Skillet Butter Tart Bars

These Skillet Butter Tart Bars are just like classic Canadian butter tarts with a tender shortbread base, chewy butter tart filling, ice cream and caramel!

Course Dessert
Cuisine Canadian
Author Chrissie (


For the shortbread base:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 cup all purpose flour

For the butter tart filling:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup raisins (optional)
  • a dash of cinnamon
  • a pinch of salt

For serving:

  • vanilla ice cream
  • caramel sauce
  • powdered sugar for dusting


For the shortbread base:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

  2. In a medium bowl, cream the butter and sugar with a wooden spoon.

  3. Add the flour and mix until combined.

  4. Press this mixture into a 10-inch greased cast iron skillet and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.

For the butter tart filling:

  1. Meanwhile, whip the eggs, the brown sugar and the vanilla until the mixture becomes light and fluffy (several minutes).

  2. Fold in the flour and baking powder with a rubber spatula.

  3. Fold in the raisins (if desired) and the cinnamon and salt.

  4. Pour the filling over the hot shortbread base just after it comes out of the oven and bake for an additional 25-28 minutes, or until the filling has puffed up and formed a crust. Be careful not to underbake - this will cause the filling to collapse when it's removed from the oven.

  5. Allow to cool at room temperature for at least 20 minutes before slicing and serving with a dusting of powdered sugar, vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce.

Recipe Notes

Because the filling for this dessert is egg-based, it appears to puff up quite quickly in the oven giving the illusion that it's fully baked before it actually is. Ensure your oven temperature is a correct 350 degrees Fahrenheit and it should take 25 minutes to bake fully on the inside.