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Old School Cornflake Tart Recipe UK

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Feeling nostalgic? Want to be transported back to the good old days? Look no further than this old school cornflake tart recipe! Shortcrust pastry, jam and Cornflakes, all enveloped together by a buttery golden syrup. Want to learn how to make it for yourself? Keep reading…

Front view of a cornflake tart slice with a fork

Cornflake tarts (also called Cornflake slice, Cornflake pie or Cornflakes tart) were one of my all time favourite school desserts. Whenever this or butterscotch tart were on the menu, I used to skip school dinner and get 2 puddings instead! (True story!) I was keen to relive those happy moments from my school days when creating this recipe.

So if you’ve been looking for a recipe for cornflake tart like school used to make, this is for you!

What is a Cornflake tart?

Cornflake tart is a dessert that was traditionally served in schools. It’s essentially a pastry case filled with jam, and Cornflakes that have been mixed with golden syrup and a few other basic ingredients.

a cornflake tart with a missing slice on a black plate

Who invented Cornflake tart?

Truth be told, I can’t find an answer to this question! I can only surmise it was invented some time after the 2nd World War. When ingredients were sparce, and recipes were very simple and more ‘throw together’.

If you happen to know who invented Cornflake tart, I would LOVE to know! Send me an email or comment below.

What is Cornflake tart made of?

There are variations out there of course. But classic cornflake tart is comprised of a shortcrust pastry case spread with a little strawberry jam (or sometimes raspberry jam). It’s then topped with cornflakes which have been mixed with golden syrup, butter and sugar. And baked until crisp, sticky and delicious!

Cornflake tart slice on a plate with a fork

Is Cornflake tart a northern thing?

Cornflake tart is definitly more common in the Midlands and up North. It’s less common down South. Although, over time it does appear to have migrated. Cornflake tart has been enjoyed in schools in Bristol, London, Kent, Essex and Cambridge. And I’ve no doubt it will appear in many more over the years to come!

Can you freeze Cornflake tart?

Yes, you can freeze cornflake tart. I would wrap it well in a double layer of cling film, then seal it in an airtight tub. Try to use a tub that is about the same size as your tart. If you use one that’s too big, it might encourage freezer burn and would take up too much precious freezer space. Defrost and consume within 3 months. You can warm it through again once defrosted if you wish.

Slice of cornflake tart on a black plate with a fork

Can you reheat Cornflake tart?

Yes! Cornflake tart can be reheated. I recommend heating it in a low oven (around 150°C – 160°C) for about 5-10 minutes. If you can fit it in your air fryer drawer, you can certainly use that instead. You could probably reheat it in the microwave too, but this is more likely to make the pastry soggy.

Just make sure you only reheat it once. Repeated reheating and cooling can speed up the growth of bad bacteria, which could make you ill.

Can you eat Cornflake tart cold?

Yes, of course you can! I have enjoyed it both warm and cold on many occasions. My preference is when it’s still a little warm, with some homemade custard. But cold Cornflake tart is just as delicious!

Close up view of a slice of cornflake tart on a plate

How to store Cornflake tart

If you have any cornflake tart left over, it’s best stored in an airtight container at room temperature. And consumed within 2-3 days (or you can freeze it as explained earlier on in this post).

I prefer to store baked goods in metal containers, as sugar sweats in plastic tubs. Metal containers usually help them keep their ‘freshly baked’ texture for a little longer.

Although personally I think Cornflake tart is best eaten on the day. The reason being that the golden syrup on the cornflakes tends to get a little runny after a while. And when crunchy ingredients mix with wet ingredients, things are bound to get soggy quite quickly.

Close up of a cornflake tart with a missing slice

Cornflake tart ingredients

Confused about what ingredients to buy? Not sure about a substitution? Here’s everything you might need to know…

  • Shortcrust pastry – You can either use shop bought or make your own if you like. At the time of writing this article, Jus-Rol pastry is accidentally vegan. And you can also buy gluten free versions for coeliac sufferers. But make sure you check the labels when baking for people with dietary requirements.
  • Milk – This is just to brush the pastry case to create a barrier for the filling. You can use any milk, or even beaten egg. It doesn’t really matter.
  • Golden Syrup – Don’t substitute this for other things like honey or agave syrup. They just don’t have the same flavour as golden syrup!
  • Butter – I like to use unsalted butter in baking, so I can add the salt separately (giving me full control). But you could use salted butter instead if you like. 
  • Sugar – I’m a fan of dark muscovado sugar in a Cornflake tart, as it adds a richer more caramel flavour. Soft light brown sugar or even caster sugar would also work fine though.
  • Salt – If using unsalted butter, it’s wise to add a little salt to balance out the sweetness and bring out the best in the other ingredients. You season your dinner, why not your bakes?!
  • Cornflakes – The obvious choice is Kellogs Cornflakes, but they can be quite expensive. Supermarket own brands will work just as well. Do check the labels if you are making vegan or gluten free Cornflake tart though.
  • Jam – Traditionally it’s strawberry jam, but you could also use raspberry jam. It’s up to you whether you use seedless or not. Fancy trying something different? Use a different flavour jam entirely!
Top down view of a slice of cornflake tart on a black plate

Recipe tips

As simple as it is to make cornflake tart – there are still places we can trip up. (Yes, even me!) With that in mind, here’s a few tips to help you succeed first time round.

