pineapple tarts

My mother-in-law bakes awesomely delicious pineapple tarts and that is one of the highlights whenever we go back home for Chinese New Year. Pineapple tarts take up lots of hours to make as there is the cooking of pineapple jam (which can take hours) and preparation of pastry followed by baking. Usually, my mother-in-law will make the pineappple jam in advance and keep it in the fridge until needed.


pineapple tart pastry 1

Unlike some poor tasting recipes, my mother-in-law’s pineapple tarts have a nice buttery smell pastry which melts in the mouth. It does not crumble in your hands, yet it nicely disintegrates when savoured. Over here, I only managed to get the recipe for the pastry and will put up the recipe for the pineapple jam and baking time when I get my hands on her secrets. If you have been baking pineapple tarts, try this pastry recipe for a change.

This is my mother-in-law’s recipe for Pineapple Tart Pastry


  • 1 lb. flour
  • 10 oz. butter
  • 2 to 3 egg yolks
  • Some cold water
  • 4 teaspoon castor sugar


Sift the flour and add in the castor sugar.

Using the pointed ends of a fork, rub the butter into the flour until it looked like fine bread crumbs. If necessary, use fingertips to continue rubbing lightly the bigger pieces into finer pieces.

Add egg yolks and cold water at the same time and knead well lightly combine them using finger tips (rather than kneading them like bread dough) before rolling out to desired thickness between baking / greased paper. (The fork and fingertip technique is what makes the pastry special)

Use mould to shape tarts. Lightly dust the pastry and mould with flour before cutting with the mould.

Roll a small amount of jam into a ball. Press the ball of jam onto the tart pastry.

For baking, bake using Gas Mark 3 (160 degrees Celcius / 325 degrees Fahrenheit) for 20 minutes. When placing jam onto the pastry, take caution not to smear jam onto the sides as this will easily “burn” and render the sides of the pastry (the flowery design) darker.

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  1. 1
    May 17th, 2007 at 5:11 pm

    You know, if I wasn’t so averse to making the jam, I’d actally try this out! I have butter, I have eggs I just need flour and castor sugar lol… I even have pineapples in the fridge!

  2. 2
    Patricia Scarpin
    May 17th, 2007 at 9:38 pm

    These are totally worth waiting for, PabloPabla!

  3. 3
    May 17th, 2007 at 10:33 pm

    Lovely! What’s the oven temperature and time setting?

  4. 4
    May 17th, 2007 at 11:17 pm

    “…does not crumble in your hands, yet it nicely disintegrates when savoured…”
    hmmm….just like M&M chocolates hor?
    You can make this for NASA and let them bring these yummy buttery sweet pineapple tarts to outerspace πŸ˜€ …

  5. 5
    May 18th, 2007 at 5:00 pm

    I’m a huge sucker for pineapple tarts! πŸ˜€

  6. 6
    May 21st, 2007 at 7:08 am

    My family used to make our own pineapple tarts for CNY. I think my aunts still do. They look good.

  7. 7
    May 21st, 2007 at 2:04 pm

    ParisB : Buy a jar of jam and put it in :)

    Patricia : You’re the master baker, Pat!

    simcooks : Er….have to ask M-i-L first. LOL!

    tigerfish : Make them for the Malaysian astronauts instead πŸ˜›

    Gallivanter : Me too. I finish them like there’s no tomorrow.

    reeseboston : Yeah, these are CNY favourites. Lots of work though.

  8. 8
    May 22nd, 2007 at 12:21 am

    This looks so good but I don’t think I can make it in a million years!

  9. 9
    Rasa Malaysia
    May 23rd, 2007 at 7:41 am

    I like I like I like Pineapple tarts, the Taiwanese way with the filling inside the tart. How do I find your mould? :(

  10. 10
    May 23rd, 2007 at 8:39 am

    PP: Quickly ask your MIL can? I have some frozen pineapple jam that I can use to make more pineapple tarts. Hurry hurry!

  11. 11
    May 25th, 2007 at 3:57 pm

    ranee : This is totally my wife and mother-in-law’s territory. I only eat them πŸ˜‰

    Rasa Malaysia : The mould is bought from the stores. Nothing special really.

    simcooks : Okay okay :)

  12. 13
    October 4th, 2007 at 2:23 pm

    the good pine apple tart i bought and tasted , can be found in malacca, behind heron street, look for Donald and Lilly restaurant, its a house of nyonya food, look for the tall round container of pineapple tarts, not the square plastic containers.There are 3 suppliers for this. Its not very sweet, pastry is just nice.Worth your money.

