Key Lime Tartlets

Macadamia nuts and coconut flakes make a crust for the creamy citrus filling in these tropical dessert tarts.

Key Lime Tartlets
Photo: Steven McDonald
Prep Time:
45 mins
Chill Time:
2 hrs
Cool Time:
1 hrs
Bake Time:
12 mins
Total Time:
45 mins
8 tartlets


  • Coconut-Macadamia Nut Pastry

  • 4 egg yolks

  • 1 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk

  • 1 teaspoon finely shredded lime peel

  • ½ cup lime juice (10 to 12 Key limes or 4 to 6 Persian limes*) or bottled Key lime juice

  • Few drops green food coloring (optional)

  • Sweetened Whipped Cream

  • ¼ cup coconut, toasted

  • 3 tablespoon chopped macadamia nuts

  • Fresh Mint Sprigs (optional)

Coconut-Macadamia Nut Pastry

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour

  • ¼ cup granulated sugar

  • ½ cup cold butter

  • ¼ cup finely chopped coconut, toasted

  • 2 tablespoon finely chopped macadamia nuts

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 1 tablespoon ice water

Sweetened Whipped Cream

  • ¾ cup whipping cream

  • 4 teaspoon powdered sugar


  1. Prepare Coconut-Macadamia Nut Pastry. Preheat oven to 450°F. Divide dough into eight portions. On a floured surface, use your hands to slightly flatten one portion. Roll dough from center to edge into a circle about 5 inches in diameter. Transfer dough circle to a 4-inch tart pan that has a removable bottom. Press dough into fluted side of tart pan; trim edge. Using a fork, prick bottom and side of dough. Repeat with remaining dough portions. Line each dough shell with a double thickness of foil. Place on a large baking sheet. Bake for 8 minutes. Remove foil. Bake for 4 to 5 minutes more or until pastry shells are golden. Transfer to a wire rack and cool. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F.

    For filling:

  2. In a medium bowl, beat egg yolks with a wire whisk or fork. Gradually whisk in sweetened condensed milk. Add lime peel, lime juice, and, if desired, food coloring. Mix well.

  3. Spoon filling into baked pastry shells. Place on a large baking sheet. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until set. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. Chill for 2 to 3 hours or until completely chilled.

  4. To serve, remove sides of tart pans. Using a pastry bag fitted with a round tip, pipe Sweetened Whipped Cream onto each slice (or using a spoon, top with whipped cream). Sprinkle with toasted coconut and chopped macadamia nuts. If desired, garnish with mint. Makes 8 tartlets.

Coconut-Macadamia Nut Pastry

Coconut-Macadamia Nut Pastry:

  1. In a medium bowl, stir together flour and sugar. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until pieces are pea-size. Stir in coconut and macadamia nuts. In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolks and water. Gradually stir egg yolk mixture into flour mixture. Using your fingers, gently knead dough just until a ball forms. Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill for 30 to 60 minutes or until dough is easy to handle.

Sweetened Whipped Cream

  1. In a chilled small bowl, combine whipping cream and powdered sugar. Beat with chilled beaters of an electric mixer on low to medium speed just until soft peaks form (tips curl over).

Bake Ahead Tip:

Prepare as directed through step 3. Cover and chill for up to 2 days. Remove sides and garnish as directed in step 4.


Persian limes are more commonly available.

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