If you’re a novice baker and lack confidence, it might help to read through baking for beginners first.

  • Make sure that shortcrust pastry is cold before baking it. (i.e. don’t skip the freezing stage!) Otherwise it can shrink, and the sides will end up really short.
  • No need to line the tin. The pastry should naturally shrink away from the sides and make it really easy to remove.
  • Ensure you mix the cornflakes and melted mixture really well before baking. Cornflake tart is pretty brittle anyway but this will help it to stick together much better.
  • Yes, it’s absolutely necessary to blind bake the pastry case. No cheating! (Unless you buy a precooked pastry case, in which case – cheat away.)
  • Need to brush up on your pastry making skills? Here’s a great easy shortcrust pastry recipe, with lots of helpful tips.
  • Short on time? Don’t worry about making your own. I suggest using shop bought ready rolled shortcrust pastry instead.
Side view of a cornflake tart slice on a plate

Time management

Have limited time? Struggle with recipe timings? Or juggling around other things? Here’s some time managing info to make your life easier.

  • Allow 15-20 minutes to properly preheat your oven.
  • If using shop bought readymade pastry, it will take approximately 45-50 minutes to blind bake from start to finish.
  • The cornflake mixture will only take about 5 minutes to make.
  • Assembly (spreading the jam over the pastry and filling with the cornflake mixture) takes a few minutes.
  • Baking should only take about 5 minutes (It’s purely to ‘set it’).
Slice of cornflake tart on a black plate with a fork

If you like this recipe…

…you might also like:

How to make Cornflake tart – Step by Step Picture Recipe

Here is what you will need to serve 8.

(For a printer friendly version, see the recipe card at the end of this post)


  • 320g (11.3 oz) Pre-rolled Shortcrust Pastry
  • 1 tbsp Milk, to glaze *
  • 100g (1/4 Cup) Golden Syrup
  • 50g (1/4 Cup) Butter
  • 25g (1/8 Cup) Dark Muscovado Sugar
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 75g (3 Cups) Cornflakes
  • 140g (4.9 oz) Strawberry Jam

*you could also glaze with beaten egg

Essential equipment

  • 20cm (8″) Loose Bottomed Fluted Tart Tin
  • Baking Beans (or similar)
  • Large Bowl OR Large Saucepan

Pastry case instructions

Preheat your oven to 180°C/Fan 170°C.

Unroll the shortcrust pastry (320g | 11.3 oz) and lay it flat. If your pastry is too short for the tart tin on one side but too long on the other – slice a piece off the long side and press/roll it into the short side to fix the issue.

Drape the pastry over the tin and gently press into the edges. Try your best not to allow any air pockets to form as that won’t end well. Once you’ve done that, roll a rolling pin over the top to cut off the excess pastry.

shortcrust pastry draped over a fluted tart tin

Then prick the base all over with a fork and pop into the freezer for 10 minutes to chill before baking.

a fluted tart tin lined with shortcrust pastry

Take a large piece of baking paper (not greaseproof or it will stick!) and scrunch it up into a little ball. Unravel it then press gently into your prepared pastry case. Top it with baking beans and spread them right out into all the edges to prevent rising, then bake for 15 minutes.

shortcrust pastry filled with baking paper and baking beans

When the timer beeps, take it out the oven and remove the baking paper and beans. It should look a little like this…

part baked shortcrust pastry case in a tin

Place it back into the oven for 5 minutes to dry out a little, then remove and glaze all over with a little milk. (You can use any kind of milk here, or even beaten egg, It really doesn’t matter.)

Then pop it back into the oven for a further 5-10 minutes until it’s golden and crispy all over.

a baked shortcrust pastry case in a tart tin

Tadah! Our shortcrust pastry case is ready. Leave it to one side while we crack on with the filling. Don’t forget to leave that oven on though, we’re going to need that shortly.

Filling instructions

Melt together the golden syrup (100g | 1/4 Cup), butter (50g | 1/4 Cup), dark muscovado sugar (25g | 1/8 Cup) and salt (pinch) either in a large bowl in the microwave in 10 second blasts OR a large saucepan set over a low heat.

cornflake tart syrup ingredients in a glass bowl

Tip in the cornflakes (75g | 3 Cups) and mix thoroughly to ensure that every flake is coated in the gooey delicious syrup.

cornflake tart topping in a glass bowl

Assembly instructions

Now time for the fun bit! Spread the jam (140g | 4.9 oz) over the bottom of your shortcrust pastry case. Try to spread it out evenly and right to the edges.

shortcrust pastry case filled with a thin layer of jam

Finally, tip in the sticky cornflake topping and spread it out evenly all over the top. Gently press it to encourage the flakes to stick together but try not to break them.

a prepared cornflake tart ready to be baked in the oven

Lastly, bake in the (still 180°C/Fan 170°C) oven for 5 minutes to set the tart.

a cornflake tart freshly baked from the oven

Your work here is DONE! Congratulations, you now have one of the greatest desserts EVER sitting right there on your kitchen side. You’re AWESOME!

