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Tartine’s Banana Cream Pie…With Caramel and Chocolate

Banana Cream Pie
I am nowhere close to Tartine Bakery in San Francisco and yet I get to have their Banana Cream Pie for dessert! Actually, it would be like going to Paris for a patisserie from my sugar daddy at that point! Except….one very generous blogger and friend, fellow Daring Baker, emailed Lisa and me one day saying she had an extra copy of Tartine and Balthazar and if we could decide which one we wanted she’d be happy to give them a new home. If I recall my email back was something along the line "I woul love the Tartine one, of it is okay with Lisa"…"please, please, please Lisa…." secretly crossing my fingers, hands and toes! As you can see I received the coveted one! Thank you Veronica…(and Lis!) I am enjoying it a lot and so is everyone else in the neighborhood!

It took me a while to decide what to make first. Really, all their pies look gorgeous, the cakes and cookies sound all so mouth watering and the pastries would make anybody drool (be right back, I forgot to wipe page 149 !).
Anyway, I had my in-laws over for dinner a couple of days ago and decided to end dinner with a very Southern treat, banana cream pie. I admit I am not a big fan of banana pudding, or pudding textures in general, except for my beloved pastry cream, but I wanted to make something that would show them my appreciation for all the wonderful things they have one for B. and me over the past 10 years. I looked online, I called my neighbor C., thinking that this good Southern girl would have a recipe for it somewhere…except that I had forgotten that C. is the one calling me for desserts so no luck there. I was started to think I would have to change my plan or come up with a botched up version of it, aka French banana cream pie – sacrilege!Nah! Can’t have that! I started daydreaming barely noticing I had my elbow propped up on Tartine. I looked down at the cover and saw the cutest pie…oh could it be?! Maybe they have a great non-pudding recipe for it! Sure they do, page 54: Banana Cream Pie, with caramel and chocolate…

Allright, so it’s not the speediest of pies to make, especially of you make individual ones, but you will be rewarded by a table of well fed, content, and well sugared guests. Just listen to this: flaky pie crust, layer of chocolate ganache, layer of caramel, pastry cream, bananas and if that was not enough a dollop of whipped cream! No pudding! No fake banana flavor!
I did change a couple of things (sorry, can’t help myself), that in my opinion only worked in its favor. Instead of the bakery’s caramel sauce, I used my beloved salted butter caramel sauce, and skipped the extra whipped cream on top as the pastry cream makes it rich enough and I think it would have masked the banana flavor. From what I can tell no one missed it…you know you did something right when there is pure sweet silence at the table!

Banana Cream Pie
Banana Cream Pie, with caramel and chocolate, adapted from Tartine.

Serves 8-12 (10 inch tart)

Flaky Pie Crust:
1 tsp / 5ml salt
2/3 cup/ 150ml very cold water
3 cups plus 2 tablespoons / 455 gr. flour
1 cup plus 5 tablespoons / 300 gr. chilled butter, cut into 1 inch cubes

In a small bowl, dissolve salt in water and keep cold.
To make dough with a food processor: put flour in the work bowl, scatter butter over flour, and pulse until the mixture forms large crumbs, but some of the butter is the size of peas. Add salted water and pulse for several seconds, until the dough comes together as a ball, but is not completely smooth (you should see some butter chunks).
On a floured surface, divide dough into two balls, shape into a 1-inch-thick disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
To fill a 10 inch tart pan, roll out one disk on a lightly floured surface to 1/8 inch thick, rolling from the center toward the edge in all directions, lifting and rotating the dough a quarter turn every few strokes. Cut out a circle 1½ inches larger than the tart pan and carefully transfer dough round to the pan (folding in half, if necessary), easing it into the bottom and sides and pressing into place, and trim the edge with a knife.Line with parchment paper and pie weights or dry beans.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Bake until the surface looks dry with no opaque areas left, about 20 minutes. Remove from oven and remove parchment and weights or beans and return shell to oven for another few minutes. If the center starts to rise, gently pierce with a knife tip. Let cool completely.

Ganache Layer:
1 cup/ 250 ml heavy cream
3 oz/85 gr. bitter sweet chocolate

Set the chocolate into a bowl. Heat the heavy cream to boiling point and pour over the chocolate. Let stand a couple of minutes an gently stir until fully incorporated and glossy. Cool to room temperature. Pour over the cooled pastry shell and refrigerate.

