Yield: 9″ salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart // Total Time: 1 hr. 30 min. // Disclaimer: This post includes affiliate links. //
Sweet, salty, chocolatey dessert perfection.
salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart
This is a *perfect* dessert and here’s the rundown: it starts with a crust that’s made from crushed pretzels. That gets baked for 10 minutes, and then topped with an edible cookie dough. The cookie dough has salted caramel in the dough, and is whipped up with heavy whipping cream which makes the cookie dough super light and airy. Then that gets topped off with a layer of salted caramel sauce and ganache. It’s salty, sweet, crunchy, and chocolatey – the perfect dessert for your sweets cravings!
heat treat the flour!
This step is *super super super* important. You might think that the only problem in standard cookie dough is eating raw eggs, but the truth is that the flour is just as dangerous to be eating raw! There are two ways that you can heat treat your flour to make it safe to eat.
In the microwave. This is the method I use in this recipe because it is fast and easy. Simply spread the flour out on a microwave-safe plate and microwave it in 30 second intervals until the flour reads 165°F / 74°C. This usually takes me about 2 minutes total.
In the oven. Preheat your oven to 350°F / 175°C. Spread the flour out over a clean baking tray and bake until the flour reaches a temperature of 165°F / 74°C. This should take 5-10 min.
weigh your ingredients
Weighing your ingredients is important for getting the recipe perfect and getting consistent results. Not weighing your ingredients can lead to adding too much or too little of an ingredient which can give you some undesirable results. This kitchen scale is super cheap and worked well for me when I was starting out! If you don’t have access to a scale, here is the best way to measure flour: fluff up the flour with a fork, then use a spoon to scoop it into your measuring cup. Use a knife to level off the top of the cup, then use as directed. Weighing won’t make or break your recipe as much here since this is a no-bake recipe (besides the crust), but it helps with consistency and ease of measuring!
room temperature ingredients
It is important for the ingredients to be at room temperature so that they properly incorporate with each other. If you have ever had your batter look curdled, it is most likely due to the ingredients separating from being at different temperatures. Take out the butter at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hr 30 min. before starting the recipe. It’s okay to leave the heavy cream cold for this recipe. A little hack that I do is microwave the butter in 5-second intervals until it’s no longer cold (but not hot.)
ingredients and substitutions
For the salted caramel sauce:
You can use any store-bought thick caramel sauce and add salt to it for taste, or you can make my super easy 15-minute salted caramel sauce.
For the pretzel crust:
Pretzels: mini or regular sized works.
Light brown sugar: to slightly sweeten the crust.
Unsalted butter: to bind the crust together. You can use salted, or your favorite non-dairy butter stick here as well.
For the edible cookie dough:
All purpose flour: gives the cookie dough structure. We will heat-treat the flour so that it is safe to eat! I’ve also tested this with gluten-free flour and almond flour which work perfectly. You don’t need to heat-treat almond flour but you do need to heat-treat the 1:1 gluten free flour.
Salt: for balancing and bringing out the sweetness of the cookie dough
Unsalted butter: gives the cookie dough that classic butter-y flavor and helps it hold up at room temperature. If using salted butter, just omit the extra salt from the dough. You can also sub in dairy-free butter sticks!
Light brown sugar: for sweetness and for more depth of flavor. You could use dark brown sugar here for an even more complex, molasses-y flavor.
Salted caramel sauce: you can use storebought, or make my recipe!
Vanilla: for flavor.
Heavy whipping cream: makes the cookie dough nice and light and airy. There aren’t many dairy-free heavy cream options, but I’ve used Silk’s non-dairy heavy whipping cream with success in the past!
Mini chocolate chips: I like mini chocolate chips because they distribute better throughout the cookie dough, but you can use regular-sized chips or a combination of mini and regular-sized chips! I also recommend using semi-sweet or dark chocolate to balance out the sweetness.
For the ganache:
Chocolate: a semi-sweet chocolate baking bar will work best here, but in a pinch, you can use chocolate chips. If you like your desserts on the sweeter side, feel free to use milk chocolate in its palace.