  13. 14
    yasmin yeong
    February 9th, 2008 at 9:21 am

    Hi Hochiak !
    I have a problem keeping my pineapple tarts fresh. I always store in an air tight container after cooling the tarts completely but after 1 to 2 days but they became soft and did not taste as fresh as they came out from the oven. Do you have this problem and if so, how do you do it?
    Thank you kung hei le fatt choy 2008
    Yasmin Yeong

  14. 15
    February 11th, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    Yasmin : Kinda strange. Were the tarts from this recipe? You need to ensure that the jam is cool before storing. My m-i-l does not have the problem of the tarts becoming soft after keeping. I might need more details from you on what might have happened.

  15. 16
    yasmin yeong
    February 17th, 2008 at 7:42 pm

    Hi Pablopabla (Hochiak) !
    Thanks for your answer. Yes, this was the recipe. How many days can you keep yr tarts n not becoming soft? Strange as you said, I always have this problem during the lunar new year when I tend to bake quite a lot n I am sure it happened to your readers too. Maybe you can find out from your friends who baked a large batch.
    Yes, I cooled the whole lot first b4 storing.
    Hope you can help me. Thanks a million.
    Yasmin Yeong

  16. 17
    February 17th, 2008 at 8:32 pm

    Yasmin : Hmm…firstly, the pastry for this pineapple tart pastry is soft (and crumbly) in nature. It does not crumble whilst in your hands but will have an almost “melt-in-the-mouth” feeling when put in the mouth. Could this be what you described as soft? Because I know there are some recipes out there which will give you “hard” pastry. We can keep these tarts for at least 3 weeks and they still taste almost as fresh as off the oven. Another thing I am guessing is that you might have cooled the tarts for too long before keeping. Once they jam are cool to touch, they can be stored. If you leave them out too long, they will become “less fresh”.

  17. 18
    March 23rd, 2008 at 6:17 pm

    Thank you for your sharing your pineapple tart pastry. I have tried your receipe and I like it very much. I have tried some other recepe before out there on the web but their pastries are very hard. Yours are very soft and just melt in the mouth. Really great! Now I have to find a way to make the tasty pineapple jam myself and I would have a perfect pineapple tart. Thanks.

  18. 19
    March 24th, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    Sue : I am glad it turned out great for you. Feel free to share the recipes with others who like the melt-in-mouth pastry πŸ˜€

  19. 20
    May 19th, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Hi! I’d like to try this out. I’m a big fan for pineapple tarts especially the one that melt in your mouth. Can i know the ingredients in gm? Approximately how many ml of water do i have to put? Sorry for any inconvenience caused. Looking forward for your early reply. Thanks in advance.

  20. 21
    May 20th, 2008 at 12:56 pm

    Sally : 1 lb equals 453.59gms. 1 oz equals 28.35gms. Water is discretionary.

  21. 22
    yasmin yeong
    June 11th, 2008 at 9:27 am

    Hi Hochiak
    Love your blog,nice n delis recipes. Keep up the good work.

    1 question though: How do you keep the BAKED Pineapple tarts fresh after baking. Mine somehow became soft the next day or so. How do you keep yours fresh. I would put them in an air tight container and they STILL became soft, why ? Thank you.

  22. 23
    June 11th, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    yasmin : Hi Yasmin, it’s hard for me to determine why the pineapple tarts you baked become soft. Sue liked it. Do keep it in an air-tight container.

  23. 24
    Cheryl Erie
    December 6th, 2008 at 8:50 am

    I live in the US and miss pineapple tarts so much. What kind of flour do you use? All purpose, cake flour or just plain flour? I love my pastry to melt in my mouth and extra buttery is this recipe like that?

  24. 25
    December 7th, 2008 at 11:25 pm

    Do i need to brush the pastry with egg yolk on the pastry before place the pineapple on it. It does not mentioned in your recipe.

  25. 26
    December 31st, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    hi! i loveee pineapple tarts. and i’m abt to make a batch! i was just wondering if your pastry works for the nastar moulds as well? i like the jam to be rolled in :) thanks hochiak!

  26. 27
    January 11th, 2009 at 7:53 am


    Can you tell me what type of flour you used to get the soft pastry? How much water you add and the ingredients you used can make approx how many tarts? Oh I also notice the sugar you used is little while most others receipe is 100g.

    Many thanks

  27. 28
    February 2nd, 2009 at 5:16 pm


    I’m Malaysian but live in HK now. Had CNY without my favourite pineapple tarts and once I read this blog I’m determined to make my own tarts (even though I heard it’s hard work!! πŸ˜‰ I’d like to also know what type of flour to use and how much water is needed (how should the texture be?

    Thanks and this site is great! Keep it up!!

  28. 29
    February 15th, 2009 at 11:14 pm

    Hi Hochiak,

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe. Have baked a batch of the tarts and it was so good…melt in mouth…that i immediately baked another batch of the tarts the next day. Gonna credit your recipe in my blog page soon. Thanks again!


