This vegan chocolate shortcrust pastry ( or pâte sucrée au chocolat) is a great sturdy base to create the most whimsical chocolate pies, tarts, and tartlets.
Feel free to skip straight ahead to the recipe if you are a shortcrust pastry pro. I also keep this blog strictly professional, so you won’t find any personal life stories on here, just useful pastry information.
What is a shortcrust pastry
Shortcrust pastry is a type of sturdy pasty dough often used to make tart shells. What makes a pastry “short” is the fact that there are no distinctive butter pieces in the dough, compared to classic flaky pie dough. The final texture of a shortcrust pastry is more crumbly instead of flaky and resembles a shortbread cookie.
RELATED: Try my classic vegan shortcrust (pâte sucrée) recipe if you are looking for something a bit more classic for your next tart project.
Methods to make shortcrust pastry
There are actually 2 methods to making shortcrust pastry, the creaming method and the crumbling method. This recipe uses the creaming method but you can easily switch between one or the other depending on your preference.
With the creaming method, the butter and sugar are creamed together before the eggs ( or aquaflaxa in this case) are added and then the flour.
While you are creaming the butter and sugar together, you want to do it until they are incorporated and no more. If you mix for too long, you will incorporate air bubbles which will make your dough more fragile.
Crumbling (Rubbing-in) method
With the crumbling method, the butter is crumbled and rubbed into the flour and sugar mixed together until it reaches a coarse sandy consistency. You do not want to see big pieces of raw butter at this stage, since this is not your classic pâte brisée ( or American-style dough).
Then the eggs (or vegan egg replacement) are added into the flour, sugar, and butter mixture and mixed until a dough is formed.
Frequently asked questions
To get a darker chocolate tart dough, you can use black cocoa powder instead of your traditional cocoa powder. It is a 1 for 1 replacement.
Yes. Simply make sure your butter is really at room temperature before starting. You can use a sturdy wooden spoon or a stiff whisk to cream together the butter and sugar.
Once you get to add the flour to the mixture, start with the sturdy spoon before turning the dough on your work surface and finish incorporating the flour by hand by squishing the mixture of butter and flour between the palm of your hand or with a bench scraper or the flat side of a plastic bowl scraper. This is called “fraiser”.
You will need the following tools to make this vegan chocolate shortcrust pastry recipe:
- Stand mixer, or hand mixer
- A large bowl , if using a hand mixer
- A sieve
- A dough scraper, optional
Vegan Chocolate Shortcrust Pastry (Pie + Tart Dough)
- 150 g (½ cup + 2 tbsp) room temperature unsalted vegan butter , I use Becel plant-based bricks
- 100 g (¾ cup) powdered or icing sugar
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 50 g (¼ cup) aquaflaxa , or 1 flax egg
- 250 g (2 cups + 2 tbsp) unbleached flour
- 15 g (2 tbsp) unsweetened cocoa powder
- With a stand mixer and paddle attachment, cream together the butter, sugar and salt on low speed.
- Slowly add the aquaflaxa while the mixer is running, and mix until incorporated.
- Sift together the flour and cacao powder and add them to the mixer. Mix until just combined.
- Gather the dough into a disk, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour, or until the dough is firm.
- This recipe is enough to line a 9-inch pastry ring or fluted tart tin.
- Can be refrigerated for up to 3 days, or frozen for up to 3 months.
- I like to refrigerate my dough overnight which gives time for the gluten in the dough to relax. This makes the dough easier to work with as it will make it less elastic.
- 1 flax egg = 1 tbsp ground flax seeds + 3 tbsp hot water ( leave to rest for 5 minutes or until thickened)
Did you try this vegan cacao shortcrust recipe?
Don’t be shy and let me know how it went! Leave me a comment below and share a picture on Instagram !