Gluten Free Shortbread Crust (Pâte Sablée) Tender Tart Crust

Pâte Sablée is a shortbread crust that is tender and often used to make tarts. The crust is made up of one part fat, (usually butter) and two parts flour. In this gluten free shortbread crust recipe, I made little changes to this rule. Pâte Sablée is not traditionally flaky. However, learn how one little change can produce a flaky crust that browns well.

How Can I Make This Crust Flaky and Brown Well?

While neither is a characteristic of pâte sablée, if you want to make this crust flaky and brown well, use half shortening as I did.


What Changes Did You Make in This Recipe?

As mentioned above, to make pâte sablée, you should use one part butter and two parts flour. When a recipe calls for something like this, they refer to the weight of the ingredients, not cup or tablespoon measurements. In this recipe, using Carla’s Gluten Free All-Purpose Flour Blend, it was necessary to use 1 part butter (or half shortening as I did) and 2 parts flour, not by weight but my mass/measurements.

This is another gluten free recipe I created for KitchenAid’s 13-Cup Food Processor with ExactSlice System and 2 Bowls. However, any food processor will work just fine. I am using this crust in my Gluten Free Banana Cream Pie.

If you were to weight the below flour, it would be 168 grams and if you used half of that by weight in butter, you would use 84 grams of butter, which equals to a little over 1/3 cup (5-1/3 tablespoons). As you can see, I used much more fat than that for this crust.

Gluten Free Shortbread Crust - Pate Sablee


Yield: Makes one 9 to 10-inch tart crust

Gluten Free Shortbread Crust - Pate Sablee

Traditional press-in or rolled gluten free shortbread crust for tarts or pies with the same great flavor and texture as gluten crusts.


  • 1-1/4 cups Carla's Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Blend Recipe (I used all superfine brown rice flour)
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon unsalted butter (or Earth Balance vegan buttery sticks), cut into 1/2-inch pieces, frozen for 1 hour, up to several days
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon shortening, frozen for 15 - 20 minutes (Organic palm shortening or Spectrum)


  1. In the large bowl of your KitchenAid 13-Cup Food Processor, add flour blend, sugar, and salt and pulse several time to combine; add frozen butter and shortening; blend on low speed until the dough clumps together; pulsate a few times until a dough ball forms.
  2. Lightly oil a 9 - 10 inch tart pan, ensuring you the scalloped side sections well, all the way to the top. Use one with a removable bottom if you chose to show off the crust. Ensure you do this step just before adding the dough, otherwise the oil will slide down, the dough will adhere to the top sides of the pan, and will separate from the lower crust once baked.
  3. Transfer dough to the center of the prepared pan.
  4. With the palm of your hand, begin to spread the dough towards the outer portions of the pan; press and distribute dough evenly on the bottom and up the sides, creating a sturdy dough at the top of the sides; smooth out with a pastry roller or the back of a spoon; freeze for 40 minutes. (This will help prevent the crust from sliding down the sides of the pan and shrinkage of the crust, but the best thing to do is to line the dough (bottom and sides) with parchment paper, fill with dry beans, rice, or pie weights right before baking it.)
  5. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  6. Transfer pan to a baking sheet; bake for 22 -23 minutes or until golden brown, rotating halfway through for even browning.
  7. Once baked, transfer pan to a cooling rack to cool completely.


If you desire to roll this crust, refrigerate the dough for about 1 hour.

2 Replies to “Gluten Free Shortbread Crust (Pâte Sablée) Tender Tart Crust”

  1. Hello from Calgary,
    I have the only 100% GF restaurant of the city and a customer gave me your web site.
    Thanks for all the recepies…. I will try all I can.
    My question so far is ….where can I get Expandex?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.