Salted Butter Caramel Sauce:
240 gr. sugar
80 ml water
115 gr salted butter
150 ml heavy whipping cream

In a heavy saucepan set over low heat, combine the sugar and water and heat just until the sugar is dissolved. Add the butter. Let it come to a boil and cook until it reaches a golden caramel color. Remove from the heat and add the cream ( it will splatter and get crazy, but do not fear and trust the recipe). Whisk to combine and put back on the stove. Let it come to a boil again over low heat and cook 10-15 minutes until you reach a nice creamy consistency. Let cool to room temperature.Pour over the cooled chocolate ganache and refrigerate.

Pastry Cream:
2 cups/ 500ml whole milk
1/2 vanilla bean, cut open down the middle, seeded
1/4 tsp of salt
4 tablespoons of cornstarch
1/2 cup/ 110gr. sugar
2 large eggs
4 Tb/ 55 gr. butter, cut in small cubes

Heat the milk, vanilla seeds and salt in a pan and put over medium heat, and bring to a boil.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk the sugar, cornstarch and eggs until smooth. Slowly add 1/2 of the milk mixture into the egg and whisk constantly to temper them. Add the remaining milk and return the whole thing to the saucepan. Cook until you get a thick consistency, whisking non-stop. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl, let cool for 10 minutes and then incorporate the butter, one tablespoon at a time, until smooth . Cover the surface with plastic wrap, directly touching the cream, let cool completely.

Layer the pastry cream on top of the chocolate and caramel. Cut 2 ripe bananas in medium-thick slices (you know, not a mouthfull but not disintegrating when you pick it up), and arrange them over the cream, lightly pressing down. Decorate with chocolate shavings and if you really need it, some whipped cream.

Ok…there is something else that makes me beam with joy beside the pie: I will be wearing the 3rd Brownie Babe apron very soon! Go check Myriam's blogs for some seriously delicious brownies recipes. Wow! Just wow! There are so many incredible recipes I want to try soon, it is a great honor to be chosen among all these fine bakers. Ya’ll went all out! I have to thank Guillemette and Loukoum for this one, I stumbled onto the Marbled Ricotta Cheesecake Brownies one day by accident and decide that my friends on this side of the pond ought to have the recipe too!

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Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 6:51 am

These look absolutely divine! Will have to gage the banana prices at the grocery store, but if I can get some for a decent price, then this is definitely being made!

Rosa's Yummy Yums September 12, 2007 um 6:56 am

That pie looks wonderful! A real oldie treat…

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 6:58 am

I wish I was there…. and I bookmarked your caramel sauce, it sounds great!

Anh September 12, 2007 um 6:59 am

Delicious! This is a perfect way to use banana!

nikcreate September 12, 2007 um 7:43 am

they look yummy! question thou, how do i prevent the bananas from browning?

Big Boys Oven September 12, 2007 um 9:19 am

At a glance, I can already smell the essence of banana, caramel and coffee….. cool!

Meeta K. Wolff September 12, 2007 um 11:38 am

A perfect way to serve bananas. Delicious! I am also so excited to be able to hand over the browniebabe crown to you!!! Well deserved!

myriam September 12, 2007 um 11:50 am

that banana cream pie is divine. i made it a couple of times and it took us MINUTES to eat it all up.

html test September 12, 2007 um 12:24 pm

c’est pas juste! comment est-ce que je peux maigrir si tu continues de nous présenter des recettes aussi alléchantes? (j’adore les bananes, je les ADORE).
Au fait, tu veux une boite de fève tonka alors?

Nora B. September 12, 2007 um 12:26 pm

Congratulations on being awarded Brownie Babe #3!!!

This pie looks utterly delectable & irresistible. I would be speechless too. Your in-laws are very lucky! I wish I was your neighbor because they seem to benefit from your baking adventures.

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 12:45 pm

Oh yum. I’m not fond of baked goods with bananas (i.e. banana bread or cake) but this tart of fresh bananas with cream and salted butter caramel and chocolate…pure delight. And I am crazy for Tartine, which I’ve visited several times. Thanks for sharing.

Mallow September 12, 2007 um 12:48 pm

Congratulations! That brownie recipe has been added to my recipe book too, thanks to your post. And beautiful pie, by the way!

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 1:16 pm

i was dreaming of heaven last night and it was this banana creampie with caramel. mmmmmmmm, wow!

April September 12, 2007 um 1:47 pm

This looks delish!! You never cease to amaze me with all of your creations!!

Congrats on being #3 Browniebabe!

Chantal33 September 12, 2007 um 1:50 pm

Oh yummy, yummy! très difficile de résister à cette gourmandise!

