Even though it’s a joyful time of year, the holidays can be pretty stressful at times, especially if you are entertaining. That’s why it’s really helpful to have a few recipes on hand that are festive, entertaining-ready, and most importantly, fuss free! These Cranberry Brie Tarts are just perfect for easy holiday entertaining. They only take 15 minutes to prepare and only have four ingredients!
These Cranberry Brie Tarts start with a mini pie shell that’s baked first so it stays crispy even after filling. The shells are then filled with cranberry sauce and topped with a square of brie (triple creme brie is my favorite here!). The cheese is melted in the oven and then right before serving, the mini tarts are sprinkled with finely chopped fresh sage. The sage adds a touch of green that complements the cranberry color, as well as just a hint of slightly piney, herbaceous flavor that cuts through the creaminess of the cheese.
Cranberry Brie Tarts Ingredients
As I mentioned, you only need four ingredients to make these delicious cranberry brie tarts:
- Pre-made pie dough: you can use homemade if you want. But, because these tarts are so small, it wouldn’t make a huge difference in my opinion. Plus, the pre-made pie dough holds it shape really well, so it’s very easy to roll thinly.
- Canned cranberry sauce: I prefer the added texture of the whole berry kind. You can use homemade, but if your cranberry sauce is on the watery side, drain the excess liquid before adding to the tart shells so it doesn’t get soggy.
- Brie: I really love using triple creme brie, it’s just so…well, creamy! This adds an extra luxurious, soft, oozy quality that really takes these tarts over the edge into decadent! But, all cheeses are amazing in my book, so feel free to use your favorite kind of brie.
- Fresh sage: this is optional really, if you don’t add it you will still have an amazing appetizer. But, I think the sage gives a little special flair to the dish, and the burgundy/green color combination is really beautiful!
Here’s a couple quick tips for making these Cranberry Brie Tarts perfectly the first time:
- When you are rolling and cutting out the dough, you won’t be able to cut all 24 pieces the first time. I got about 18 pieces out of my first roll. Gather up the scraps and form them into a disk. You can roll the disk out a bit to help the pieces stick back together, but don’t try to roll it thin at this point. Go back and shape the tart shells you already cut, and prick them with a fork. Then return to your scraps disk and roll it out to cut the remaining pieces. When dough is overworked, it can get tough and elastic. By giving the scraps time to rest after the first rolling, it will be easier to work with without getting tough.
- Use a shot glass to help you form the tarts! The first time I did it, I used my hands and my nails were tearing the dough, plus the whole thing was a bit cumbersome. This way is much easier and faster! Just place the dough circle on top of the mini muffin tin hole and press down with the shot glass. Make sure to move the glass around the bottom edges to ensure the dough is completely filling the tin without gaps.
- If you don’t have the right size circle cookie cutter (2 3/4 inches), you can cut the dough into squares. The shape will be a bit different but still beautiful! You can also look around your house for other objects that might work, such as a jar lid.
- Here is an easy way to cut the brie pieces if you have a round wheel. Cut the cheese in half horizontally. Then cut the half wheel into four strips, then squares. The corner pieces are for the cook!
- Cut the fresh sage right before serving. If you try to do it early, the edges get a bit brownish and it’s not quite as pretty. (It will still taste good though!)
Making Cranberry Brie Tarts Ahead of Time
If you want to save yourself some time on the night of your party, make the pie shells ahead of time! Just follow the directions for baking the shells. Then once they are completely cool, place them in an airtight container. They will keep at room temperature for up to three days.
When you want to serve the tarts, place them on a baking tray. Fill and bake them as directed in the recipe to melt the cheese.
If you’ve tried this recipe for Cranberry Brie Tarts, please let me know what you thought about it in the comments down below, I would love to hear from you! You can also follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest to see more delicious recipes from Nibble and Dine!
Really love cranberries like me? Here are some other awesome recipes featuring cranberries to satisfy your cravings for all things tart and sweet!
- Thumbprint Cookies (these are filled with cranberry sauce!)
- Brussels Sprout Salad with Cranberries
- Cranberry Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Mini pie shells filled with cranberry sauce and topped with oozy brie and a sprinkle of fresh sage. A 4 ingredient appetizer that’s as festive as it is easy to make!
- 1 store-bought refrigerated pie dough (for 9 inch pie)
- 3/4 c. canned whole berry cranberry sauce
- 8 oz. brie
- 2 – 3 fresh sage leaves
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
- Microwave the pie dough (do not unroll first) on 30% power for 10 – 15 seconds or until the dough can be easily unrolled without cracking.
- Unroll the dough on a clean work surface. With a rolling pin, roll the pie dough out to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut the pie dough into as many circles as you can using a 2 3/4 inch diameter round cookie cutter. Press the circles into the cups of a 24 cup mini muffin tin, making sure the dough is pressed down into the corners of the muffin tins (see note). Prick the bottom of the tarts 3 times with the tines of a fork.
- Re-roll the remaining scraps to 1/8 inch thickness. Cut enough additional circles to equal 24 in total. Press them into the remaining muffin tins and prick them with a fork as directed in step 3.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 5 – 6 minutes or until golden brown. While the pie shells are baking, cut the brie in half horizontally, then cut each half into 12 pieces, for a total of 24 pieces.
- Remove the baked pie shells from the oven. Reduce the oven heat to 350. Fill each pie shell with about 1 tsp. of cranberry sauce, then top with a piece of brie. Return to the oven and bake just until the brie is melted, about 3 minutes.
- Remove the tarts from the oven. Allow to cool for a minute or two while chopping the sage leaves very finely.
- Carefully lift the tarts out of the muffin tins and place on a serving tray. Sprinkle the finely chopped sage over top of the tarts and serve.
A shot glass is helpful to press the pie dough into the bottom of the mini muffin tins!
Keywords: cranberry brie appetizer, cranberry brie tarts, cranberry brie tartlets, cranberry brie bites