Allow to cool/set for 30 minutes or so before slicing and serving.

I want to see YOUR baking!

Have you made this easy cornflake tart? I’d love to know if you have! Tag me in your pics on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or email me at

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A slice of cornflake tart on a plate with a fork. A text overlay says "how to make cornflake tart"
Slice of cornflake tart on a black plate with a fork

Easy Cornflake Tart - Printable Recipe

Yield: 8 Servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Freezing Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

An English school dinner CLASSIC, this nostalgic Cornflake Tart recipe will take you straight back to your childhood!


  • 320g (11.3 oz) Pre-rolled Shortcrust Pastry
  • 1 tbsp Milk, to glaze *
  • 100g (1/4 Cup) Golden Syrup
  • 50g (1/4 Cup) Butter
  • 25g (1/8 Cup) Dark Muscovado Sugar
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 75g (3 Cups) Cornflakes
  • 140g (4.9 oz) Strawberry Jam

Essential Equipment

  • 20cm (8″) Loose Bottomed Fluted Tart Tin
  • Baking Beans (or similar)
  • Large Bowl OR Large Saucepan


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/Fan 170°C. Line the tart tin with the pre-rolled shortcrust pastry and cut off any excess. Prick all over the base with a fork then freeze for 10 minutes.
  2. Line the pastry with scrunched up baking paper and top with baking beans. Blind bake for 15 minutes.
  3. Remove the baking paper and beans then bake for 5 more minutes. Remove again, glaze all over with a little milk (or beaten egg) then bake for a final 5-10 minutes until golden.
  4. Weigh out the golden syrup, butter, dark muscovado sugar and salt into a large bowl. Microwave in 10 second intervals, stirring until melted. (Alternatively you can heat in a large saucepan over a low heat.) Mix in the cornflakes and stir to coat.
  5. Spread the jam evenly over the pastry base then top with the cornflake mixture. Bake in the oven for 5 minutes to set, then allow to cool before serving.


See the main post for a more detailed, step by step picture recipe.

Be sure to read the sections Ingredients, Recipe Tips and Time Management for lots of helpful information before you begin making this recipe. You can find them in the main body of this post.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 292Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 25mgSodium: 302mgCarbohydrates: 50gFiber: 2gSugar: 26gProtein: 4g

Did you make this recipe?

I'd love to hear about it! Please leave a comment on the blog or tag me on Instagram.

Other tasty old school recipes

About Emma Mason

Emma is a professional blogger. Utilising over 20 years of cooking experience, she’s passionate about making your life easier, one recipe at a time! Drawing on her 12+ year background in recipe research and development, photography, copy writing and marketing, Emma has turned into a successful career. Known as ‘the organisation queen’ among friends, she is passionate about creating easy to follow recipes that anyone can follow and enjoy. She lives in Nottingham (UK) with her husband, daughter and 2 naughty cats. In her spare time she can be found reading a good book, training at the dojo preparing for her black belt grading, or dreaming up the next crazy colour combo for her hair!

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Sunday 23rd of April 2023

I’ve just made this today with raspberry jam as I didn’t have strawberry, it’s just as good. I seem to remember it being chewy at school. This recipe worked out great. It’s so easy to make and I used shop pastry. Looking forward to it tonight with custard YUM YUM


Sunday 23rd of April 2023

Hi Lynne. I’m so happy you love my recipe and it worked so well for you! Thanks so much for sharing :) Emma x


Wednesday 3rd of August 2022

My mum makes a similar dessert but uses apple instead of jam. A family favourite.


Wednesday 3rd of August 2022

Hi Simon. Oooh using apples sounds like a really yummy alternative!! Emma x


Tuesday 3rd of May 2022

I’m in Australia & just about to make this for my Son in-law who is from England. He sent me this recipe last night and ask me if I could make it for him. Hopeful I don’t stuff your recipe up & he loves it.


Sunday 8th of May 2022

@Emma, the tart was a big hit with him. He left it overnight so the cornflakes went soft. He said the cornflakes were soft when the tea ladies served it, and with custard. Thank you for sharing your delicious recipe.


Tuesday 3rd of May 2022

Hi Ange. Aww, I’m sure you won’t stuff it up! Glad he found my recipe :) Emma x

Lisa Roas

Saturday 23rd of May 2020

Love this dessert! Reminds me of my school days.


Sunday 24th of May 2020

It reminds me of school too Lisa! Glad you like my recipe :) Emma x

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