Butterscotch Tart

Butterscotch TartWhen most people think of school dinners, they think of all that horrifically congealed, stodgy cack they were served as a child. Me? I only think of one thing… Butterscotch Tart. I absolutely adored this pudding when I was in school. Before I left, I  even went as far as to ask a dinner lady for the recipe! It was on this scrappy little bit of paper that got mislaid over the years. I honestly thought it was lost forever & that I would never again taste the amazingness that is butterscotch tart…

Until one day, I was being nosy at my parents house (as you do) and to my surprise, found the scrappy bit of paper with the Butterscotch Tart recipe on it! It was a little on the vague side but nothing I couldn’t work out if I put my mind to it. And believe me, I was very determined.

So without further ado, here is what you will need to make a 20cm/8″ tart.

For the Pastry

  • 250g Plain Flour
  • 125g Unsalted Butter, Cold/Cubed
  • Good pinch of Salt
  • 2 Eggs, Beaten
  • Cold Water


For the Filling

  • 175g Unsalted Butter
  • 175g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 175g Plain Flour
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 tsp Butterscotch Essence/Flavouring
  • 110ml Semi Skimmed Milk


Essential Equipment

  • 20cm/8″ Loose Bottomed Tart Tin


Butterscotch Tart Recipe

To make the pastry, put the flour, cubed butter & salt into a food processor & blitz briefly until it resembles fine crumbs. (If you don’t have a food processor, put the ingredients into a large bowl and rub between fingers & thumbs until the same result is achieved.)

Butterscotch Tart

Butterscotch TartThen add one of the beaten eggs and a little cold water. Blitz again briefly until it just starts to come together to form a dough. (Or mix together with your hands.) Add a little more cold water if you need to but don’t make it too wet.

Butterscotch TartTip the dough out and gently/briefly knead together into a ball. Place into some clingfilm, flatten into a disc and refrigerate for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Butterscotch TartPreheat your oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C.

Once the dough is chilled, place between two pieces of clingfilm and roll out a circle to a thickness of about 2-3mm.

Butterscotch TartPeel off one layer of clingfilm then carefully (cling film side up) lift and drape over the loose bottomed tart tin. Press the pastry down firmly into the base & sides. Try not to trap any air underneath.

Butterscotch TartFold the sides down over the edge of the tin and press to “cut off” the excess pastry.

Butterscotch TartRemove the cling film & excess pastry then pierce all over with a fork.

Butterscotch TartLoosely cover with cling film and pop into the freezer for 10 minutes. This should stop the butter from melting too quickly and, therefore, the sides from shrinking too much.

Scrunch up a large sheet of baking paper (NOT greaseproof paper as that will stick) and place into the tart case. Fill with baking beans or rice and bake in the preheated oven for 15mins.

Remove from the oven, take out the beans & baking paper. Brush the pastry all over with the 2nd beaten egg and pop back into the oven for a further 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool completely before adding the filling.

Butterscotch TartTo make the filling, in a very large saucepan – melt the butter and the sugar together over a low heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved.

Butterscotch TartAdd in the flour and cook, beating vigorously with a wooden spoon, for 2-3 minutes. You just need to ‘cook out’ the flour so it doesn’t taste chalky.

Butterscotch TartIf the mixture starts to split & butter leaks out, don’t panic – all is not lost!

Tip the mixture into a large mixing bowl and add in the salt, vanilla, butterscotch & milk. Beat until smooth and thick. To start with, it will feel like it just won’t come together, but keep going, it will.

If you’re mixture split & you’re having a hard time bringing it together, pop it all into a food processor and blitz on high until smooth and thick. It will be fine I promise.

Butterscotch TartWhen the pastry case is completely cooled, pour the filling in and allow to set at room temperature for at least 30 minutes to an hour. It should be able to just hold it’s shape when cut.

Butterscotch TartIf memory serves me correctly, the traditional (and my personal favourite) way is to slice & serve with warm custard. Although, custard is definitely something I do NOT remember being nice in school! Steer clear of those horrible powders & premade versions though. Go on, do this tart proud and make some from scratch. There’s nothing better than home made vanilla custard!

With my first bite into this Butterscotch Tart, it took me straight back to my school days. I would get so excited when this was on the menu that I would just skip dinner and have two desserts instead! That beautiful, soft & gooey butterscotch filling on a gorgeously golden pastry crust. Just, yes. A thousand times yes!

I hope you enjoyed my nostalgic post this week my lovelies, until next time.

Miss KitchenMason

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47 thoughts on “Butterscotch Tart”

  1. Jessica says:

    Can you post with cups an tsp an tbs not in grams or ml

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Hi Jessica. Sorry, I’m based in the UK and we use weight instead of volume. It’s much more accurate. That’s why I use grams & ml. There are plenty of good conversion tools online that you can use though. x

  2. Ruth says:

    Thanks so much for this recipe, it worked perfectly for me. It looked and tasted exactly how I remember it from school.

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Aww you’re welcome Ruth!

  3. Joanne says:

    This is seems like an awful lot of flour in the filling. Other recipes use a much smaller ratio of flour to butter and sugar. Is the 175g by any chance a typing error?

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      It’s not a typo Joanne. It seemed to work ok for me but you could be right? I’m not sure without trying it for myself x

  4. Anjali says:

    Can I replace caster sugar with regular ones?

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Yes replacing the sugar is fine! I use caster as it’s a fine sugar and dissolves easily.

  5. Randy says:

    I can’t wait to make it.

    Miss KitchenMason, I really like your step by step instructions with all the pics. Helps so much. Thanks for taking the time, I know it can be a lot of work, doing a writeup like this, and thought you should know, that it is much appreciated.

    Though, by all the comments, I’m not the only one who feels that way.

