If I were to speculate, I’ve probably eaten around 250 Pop-Tarts in my lifetime. And not the kind with the baby zebra on the box with no sugar added, whole fruit, wheat crust, and no frosting. WHO EATS A POP-TART SANS FROSTING? That’s what I wanna know.
No, the kind I consumed were of the brown sugar cinnamon, strawberry, cherry, or wild berry variety with the purple frosting with blue swishes across the front. My mom would toast two up, slather them in I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, and carry them downstairs to me, where I’d inhale bites between strokes of mascara and lip gloss before school. Now THAT’S how you eat a Pop-Tart, kids.
That is, unless you’ve turned a new leaf and no longer consume high fructose corn syrup, blue lake dye, and hydrogenated oils. See where I’m going with this?
I’ve tried to make Pop-Tarts before with Greek yogurt or whole wheat flour in the crust to slash calories, but let’s be honest: They tasted like sand.
So this time, I wised up. I used Earth Balance and whole-wheat pastry flour and kept my fillings as simple as can be – pure fruit compote.
Friends, we have a winner.
These glories are vegan and fairly simple to throw together, requiring just 7 ingredients and about 45 minutes of your precious, precious time. After all, who would actually make Pop-Tarts if they took 5 hours to prepare? Not I, and neither should you. You deserve better than that. We deserve better than that.
You will love these Pop-Tarts.
The crust is flaky and buttery (despite using vegan butter).
The filling is tender, fruity and naturally sweet.
The raw sugar on top provides a delightful crunch.
And the optional vegan vanilla glaze sends me straight back to my childhood, sans GMOs.
Gah, life is good again, thanks to healthified Pop-Tarts.
Vegan Berry Pop Tarts
- 2 cups flour (I used half whole-wheat pastry, half unbleached all-purpose)
- 1 pinch salt
- 2/3 cup cold vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
- 2-4 Tbsp ice cold water
- 1 heaping cup frozen mixed berries
- 1 Tbsp raw sugar for topping (optional // plus more for sweetening compote filling)
- Vanilla glaze
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Prepare the compote by placing berries in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook for 5-8 minutes with a lid on, stirring occasionally and smashing down with a spoon. Add a few teaspoons of sugar to sweeten if desired. I added 1 tsp. raw sugar (amount as original recipe is written). Transfer to a bowl to cool.
- To prepare crust, mix flour and salt in a large bowl, then cut in butter with a fork or pastry cutter until well combined.
- Using a tablespoon, drizzle cold water over the mixture and mix with a wooden spoon until it starts to form a dough. I added 2-3 Tbsp – you may need to add up to 5 Tbsp (as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size). It should be moist enough to form into a ball, but not too sticky to knead. Add more flour if it gets too wet.
- Turn onto a floured surface, shape into a disc, and then use a rolling pin to roll into a large rectangle. I find it helpful to place a sheet of plastic wrap over the dough while rolling to reduce cracking.
- Cut into 12 equal squares (not rectangles) and carefully transfer each to the baking sheet (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size).
- Place about 1 Tbsp of filling onto half of the squares (6 as original recipe is written), leaving a 1/4 inch border to seal the edges. Then use your finger to dot water around the edges so the two squares stick together. Top the squares with their matching halves and then seal lightly with a fork.
- Poke a few holes in the top of each, rub a tiny bit of vegan butter on top of each, sprinkle with raw sugar, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
- Let cool for a few minutes. Then top with glaze if desired. Not necessary, but recommended for sweeter Pop-Tarts.