Cranberry Frangipane Tart (GF) – Sally’s Baking Addiction

This beautifully bejeweled-looking cranberry frangipane tart combines sweet, buttery almond cream and tart, juicy cranberries, all atop a toasty almond crust. Sugared cranberries add a decorative touch, and we all loved this with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Each bite is so soft, so moist, and so delicious that no one will realize it’s naturally gluten free!

cranberry frangipane tart with sugared cranberries on top.

To be honest, my pie dishes get a lot more regular use than my tart pan, but I absolutely love a good tart recipe. And this is a good tart recipe. I don’t mean “good for a gluten-free dessert”—I mean, just plain good… just like my gluten free apple crisp.

Juicy, tangy cranberries contrast beautifully with the flavor and texture of the sweet almond crust and filling, and they add a bold pop of color, too! Festive and tasty—this cranberry tart definitely deserves a spot on your Thanksgiving pie recipes shortlist.

In addition to a tart pan (my team and I tested this cranberry frangipane tart recipe in both a 9-inch tart pan and a 10-inch tart pan, and it works in either), you’ll need a food processor for the crust, and an electric mixer for the filling. Beyond all that, this is a pretty easy gourmet-looking dessert to make!

3 Parts to This Cranberry Frangipane Tart

  1. Crisp and toasty almond crust
  2. Soft, sweet, & buttery frangipane almond cream filling
  3. Tart and colorful fresh cranberries
slice of cranberry almond frangipane tart with ice cream on white plate.

What Is Frangipane?

Frangipane is almond pastry cream—think of it as a creamier homemade almond paste. It’s incredibly versatile and tastes delicious paired with fruit. Some bakers grind their own nuts for frangipane, but using store-bought almond flour is a handy shortcut.

You could even use pistachios or hazelnuts for a flavorful twist!

Frangipane is most commonly used in tarts, like a classic Bakewell tart, or piped inside croissants for an extra-special pastry treat. I also love it in a galette, like this blueberry peach frangipane galette.

Grab These Ingredients:

bowls of measured ingredients on blue surface including sugar, fresh cranberries, almonds, almond flour, butter, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt.

These are all of the ingredients you need for the entire tart. You’ll appreciate that the crust and filling use a lot of the same ingredients.

  • Almonds: This is the main ingredient in the tart crust, and I prefer to use roasted and salted almonds for extra flavor. Grinding down whole almonds gives the crust some much needed texture under the soft filling.
  • Almond Flour: You need this for both the crust and the filling. Almond flour is now widely available in most grocery stores. I usually find it in the baking aisle by the regular flour, and/or in the natural food/gluten-free section. Or you can make your own by pulsing blanched almonds into a flour-like and mealy consistency. You’ll need a food processor for the crust anyway, so this is an easy option.
  • Sugar: We’re sweetening this tart with granulated sugar.
  • Butter: You’ll use melted butter in the crust, and softened butter in the frangipane filling. In both cases, the butter plays an important role both in binding the ingredients together, and in giving the tart a delicious buttery flavor. It’s also what makes the frangipane creamy.
  • Salt: A little salt draws out all the flavors, particularly if you’re using unsalted almonds.
  • Eggs: Eggs turn this frangipane into a custard-like filling that puffs up beautifully when baked. Without them, the frangipane would be more like a stiff spread.
  • Almond & Vanilla Extracts: The main flavors in the frangipane.
  • Lemon Juice & Zest: A hint of lemon brightens up all the flavors and really makes them sing—don’t leave it out!
  • Fresh Cranberries: Fresh cranberries are ideal in this tart, but you could use frozen and thawed instead. If you don’t love cranberries, raspberries or blueberries are fantastic in this.

Notice there is no all-purpose flour: Some frangipane recipes use all-purpose flour to smooth the frangipane out. I skipped that here, so the filling stays gluten free. If desired, feel free to replace 3 Tablespoons of the almond flour with all-purpose flour.

Here’s the almond frangipane. You’ll use an electric mixer to prepare it:

red spatula stirring almond frangipane cream in glass bowl.

Gluten Free Almond Crust

  1. Combine almonds, almond flour, sugar, and salt together in a food processor. Pulse until the almonds are finely chopped, then add the melted butter and process until everything is combined. This crust is a lot like the crust I use in this gluten free chocolate coconut almond tart.
  2. Press the mixture into a 9- or 10-inch tart pan.
  3. Bake for about 10 minutes. You can use pie weights if you’d like, but I don’t find them necessary with this crust.
crumbly crushed almond mixture in food processor bowl and shown again pressed into tart pan.

Next, spread the filling into the warm pre-baked crust. A small offset spatula is helpful for this step. And yes, I realize the filling looks like hummus in these photos. LOL.

spreading almond cream into tart crust.spreading almond cream into tart crust.

Add the Cranberries Last

Dot them on top, and give them a very light press into the filling. It will look like polka dot pie at this point, but the frangipane rises a bit as the tart bakes, so you can see the beautiful sweet almond cream between all the fruit.

This is totally optional, but while testing this recipe, I sprinkled the cranberries with coarse sparkling sugar. I loved the extra crunch and glitz! Again, it’s optional.

Here is the cranberry frangipane tart before & after baking:

This sparkly cranberry frangipane tart is wonderful all on its own, but I recommend you try it warm with a scoop of ice cream. Yes, you can slice into it while it’s still warm! I know we all appreciate desserts that can be enjoyed right away. Reserve your patience for cheesecake and pumpkin pie. 😉

cranberry frangipane tart with slice being removed from the top.cranberry frangipane tart with slice being removed from the top.

This recipe is part of Sally’s Pie Week, an annual tradition where I share a handful of new recipes that fit into the pie/crisp/tart category.