Spiral Vegetable Tart
Thinly sliced vegetables are the visual star of this Spiral Vegetable Tart. With a layer of homemade sundried tomato pesto and a flaky pie crust, this tart is as delicious as it is beautiful.
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Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words. I could tell you about this tart — the flaky crust, the crisp-tender layers of thinly sliced vegetables covering a thin layer of savory sundried tomato pesto, the fresh rosemary and oregano right from my garden.
But really, the best part about this tart: it’s beautiful.
Don’t get me wrong — it’s also delicious. But you could thinly slice some vegetables, drizzle them with olive oil and herbs, and roast them and they would also be delicious.
This tart, however? It’s a visual showstopper. Concentric circles of brightly colored vegetables, almost mesmerizing in appearance. Did I also mention that it’s easily adaptable for gluten-free or vegan diets?
Most of the time, we eat things because they are delicious. Sometimes, we eat things because they’re beautiful.
And once in a while, we hit that amazing intersection of the Venn diagram, where something is delicious AND beautiful — and that, friends, is this spiral vegetable tart.
Best Homemade Tart Dough
I won’t lie; this spiral vegetable tart does take some time to assemble. There’s rolling out the pie dough. There’s slicing the vegetables. Of course, there’s wrapping all those vegetables around each other, trying to hold the end of a zucchini down while starting the next squash.
And yet despite the time requirement and mundane tasks, or perhaps because of them, I found this so incredibly soothing to make.
So let’s get started with some step-by-step tips to help you make your own stunning spiral vegetable tart. More of a visual person? Check out the video below! ↓↓↓
First up: the pie crust. I always use my no fail pie crust recipe. It’s easy. It’s foolproof (hence the name). You can make the dough ahead of time and freeze it.
Homemade Tomato Pesto
Blind bake the dough in a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. This allows you easily take the sides of the tart pan off and showcase your beautiful work. Blind baking the dough will help keep the crust crispy, even though we’re going to cover it with a layer of sundried tomato pesto.
Next up, make that sundried tomato pesto. I make my own, starting with sundried tomatoes packed in oil.
The sundried tomato pesto comes together very quickly in a food processor. But if you want a shortcut, use store-bought sundried tomato pesto – easy peasy!
Thinly Sliced Vegetables
Slice all your vegetables into long, thin strips. I recommend a mandoline, though a Y-peeler or a steady hand and a sharp knife will also get the job done. I start wrapping from the center of the tart and work my way outward, wrapping as tightly as I can.
Brushing each slice of vegetable with just a little olive oil first provides wonderful flavor, but does make the project a little messy (and slippery!)
Using one hand to hold the spiraled vegetables, keep adding zucchini, squash, and carrots to the circle until you reach the outer edge of the tart. If there are any gaps along the way, push a few extra strips of vegetables in the extra spaces.
Gluten Free and Vegan Vegetable Tart Alternatives
To make a gluten-free version of this spiral vegetable tart, use this gluten free pie crust recipe and ensure the sundried tomato pesto is gluten-free.
To make a vegan version of this spiral vegetable tart, use this vegan pie crust recipe and omit the shredded parmesan cheese from the pesto.
Other Vegetables to Try
Rather than spiral vegetable tart, I could have alternatively titled this “Summer CSA Overload Tart” because that’s how this came to be. A drawer full of zucchini, squash, and rainbow carrots, thanks to our Philly Foodworks share.
Any long, sliceable vegetable will work — if it’s too wide, just cut it in half or thirds. For a summery tart, toss in an eggplant.
I’m already daydreaming about a winter version with circles of butternut squash, leeks, and parsnips.
Whatever vegetables you use, the key to this spiral vegetable tart is olive oil. It’s the glue that holds each strip of the vegetables together. You’ll get a little messy. It certainly takes some time.
How to Store Spiral Vegetable Tart
The spiral vegetable tart is most delicious coming straight out of the oven. But that’s not to say that you can’t make it ahead of time and still enjoy it!
Once fully baked, allow the tart to cool and store it in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. The tart can be reheated at 350 °F until warm, 20 to 25 minutes, before serving.
The bottom crust does not stay as crisp as the first day – one way to partially help remedy this is to preheat a baking sheet in the oven until hot, then slide the tart directly onto the hot pan and cook on the already hot, lightly greased, baking sheet.
Also to note, while safe to store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, if you’re going to serve this at Thanksgiving or some other food-centric dinner party, I’d try to make it a day ahead of time at most. The sooner you serve it, the better it will taste!
The spiral vegetable tart can also be enjoyed at room temperature – just bring it out of the refrigerator an hour before serving.