Stella September 12, 2007 um 1:53 pm

Good looking, delicious & utterly irresistible. That’s how I’d describe your banana pie..:)

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 1:58 pm

Congrats on being brownie babe! I think that’s one of the sexiest award there is. I’m thrilled that you are using the Tartine book. I need to get cracking on my copy, there are absolutely so many delicious recipies to try…I just need to pick one.

Truffle September 12, 2007 um 2:33 pm

Now that is just cruel! I desperately need a slice of that pie right now.

Congrats on Brownie Babe! So well deserved!

Deborah September 12, 2007 um 3:19 pm

This has got to be one of the best looking banana cream pies I have ever seen! And congrats on the browniebabe – I knew I didn’t have a chance after seeing your recipe (and a few others – this time around was amazing!!)

Marta S September 12, 2007 um 3:43 pm


thankyou for sharing this recipe with us!!

Amanda at Little Foodies September 12, 2007 um 3:47 pm

This looks really wonderful! I see you’re top of the list for blogs of note again. Very well deserved too Helen!

The Miracle Maker September 12, 2007 um 5:09 pm

Nice looking pie! Very delicious!

Mandy September 12, 2007 um 5:25 pm

Congrats on your new "Browniebabe" title! You deserve it! I have the same Tartine book and am thinking of what to make first from the book now!

Baba Doodlius September 12, 2007 um 5:32 pm

Nothin' better than a good tart.

Unknown September 12, 2007 um 5:33 pm

I love that book, I have the bookmark on the trifle for Christmas! The pie looks amaking it’s kind of like banoffi with the added bonus of chocolate and pastry! Congrats on your brownie babeness can’t wait to see the apron!

Aimée September 12, 2007 um 6:22 pm

Congratulations Brownie Babe! You had some tough competition, but you deserve this title, there is no doubt about that.

I have no words to describe how I feel about your banana tart. It sounds like a combination that should either be mandatory–or illegal.

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 6:47 pm

Oh my word! My taste buds193480
are already doing a jig 🙂

Anonymous September 12, 2007 um 6:49 pm

This pie looks absolutely amazing! I’m not usually a big fan of desserts with banana, but I feel like this will change my mind…!

Maggie September 12, 2007 um 7:01 pm

Can I have a piece – please? The pie looks absolutely beautiful.

Mansi September 12, 2007 um 7:19 pm

wow, that’s all i can say, just WOW!!! I could dive into it right now!!! the effort u must have put in shows in the end result:) great recipe and a fine presentation…I’ve used banana and cream cheese for desserts before; i just love the combo!

Peabody September 12, 2007 um 7:24 pm

Mmmm, that pie looks so homey and good…and then you go and add salted caramel…so not fair.

Lauren @ Sassy Molassy September 12, 2007 um 7:25 pm

I am in awe of people who can bake well and make it look gorgeous at the same time. It almost looks too good to eat, almost. As for me, I’ll just stick to my local bakery and dessert shop.

Half Baked September 12, 2007 um 7:53 pm

That banana pie look unbelievalby good! Congrats on the Brownie Babe #3 win!! I sooo love that apron!

Cynthia September 12, 2007 um 8:44 pm

This site is not good for my waistline. Wait, where is it? :O This is all your fault, Helen 😀

LizNoVeggieGirl September 12, 2007 um 9:32 pm

oooh, that banana cream pie looks stellar!! great food photography as usual :0)

Nancy September 12, 2007 um 10:55 pm

That looks so tasty! I am gonna try that a.s.a.p.!

Dwacon September 13, 2007 um 12:39 am

I need one of those Star Trek replicators so I can have one appear. Mouth watering!

monica September 13, 2007 um 12:42 am

i have to admit helen, i am utterly jealous of the time you have to bake such wonderful things at home! i feel as though i am constantly struggling for time to bake at home….but the pie looks absolutely dreamy!

Belinda September 13, 2007 um 1:08 am

Why, oh why can’t I be your neighbor?! This looks melt in your mouth delicious…and congratulations on being BrownieBabe of the month…well deserved. 🙂

The Rainmaker September 13, 2007 um 1:08 am

Yummy.looks tasty.

Yvette September 13, 2007 um 1:20 am

Your blog is wonderful! I’m planning on trying you walnut honey tartelettes tomorrow (we’re big walnut fans from our days living in Grenoble, France). And the Banana Cream pie . . . like you, not a huge banana fan, but this could the recipe that sways me! I hope you don’t mind, but I’ve put your blog in my list of favs. I’ll remove it if you’d prefer!
Thanks for the yummy recipes!