  29. 30
    September 14th, 2009 at 9:40 am

    Hi ,

    How many eggs did you put in?

  30. 31
    October 15th, 2009 at 5:38 am

    Hola! I tried this recipe today, and it turned out fantastic!!! Was longing to bake my loving grandma pineapple tarts tht she’s always been asking, n now I myself am soo satisfied with this amazing tarts…Thanks abundant for sharing such superb recipe..this is definately a keeper to me…no adjustments needed :)

  31. 32
    October 16th, 2009 at 3:31 am

    There is typo error in yr recipe, Is it 2 or 3 egg yolk?

  32. 33
    January 17th, 2010 at 11:35 am


    i tried making the tarts ytd. it taste great but there is some bitter after taste.

    DO u know where the problem lies in?



  33. 34
    January 18th, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    Adeline : Was the bitter after-taste from the pineapple jam?

  34. 35
    January 22nd, 2010 at 12:48 am

    Tried the pastry recipe tonight.
    The dough was surprisngly easily to handle!!
    Texture was soft and nice as described!
    Thank you! ^^

  35. 37
    January 28th, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Shuurei : Thank you for the feedback.

  36. 38
    January 30th, 2010 at 11:20 pm

    Hi, does prima deli brand plain flour and top flour make any difference? Need your advise please?

  37. 39
    Christy Grace
    February 1st, 2010 at 5:03 pm

    Tried part of yr method yesterday. Turned out good but still lack something.. we could not discribe. My sis-in-law said like it lack some fragrant???

    Cld u pls help convert the lbs to gram for us. tks

  38. 40
    February 2nd, 2010 at 11:39 am

    Michelle : Any brand of plain flour will do.

  39. 41
    February 2nd, 2010 at 11:48 am

    Christy : Hi, you mentioned that you tried part of the method. Which part did you omit? I think the brand of butter used also makes a difference. Some brands are more fragrant πŸ˜€

  40. 42
    February 2nd, 2010 at 4:42 pm


    Just wanna check with you, your pineapple tart is melt into mouth? just plain flour? any brand butter? i like those heavy butter smell and melt into mouth. need to try your method.

  41. 43
    February 2nd, 2010 at 5:02 pm

    sunshine : Yes, it melts in the mouth. Just plain flour will do. And for butter, we use the Golden Churn brand.

  42. 44
    February 2nd, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Hi Pablo Pablo!

    This recipe seems soo appealing! I love the melt-in-the-mouth pastry not the hard ones with packed with flour. Can’t wait to give this a try for the new yr!!

    Anyways wanted to ask, would it be recommend to bake the pastry 1/2 way through first then add on the pineapple jam?! Bc I have tried baking pineapple tarts before and after baking the jam became really dry..

  43. 45
    February 2nd, 2010 at 5:20 pm

    Audris : You’ve found the right place for the melt-in-the-mouth pineapple tart pastry! Give this a try, ya? However, I wouldn’t advocate baking half-way prior to adding the jam because this will definitely interfere with the baking process. The culprit is most likely the pineapple jam, which could be too dry in the first place. Try making the jam your own from the pineapple jam recipe here.

  44. 46
    February 4th, 2010 at 12:37 pm

    hi, can i check if you used salted or unsalted butter?

  45. 47
    February 5th, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Hi Pablopabla (Hochiak),

    I have lots of unsalted butter at home..
    Can I used them and add salt instead?
    Would you happen to know how much salt I should add if i used unsalted butter?

    Many thanks,

  46. 48
    February 6th, 2010 at 8:21 pm

    Jane : We used salted butter.

    Janice : No, you should not add salt to the butter. Actually, it does not really matter whether you use salted butter or unsalted butter. The recipe calls for butter and it’s up to you which type to use. It so happens that we like the taste from the Golden Churn butter (salted).

  47. 49
    February 21st, 2010 at 9:41 pm

    I live in Belgium and with CNY season..have been craving for pineapple tarts. Well, have been like this since Hari Raya ’09. I finally gave up asking friends and family to send me some and attempt to make some myself. Found your MIL recipe, VOILA!!! ITS DELICIOUS! It’s my first time and it turned out so well! Thank you for sharing the recipe. I’m going to bake a second batch today to share with fellow Singaporeans here.. :-)

  48. 50
    February 21st, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    Jai : Thanks for the feedback. I’m glad you liked it enough to share with others πŸ˜€

  49. 51
    February 27th, 2010 at 12:30 am

    Hi again,

    I got only praises for your recipe from fellow Singaporeans and locals here. :))

    Can i have your permission to share the recipe with Singaporeans here in Belgium and Luxembourg please? I will post it on our website and also publish a link to you blog.