    Nice to see current comments and Holy Cow! even replies from the author.

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Thank you SO much! That’s so incredibly sweet of you to say! Especially about the step by step pictures as yes, it’s a lot more work! But totally worth it if my wonderful readers enjoy it 🙂 You’ve made my day, thanks again!

  6. Mr Barton says:

    I did the same thing almost, I used to love this desert, and then the school cook got a job opportunity at a bigger better school, my school was pretty small so we knew everybody and I was always friendly with the teachers and staff, before she left I asked her for the recipe, she adapted it into something more suitable for home and gave it to me, but like you say, life happens, things get lost, so very much looking forward to trying this one out!
    Thank you for posting

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      You’re welcome! Thanks for checking out my recipe 🙂

  7. Aly says:

    I’m so glad I found this recipe! I’m cooking for my family tonight so I’m a bit short for time on sourcing ingredients, the main ones I already have in my cupboard but I couldn’t find butterscotch essence anywhere in my supermarket. They did have a caramel one though, do you think this would be okay or will the flavour be too different?

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Hi Aly! The flavour will be different but I can’t see any reason why it wouldn’t taste just as good 🙂

  8. Emily says:

    Also, can I substitute the sugar for regular white sugar? 🙁 I’m in the US and have had the hardest time finding some of these ingredients. I used my food processor to process some golden raw sugar, but the grains didn’t get small enough, so I used the white sugar (called refined sugar, I think). I can taste the grittiness of the sugar, but maybe I didn’t dissolve it long enough? Your pics looked just like my steps, and I had no problems with separation. I let it dissolve for a quite a while – but do you have a minute number that could help me out?

    Thank you!! 🙂 🙂

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      White sugar will be fine, I only use golden as I think it adds a very slight caramel flavour. So long as it is a fine sugar and not granulated it will be ok. (I think you call it superfine in the US?) With regards to the sugar dissolving, it’s been a while since I’ve made this but, from memory, I think it only took about 5 minutes. Basically, you shouldn’t be able to feel any scraping when you stir with a spoon. That’s when it has dissolved. I hope I’ve been able to help! Good luck 🙂

  9. Emily says:

    I’d like to travel with this pie. Should I assemble it, freeze it, and thaw it? Or, freeze the filling once it’s made, then thaw and place it in a crust?


    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Hi Emily. I’ll be honest, I’m not sure. I’ve never frozen it before. I can’t see any reason why it shouldn’t be ok being frozen assembled though, so long as it’s in an airtight container?

  10. Emma says:

    My little girl started school in September and she sometimes has Butterscotch Tart for pudding – I’m so envious every time she comes home and tells me she had it for lunch, so I can’t wait to make this!

    1. Miss KitchenMason says:

      Hahaha I would be too! It was my fave school pudding by a country mile!

  11. Emily Bakes' says:

    Reblogged this on and commented:
    This is such a blast from the blast and it was so easy to make! Try for your self

  12. vicky says:

    you never said when to add the second egg….

    1. It’s used beaten as a glaze over the pastry later on in the recipe Vicky.

  13. Charlie says:

    Hey! Been years looking for the name of this tart because i didn’t remember when i lived in England until i had 13, now i am 27 and thanks to you i can do this tart, i wanted to ask you if i don’t use butterscotch flavoring could i do the butterscotch sauce and use it as a flavoring? 😀 thanks for the recipe 😀

    1. Hi! Glad you’re so happy you found my recipe! I’m not sure butterscotch sauce would work as well as it’s not as concentrated as extract/essence. X

      1. Charlie says:

        Thanks! 😀 you’re very kind! and well i will try it and see what happends, and thanks for the fast anwsering i apreciate it 🙂

        1. No problem at all, let me know how you get on 🙂

      2. Charlie says:

        Sure 🙂

  14. Chris Fell says:

    Exactly how I remember school dinners…. butterscotch tart to excite the taste buds. I dont know your age “KitchenMason”, but Butterscotch tart was just the same in 1964 when I was 10. I am now going to try your recipe, I’ve always loved cooking so this will be another conquest for me. Thanks.

    1. I’m 27 and it was my favourite pudding at school by a country mile! Thank you for your kind words x

  15. Jojo says:

    Tried to make old school butterscotch tart for many years and still not managed to get it right, however after searching for images for old school butterscotch tart I came across your post. I’ve literally just finished making yet another unsuccessful tart, noted you recipe and I’m going to make it this afternoon. I’ll let you know if it’s the same one we used to have with chocolate shavings on top cut into rectangles mmmm….

    1. I had a long search too – good luck! Hope you’ve found what you were looking for 🙂

    2. Zoe says:

      Was it the same one as you used to have at school? That’s how I remember it 🙂 Hoping it is!

      1. Yes Zoe it was! I actually got the basics of the recipe from a dinner lady when I was at school many moons ago 🙂

  16. sab says:

    Okay I seriously need to try this recepie! I must run to the store I have a sudden craving for butterscotch! 🙂

    1. It’s gorgeous Sab you’ll love it!

      1. sab says:

        once I get the ingredients I’ll let you know how it turns out 🙂

  17. huntfortheverybest says:

    oh it looks wonderful. i love custard pies!

  18. That looks sooo good

  19. This looks and sounds divine. Yum!

    1. Thanks Gab! It was my favourite in school 🙂

  20. Sinead says:

    We never had school dinners when I was a kid, everyone just brought a packed lunch! I’ve heard lots of horror stories about them though but this looks and sounds really good 🙂

    1. Haha the horror stories are probably true! But here in the UK we had a choice, packed lunch or school dinners. And this pudding was my all time fave!

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I am not trained & I am not perfect. I simply enjoy cooking, eating & learning about food! So come and join me on my step by step culinary adventures!

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