Tips and Tricks for the Best Spiral Vegetable Tart
- Blind bake the crust using dried beans or a pie weight to help ensure a crispy, not soggy, crust.
- Cut the vegetables to a similar thickness using a mandoline or Y-peeler so the vegetables cook through at a similar time.
- To make the day-of work easier individual components can be done ahead of time: the pie crust can be made and refrigerated or frozen ahead of time, the pesto can be made and refrigerated or frozen ahead of time, and the vegetables can be sliced the night before.
- The spiral vegetable tart can be refrigerated for up to 5 days and reheated in the oven or enjoyed at room temperature.
Love sweet potatoes? Try this Spiral Sweet Potato Tart!
More Vegetable Sides:
- Fall Broccoli Salad with Pecans, Apples, and Craisins
- Spicy Butternut Squash Salad
- Honey Glazed Moroccan Eggplant
- Tomato and Zucchini Galette
- Healthier Tomato Pie
Spiral Vegetable Tart
Thinly sliced summer vegetables are the visual star of this spiral vegetable tart. With a layer of homemade sundried tomato pesto and a flaky pie crust, this tart is as delicious as it is beautiful.
- 1 no-fail pie crust
- 1 cup sundried tomatoes, packed in oil and drained
- 1/4 cup basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- 1/4 cup shredded parmesan (optional)
- 1 large zucchini
- 1 large yellow squash
- 2-3 medium carrots
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (suggested: rosemary, thyme, oregano)
- salt and pepper, to taste
- Prepare a batch of No-Fail Pie Crust (or gluten free or vegan alternatives, depending on dietary preferences). Chill dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
- While the dough is chilling, trim the edges of the zucchini, squash, and carrots. Slice the vegetables into long, thin slices, using a mandolin, vegetable peeler, or a sharp knife.
- Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Grease a 9″ tart pan. Roll the dough on a lightly floured surface until just a bit bigger than the tart tin. Place the dough into the tin and press into the bottom and sides. Trim any excess overhang. Refrigerate the dough in the tart pan for 15 minutes.
- Line the dough with parchment paper and fill with dry beans or a pie weight. Bake for 15 minutes, until edges are slightly golden. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.
- While the crust cools, make the pesto. Combine the sundried tomatoes, basil, and garlic in a food processor or blender. Pulse several times, then slowly add in 1/4 cup of olive oil and continue to pulse until the pesto reaches the consistency of spreadable paste. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Spread the pesto along the bottom of the tart. Sprinkle with the cheese (if using).
- Quickly dip one piece of sliced vegetable in the remaining olive oil, or bush with oil using a pastry brush. Roll the strip into a tight circle and place in the center of the tart. Dip the next vegetable slice in olive oil and roll around the first slice. Continue wrapping the vegetable slices in concentric circles until the tart is full.
- Brush the top of the vegetable tart with any remaining olive oil, then sprinkle with salt, pepper, and chopped fresh herbs.
- Bake at 350 °F for 45 to 50 minutes, until vegetables are crisp-tender and cooked through. Cool in tart pan for 10 minutes, then slice and serve.
- To make the day-of work easier, individual components can be done ahead of time. The pie crust can be made and refrigerated or frozen ahead of time. The pesto can be made and refrigerated or frozen ahead of time. The vegetables can be sliced the day before.
- The finished tart can be refrigerated for up to 5 days and reheated in a 350 °F oven until warm (20-25 minutes) or enjoyed at room temperature.
A Bunsen Burner Bakery Original Protocol
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 222Total Fat: 17.9gCarbohydrates: 14.0gProtein: 3.1g
Oh. Em. Gee.
When I first saw this, you’re right – it’s a showstoppingly beautiful tart! I LOVE it. Sharing it everywhere, because YUM.
Thanks so much, Kylee!
Wanting to make this for my Dad’s 90th party. My Dad loves art ! Do you think this would fair well in the fridge overnight and bake in the morning before the party?
Hi Jane — I’d blind bake the tart a little longer to make sure it doesn’t get too soggy sitting in the refrigerator overnight, maybe 30 minutes instead of 15? Otherwise I think it should work!
Thank you so much Julie!
This tart is beautiful!! I can’t wait to make it!
Hope you love it, Josie!
What a showstopper!!! Really beautiful, and sounds delicious too! And personally I’d love to share this with a cute 16 month old any day!!!
He’s a pretty good dinner companion, as long as you don’t mind picking his fork up off the floor fourteen times. 😉
Julie- if I make the pie crust the night before I make the tart, at what stage should I stop for the night? After I put it in balls or after I roll it out?? I hope you see this! Thank you!! 🙂
That’s about the most beautiful way to cook veggies that we’ve ever seen. Nice!
