Nostalgia for dishes we loved as kids can be quelled when we taste them, years later, with our mature palates. Take Kellog’s Pop-Tarts. Found in the breakfast aisle of grocery stores, these artificial sugar-licks taste like sweetened cardboard. But now you can relive those happy childhood memories, minus the caramel color and Red Dye No. 40, by baking your own.

Game plan: You can make the dough a day in advance; just be sure to let it soften at room temperature for about 10 minutes before rolling out.

Tip: Cooled pop tarts can be stored in an airtight container for up to two days at room temperature. Freezing is not recommended.


For the dough:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon fine salt
2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
2 large egg yolks
¼ cup milk (not nonfat)

To assemble the tarts:

Flour, for rolling the dough
1 large egg
1 teaspoon water
½ cup plus 2 tablespoons strawberry jam or preserves

For the glaze:
¾ cup powdered sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon milk (not nonfat), plus more as needed
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract


For the dough:

1 Whisk the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add the butter and toss with your fingers until well-coated in the flour mixture. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, rub the butter into the ingredients until reduced to pea-size pieces.

2 Whisk the egg yolks and milk in a small bowl until combined. Add the egg-milk mixture to the flour mixture and combine with your hands until large clumps form. Place mixture on a work surface and knead briefly, smearing the butter into the dough with the heel of your palm until the dough comes together, about one minute.

3 Divide the dough into two equal portions and shape into two (6-by-5-inch) rectangles. Wrap each tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least one hour.

Assembling the tarts

1 Heat the oven to 375°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside.

2 Lightly dust a work surface with flour and roll one dough portion out into a rough 12-by-10-inch rectangle, rotating the dough and reflouring the surface and rolling pin often to prevent the dough from sticking. Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, trim the dough to a 10½-by-9-inch rectangle. Cut that into six equal rectangles (each about 3½ inches wide by 4½ inches tall). Using a flat spatula, transfer the rectangles to the baking sheet, leaving about two inches of space between each. Place the baking sheet in the refrigerator.

3 Whisk the egg and water in a small bowl; set aside.

4 Roll out the second dough portion to the same dimensions as the first, trim and cut into six rectangles. Using a fork, prick the dough all over.

5 Remove the baking sheet from the refrigerator and brush a thin coating of the egg wash over each rectangle. Spoon 1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons of the jam onto each rectangle. Spread the jam into an even layer, leaving a ¾-inch border.

6 Place the pricked rectangles on top of the jam-covered ones. Press on the edges to adhere, and push down gently to slightly flatten. Using a fork dipped in flour, crimp the edges. Bake until golden brown, about 23 to 25 minutes. Cool completely before glazing.

Making the glaze

1 Place all the ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until evenly combined. (You may need to add more milk by the 1/2 teaspoon if the glaze is too thick.)

2 Set the wire rack with the tarts on it over a baking sheet. Using a spoon, drizzle about 1 tablespoon of the glaze over each tart. Let set before eating, about 15 minutes.