The ultimate recipe for Pastel de Nata (portuguese tarts)

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Popular the world over, and affectionately known as an iconic staple sweet of Portugal, here is the ultimate recipe for Pastel de Nata (Portuguese Tarts). Pastel de nata are a egg tart pastry. One part crispy, one part gooey and ten parts delicious, this recipe (in our humble, well-taste-tested opinion) rivals the original and best Pastéis de Belém from Lisbon, Portugal, which has been making them since 1837. Today the kitchen in Belém is rumoured to make around 14,000 every day.

While the Pastéis de Belém recipe is patented and kept strictly under wraps (the story goes that pastry chefs were once only promoted from within the company and must have been working for the factory for at least 25 years before being trusted with the recipe).

Don’t worry, we’re completely happy to share the WoW recipe!

These tarts are best served straight out of the oven. Note that the puff pastry will go a little soggy after one day – but if that happens, it really just means you haven’t eaten them fast enough.

Portuguese_Tarts_Recipe Portuguese_Tarts_Recipe

4.0 from 3 reviews
The ultimate recipe for Pastel de Nata (portuguese tarts)
Recipe type: Baking
Cuisine: Portuguese
Serves: 12
  • 1 whole egg + 2 egg yolks
  • 115 grams caster sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornflour
  • 200ml cream
  • 200ml milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 sheet of puff pastry
  1. Whisk together the egg and egg yolks, sugar and cornflour in a saucepan until combined. Gradually whisk in the cream and milk until smooth.
  2. Place the pan over a medium heat and cook, stirring constantly until the mixture thickens and comes to the boil.
  3. Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Transfer the now-custard into a bowl to allow cooling. Cover the surface of the custard with cling film in order to prevent a skin forming.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200C, and lightly grease a 12-hole 80ml muffin tray.
  5. Cut the puff pastry sheet in half and put one half on top of the other, then set aside for 5 minutes.
  6. Roll up the pastry tightly from the short end, and cut the pastry log into twelve 1cm rounds. Lay each pastry round on a lightly floured surface and use a rolling pin to roll out the pastry until each disc is very thin and 10cm in diameter.
  7. Form the pastry rounds into the muffin tin, and then spoon the custard into pastry cases.
  8. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the pastry and custard are golden. The authentic look is to see the top of the custard blackened in places!
  9. Leave the tarts in the tin for 5 minutes and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  10. Dust with cinnamon and icing sugar for serving.

Portuguese_Tarts_Recipe Portuguese_Tarts_Recipe

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  • reyesllanos95@gmail.com'
    March 29, 2016 at 6:25 am

    Thank you for this amazing recipe! I like to eating cakes
    and to eat from different cultures, so it will be wonderful to make the recipe at home!
    Montaña Reyes

    February 29, 2016 at 1:20 pm

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  • joanna.gence@gmail.com'
    February 9, 2016 at 9:05 pm

    This is on of my favorite thing EVER! I thought people were exaggerating when I was preparing my trip to Lisbon and reading blog…BUT THEN OMG I tried it at Belem and WOW
    the myth is real hahaha
    thanks for the recipe i’ll definitely try it!!

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  • Emma
    December 1, 2015 at 10:16 pm

    Hi Molly, thanks for raising your concern. I was actually given this recipe handwritten by a family friend – so this recipe was certainly not stolen or pulled from any other website intentionally, just shared from one Portuguese tart lover to another. There obviously must be something magic in these ingredient quantities and ratios – they sure make for a dreamy custard texture! Happy baking! Emma x

  • Mollythinksyoureafraud@gmail.com'
    November 30, 2015 at 10:41 pm

    I got this recipe from Notquitenigella and it looks just like hers. Maybe you should credit her instead of stealing it. She attributed it to Bill Granger too but she adapted it from what I can see between the two and your ingredient list is the same as hers.

  • britt.jeffs@gmail.com'
    November 10, 2015 at 10:23 pm

    Yummmm I’m going to try baking these this week now that I have so much free time on my hands after finishing exams for the semester!

  • lyanasu@gmail.com'
    November 9, 2015 at 2:32 pm

    Looks so delicious! I love these tarts, thanks for sharing.

  • kerjan@backpackbabe.com'
    Kerjan | Backpack Babe
    November 9, 2015 at 11:49 am

    Amazing!!! these look absolutely divine! you can never go wrong with cream, egg and sugar 😉 mm mm good

  • olg.rabo@gmail.com'
    November 9, 2015 at 8:39 am

    mmm, I love pastel de nata! You can get really good ones here in Berlin!

  • karmapoliice@gmail.com'
    Tessa / Bramble & Thorn
    November 8, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    Thank you for this amazing recipe! I went to Belem more times than I’d care to admit when I was in Lisbon, so it will be wonderful to replicate the recipe at home!

    Tessa at

  • ponchomovesalone@gmail.com'
    November 8, 2015 at 6:38 am

    They are delicious! I will have to try to make them as well :).

  • anupcpo1@gmail.com'
    Clipping Image Processing Service
    November 8, 2015 at 5:31 am

    This is so testy & alluring food.

  • Mrsdkrebs.edublogs@gmail.com'
    November 8, 2015 at 2:14 am

    Corn floor is corn starch. Where I’m living now, it’s also called corn flour. I had the same question when I first saw “corn flour”.

  • hyyperlic@gmail.com'
    Travelblogger Lisa
    November 7, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    aaaaahh, thanks for sharing! Now I kow what I’ll do on Sunday afternoon 😀

    Have a nice weekend 😉

    Lisa |

  • sherry.galey@rogers.com'
    November 7, 2015 at 7:40 pm

    Is cornflour the same as corn starch or corn meal? Thanks!

    • Brooke Saward
      November 8, 2015 at 8:10 am

      corn starch 🙂 sorry for the confusion sherry! shows how global WoW is!! 🙂

  • catarina_gi@hotmail.com'
    November 7, 2015 at 7:31 am

    I’m portuguese. I love love love love (…) pasteis de Belém! I follow you and I was very happy when I saw this recipe. Portugal is a beautiful country with a best food in the world. Looks delicious, nice try!

  • kariguastella@gmail.com'
    November 7, 2015 at 6:40 am

    These look so delicious! I’ve never had one before!