Aw, thanks! Nature sure is beautiful.
This is absolutely stunning. Like a painting. And it sounds so delicious!
Thanks, Valentina – food definitely is art!
Absolutely beautiful! Stunning! So inspired right now! Cant wait to try this one!
Definitely give it a try – it’s so fun to make. My new favorite way to eat my veggies. 🙂
Such a beautiful and trippy looking tart, I love it fantastic pictures too!
I always thought these were so pretty!!! You’ve inspired me to try one myself.
Definitely try one, Cheryl! It’s time consuming, but I found it very relaxing to keep adding more and more slices to the circle.
This is so beautiful!
I’m wondering if this could be assembled the night before? Thanks!
Absolutely! You can bake it the night before as well and then reheat it quickly in the oven when you’re serving. We ate the leftovers over 3 days and it was just as good the last day as it was fresh out of the oven.
If using a winter squash, would it be better to parcook the slices first (maybe roasting since boiling might leave them too waterlogged)?
If you slice the squash thin enough with a mandoline, you should be fine — I had no issues with the carrots, which are pretty crisp and non-bendy. If you don’t have a mandoline and are slicing by hand, you may want to parboil and then dry thoroughly between towels before rolling!
Beautiful! Can’t wait to try it out for myself. What sort of base would you recommend to replace the sun-dried tomato pesto if you were doing a winter version?
Hmmm, a light layer of a brown butter sauce with a sprinkle of parmesan? A brown sugar sauce (similar to candied sweet potatoes)? A thick red pepper cream sauce? Anything that works with butternut squash ravioli would be delicious with a squash-based winter tart!
Perhaps some apple butter for the base on the winter version?
I actually have a winter version I’ll be sharing soon!
Made this last night for my birthday- we did small tartlets so could try 4 different flavor combinations. Your sundried tomato version was high on list!! The pesto is awesome and will be using extra for triangle polenta bites tonight.
So glad you liked this, Julie! What other flavor combinations did you try?!
Hi Julie: This looks fabulous and delicious.
Could you make this with puff pastry as opposed to pie crust?
If so should I par bake the puff pastry as well?
I would not want the pie bottom to be soggy but also would not want
the puff pastry on the sides to burn… the cooking time may be too long for puff pastry.
Let me know…. also will the pest bottom make the puff pastry soggy?
Maureen from Toronto, Canada
Hi Maureen – I bet this would taste delicious with puff pastry, but it probably will lose a little of the visual spiral effect. Since puff pastry… well… ‘puffs’ so much, I think it will overlap the vegetables, at least on the edge. I haven’t tried this so it will be a bit of an experiment on your part, but I would skip the par baking. I don’t think the pesto will make the puff pastry soggy, since it doesn’t make the pie crust soggy. Keep the baking time the same, but check 3/4 of the way through – if you see the sides are getting too dark, cover the edges with aluminum foil, like you would a pie crust. If you try it out, report back and let me know how it goes!
I have an 11″ tart pan. Could I still use 1 pastry crust or should I use part of a second?
Also,my little boy is 16 months too!
Hi Julie – for an 11″ pan, I’d try 1.5x the dough recipe. I don’t think one pastry crust will fill an 11″ pan – you’d probably have to roll it so thin that it’s likely to tear. Definitely increase your veggies, too! Hope your little guy loves it as much as mine did. 🙂
I LOVE dramatic foods, everyone expects it of me, this will work terri8fic for Christmas parties
That’s so on my gastronomy bucket list! Thank you for your inspiration.
Definitely make it! It’s absolutely worth the time and effort – and I love the idea of a gastronomoy bucket list, haha!
Made this today but instead of draining the juice for the tomatoes I squished out all the juice from the jar and threw it away : ( any way you could think of to fix this? I did add a bit more olive oil, but doesn’t seem to be doing what I want.
Oh no – so sorry I just saw this! I hope you were able to salvage the pesto!! For future reference, I’d continue to add more olive oil and a little more salt, since there is usually a little seasoning in a jar of sundried tomatoes.
Hi Julie, I made this for Thanksgiving dinner. You were right–it was a show stopper 🙂 I will try your new sweet potato version for the December holidays.
I am so, so glad the tart was a hit for your Thanksgiving dinner! Thanks for sharing – I love feedback from readers. I hope you love the sweet potato version as well!
Yesterday (Christmas) is the third time I’ve made this, and it’s always the same- everybody oohs and aahs, and then wanwts the leftovers. I usually hate to be assigned veggies for a group dinner, but love bringing this one. Thanks so much!
