Last Updated on August 21, 2021 by Chenée Lewis
It's peach season! This is the perfect time to enjoy your favorite fresh peach desserts, from pies to cobblers to ice cream. There are so many options, and I'm excited to share with you one of my new favorite recipes! My brown butter peach tart is an easy and delicious way to use fresh peaches, or frozen peaches all year round!
But the best part about this peach tart is right there in the name: the richness of brown butter is in the filling and in the icing drizzled on top! Plus, the crust and shortbread topping are made with dark brown sugar and the peaches are simmered in brown sugar to really bring out that rich, caramely flavor throughout. It's a truly showstopping dessert, and much easier to make than you'd think!
Fresh or frozen peaches
It's really up to you whether you use fresh or frozen peaches for this brown butter peach tart! I have tried it both ways, and they both came out delicious! The ease of frozen peaches is very appealing to me, so that might be my preference, but if you've recently done a farmer's market haul you should definitely use all those ripe, juicy peaches you have on hand!
A crucial ingredient in this peach tart is brown butter. I find that it deepens the flavor of anything it touches, and I wanted this peach tart to be full of deep flavor. If you've never used brown butter, never fear! It's very easy to make, and all you need is butter and a light-colored sauté pan.
I detail all the steps in my How to Brown Butter post, so check that out if you're new to browning butter! In this recipe, we're using 3 tablespoons of browned salted butter in total, so to ensure you have enough it might help to brown four tablespoons, or one half stick, and then measure liquid tablespoons from that amount. Feel free to use unsalted butter as well, but in that case you may need to add a couple pinches of salt to your peach filling and your icing.
One crucial piece of equipment whenever you're making a tart is a tart pan. Go figure, huh?! I like this one that I got on Amazon because it's nonstick, has a removable bottom that makes this tart SO easy to slice and serve, and its fluted edge gives the tart a beautiful look. But you can definitely use a pie pan, a springform pan, or another type of tart pan!
Besides the tart pan, for this brown butter peach tart you will also need a few standard baking tools: a whisk, a pastry cutter, and a measuring cups and spoons. I would also recommend a food scale to help get accurate measurements for flour, powdered, sugar, and other dry ingredients, as well as measuring your peaches.
This layered tart is packed with flavor and rich textures. Here's what you'll need to make it:
For the crust and crumb topping:
- all-purpose flour - forms the base for our shortbread crust and topping.
- dark brown sugar - adds a deeply rich sweetness, and helps the crust to come together.
- baking powder - lets the crust and topping have a bit of lightness.
- cold salted butter - it's important that the butter be cold to achieve that crumbly shortbread texture! Feel free to use unsalted butter if you prefer-- just add a couple pinches of salt to balance out the sweetness.
For the brown butter peach filling:
- peaches - you can use fresh or frozen peaches, but if you use frozen, make sure they are thawed and drained. I would suggest cutting your peaches into small chunks to fit well in the shallow tart pan and make the tart easier to slice.
- lemon juice - helps to bring out the tartness in the peaches.
- cinnamon - a perfect spice to complement that peach flavor.
- cornstarch - helps to thicken the peach filling.
- brown butter - makes everything better!
For the brown butter icing:
- brown butter - totally transforms this basic vanilla icing to something irresistible!
- powdered sugar - provides the sweetness and texture of the icing.
- whole milk - helps to thin out the icing to make it pourable.
- pure vanilla extract - perfect flavor for this easy icing!
If you have everything gathered together, you're ready to make this delicious brown butter peach tart! Let's get baking!
Step by Step
- First, brown your salted butter, remove it to a heatproof container, and let it cool just a bit.
- Then make your crust and crumb topping by whisking together your flour, brown sugar, and baking powder and then cutting in your cold butter with either a pastry cutter or your hands.
- When the mixture is combined and looks like pea-sized crumbs, take out ½ cup of it and chill that portion in the refrigerator.
- Press the rest of your crust into your 9-inch tart pan and blind bake the crust for 12-15 minutes.
- Then, stir together your filling ingredients and simmer in a saucepan for about 5-10 minutes until peaches are tender and filling is slightly thickened.
- Pour your filling evenly into the blind baked crust, top with remaining shortbread crumbs, and bake!
If you like brown butter, you're on the right blog! This peach tart is a variation on one of my first blog recipes, pineapple pecan cheesecake bars, which are very rich and decadent but SO good.
Or if you want to try another summery peach recipe that's incredibly quick and easy, check out my cherry peach galette! It has a secret ingredient (store-bought pie dough, spoiler alert) that makes it ready for the oven in just 5 minutes. It's perfect with some vanilla ice cream and so simple for your summertime celebrations, or just a low-key family treat.
Either way, you can't go wrong! Happy baking!
Equipment you may need
- pastry cutter
- 9-inch tart pan
Shortbread Crust and Crumb Topping
Brown Butter Peach Filling
Shortbread Crust/Crumb Topping
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Whisk together flour, baking powder, and brown sugar.
- Add cubed butter and work in with hands or a pastry cutter until mixture forms pea-sized clumps and sticks together when pressed. Remove ½ cup of mixture and set aside.
- Press remaining crust dough into a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom.
- Bake in preheated oven for 13-15 minutes.
Prepare Brown Butter Peach Filling
- Brown your salted butter in a light-colored sauce pan and transfer to a heatproof (see note)
- In a large bowl, toss peaches with cinnamon, brown sugar, cornstarch, brown butter, lemon juice, and vanilla extract.
- Transfer to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer on stovetop over medium-high heat.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes, or until filling has thickened slightly.
- Pour peach filling into baked crust and spread to even.
- Sprinkle reserved crumbles of crust mixture on top of peach filling to create the crumb topping.
- Bake in preheated oven 30 to 35 minutes, or until the crumb topping is a deep golden brown. Cool completely.
Whip Up Brown Butter Icing
- Whisk together brown butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, and milk until smooth. If desired, add a bit more milk to thin consistency.
- Drizzle icing over cooled tart and serve!
- You can prepare the filling and crust dough ahead of time and refrigerate or freeze, well wrapped, until ready. Just let them thaw in the fridge before assembly and adjust cook time to accommodate the colder ingredients.
- You can also prepare and bake the whole tart, allow it to cool completely and then drizzle with icing. Then let it solidify uncovered in the freezer, and then wrap it well and freeze for up to 4 months. Let thaw, covered in the refrigerator, for 24 hours.
PIN this brown butter peach tart recipe for later!