Twix lovers will go nuts for the outrageously decadent Chocolate Caramel Tart made within outrageously delicious homemade caramel! This decadent tart starts with a chocolate crust, then a thick layer of caramel topped with luscious ganache!

I served this amazing Caramel Dessert to some neighbors and they went crazy for it! We had some laughs when one friend was shocked to find out that you could make caramel from scratch instead of unwrapping squares from a bag! Another declared that she never eats desserts but that this was worth every bite (and calorie!).

Slice of a Chocolate Caramel Tart on a white plate

Chocolate Caramel Tart

Back in 2014, when I saw this tart recipe from Saveur magazine in my in-box, I knew it was only a matter of time before I made it. One of the on-line reviewers called it a gourmet Twix bar…and I tend to agree. This is a slightly advanced recipe since it involves making caramel from scratch, but I’ve added some tips below to help you out.

Thank goodness my youngest is as much of a caramel fan as I am, so I made it for his 21st birthday celebration and took it down to campus for an early birthday dinner.

We took Nick and his roomies out for a steak and we all were full to the brim by the end of the meal. We walked back to his apartment and sampled a few bites of this caramel dessert despite our sated bellies. Again, worth every calorie!

Chocolate Caramel Tart slice on a white plate next to a cake stand and two fork

How to Make a Tart

First, you must know the definition of a tart. Typically, a tart has a pastry crust, shallow sides, a filling, and no top crust. Tarts can be sweet or savory, baked or no-bake, full-sized or smaller tartlets.

  • The crust can be a classic pastry crust, made with cookie or graham cracker crumbs, or a pressed in dough.
  • The crust can be baked before filled or a no-bake version.
  • Most tarts are made in a two-piece tart pan with a removable bottom. This makes it easy to cut and serve.
  • Tarts can also be made in single servings or as bite sized desserts or appetizers. Different specialty pans can be used for tartlets.
  • First, make the crust and bake or chill as directed.
  • Once the crust is ready to go, make the filling and fill the tart. Bake or chill as directed.
  • After cooling or chilling, add any toppings, and when ready, slice into wedges if needed, and garnish to make a show stopping dessert.

Tips for Making the Homemade Caramel Filling

Oh, my heavens. This is one of the best desserts I’ve made. A lovely chocolate cookie-like crust, a thick layer of homemade vanilla caramel topped with chocolate ganache. Total bliss.

When we celebrated Nick’s birthday, all seven of us shared one piece. I restrained myself and didn’t ask for a doggy bag. Good girl. But when I remade it a few weeks ago, I had my own slice. Heaven on a plate.

  • Be patient when cooking the caramel. It must reach 240º so that it is the right texture when cooled. Rushing the process will often result in a bad batch.
  • Use your eyes instead of relying solely on the candy thermometer. Watch for the mixture to turn to an amber color as well as reach the proper temperature.
  • Do not stir the mixture while it’s bubbling away. But you may give the pan a swirl now and then to prevent hot spots from scorching. Pro-Tip: Use a heavy saucepan so that the heat is conducted evenly.
  • Remove from the heat to add the butter, cream, creme fraiche, and vanilla as the cooler ingredients will cause the sugar syrup to bubble and expand.
  • Make sure you have an accurate candy thermometer before attempting this recipe. PRO-Tip: If you want to check its accuracy, place the tip in a pan of boiling water and it should read 100º C or 212ºF.
  • Keep the tart refrigerated until you’re ready to serve. If you slice it ahead of time, some of the caramel may start to ooze a bit. It will still taste amazing, but the slices will not be pristine.

More Holiday Dessert Recipes

Here are a few more recipes for any special occasion. If my children could actually bake, I’d ask them to make this Chocolate Caramel Tart for my birthday or Mother’s Day. It’s just that scrumptious. I also love these Brown Sugar Caramels. But if an upscale chocolate Twix tart doesn’t appeal to you, I have a feeling that one of these delicious desserts will tickle your fancy.

Slice of a Chocolate Caramel Tart on a white plate

Chocolate Caramel Tart

Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield 12 servings

A decadent pie with a chocolate crust, caramel filling and ganache topping. Adapted from Saveur.

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 10 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 2 egg yolks, at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the caramel:

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon crème fraiche
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

For the ganache:

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

Instructions

  1. Make the crust: Heat oven to 350º. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside. With a handheld mixer, cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is pale and fluffy, then mix in yolks and vanilla. Mix in dry ingredients. Press the dough into the bottom and up sides of a 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Prick the bottom and sides of the tart with a fork and bake for 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature on a rack.
  2. Make the caramel: In a large saucepan, whisk together sugar, corn syrup, salt, and 6 tablespoons of water and bring to a boil. Cook, without stirring, until a candy thermometer reads 240º and is a medium amber. You may swirl the pan briefly to avoid hot spots (if one area is browning before the rest).
  3. Remove pan from heat and whisk in butter, cream, and crème fraîche (the mixture will bubble up) until smooth. Pour caramel into the cooled tart shell and let cool slightly, then refrigerate until firm, 4–5 hours (may hurry along by popping into the freezer for a short time).
  4. Make the ganache: Bring cream to a boil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Put chocolate into a medium bowl and pour in hot cream; let sit for a minute or two, then whisk till smooth. Pour ganache over the cooled tart and refrigerate until set, 4–5 hours. Slice and serve chilled.

Notes

Total time does not include chilling times.

This is a very rich dessert and can serve up to 12 with small slices.

Cut with a hot, dry knife just before serving.

The Saveur recipe had a sprinkling of sea salt over the ganache if you'd like to try that.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

12

Serving Size:

1 slice

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 646Total Fat: 39gSaturated Fat: 24gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 139mgSodium: 334mgCarbohydrates: 74gFiber: 2gSugar: 54gProtein: 5g

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