This comment makes me so happy, Phyllis! I’m glad you (and everyone you are serving it to) loves the tart! I completely agree – vegetables are often a boring side dish to make, especially if you want to wow people. Glad this tart is helping to solve that problem!
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Adorable! I have to make this now!
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So I use these vegetables all the time and I was getting sick of how I was preparing them. Then I came across this recipe and the visual alone is stunning; I knew I had to make it. So I made the recipe and it was fun, time consuming but fun! I also made the pie crust by hand which was super easy; for some reason it was really hard for me to find no fail pie crust dough. I have to say going through the cooking process I learned a few things.
First, my pesto looked a lot redder than your pictures provided, not sure what kind of sun dried tomatoes you may have used but mine looked more like marinara sauce.
Secondly, I did get a large squash and zucchini but they were more fat than long. When I first started they looked too tall so I started to fold them in half and used both sides per layer. This actually worked better cut in half because the squash’s seeds made the cuts flimsy, and they now became carrot sized.
Thirdly, I learned that if the center doesn’t stay perfectly rapped that’s okay, you can go back and fill them in (I had to fix my tall rose center). At the end I filled spaces in with the colors they were lacking.
Fourthly, I found and this is of course my opinion, that two tablespoons of spices was a little too much to garnish with.
Lastly, I didn’t have a tart or pie pan, so I used a metal circle pan that drops the center once you unlock it, no sure of the actual name (sorry). Honestly it worked just fine in case anyone feels that they need to have one. I just cut my excess dough to the height of a tart pan. From rolling out the dough to putting the finished product out of the oven, it took about an hour. My fiance is a chef and he had his doubts I could make this look like the picture, but I did!! Wish there was a place to upload the picture!
I’m glad that you enjoyed the tart, Autumn! As far as the sundried tomatoes, I “oven dried” my own tomatoes from my garden, so using fresh tomatoes might have a different color than a jar that you buy in the store. Folding the vegetables in half is a great idea – thanks for the tip! As far as the herbs, I’m sure the variety you use — and how fresh they are — makes a difference in potency, but of course, one of the best parts about cooking is adjusting little details yourself to better suit your own tastes. 🙂
It sounds like you’re describing a springform pan, which will also work great for this! You could even use a regular pie pan, but anything with a separate bottom makes it easier to cut the first slice without it falling apart.
I wish I could figure out how to include photo uploads in the comments! If you share on Instagram or twitter though, tag me – I’d love to see any finished products!
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Novice but always ambitious cook here.
I would like to make the for a picnic brunch but am confused as to how to reheat – if I make it the night before. How do I wrap it once its cooled? What temp do I put it back into the oven the next morning… for how long? Will it be ok before its served a couple hours later? How best to wrap for transit? How long will it keep once served on the table? I want it to stay pretty, crispy and delicious!
Hi Sylvia — I suggest making and serving immediately. I ate the leftovers the next day and baked it in the oven for about 15 minutes at 350 °F, but the crust was a little soggy after sitting overnight. It may taste fine the next day at room temperature, but it’s not something I’ve tested myself, so I don’t have any advice, sorry!
Could I make this with goat cheese on the bottom instead of pesto? I’m doing it for brunch so might be even better? What does that do to the temperature, timing etc?
I think it sounds delicious with goat cheese! I haven’t tried it myself, though, so I can’t offer any guidance or suggestions on how to change the cooking time. You can always try keeping the rest of the timing the same since the pie crust and the vegetables have to cook, but I can’t promise it will turn out. I’m a big fan of experimenting in the kitchen, though, so I encourage you to give it a try and report back!
thank you ….will find another excuse to make it!
will do. thanks.
Would this freeze? I’m trying to get ahead for a birthday lunch.
Hi Christine — I’ve never tried freezing it before, either baked or unbaked. My gut reaction is that it won’t thaw particularly well.
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How much time prior to cooking can I assemble this? It’s gorgeous! I cannot wait to make this tomorrow.
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Hi. I’m making this as a side dishes for our thanksgiving dinner. We are about 20 people, do you think 1 11” tart will be enough? I have another 5-6 sides besides this tart.
Thank you, can’t wait to try it!!!
Hi Amanda! If you think all 20 people will want some, it probably won’t be enough – I’d venture you could probably get 16 small slices out of an 11″ tart. I think you’ll have plenty of other food though, with 5-6 sides, so if some people may not want a slice (or are willing to split a slice) I think you’ll be fine!