Nicole V Lozano September 13, 2007 um 4:22 am

What a fabulous site. I think I gained 5 pounds just reading.

Anita September 13, 2007 um 4:40 am

Tartine’s pie is indeed wonderful – but yours looks divine! I think I’d rather have yours! P.S. congrats browniebabe!

Unknown September 13, 2007 um 8:29 am

Tu veux nous faire grossir ! Rien qu’une part, voilà, je prends 1 kilo difficilent à perdre.

iliketweet September 13, 2007 um 8:47 am

Mmm that looks fabulous!

angiemabute September 13, 2007 um 9:01 am

Its looks delicious! =)

test it comm September 13, 2007 um 10:37 am

That looks amazing. I like the combination of chocolate, caramel, cream and bananas.

Love Yourself September 13, 2007 um 10:39 am

I love the recipes looks great!

Unknown September 13, 2007 um 12:08 pm


That pie look frakking delicious!

any spanish "receta"?


Lis September 13, 2007 um 12:57 pm

Now THAT’S a tart that I would instantly fall in love with!

Congrats again on Brownie Babe! Yay!

Love you!

Anonymous September 13, 2007 um 1:52 pm

I am from a country that exports bananas and I am always looking for all the gourment uses for bananas. This definitely a good one. Thank you for making banana more than a mere food staple.

All banana producing countries give you 3 cheers all the way.

Hey elle, I think everyone can afford bananas.

I’m in banana creme heaven.

Anonymous September 13, 2007 um 1:54 pm

How I have missed my Tartelette! That pie is just adorable. I have Tartine and think it’s such an incredible cookbook. I’m glad that you got a copy!

Kajal@aapplemint September 13, 2007 um 2:58 pm

hey what a co- incidence i’ve made banoffee tarts !

*Sarah* September 13, 2007 um 6:20 pm

Jesus tap-dancing Christ that looks GOOOOOOOOD!!!!!

Mila September 13, 2007 um 6:23 pm

loved the recipe… I visit your blog all the time just to see what’s new here! Hope you don’t mind, but i linked your blog the pink tagada macaroons recipe in my blog…if it’s a problem just let me know that i’ll unlink it…!! And Congrats by your wonderfull blog…

Anonymous September 13, 2007 um 6:47 pm

Your banana cream pie looks beyond delicious! Thanks for the heads up on Tartine Bakery. I’ll have to go when I get the chance. Thanks, as always, for the inspiration.

Anonymous September 13, 2007 um 7:05 pm

Congratulations on the cookbook and the new apron! Both, I am sure, will be well used.

Cate September 13, 2007 um 7:58 pm

I had a craving for Banana Cream Pie about a month ago – haven’t made it in ages. Yours looks divine!

Amy September 13, 2007 um 9:41 pm

Congrats on being browniebabe! This is another cookbook that’s on my list too.

MyKitchenInHalfCups September 13, 2007 um 10:26 pm

You have always been a bronwiebabe in my book!
Banana Cream Pie . . . you know you did something right when there is pure sweet silence at the table! Ha, truer words can not be spoken! That is when silence is really golden.

Parisbreakfasts September 13, 2007 um 11:24 pm

BRAVO on the new apron..oh heck what’s the French word…so much better too.
Banana cream pie!
ANd then you have to go and add CHOCOLATE!
And if that wasn’t enough, you add CARAMEL to boot!
Do you want to kill us with kindness?
No doubt…Hmmm…Hmmm…

Anonymous September 14, 2007 um 3:03 am

I love bananas! And that looks absolutely delicious!!! 🙂 I just made a loaf of banana bread…love this fruit…

Congratulations on the Browniebabe! 🙂

Anonymous September 14, 2007 um 3:21 am

I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more wonderful dessert.

Thanks for sharing (for me, vicariously).


Jen the Bread Freak September 14, 2007 um 7:40 am

Congratulations brownie babe! The tarts look gorgeous, but then you made them so how could they not? 😀

test myzen September 14, 2007 um 1:26 pm


Blame It on Paris September 15, 2007 um 12:17 pm

I love banana cream pie! And I agree, no fake pudding flavors allowed.

This looks delicious.

Anonymous September 15, 2007 um 11:25 pm

These look amazingly good… I can understand why your dinner guests fell silent when you served them these beautiful tarts!! Chocolate, bananas, and salted caramel sauce… tres magnifique!

