These healthy lemon cardamom tarts are such a lovely treat! Lightly sweet, with the subtle spice of cardamom and zesty lemon, the flavor is both refreshing and delicious. No refined sugars or unnecessary oils here, just a gently sweet and pleasantly tart dessert that is happily both vegan and gluten-free.
Since I’m currently on a healthy eating streak, these cute tarts were the perfect treat because there is no sugar or calorie overload. These tarts really make the perfect healthy dessert! Especially since I haven’t had much of a sweet tooth recently, the so flavor didn’t give me an overload of overly sweet sugariness. So, go ahead and eat these healthy little tarts guilt-free, because you might as well enjoy a delicious dessert without a bunch of unnecessary calories.
The light and lemony flavor of these healthy lemon cardamom tarts is lovely and refreshing for spring or summer! Fresh berries or fruit complement the citrusy custard filling perfectly. Since it’s strawberry season around here I decided to garnish these little tarts with freshly sliced strawberries. On that note, do you have any plans to go berry picking?! Since spring is officially here I am starting to get so excited about going berry picking. Possibly this weekend you’ll find me deep in the rows of strawberry plants at the local you-pick farm, happily filling a bucket with beautiful fresh berries. Berry picking in a farm field is definitely one of my happy places!
I decided to add cardamom and a dash of ginger to these tarts as a fun experiment and discovered that the spices were the perfect complement to the lemon, adding depth and a bit of spice. Cardamom has a spicy aroma with hints of citrus, mint, and smoke which add a delightful depth to the custard. The lemon zest as a garnish also adds an extra little zing of flavor. Plus they are pretty 🙂
The dates and nuts in the crust combine together perfectly to add another level of gentle sweetness to the flavor of the tarts, plus a nice crunch. You could easily use a variety of different nut combinations for the crust, but I went with almonds and cashews since I had them on hand. And the texture came out really nicely. Overall, I was so happy with how all the flavors combined to make a deliciously smooth and flavorful custard tart!
These healthy lemon cardamom tarts are so easy to make and can be whipped together in just a few minutes. All they need is a food processor and a few minutes in the oven! The most time consuming part of the process is letting them cool in the refrigerator, but you can easily make them a day in advance and have them perfectly chilled by the next day.
Also, I have to mention that I had such a fun time making them in the mini tart pans! The resulting personal sized desserts were just so cute. You could also use a large pie pan if that’s all you have, since a single pie would be just as delicious. Overall, I’m really excited with how these cute little tarts turned out! Don’t expect a sweet and decadent dessert, but rather a subtle and refreshing treat that won’t leave you feeling weighted down or like you’ve indulged too much.
I had such fun making (and eating) these pretty little healthy lemon cardamom tarts! The light lemony flavor is wonderful for spring and they pair perfectly with seasonally fresh berries and fruit. I hope you love them too!
These healthy mini tarts are the perfect light summer dessert with a subtle citrus spice and a creamy custard filling!
- 1 cup almonds
- 1/2 cup cashews
- 1 1/2 cup dates
- 2 Tbs shredded coconut
- 1-2 Tbs almond milk, only use as needed
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 12.3 oz silken firm tofu, drained
- 3.5 oz (1/4 of a block) firm or extra firm tofu, pressed
- juice of 2 lemons
- 1/4 cup + 1 Tbs maple syrup
- 3/4 tsp cardamom powder
- 1/4 tsp ginger powder
- sliced strawberries or fresh fruit of choice, for garnish
- zest of 1 lemon, for garnish
Drain the firm/extra firm tofu and set aside to press, using a tofu press or heavy object. Gently squeeze and drain the silken tofu and pat dry with a towel. Set both types of tofu aside while preparing the crust.
Preheat the oven to 350°.
Place the almonds and cashews into the food processor and process until they are finely chopped.
Add the dates, shredded coconut and vanilla. Continue processing the mixture until it is finely chopped and starts to form into large clumps. Add almond milk as needed, only using the full 2 Tbs if the mixture seems dry and isn't sticking together to form clumps.
Cut and place two strips of parchment paper in an X pattern into each of the five tart pans. You will use the strips of parchment paper as tabs to pull the tarts out of the pan when they are done.
Scoop the crust into the tart pans, on top of the parchment paper strips. Form the crust to fit the pans using your hands.
Bake the crusts at 350° for 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool. They can also be placed in the refrigerator or freezer to speed up the cooling process.
Place all of the filling ingredients into the cleaned food processor and blend until the texture is like a smooth custard.
Spoon the filling into the crusts and garnish with sliced strawberries and lemon zest.
Place the tarts in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hrs, preferably 4 hrs or longer. Remove the tarts from the pans and serve chilled with extra strawberries or fresh fruit of your choice!
- I used 5 separate 4"round mini tart pans, but you can also use just 1 large pie pan instead.
- The tarts paired perfectly with strawberries, but they would also be delicious with blueberries or any other fresh fruit!