I’m really excited to make this for a party tomorrow. I have a jar of regular basil pesto I need to use up. Do you think it’d be okay if I used that instead of the sundried tomato pesto? Thank you!
Yes, regular pesto will work fine too!
I ended up making two of these at the same time because I had so many veggies (and my store bought pie crust came with two crusts) so I devoured one myself and gave the other to a vegetarian friend who hates cooking. She loved it so much that she requested I bring one to her Christmas party! I love this recipe so much—thank you so much for it!
I’m so glad you and your friend liked it so much, Octavia!
Getting my family (especially the kids) to eat vegetables is always a challenge. I’ve learned the more appealing to the eye, the better chance I have. This is STUNNING!! It’s about 10 degrees outside but I am inspired. I’m going to look for your winter version. And before I look I’m thinking about combinations: beet, sweet potato, parsnip….. or butternut squash, sage and maybe spinach (if it would hold up). I follow this advice I heard years ago – Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon! 🙂 Life is good.
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Found this on Pinterest and made it for a small dinner group 0n Sat. It was beautiful and delicious! I used Trader Joe’s sun dried tomatoes in olive oil. Next time I’m going to save the drained oil to mix with with olive oil used for coating the vegetable stripy. This time I mixed about a Tbs of the pesto in the oil and let it sit for a few minute. Wanted to spread the wonderful flavor of the pesto through the veggies,
This dish got rave reviews from my friends. But I want to make it again because it tasted so good.
I’m so glad to hear that you liked it!!
Could you do this with fruits, like apples and pears, leaving the feelings on for color and do a caramel sauce instead of pesto? It would take more time due to smaller pieces I’m sure, but it would be a new twist to a fruit pie kind of thing. My daughter and I experiment with this kind of stuff all the time, sadly my family isn’t veggie fans. But took this to work and they loved it.
Absolutely! I don’t have times worked out (although I am planning on trying something similar this fall!) but it should absolutely work as a different take on an apple or pear pie. I’m glad your coworkers liked the veggie tart!
Could I freeze this, for make-ahead?
Hi Zoe — I haven’t tried freezing them myself; I can’t think of a real reason why it wouldn’t work, but the crust may get a little soggy with the pesto layer as it thaws. If you give it a try, please report back and let me know how it goes!
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Made this for Thanksgiving, it was a HIT! A little time consuming, but I sliced the veggies day before, and I cheated with a frozen pie crust. I also subbed sweet potatoes for carrots. Can’t wait to make it again! Thank you!
So glad to hear that you liked it, Megan!
I love the look and sound of this tart and can’t wait to try it, probably with an almond-flour crust. Plus, as a retired HS chemistry teacher, I LOVE your blog name, because of course cooking is food chem.
Thanks for your years of serving as a HS chemistry teacher, Beth — a big part of why I went on to get a Ph.D. in biochemistry teacher is because of the great AP Chemistry teacher I had in high school!
I used my homemade bacon jam on the bottom of the tart instead of pesto and it was divine
Made this today and it turned out beautifully! The pesto bottom was fantastic, but the layered vegetables were lacking in flavor. I think next time I make it I will layer in a bit of pesto in between the vegetables to add an extra punch. Also, a tip to anyone who doesn’t have a mandolin, peelers work wonderfully to create thin, even strips!
O-O-O AH-AH-AH-AH ! A feast for my eyes, a feast for my mouth, a feast for my belly, a feast for my soul. This was wonderfully scrumptious; I used my homemade onion bacon jalapeno jam instead of pesto. Yes, yes it was long process but ultimately rewarding. I found it relaxing I prepared the night before spreading out all the cooking utensils. Sat. morning, I began with my favorite classical music, apron on- coffee, later on, wine. I used my home-grown veggies, I loved the process, the results were spectacular. Wow, I made this?-with your help. I have made this beautiful work of cuisine art and I will now try adding eggs and cheeses. You have inspired me so much.
Thank you so much for sharing.
I am so glad you enjoyed this whole process – what a wonderful description of making it. And the onion bacon jalapeno jam sounds fabulous!
I loved this recipe. Everyone in my family loved this recipe. It was very time consuming to make and I needed my niece to help with the construction (by the time I got to the outer layers I probably could have used another helper to hold everything together). We made it the day before and had it for brunch. Everyone kept commenting ‘it’s like Ratatouille’ and I replied ‘yes this is ratatouille’. Turns out they meant it was fancy French rat cooking and didn’t realize there was a dish called ratatouille. Softer veg like eggplant and zucchini are definitely easier to work with. The sweet potato and carrot were a bit difficult. Even though I have a mandolin they didn’t slice very thinly and were hard to bend.