  50. 52
    February 27th, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    Jai : Sure, do share the recipe and tell them it’s courtesy of my mother-in-law πŸ˜€

  51. 53
    Jackie B
    February 28th, 2010 at 8:10 am

    OMG!!! Do you deliver? I have been craving these forever, thank you for recipe. Will have to try these out. I am hopeless at baking ;( but will give it a go.

  52. 55
    March 2nd, 2010 at 2:51 am

    Based on my experience and going for classes, salt does make a difference in your dough.If using unsalted butter add some salt. Ur pastry will taste much better

  53. 56
    August 26th, 2010 at 4:58 pm

    Hi… may i know de butter… is it the can golden churn or the bar….
    And the butter must it be chilled while we mixed it with the flour?

  54. 57
    September 4th, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Could u tell me the recipe in grams? tq

  55. 58
    September 9th, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    Hi just wondering how many tarts does this recipe make approx? Looks good I cant wait to try making this. Thank you :)

  56. 59
    September 10th, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    ana : The butter is in chilled form. And the golden churn block of butter is ideal.

  57. 60
    September 10th, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    Serene : About 80 to 100 pieces depending on the thickness and size of the cut-out pastry.

  58. 61
    January 6th, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    Thanks so much to your MIL for the recipe, and you sor sharing with us. I made my 1st jam tarts last CNY, and it turned out well…am going to make more this year. Cong Xi Fa Chai to you!

  59. 62
    January 11th, 2011 at 2:11 pm

    Hi! I’m looking to make my own pineapple tarts this year for CNY, and after doing some research it seems that the majority of recipes for making pineapple tarts have been adapted/based on your recipe, so I’m going to follow yours. Just a quick question, how many tarts does this pastry yield?

  60. 63
    January 11th, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    Lianne : It very much depends on the thickness of the pastry that you roll out and the size of your cookie cutter. Since the pineapple jam is prepared in advance (and extras can be stored), try this recipe out and see how many you can make.

  61. 65
    January 20th, 2011 at 4:46 pm

    Hi Hochiak, this is the first time I tried to bake pineapple tarts & I found your recipe in the website. My first attempt in making the pastry n jam was very successful, it’s very soft n tasted very good and now I’m making my second batch of tarts to giveaway. Thank you very much for sharing the recipe generously.

  62. 66
    April 14th, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    Made the tarts today. Yumms, the only thing i did was to add lemon juice instead of water. Great job, Love you blog btw.

  63. 67
    January 10th, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    Hi baking it yesterday and it turn out bad! Do not know what happened, the dough is so soft! I try baking it in the oven for almost 30 mins and it is still uncooked! I uses gulten free flour. Could that be the problem? It says cold water in your recipe but did not said to put how much.Please advise.

  64. 68
    January 10th, 2012 at 2:38 pm

    Maggi : Hi, I’m sorry to hear that the pastry did not turn out as expected. Try using plain flour as indicated in the recipe. As for water, a tablespoon should suffice. My mother-in-law usually uses the egg shell to measure :)

  65. 69
    karen lim
    January 11th, 2012 at 1:43 pm

    Hi tks for sharing. May i ask how much estimated cold water did you add into the mixture?
    appreciate your advise as i dont know the amount of water to add.

  66. 70
    January 12th, 2012 at 8:39 am

    Hi, thanks for sharing your MIL secret recipe. After reading all the above comments, all the ‘estimate’ quantity of ingredients are clearer now. How about the thickness of the dough when roll it? I’m sorry I’m really bad on estimating how thick the jam tart should be. There must be an ideal thickness of the tart so that it’ll just melt in the mouth and will be cook in your baking time of 20 min. I’ve seen some that are very thick.

  67. 71
    January 12th, 2012 at 8:40 am

    Can I use margarine instead or shortening ?

  68. 72
    January 13th, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Karen : 1 tablespoon of water should suffice.

    Kate : Please do use butter instead of margarine or shortening. As for the thickness of the pastry, it should ideally be between 3 to 5mm.

  69. 75
    March 12th, 2012 at 4:00 pm

    Hi Pablopabla,

    I found your website through my friend FB when she post a photo of this delicious pineapple tart. I’m thinking of using this recipe to make some today and thinking if I could publish the recipe on my blog and link it to your website and I need your approval before I put up on the blog.

    Thank you in advance,

  70. 76
    December 26th, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    Hi Pablopabla

    Do you think u can make the roll (pineapple nastar) using your recipe for pastry ? I would like to ry it as my pastry is very delicate and crumbles easily after baking.


  71. 77
    January 11th, 2013 at 10:47 am

    SL : This pastry can be quite crumbly and I’m not sure whether it will hold a roll well.

  72. 78
    January 31st, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    I made this pastry today and it was very easy. I’m not sure if I did something incorrectly or what but the pastry wasn’t as “melt-in-my mouth” as i had hoped it would be.


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