and use a cookie cutter to cut 12 rounds that fit in the muffin tin holes.
- Press the rounds into the muffin tin holes and spoon in the custard cream evenly.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden and the pastry is baked through and the custard is golden, and slightly brown.
- Allow them to cool, then use a sharp knife to ease up the edges and transfer the tarts to a plate.
- Once out of the oven, the custard will sink in, so not to worry if in the oven the tarts looked popped out.
- If you'd like to see the measurements in CUPS and OUNCES, please click on the US CUSTOMARY link.
- It is important to allow the custard to cool, otherwise the tarts will get the much-dreaded soggy bottom.
- You can make the custard in advance and refrigerate it. The custard tastes so much better when it's cold, the vanilla flavour comes through a lot better rather than if you keep them a room temperature.
Lynz Real Cooking
These look lovely!
Thank you 🙂
Great recipe for the holidays!
Thank you ?
Lovely, Daniela. I have adored egg custard all my life. My mum made a lot of them when I was a child, but always with short crust pastry. Later I discovered creme caramel, which I still make very often. I'll have to try them with puff pastry now. 🙂
Thank you, Millie. I tried with short crust pastry too, but l prefer the puff pastry, it makes the tarts a lot lighter. I must try the caramel ones ?
Hi Daniela. I've just tried again to reply to this comment from my notifications box and it still won't .send'. Also, the 'follow' tag at the lower right hand side of your page still pops up inviting me to follow you - which I have done 3 times since you upgraded your site. I've filled in my email address as well.
So. I'm putting my reply straight onto your page here:
I'm going to try them with puff pastry, too. The creme caramel isn't a tart. It's an egg custard desset, made the smae way as for the tarts, but it is cooked in a basin with caramel at the bottom. When it's turned out, the caramel can run down the sides of the set custard. It can be eaten either warm of cold. 🙂
Hi Millie! So sorry for that, it appears that being self-hosted means that the people can no longer follow me via the follow button, but only if they subscribe via e-mail. I've managed to desactivate the follow me button since it doesn't work now anyway.
The creme caramel sounds delicious ?
I did fill in th email subscription too, Daniela, but if needbe, I'll do it again. I just can't work out why comments won't send to you. They work with everyone else, so something is wrong. I'm writing this on your page again, after trying to send it (unsuccessfully) from my notification box).
I like creme caramel warm, but my husband likes it best chilled, straight from the fridge. 🙂
I've just written my email address, above, again, so I'll see what happens now. 🙂