Heavy whipping cream: thins out the ganache.
how to make a salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart
Here are some processs photos of making this tart. The full recipe can be found at the end of this blog post!
salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart q&a
can I make this gluten-free?
Yes! I’ve made this edible cookie dough with almond flour and gluten-free flour with success. Please be sure to still heat-treat the flour if you are using a 1:1 gluten-free flour. If you are using a nut flour, you do not need to heat-treat it. You would also need to use a gluten-free pretzel for the crust, or you could change it up to a graham cracker crust or a gluten-free oreo crust to make things easier.
can I make this dairy-free?
Yes! Just use your favorite non-dairy butter stick, non-dairy heavy cream, dairy-free chocolate chips & non-dairy caramel sauce. These are truly super easy and super customizable!
can I double this recipe?
Of course! Just double all the ingredients and divide them between two 9″ tart pans.
why do you measure in grams?
My recipes are all written in grams because it is the most accurate way to bake. When you use a kitchen scale, you ensure that your baked goods turn out as close to the written recipe as possible. Plus, the cleanup is way easier when using a scale! I will provide standard cup measurements but please note that I have not tested the recipe using cup measurements and therefore can not guarantee your recipe will come out how mine did. Here is my favorite kitchen scale.
tools and ingredients
You can find all my favorite tools and ingredients that I use on my Amazon Storefront page, here!
did you make this salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart?
If you made this salted caramel pretzel cookie dough tart I would love to see and know your thoughts! Please leave a comment and review down below, and tag me on Instagram @freshbeanbakery. If you have any questions about the recipe I will gladly do my best to answer them in the comments below!
Salted Caramel Pretzel Cookie Dough Tart
- 140 g salted caramel sauce (½ c. + 2 tbsp.)
- 180 g pretzels crushed
- 90 g unsalted butter (6 ⅓ tbsp.)
- 2 tbsp. light brown sugar
Edible Cookie Dough
- 150 g all purpose flour* (1 ¼ c.)
- 113 g unsalted butter (8 tbsp.) room temperature
- 110 g light brown sugar (½ c.)
- 30 g salted caramel sauce (2 tbsp.)
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 110 g heavy whipping cream (½ c.)
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 90 g mini chocolate chips (½ c.)
- 115 g semi sweet chocolate (⅔ c.)
- 100 g heavy whipping cream (3 ½ oz.)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F / 175°C.
- Blitz the pretzels in a food processor or blender until they are super fine/in very small pieces.
- Melt the butter, then add the melted butter and sugar into the pretzels and mix until well combined.
- Press the pretzel crust down into a 9" tart pan. Bake for 10 minutes, then set the crust aside.
Edible Cookie Dough
- *HEAT TREAT THE FLOUR* Place the flour in a microwave safe bowl and heat in 30 second intervals until it reaches an internal temperature of at least 165°F / 74°C. For me, this takes a total of 1 minute.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or with a hand mixer, beat together the butter, light brown sugar, caramel, and salt until light and fluffy (~3 min.)
- Add in the heat treated flour and beat until combined.
- Add in the heavy whipping cream and vanilla. Beat the mixture for a couple minutes, until it becomes super light and fluffy.
- Fold in the chocolate chips.
- Carefully press the cookie dough into a flat, even layer in the tart pan.
- Spread the remaining salted caramel sauce over the cookie dough, then place it into the freezer for at least 10 minutes while you make the ganache.
- Pour the chocolate into a small mixing bowl.
- In a large microwave safe liquid measuring cup heat the heavy whipping cream for 1 minute.
- Pour the heated heavy cream over the chocolate, then mix together until all of the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth. (If the chocolate is not melting – place the mixture in the microwave in 10 second intervals, stirring after each.)
- Pour the ganache over the tart and smooth it into an even layer.
- Place the tart in the fridge to firm up for at leats 30 minutes. Garnish with extra pretzels and flaky sea salt if desired, then serve and enjoy!