Homemade Pop Tarts From Scratch (Hand Pies) - Melissa K. Norris

Homemade Pop Tarts From Scratch (Hand Pies)

By Melissa Norris | Breakfast

Apr 30

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Got pop-tart lovers in your house? These homemade pop tarts from scratch are 110% better than store-bought, with flaky melt-in-your-mouth crust and delicious fruit filling.homemade pop tart on white plate with bite out of it

I gotta tell you, I’ve never been a huge fan of pop-tarts. I’ve always thought they tasted like cardboard with frosting thrown on top (don’t hate me if you’re a diehard fan, my kids loved pop tarts whenever they had them), just calling it as I taste it. However, now that I have this homemade version, I’ve made these two weeks in a row and my husband texted me from work saying, “Those were REALLY good!”

You have to understand, those texts, they’re a big deal. If you’ve read my book Hand Made you know I say in the dedication my husband lets me know, for better or worse, how a recipe really tastes, and I’m not kidding.

I rarely buy pop-tarts or breakfast cereal, talking maybe once a year. But my kids were begging for something special beyond our regular sourdough chocolate bread and I had jars of pie filling and jam that needed to be used up.

Pop tart flavors

The beautiful thing about these homemade pop tarts is you can use any flavor filling you want. A thick jam, fruit butter or pie filling works best, this strawberry jam with low sugar and no pectin recipe is an excellent choice for a strawberry pop tart.

Blueberry is also delicious (ya know I have a recipe for blueberry jam without pectin right here) or try an apple pie pop tart with this apple pie jam recipe or apple butter!

Want to know how to really take it up a notch… make a cream cheese strawberry pop tart, simply mix 4 ounces of cream cheese with 2 Tablespoons honey (or sugar, you pick) and add a spoonful with each Tablespoon of jam!

I’ll be trying a homemade smores pop tart version next per my husband’s request.

Honestly, any filling your heart desires so long as it’s thick will work. Some other popular options are to place brown sugar mixed with a little bit of cinnamon and flour in the center, I haven’t tested this as I’d rather use up some of our fruit preserves.homemade pastry dough on floured counter top

Supplies Needed

  • rolling pin
  • baking sheet
  • wide mouth canning ring OR cookie cutter at least 3.5 inches in diameter
  • fork to crimp edges
  • sharp knife to slit top crusts
  • brush for egg wash- I love this silicone baking brush

Pop tart ingredients

Pie crust- the pie crust recipe is super important so it’s flaky and rolls out easily for cutting. This best ever flaky pie crust from my Great-Grandmother has 2 secret ingredients and is the ONLY recipe you should ever use. Bold but true.

Jam, jelly, fruit butter, pie filling, or fruit sauce of choice

Egg and water for egg wash

Sugar to sprinkle on top

 

How to Make a Pop Tart

Make your pastry dough first, my biggest tips for the best pop tarts is to follow the instructions carefully for flaky pastry crust! Mix together flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in lard, butter, or coconut oil.

Note: In order to achieve a flaky crust, your lard, butter, or coconut oil needs to be cold. It’s the pieces of solid fat distributed throughout the flour which melt upon baking that create the flakiness. You can freeze your butter or lard for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting it in.

Fat is fully cut in when the flour is crumbly pea-size pieces. Add in liquids (your egg is a liquid in this recipe) until the dough just holds together. You don’t want to over mix it. Cover dough in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Take pie dough (the equivalent of 1 bottom or top pie crust) out of the fridge. Don’t let it come to room temperature, you want the dough to be chilled so the fats melt when they hit the oven. This creates the flaky layers were after. Plus, if you used my pie crust recipe, you’ll find it rolls like a dream straight from the fridge! Sprinkle flour on the counter, no need for parchment paper with this dough.pastry dough rolled and cut out on counter for homemade pop tarts

Roll dough out to a 1/8 inch thick. Using your cookie or canning ring, cut out your circles. If you want the same rectangle shape of pop tarts (I’m too lazy to measure and cut out the dough with a ruler and pizza cutter for anything except homemade croissants) you can roll dough into a 9 x 12 rectangle and cut into 3 x 4-inch rectangles.

