Do you have a favorite dessert? I do! If I had to choose one that I’d ask the Hogwarts house elves to whip up on a visit to the kitchens, it would have to be lemon meringue pie… or maybe mint chocolate chip ice cream… or salted caramel pudding. Shoot, how can I choose?
This dessert isn’t well-known or common outside the U.K., so you might wonder exactly what this dessert is that Harry’s so keen on. To that end, I’ve put together this treacle tart recipe that you can try and make at home. Read on to learn more about treacle tart in the magical world and Harry Potter stories, and how to make treacle tart for yourself!
This post was originally published in July 2020, and was updated in July 2023.
Treacle Tart in the Magical World
There’s something to be said that in the magical world, Harry Potter’s favorite dessert is a muggle treat. Though the house elves at Hogwarts can make any dessert in the muggle or magical world, Harry is naturally drawn to something simple and delicious that he never got to enjoy growing up with the Dursleys.
Treacle tart is mentioned in almost every Harry Potter book, in part because of Harry’s preference for it. He loves it so much that he even smells it in Slughorn’s Amortentia love potion!
[A] gold-colored cauldron … was emitting one of the most seductive scents Harry had ever inhaled: somehow it reminded him simultaneously of treacle tart, the woody smell of a broomstick handle, and something flowery he thought he might have smelled at the burrow.HBP, Ch. 9
But many of us in the muggle world – especially those who live outside the U.K. – may have never heard of much less tasted treacle tart (or treacle in anything!). So let’s jump into a non-magical recipe that tastes like it should be.
How to Make Treacle Tart
If you’re curious why Harry considers this his favorite dessert, there’s only one way to find out – you’ll have to make it for yourself. (Sorry, there are no house elves to make it happen!). Here’s a relatively easy treacle tart recipe.
- 2 1/2 C Flour
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1 C Butter, diced
- 1/3 C Cold Water
- 1 C Golden Syrup
- 1 C Fresh White Breadcrumbs
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a pie pans and set aside.
- In a bowl combine the flour, sugar, and butter using two forks or a pastry cutter. The mixture should resemble coarse sand.
- Add the cold water, one tbsp at a time, mixing after each addition.
- Once the mixture forms big clumps and sticks together when pressed it's done. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Flour a surface and with the help of a rolling pin, roll out the pie crust dough. Cut into 2 pieces and transfer one to the prepared pie pan.
- Prepare the filling: In a small saucepan over medium heat cook the golden syrup until it melted and just about to begin simmering.
- Add the breadcrumbs and the vanilla and stir to combine.
- Remove from heat and once it cools down, beat in the egg. Pour into the pie tin.
- Cut the remaining pie dough into strips and weave over the pie.
- Brush with egg and sprinkle with sugar.
- Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until done.
Harry Potter’s Treacle Tart Shopping List
If you want to snag all the ingredients to make treacle tart using this muggle contraption called the internet, here’s what to buy:
- Bob’s Red Mill All-Purpose Flour, 5lb Bag
- You can use any sugar, but I love Turbinado sugar (Sugar in the Raw)
- Lyle’s Golden Syrup is the best brand to buy
- Here’s a good option for fresh white breadcrumbs
- Lastly, splurge on this Madagascar vanilla extract and you won’t regret it
Don’t forget, you also need butter and eggs! Once you have it all, it’s time to put the recipe together.
Harry Potter’s Treacle Tart Recipe
I started by creating my dough, which is the important foundation you need to get right in order to make the perfect treacle tart. After making it and letting it cool, I pressed it into small quiche dishes (rather than pie pans; these are a good option similar to what you see).
While my dough was cooling, I prepared the filling – that’s what helps this recipe be quicker than others you might see. Once that was cool, I poured it in and smoothed it… It almost looked good enough to eat at this point!
Next was the fun part: creating a lattice on top! Honestly, you could have a lot of fun with this step – if you love baking and have skills here, it’s the opportunity to be creative.
Once brushed with egg and sprinkled with sugar, it’s time to bake – and honestly, waiting for these treacle tarts to bake is the hardest part! Okay, that’s not true – waiting for them to cool a little bit before eating them is the hardest part!
A sweet and unique pastry we don’t really have here in North America, it’s not hard to see why treacle tart is Harry’s favorite dessert in the magical world. Where’s my fork?!
Will you be trying to make this treacle tart recipe? If you have any questions or concerns about trying to make treacle tart, let me know in the comments!