Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil

Celebrate late summer with this Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil, a dessert that’s made with puff pastry and is easier than pie (pinky promise!)

Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil

I’ve got the yummiest end of summer dessert for you today. And the best part is, it’s easier than pie. Side note- who else is super sad that summer is coming to an end??

Easy Tarte Tatin

I will sure miss it, but we still have a few weeks left, and I plan on celebrating it with delicious seasonal  treats like this Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil. This Easy Tarte Tatin seriously lives up to its name, and it’s quite impressive to boot.

Tarte tatin ingredients

Have you ever made a tarte tatin? If not, have no fear, because this beauty comes together in a snap thanks to store bought puff pastry and beautiful, ripe plums. I recommend using a variety if you can find them.


To start, we toss those gorgeous plum slices in a mixture of sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla bean and let it all mingle together for a bit.

cliced plums

Additionally, I like to add a touch of basil to this easy tarte tatin because I love how it both complements the flavors of the plums and elevates this dessert into straight up fancy territory.

So before the plums go down I lay a big, fat sprig of fresh basil over the butter and sugar mixture, to let the basil flavor infuse into the caramel sauce that forms while the tarte tatin cooks.

Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil

Next, it’s time to nestle them into a cast iron skillet that’s been coated in melted butter and sugar.

Easy Tarte Tatin

The tarte tatin cooks on the stove for a bit to let the plums soften and the juices caramelize. Then, it gets covered with a sheet of puff pastry- don’t forget to cut some slits in the crust to allow steam to vent!

Easy Tarte Tatin

Into the oven it goes until that crust gets nice and golden…

Easy Tarte Tatin

The most intimidating part of this easy tarte tatin (and it’s really not difficult- I promise) is inverting the contents of the skillet onto a plate for serving.

Easy Tarte Tatin

Tips for inverting your tarte tatin:

  • Cool the tarte tatin in the skillet almost completely after taking it out of the oven.
  • If the tarte tatin seems like it has adhered to the skillet, you can reheat it gently on the stove for a few minutes to loosen it.
  • You can also run a knife around the edge of the skillet to loosen the crust.
  • Place your serving plate on top of the skillet. Use oven mitts to grab the skillet from both sides, pinning the plate tightly to the skillet with your thumbs. In one swift motion, flip the skillet upside down so that the plate is on the bottom, then gently lift the skillet away.

Easy Tarte Tatin with Plums and Basil

After you’ve successfully inverted the tarte tatin onto its serving plate, you can discard the basil sprig- it has done its job of infusing flavor into the sauce. I also like to garnish the tarte tatin with additional basil leaves just before serving. I find that the smaller, baby leaves make for the prettiest presentation.

Easy Tarte Tatin slices

Then just slice it up and serve! This easy tarte tatin tastes best with a dollop of whipped cream, creme fraiche, yogurt or a scoop of ice cream.

Easy Tarte Tatin slices

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Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil
5 from 5 votes

Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil

Celebrate late summer with this Easy Tarte Tatin with Plum and Basil, a dessert that's made with  puff pastry and is easier than pie (pinky promise!)  

Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Keyword dessert, plum, tart
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Author Denisse


  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry half of 17.3-ounce package, thawed
  • 2 1/4 pounds sweet firm plums quartered and pitted
  • 2 tablespoons plus 2/3 cup sugar divided
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 vanilla bean split lengthwise
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large sprig fresh basil plus extra basil leaves for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Toss plums, 2 tablespoons sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and vanilla beans in a large bowl. Let stand 30 minutes.
  2. Melt the butter in heavy ovenproof 9-inch-diameter skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle remaining 2/3 cup sugar evenly over melted butter. Place basil sprig in the center of skillet. Tightly arrange plums, cut side up, in concentric circles over the basil in skillet. Cook over medium heat until syrup turns deep red, pressing plums slightly to form compact layer, about 20-30 minutes depending on the firmness of the plums. Shake the pan slightly every now and then to prevent sticking Remove skillet from heat and cool for 10 minutes.

  3. Slide chilled puff pastry crust over the plums in skillet. Press crust edges down around plums at the edges. Cut several slits to allow steam to escape. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Cool tart completely in skillet.
  4. If tarte appears to stick to skillet, rewarm over high heat to loosen, about 3 minutes. Place a large platter over skillet. Using oven mitts, hold skillet and platter together and invert, allowing tart to settle onto platter. Slowly lift off skillet. Discard basil sprig and garnish with fresh basil leaves before serving.

Recipe Notes

Serve with creme fraiche, whipped cream, ice cream or yogurt. Special Equipment a well-seasoned 10-inch cast-iron skillet


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