Place cut out dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Put this in the fridge as you roll out the disc of pie crust in the same manner for the tops (depending on how thin you roll, I get 10 circles per disc).homemade pop tarts on cookie sheet with filling on top

Bring back out the cookie sheet with the bottom pieces of dough. Place a good-sized Tablespoon of fruit filling in the center. Take your top piece of dough and center it over the filling. With the tip of a sharp knife, cut three slits in the center. Push down on edges of dough to crimp and seal your pop tart. Use the tines of a fork to press them together firmly.homemade pop tart on cookie sheet ready to be baked

Once all your pop tarts are filled, topped and sealed, place the cookie sheet back in the fridge.

Mix together your egg and water until well blended.

Bring back out the pop tarts and brush with the egg wash. Sprinkle with sugar.homemade pop tarts on cookie sheet

Place in preheated oven and bake for 28 to 32 minutes (my oven was 30 minutes) until golden on top.

These are amazing eaten while still warm from the oven, like shut the front door and eat-the-entire-pan good.

I store mine in my glass cake server on the counter for up to 5 days. If your house is hot and humid, store in the fridge for up to 7 days.plate of homemade pop tarts on kitchen counter

Can you freeze pop tarts

Yes, you can. Bake the pop tarts, allow to cool fully, wrap well, and store in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Other Breakfast Favorites:

Homemade Granola Bars (Copycat Nature Valley Granola Bars)

Sourdough Chocolate Bread From Scratch

Grandmother’s Date Bread Recipe

Blueberry Zucchini Muffins – Healthy Zucchini Muffins w/ Applesauce

Buckwheat Pancake Recipe from the 1920s

 

homemade pop tart on white plate with bite out of it

Homemade Pop Tarts From Scratch (Hand Pies)

Course: Breakfast
Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 10
Author: Melissa Norris
These homemade pop tarts from scratch are 110% better than store-bought, with flaky melt-in-your-mouth crust and delicious fruit filling.
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • Pastry Dough
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour spoon & level into cup to measure
  • 1 and 3/4 cup lard butter, or coconut oil
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar You can use white vinegar, but I prefer apple cider in baking
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • Filling
  • 3/4 cup jam jelly, pie filling, fruit butter or apple sauce (1 heaping Tablespoon for each pop tart)
  • Wash
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • Sprinkle on top
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  •  

Instructions

  • Mix flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in lard, butter, or coconut oil. Note: In order to achieve a flaky crust, your lard, butter, or coconut oil needs to be cold. It’s the pieces of solid fat distributed throughout the flour which melt upon baking that create the flakiness. You can freeze your butter or lard before cutting it in. The large side of a cheese grater works great with frozen butter.
  • Fat is fully cut in when the flour is crumbly pea-size pieces. Add in liquids (your egg is a liquid in this recipe) until the dough just holds together. You don’t want to over mix it.
  • Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Separate pie dough into four equal balls, place other 3 pieces of dough back in the fridge.
  • Sprinkle flour on the counter, no need for parchment paper with this dough. Roll dough out to a 1/8 inch thick. Using your cookie or canning ring, cut out your circles. If you want the same rectangle shape of pop tarts (I'm too lazy to measure and cut out the dough with a ruler and pizza cutter for anything except homemade croissants) you can roll dough into a 9 x 12 rectangle and cut into 3 x 4-inch rectangles.
  • Place cut out dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet. Put this in the fridge as you roll out the disc of pie crust in the same manner for the tops (depending on how thin you roll, I get 10 circles per disc).
  • Bring back out the cookie sheet with the bottom pieces of dough. Place a good-sized Tablespoon of fruit filling in the center. Take your top piece of dough and center it over the filling. With the tip of a sharp knife, cut three slits in the center. Push down on edges of dough to crimp and seal your pop tart. Use the tines of a fork to press them together firmly.
  • Once all your pop tarts are filled, topped and sealed, place the cookie sheet back in the fridge.
  • Mix together your egg and water until well blended.
  • Bring back out the pop tarts and brush with the egg wash. Sprinkle with sugar. Place in preheated oven and bake for 28 to 32 minutes (my oven was 30 minutes).

Notes

Make Pastry Dough Ahead Make the pastry dough ahead of time and store sealed in fridge for up to 3 days
How to Freeze Pop Tarts Bake pop tarts and allow to cool fully. Wrap well or place in a sealed air-tight container and freeze for up to 3 months

homemade pop tart on plate and baking sheet

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About the Author

Melissa K. Norris inspires people's faith and pioneer roots with her books, podcast, and blog. Melissa lives with her husband and two children in their own little house in the big woods in the foothills of the North Cascade Mountains. When she's not wrangling chickens and cattle, you can find her stuffing Mason jars with homegrown food and playing with flour and sugar in the kitchen.

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