Delicious Make-Ahead Pies & Tarts

Try our expert tips (and yummy recipes) for a scrumptious dessert that you can make in advance.


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Holiday Fruit Pie
1/17
Make-Ahead Pie Tips

    Here we offer general make-ahead tips for various kinds of pies. Click to the following slides for yummy recipes.

    Fruit Pies: Most fruit pies can stand at room temperature for 24 hours; cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days. To freeze fruit pies, follow recipe directions -- some call for freezing prior to baking, others can be frozen after the pie has been baked and cooled.

    Cream and Custard Pies: Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Do not freeze unless specified in the recipe -- the filling may separate when frozen and thawed.

    Ice Cream Pies: Wrap tightly in plastic and put in a 2-gallon freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month. Add whipped cream just before serving.

2/17
Raspberry Pie

    Tart lemon peel balances the sweetness of the raspberry filling in this pie.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Place the baked and cooled pie in a freezer bag and label; freeze for up to 3 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   30 mins 
Bake   50 mins  375°F 
3/17
Berry Slab Pie

    A bit of crystallized ginger adds mellow sweetness to this tender, flaky mixed-berry pie.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Store the baked and cooled pie in a single layer in an airtight container, then refrigerate for up to 1 day. Or freeze for up to 4 months.

Makes: 16 servings
Serving size: 16 bars
Prep   30 mins 
Bake   25 mins  400°F 
4/17
Peach-Blueberry Pie

    This delicious pie can be made with either fresh or frozen peaches and blueberries, but the secret ingredient is in the filling: A dash of bourbon.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Freeze this pie unbaked. Prior to freezing, treat the peaches with an ascorbic-acid color keeper. Assemble the pie in a metal or freezer-to-oven pie plate, then place it in a labeled freezer bag. Enjoy within 4 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   30 mins 
Bake   50 mins  375°F 
5/17
Bumbleberry Pies

    This pie is filled with lots of berry goodness -- blueberries, raspberries, and cherries. Add cut out pastry dough before baking for a pretty topper.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Freeze the assembled pies in a metal or freezer-to-oven pie plate (not glass) for baking later. Freeze up to 4 months.

Makes: 4 servings
Prep   20 mins 
Bake   50 mins  375°F 
Stand   45 mins 
6/17
Rosemary Apple Pie

    A rosemary-flecked sugar syrup adds aromatic appeal to this autumnal favorite.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Bake and cool the pie, then refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Or to freeze an unbaked pie, treat apples with an ascorbic-acid color keeper. Assemble the pie in a metal or freezer-to-oven pie plate, then place it in a labeled freezer bag. Freeze for up to 4 months.

Makes: 10 servings
Prep  1 hr 
Stand   30 mins 
Bake   55 mins  to 1 hr  375°F 
7/17
Lattice Cherry Pie

    This 7-ingredient pie is perfect when you're in a hurry. Start with purchased piecrust and prep the cherry pie filling in just 5 minutes.

    Make-Ahead Tip: The pie may stand at room temperature for up to 24 hours. Cover and refrigerate for longer storage. Or to freeze an unbaked pie, assemble the pie in a metal or freezer-to-oven pie plate and place it in a labeled freezer bag; use it within 4 months. To bake, unwrap it and cover with foil.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   40 mins 
Bake   55 mins 
8/17
Crumb-Topped Apple Slab Pie

    This streusel-top pie is our easiest pie recipe ever. Use tart cooking apples such as Rome Beauty or Granny Smith -- their firm texture holds up better than sweet apples and they get sweeter as they bake.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Bake and cool as directed. Cover and let stand at room temperature for up to 24 hours; or store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Makes: 25 servings
Prep   45 mins 
Bake   40 mins  375°F 
9/17
Cherry-Berry Pie

    Filled with fresh cherries and raspberries, this sweet-tart pie makes a full-flavored, juicy treat that tastes great with ice cream.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Save time by making the crust in advance. You can roll the pastry out and fit it into the pie plate before freezing. Frozen pastry shells can be baked without thawing, but you will need to use a freezer-to-oven pie plate and may need to add 5 to 10 minutes to the baking time. Or bake and cool pie as directed in recipe. Seal in a freezer bag and label. Freeze for up to 4 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   20 mins 
Cool  2 hrs 
Bake  1 hr  375°F 
10/17
Frosted Apple Slab Pie

    Part pie, part bar cookie, this tasty apple dessert takes more than two pounds of sliced apples -- but the results are worth it. Cool completely before drizzling with powdered sugar icing.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Layer baked and cooled bars between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container and cover. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Makes: 32 servings
Serving size: 32 bars
Prep   40 mins 
Chill   30 mins 
Bake   45 mins  350°F 
11/17
Plum-Berry Whole Wheat Tarts

    These honey-tinged tarts are garnished with tangy goat cheese, which beautifully complements the sweet fruity flavor.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Let tarts cool completely after baking, then place in a freezer bag. Seal, label, and freeze for up to 4 months. Save the goat-cheese and honey garnish until you're ready to serve.

Makes: 6 servings
Prep   25 mins 
Chill  1 hr 
Cool   30 mins 
12/17
Maple-Apple-and-Cheddar Pie

    White cheddar cheese, sliced apples, and maple syrup put a fresh spin on classic apple pie.

    Make-Ahead Tip: To freeze the pie, first bake and cool completely. Seal in a freezer bag, label, and date. Enjoy within 4 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   30 mins 
Cool  1 hr 
Bake  1 hr  375°F 
13/17
Apple Tart with Cheddar Cheese Crust

    Get a double dose of cheddar cheese in this rustic apple tart: in the flaky crust and in the crunchy crumb topping.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Prepare pastry and chill up to 24 hours. Let stand at room temperature if too firm to roll out. Prepare Cheddar Crumb Topping. Place in a storage container; cover and chill up to 24 hours. When ready, prepare pie as directed in recipe.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   50 mins 
Chill  1 hr 
Bake   50 mins  350°F 
14/17
Cherry-Cranberry Pie

    This sweet-tart pie has a dash of nutmeg and cloves, giving it a hint of spice. The ornate lattice top is easy to make -- just twist the lattice strips slightly as you arrange them on the pie.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Let this pie stand covered at room temperature for up to 24 hours before serving. Refrigerate up to 3 days if needed, but return to room temperature before serving. Or bake and cool the pie as directed in recipe. Place in a freezer bag; freeze for up to 4 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   25 mins 
Stand   15 mins 
Bake   55 mins  375°F 
15/17
Peppermint-Fudge Pie

    Layers of peppermint ice cream and homemade fudge sauce are topped with fluffy meringue to create this showstopping dessert.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Cover the pie loosely with foil and freeze for 6 to 24 hours before serving. Garnish with crushed peppermint candy before serving.

Makes: 12 servings
Prep   50 mins 
Freeze  2 hrs plus 6 hours
Bake   10 mins  to  12 mins 375/475 degrees F
16/17
Brownie Walnut Pie

    A rich and chewy brownielike filling tops flakey pastry crust. Hot fudge sauce and chopped nuts make a tasty topper.

    Make-Ahead Tip: Bake and cool this pie as directed; place pie in a freezer bag. Freeze for up to 4 months.

Makes: 8 servings
Prep   40 mins 
Cool   20 mins 
Bake   50 mins  350°F 
17/17
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