Kelly-Jane September 16, 2007 um 3:56 pm

Well done Brownie babe 🙂 It was only a matter of time before you won I was thinking, such a great baker 🙂

Brent September 16, 2007 um 9:28 pm

I am freakin' starving

Anonymous September 18, 2007 um 5:22 pm

I really hate to break this to you…but you are TOO good at what you do. Bake me something anytime!

Mansi September 18, 2007 um 11:29 pm

man this looks heavenly!! I live close to SF, can I get one too?? or i just might drive over to tartine’s one weekend!:)

Sarah September 20, 2007 um 9:39 pm

I just saw your blog on the blogger dashboard. Your blog is great, I’m going to have to try some of your recipes!

h@n| September 22, 2007 um 11:33 pm

OMG! They look so tempting!

Sjs November 28, 2007 um 9:15 pm

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Anonymous December 13, 2007 um 5:01 pm

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Anonymous December 9, 2008 um 10:49 am

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Anonymous February 3, 2009 um 8:15 am

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Anonymous February 3, 2009 um 11:38 am

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Anonymous March 11, 2009 um 12:48 pm

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Anonymous March 14, 2009 um 4:54 pm

Baking the pie shell right now…. Just doing one large tart as I don’t have individual ones. Got to run out to get a vanilla bean but will get started on chocolate layer once the crust cools. I’m kinda excited because I rarely bake anymore.

Awareness and Grace July 24, 2009 um 3:34 am

I too hate the idea of a fake banana pudding pie, so thanks so much for putting this up here!

I'm in the middle of making it right now! Caramel sauce looks, smells amazing.

Did your chocolate layer harden-ish before you layered the caramel? Any comments on that?!

Thanks again

Helene July 24, 2009 um 4:11 am

Carolyn: I don't remember! It's been a while but I think it was the consistency of semi-hard ganache, like in truffles.

Lakers Fan November 21, 2011 um 3:24 am

I have the Tartine Cookbook and this recipe is horrendously INACCURATE.

Helene November 21, 2011 um 3:36 am

It is not inaccurate, it says it is ADAPTED.
If it had been copied ad verbatim, I would worried about how my own copying skills…

Tina November 26, 2012 um 4:28 am

You have so many comments on this recipe but nobody seems to have actually tried making it. Well, I tried it. It was good, but not sure things came out how they were supposed to: 1) the ganache was like pudding, 2) the caramel got hard so it was hard to cut and eat with just a fork, 3) tartine's pie is like 8" high and I think it's a deep dish pie not a short tart crust. 4) my guests said it was false advertising to say its banana cream pit since it was a lot of other with some bananas on top.,..they did say it was delicious though. I think I will try tartines recipe next time.

Helene November 26, 2012 um 7:32 am

Tina: your first and second points are easily addressed from a pastry/baking lingo and method perspective.
1/a chocolate ganache is not necessarily hard. Depending on the ratios and their intended uses, the texture will range from thick chocolate sauce to hard truffle shells, so yours was correct. It would be very strange to cut through soft cream, hard ganache and tart crust. The ganache being soft makes it easier for a fork to cut through.
2/ A short tart crust does not mean a low/short as compared to high/deep dish pie tin but short crust is a term refering to a certain butter to flour ratio in a pastry crust. Pate brisee is more like an everyday pie crust while a pate sablee (aka short crust) is more like a sandy cookie pie crust. This one is a short crust dough due to the high ratio of butter to flour.
3/blame Tartine for the false advertisement, not me! I followed their instructions for the banana part. If you read the post, the reason I did so was precisely because I am not a big fan of banana pudding or banana flavored anything so their stance on using cut bananas on top and not in the cream was perfect for me. Again, that's Tartine's naming.
4/ I don't recall my caramel being hard to cut through and not sure what happened there. It's been five years since that post. I'd have to remake it again one of these days for something else. Wondering if it's not a difference in fridge or room temperature differences being in sub tropical area. For example I often do not need to add water to pie crust, it's already so humid where I am – that could play a huge part in how fast a caramel sauce could soften at room temp or harden in the fridge.

Thanks for revisiting that post!

Unknown May 9, 2014 um 7:03 am

What do you do with the other pastry disk for the banana cream pie with chocolate ganache and caramel since there are 2 disks?

I'm making the pie tomorrow, 5/9/14.

thanks and look forward to your response.

Helene May 9, 2014 um 12:37 pm

Viola: you can freeze it for another use. It's easier to make the whole quantity of dough than trying to divide it in half.

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