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Maple Walnut and Chocolate Tart

Have you ever boarded a plane on Thanksgiving Day with a pink pie box in hand? I have. I don’t know how many fellow travelers have teased me with, “Is that a pumpkin pie for me?” Smile. They don’t know the pink box carries a walnut and chocolate tart, a less sugary cousin of pecan pie. Filled with walnuts, bittersweet chocolate, and maple syrup, this tart is not excessively sweet. And not what you’d expect.

Walnut and Chocolate Tart

You can see by the photo that the filling is dark in chocolate—and when it’s still warm, that chocolate is soft and oozy, like a chocolate chip cookie that spent the afternoon in a hot car. Those chopped walnut pieces provide plenty of chunk, and their slightly bitter skins even out chocolate’s richness. Like I said, sweet, but not too much.

Click here to PIN Maple Walnut Chocolate Tart!

No processed sugar here. Well, except for the chocolate. Sugar in chocolate doesn’t count, right? I used my oat pie pastry for the crust, with coconut sugar replacing white sugar, and whole wheat pastry flour taking the place of all-purpose flour. Both bump up the flavor and health quotient.

This recipe can be either a pie or a tart. It just depends on how you form the crust. Don’t have a fluted tart pan with a removable bottom? Just bake the pastry and filling in a pie plate. Then it’s a pie.

When your relatives ask you to bake the pies, say of course. But bring a tart—this walnut and chocolate one. In a pink pie box.

Blind baking step-by-step for Walnut and Chocolate Tart

Maple Walnut and Chocolate Tart details:

  • Blind bake the shell for about 15 minutes before adding the nuts and filling. Blind what? Blind-bake is a curious term that means to pre-bake an empty tart or pie shell with weights. (see recipe note) The weights can be dried beans and/or rice kernels, or special purchased weights. (I keep a jar of used and re-used beans/rice in my pantry for blind-baking occasions. The beans get a bit stinky over time but last just about forever.)
  • Do you need your walnut and chocolate tart to be gluten free? Use a nut crust—like this one.
  • Because maple syrup is thinner than corn syrup, the typical sweet component in nut pies, I added a bit of cornmeal, the thickener in chess pies, to insure the filling isn’t too runny.

Make it a fabulous week–get in the kitchen and try an new dessert!

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  • Hi Letty, Would the chocolate be like an 85% dark chocolate or a bittersweet bar? I’m going to definitely make this! Reply · 24 November, 2014

    • Letty

      Maura, I think the trader joes is more like a 65%. It doesn’t say on the label–I checked. Reply · 25 November, 2014


    Letty yesterday I was debating whether to make a chocolate walnut bourbon pie but was grossed out by the corn syrup.Were you reading my thoughts?? Kathryn Reply · 24 November, 2014

    • Letty

      Yes, reading your mind…. Reply · 25 November, 2014

  • This looks like pure chocolate heaven on a plate…and my best shot at separating my Southern husband from the pecan pie we have year after year. Happy Thanksgiving!! Reply · 25 November, 2014

    • Letty

      Thanks Kate. I bet you can sell him on the change. The chocolate was a late addition to mine. I had planned to just make it walnut without the corn syrup–and maybe some dried cranberries–but the chocolate snuck right in. Reply · 25 November, 2014

  • […] blogging (thank you Letty of Letty’s Kitchen was the Executive Pastry Chef at Deer Valley Resort for more than 30 years. If you’ve yet to […] Reply · 17 January, 2017

  • Susan Bond

    I just brought my false bottom tart pans up to the mountains, and now I know why! Can’t wait to make this for our chocolate loving friends.
    Susan Reply · 21 September, 2018

    • Ahh Susan, Thank you. Tarts in those pans are so attractive! Reply · 22 September, 2018

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