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Homemade Pop Tarts

Friday, 1 November 2013

Actual Pop Tart on the left, Alex Tart on the right.

I set myself a little baking challenge this week. I came across a recipe for homemade Pop Tarts on the Oh Comely website and I just couldn't resist. Pop Tarts are some sort of mythical beastie from my childhood. I remember them coming over from the US. I definitely remember those "OMG THEY WILL BURN YOUR FACE OFF!!" news reports. I never actually got to taste one though. Pesky allergies.

My friend Lisa donated a box of genuine American strawberry Pop Tarts for the purposes of this challenge (thanks, Lisa!) and I took one for the team and sampled a bit. Bleughhhh. I wasn't missing out all those years, was I?! Cardboardy, tasteless pastry and barely any filling. What was there didn't taste of strawberry or jam, it was just artificial and odd. Maybe icing and sprinkles (which I believe are the usual topping) would have improved the taste by sugarbombing it to death but I was not impressed.

Time to attempt my own.

Any sort of baking is hard in my ridiculously small kitchen. There's enough room for a fridge freezer, cooker, sink and some countertops but very little else. I would kill for a dishwasher. Simple recipes are the best kind though and I'm pleased to report that this one didn't require much in the way of ingredients or space. You just whiz up some pastry, cut some shapes, bung the filling in and chuck them in the oven.

I won't list the recipe here as the original is on Smitten Kitchen and the translated version with UK measurements is on Oh Comely. I will say a couple of things though:

- Be careful of the fat quantity when making the pastry - either it wasn't converted entirely correctly or my usual butter substitute acts very differently in this recipe because I had to add a crapload more flour in order to turn it into a workable dough.

- Don't do what I did about two weeks ago. In an effort to be tidy I turned out the baking cupboard and threw away loads of stuff. Cornflour? When was the last time I needed that? PAH! Then, you guessed it, this recipe says to mix a bit of cornflour with the jam and heat gently on the hob so that the filling has the right consistency. It wasn't the end of the world in this case as I used blackcurrant jam which was quite chunky but it would definitely have been better less runny!

- Don't burn your chin on molten cinnamon brown sugar goo. That's not big or clever.

It tastes lush though! Even better with a lavish dollop of icing.

Here's a nice comparison of the filling. Why have a thin scraping of artificial nastiness when you could have a delicious freshly baked concoction of cinnamon and brown sugar or warm blackcurrant jam? They're super quick and easy to make so I'll definitely be giving them another go. Love some of the filling suggestions on the original Smitten Kitchen recipe!



  1. Those look really good, I don't really like the "real" version they taste far too sweet for my liking. I know what you mean about the cornflour though, barely ever used it in the UK and in America it's in so many recipes!

  2. Another person here who has never tried a Pop Tart, mostly because I think they sound vile. Like Burger King, Pot Noodles and all of the other things I've never eaten because, um,yuck.
    Your version look a bit like jam turnovers, which do sound rather nice.

  3. they are easier to made than I thought :) I have to try them out, they look so delicious!

  4. 8drools* the cinnamon sugar poptarts I love, they're a bit artificial, but it's part of the badness appeal to me. I'd love to make my own though, and I think they'd be amazing with a peanut butter filling too. I'm itching to give this a god, but have resisted whilst I have a zillion other things to do and whilst November is totally out of control.

  5. Yours look so much better than the original (I don't think I've ever had one either!) Love your green edged plate too.

  6. I have never had a Pop Tart but cinnamon and brown sugar? Count me in!

    Maria xxx


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