Homemade Pop Tarts
I suppose that I could post leftover ham recipes, or even leftover turkey recipes. But that would not be fun, nor would it highlight all of the other great and wonderful new toys that I received. I received the most wonderful Kitchenaid Food Processor with all the accessories. I also bought a few toys for myself.
On my recent trip to Williams-Sonoma I knew that I needed to make homemade pop tarts for the kids. And uncrustables. (That’s another post for another day). When I found that the homemade toaster pastry press was on sale it was like a sign. Of course when I went to check out the kind lady checking me out asked if I have ever tried making uncrustables for my kids. “Of course,” I replied. She then proceeded to tell me that she bought an uncrustable maker for her daughter who made them from scratch and told me that they too were….on sale. I bought it.
I do have one huge disclaimer. Pop Tarts aren’t healthy. Not by a long shot. But growing up as a kid, treats like this weren’t even in my vocabulary. (See: Traci has first Twinkie at age 19). I do want my kids to at least have an idea of what they are and experience a taste of an iconic American filthy treat. And in my experience if you give them something made from real ingredients to taste first, they usually don’t like the artificial storebought ones they try later.
I’ll be the first to admit that the ingredient list on a real Pop Tart is not pretty. 400 calories, corn syrup, sugar, high fructose corn syrup, sugar, and lot’s of ingredients I can’t pronounce the name of. And have you ever tasted one? I have. They really aren’t that great, and I have a hard time understanding why kids love them so much. It’s like cardboard with frosting glazed on top.
I set out to make them a real ingredient Pop Tart. It’s not healthy by any stretch of the means. But it’s ingredient list won’t have you running. And remember, it’s a treat not a meal.
Oh, I even veganized it for my vegan friends!
Homemade Pop Tarts
- 2 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour or unbleached all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
- 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch dice (substitute Earth Balance buttery spread for vegan version)
- 6 to 8 Tbs. ice water
- 1/2 cup strawberry, cherry, or blueberry preserves
- 3/4 cup sliced strawberries or 1/2 cup roughly chopped pitted cherries or chopped blueberries
- 1 egg, beaten with 1 tsp. water (for vegan version, substitute 1 tsp egg replacer with 1 tbsp of water)
- 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
- 2 Tbs. milk (for vegan version, substitute almond or soy milk)
In a food processor, pulse together the flour, salt and granulated sugar until combined, about 5 pulses. Add the butter or Earth Balance and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 pulses. Add 6 Tbs. of the ice water and pulse 2 or 3 times. The dough should hold together when squeezed with your fingers but should not be sticky. If it is crumbly, add more water 1 tsp. at a time, pulsing twice after each addition. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, divide in half and shape each half into a disk. Wrap the disks separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out 1 dough disk into a rectangle 1/8 inch thick. Using the outer ring of a toaster pastry press, cut out 8 pastries, rerolling the scraps as needed. Using a small offset spatula or a butter knife, spread 1 Tbs. of the preserves onto each of 4 pieces of dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border, and top each with 3 strawberry slices or 1 Tbs chopped cherries. Brush the edges with the beaten egg or egg replacer mixture. Top each with a plain piece of dough. Place the 2-piece press on top and press the inner ring down to seal the edges. Remove the mold. Transfer the pastries to a prepared baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Repeat with the remaining dough disk, preserves and fruit.
Position 1 rack in the upper third and 1 rack in the lower third of an oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Bake the toaster pastries until golden, about 25 minutes, reversing the positions of the baking sheets on the racks and rotating them from front to back halfway through the baking time. Let the pastries cool on the baking sheets for 10 minutes, then transfer the pastries to wire racks and let cool completely.
In a bowl, stir together the confectioners’ sugar and milk (or soy or almond milk) until well combined. Using a spoon, lightly drizzle the icing onto the toaster pastries. Let the icing harden completely before serving. Makes 8 toaster pastries.
Toaster pastries can also be frozen and taken out when ready to use. Simply pop into a toaster for several minutes.
YES! For children who don’t like fruit, you CAN omit the fresh strawberries or fruit.
Homemade Pop Tarts by Smitten Kitchen
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