These Mini Pear and Goat Cheese Tarts with Puff Pastry are to die for! The flakey savory dough, garlic-y goat cheese, and pears go so well together. They will surely become your next favorite fall appetizer!
MINI PEAR AND GOAT CHEESE TARTS = A GREAT HOLIDAY APPETIZER
Oh, pears…how I forget about you. Seriously, I always forget how much I like pears until Fall rolls around. Then, I take a bite of one and think, “Why don’t I eat more pears?” It’s become this yearly game I play with my tastebuds. Forget about pears and then be delighted by them.
So what goes great with some amazingly ripe Fall pears? How about some goat cheese and super flakey puff pastry. Yeah, these pear and goat cheese tarts are so effing good. They are fantastic savory appetizers that just pack a punch in the flavor department!
With fall here and the holidays right around the corner, you need to make these mini puff pastry tarts for a holiday party. Yeah, holiday parties almost always require delicious food and maybe a killer cocktail like the Seventh Heaven. Whether it’s a work party or a casual get together with friends, these pear and goat cheese tarts need to be on your shortlist of must-make appetizers.
LET’S TALK INGREDIENTS
Let’s talk about the good stuff, the ingredients that make these mini pear and goat cheese tarts one of the best fall appetizer recipes I’ve shared!
These appetizers wouldn’t be complete without the pear. In my recipe photos and YouTube video, I used Red Bartlett pears. In all honesty, I chose them because I knew that the red skin of the pears was going to look nicer when baked vs a green variety or even a brown Bosc.
You can use whatever variety of pear you love for this killer appetizer. Keep in mind that if you are interested in having a real pretty bite to serve, stick with a red variety! Oh, and if you want to learn more about the different varieties of pears, check out USA Pears, they have some great info.
On to the cheese! Goat cheese is a must for this recipe. I mean it has goat cheese in it’s name. There are a handful of brands out there that make goat cheese. For the most part, I get mine at Trader Joe’s since I’m there at least once a week.
Whatever brand of goat cheese you grab for this recipe, it’s ideal for it to come to room temp before mixing it with the garlic, shallot, and thyme. If you remember, it’s a good idea to pull it out of the fridge about 30 minutes before getting started. If not, no worries! You’ll just need to use a little elbow grease and a silicone spatula.
Hands down my favorite part of these mini pear and goat cheese tarts are the flakey layers of the puff pastry. Puff pastry just brings me so much joy and it’s a fantastic base for these mini-tarts. It makes the recipe super easy to make, instead of making a traditional tart dough you just need to defrost the puff and there ya go! A (semi) instant base for the delish goat cheese and pear toppings.
The puff pastry I used for this recipe came from…can you guess? Yeah, Trader Joe’s. During the holidays they have a season puff pastry product that is REALLY good! Too bad it’s not in stock year-round. If you can’t get puff pastry from TJ’s, the two other options you’ll see around are Dufour and Pepperidge Farms. Both are good (check out this Serious Eats taste test for all the details), but if you want an all-butter option Dufour is the way to go as Pepperidge Farms uses shortening.
HOW TO MAKE MINI PEAR AND GOAT CHEESE TARTS STEP-BY-STEP
Step 1: Chop the garlic, shallot, thyme and mix it with the goat cheese!
Step 2: Slice up your gorgeous pears!
Step 3: Cut each puff pastry sheet into 16 pieces.
Super important tip! Keep that puff in the fridge until you need it.
Step 4: It’s time to assemble!
Dock the puff, scoop some goat cheese mixture, place some pear slices.
Step 5: Bake until the puff pastry is a gorgeous golden brown…it’s totally cool if the bottoms get a little dark.
They’ll still be delish!
When they cool enough to handle, top with some fresh thyme, black pepper, and drizzle with honey!
MINI PEAR AND GOAT CHEESE TARTS RECIPES TIPS
You are going to be a start when you serve these delish appetizers at your next get-together. Here are a few more tips to help you with making them!
Let’s say for you are great at planning ahead, and you decide that the night before your get-together, you want to make a batch of these puff pastry tarts. GOOD FOR YOU! Seriously, you will save yourself some much time and stress instead of making them right before the party.
Ideally, you could assemble the tarts all the way up to adding the pear. Then, right before the party, slice the pears, place them on the tarts and bake them up! That would be the best way to go.
STORE & REHEAT
If you want to bake them ahead of time, I’ve got some other tips on how to store and reheat these flakey bites.
To store them after they have baked, allow them to cool completely, and place them in an airtight container or on a small tray covered with foil. You can totally stack them and they should be fine.
When you are ready to reheat them, just pop them in the oven at 350 degrees for about 25-30 minutes until they are warm. Now, here’s a super important note. They won’t be as flakey and crisp as they were when they were first baked. When reheating they are actually better when they cool to room temp. So just keep that in mind when reheating these puff pastry tarts!
DO YOU LIKE MY CUTTING BOARD?
I have used Boos block cutting board for years and absolutely love them. You can see them in many of my photographs, it’s the light brown board in this post.
While they aren’t necessary for this recipe, I just wanted to share my love of them and strongly suggest you check them out when you are in the market for a new cutting board. They are super heavy-duty, look nice and a great to serve apps on too!
MAKE THEM & IMPRESS YOUR FRIENDS!
Seriously, these easy mini pear and goat cheese tarts are going to impress people when you bring them to a party. The flakey puff pastry layers, and the combo of the pear and goat cheese…yes, yes, yes.
When you do make them, make sure to share a pic on Instagram and tag me so I can see your awesomeness!
Mini Pear and Goat Cheese Tarts with Puff Pastry
- 8 ounces goat cheese room temp
- small shallot finely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 teaspoon chopped thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 3 small red pears sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 2 sheets puff pastry thawed
- 2 tablespoons honey
- Optional: thyme sprigs and extra pepper to garnish
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Combine goat cheese, shallot, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper in a bowl. Mix well.
- One sheet at a time, cut puff pastry into 16 rectangles. Place on the parchment-lined baking sheets. Using a fork, dock the center of each puff pastry rectangle (poke a few times with the tines of the fork).
- Evenly divide the goat cheese mixture between the centers of the puff pastry rectangles, about 1 teaspoon per piece. Place the pear slices on top of the scoops of goat cheese, about 1-2 slices per pear.
- Bake until the puff pastry is golden brown, about 40 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through.
- Transfer to a serving platter, drizzle with honey and garnish with extra pepper and thyme sprigs and serve!
- 1 serving = 2 pieces
MORE PARTY READY RECIPES!
If you have a ton of get-togethers this season, these recipes will be great to add to your party food rotation!