Healthy Snacking – No Bake Strawberry Tarts. Dairy Free. Vegan.

In today’s post, I’m sharing recipes for a delicious, quick and easy strawberry jam and ‘treat snack’ that the family has been loving lately: No Bake Strawberry Tarts

But before I do so, there’s an occasion that I must mark on this blog – Lil’ L’s first strawberry picking outing. I’d been dreaming about this moment for years.

Strawberry Picking

Until recently, neither for love nor money could Lil’ L be encouraged to eat strawberries. Sadly, along with all other berries, as well as oranges, plums and grapes, strawberries fell in his ‘too squishy’ camp. On the odd occasion that he did actually attempt to eat one, he just ended up gagging and retching with tears streaming down his face. It was just too torturous to watch. He did like the flavour of berries though and would happily drink them in smoothies. As long as he was consuming the berries in some shape or form, I didn’t really mind.

So I put the dream of berry picking with my son on hold. In fact, I’d pretty much given up on the idea that it would ever happen…

Strawberry Picking

THEN, everything changed when we visited Spain this Easter. In the supermarkets, stacked crate upon crate were the lushest strawberries we’d ever seen. They were big, deep red, with the most incredible aroma. Spain must have had a glut of strawberries at that time as they were selling them off real cheap (3 euros for a whole crate!) We decided to buy one and Lil’ L actually offered to carry it. I could see him eyeing up the strawberries. They were that inviting that he couldn’t resist trying one. He took his first tentative bite… and lo and behold no gagging. He then proceeded to eat another five. You can imagine how ecstatic I was. Finally, at the age of 11, he’d moved on from loathing to loving strawberries.

Strawberry Picking

It was a joy to see him so enthusiastic about strawberry picking. He was filled with delight each time he found a ‘perfect’ strawberry. This week he’s mentioned numerous times how much he enjoyed the outing. It was a long time coming, but definitely worth the wait.

The strawberries are so sweet and delicious, that we’ve been eating them by the handful. However, they don’t keep fresh for long, so I’ve also frozen some for ice creams, sorbets and smoothies, as well as making batches of my favourite jam.

Strawberry Picking

Berry Chia Jam has been buzzing around ‘health food world’ for a good few years now. I think I first came across is on Angela’s Oh She Glows blog back in 2010. I don’t know if she was the first to discover it, but if so full credit to her for such a simple yet innovative recipe.

While ‘no added sugar’ jams are widely available today (I love the St Dalfour range) still, for me, nothing beats the freshness of home-made berry chia jams. Plus, they are so easy to make. You just cook the strawberries for a couple of minutes, add the chia seeds and simmer for 20 minutes or so, then chill. It lasts up to a week in the fridge and is delicious slathered on toast and scones, swirled into yogurt parfaits, or as a filling for tarts…

Strawberry Chia Jam Making

Strawberry Chia Jam Making

including these delicious and simple No Bake Strawberry Jam Tarts.

No Bake Strawberry Tarts

With last week’s mini heatwave, I was in no mood for baking. However, these no bake tarts were just perfect. They’re cool, light and fresh-tasting. Lil’ L and M have been enjoying them as post school/work snacks. For me, they’ve felt like an indulgent (yet healthy) treat when I’ve needed a ‘little something’ late afternoon or in the evening.

No Bake Strawberry Tarts

For the tart shell, I took inspiration from my Pina Colada ‘Cheese’ Cake crust. Packed full of nuts and dates, these shells are much healthier than pastry and provide a whole bunch of nutrients including protein, fibre, heart-healthy monounsaturated fats, omega-3 essential fatty acids, iron, zinc, magnesium, manganese and selenium. They have a beautiful, subtle caramel/vanilla flavour and while they aren’t super firm they hold together fine with no jam leakage.

No Bake Strawberry Tarts


Makes 12 mini tarts
Hands on time: 25 minutes    Cooking time: 25 minutes
Ready in: 1 hour 25 minutes

Strawberry Chia Jam
200g / 7 oz / 1½ cups fresh or frozen strawberries, chopped
1½ TBSP maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)
½ TBSP freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 TBSP chia seeds
½ tsp vanilla extract

No Bake Tart Shells
50g/ 1¾ oz / ½ cup rolled oats (use certified gluten free, if needed)
40g / 1½ oz / ¼ cup cashews
30g / 1 oz / ¼ cup walnuts (or pecans)
100g / 3½ oz / ½ cup soft, sticky pitted dates (e.g. Medjool)
1 tsp maple syrup (or other liquid sweetener)
½ tsp vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
22g/ ¾ oz / ¼ cup desiccated coconut

Prepare the jam: Gently cook the strawberries, syrup and lemon juice until the berries start to break down. Stir in the chia seeds. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, until the jam has started to thicken. Give it a stir now and then with a wooden spoon and mash the berries to break them down. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. Transfer to a glass jar, leave to cool then add a lid and place in the fridge. The jam will thicken up as it chills.

While the jam is simmering, prepare the tart shells. Loosely line a shallow tart/mince pie tray with cling film (plastic wrap).* Place the oats and nuts in a food processor and blitz into crumbs. Add the dates, maple syrup, vanilla extract and salt and continue processing until the mixture starts to come together. Add the desiccated coconut and whizz for a few more seconds. The mixture should easily stay together when you press it. If it’s still crumbly, keep processing until it sticks together.

Press the crumbs together to form a dough ball. Place between two pieces of baking paper (or use a large silicone pastry mat folded over) and roll out to a thickness of ½ cm / 1/5 inch. Press out using a 6 cm / 2½ inch pastry cutter and place in the lined tart tray. Repeat until all the dough is used up, re-rolling as needed. Chill in the fridge until the jam is ready. When the jam is completely chilled, spoon it into the tart shells and serve.

These tarts will keep in the fridge for up to a week.

*If you don’t have a shallow tart tray, you can shape the tart shells by hand or by moulding them round one end of a rolling pin.



Have you been berry picking this summer?

19 thoughts on “Healthy Snacking – No Bake Strawberry Tarts. Dairy Free. Vegan.

  1. Thank you Sharon, you’ve just inspired me to search for a local strawberry farm and I think I’ve found one!

    This recipes looks so nutritious and the chia strawberry jam looks yum! We get the St Dalfour range too and I agree, nothing beats home made!

    Glad Lil’L likes stawberries now!

    1. I hope you get to go on a berry picking adventure this summer. It’s so much fun! And if you do, please do tweet me a pic 🙂 xx

  2. Brilliant! I have to make these! Thanks so much for the recipe. When I lived in Bath I took my daughter to Avon Valley farm in Saltford to pick broad beans and soft fruit. Surprisingly, she liked the broad beans best!

    1. Oh wow I didn’t realise that Avon Valley did PYO too. (We went all the way to Hungerford for our strawberries). I’m going to check out their website and see if it’s still open. That could be a fun activity for the summer hols. I’ve never picked beans before!

  3. I’m so glad your son has embraced berries! I love them so much and can imagine how it would be to have a child that hated them 😛 These tarts look utterly delicious too.

    I really need to figure out the where and how of berry picking in the UK. I have spotted some wild blackberries nearby that aren’t yet ripe but I fear I’m going to miss all the berry picking times out of sheer ignorance! It looks like you went somewhere for your strawberry picking?

  4. These look PERFECT! I’m so glad Lil L has a new passion for strawberries…I can’t imagine life without them 😉

    This is such an awesome use of chia jam (which I love, by the way!). The weather has been crazy hot here, too…this is my kind of cool summer ‘baking’!

    1. Thanks Koko ♥ You can imagine how excited I was when Lil’ L finally ‘got’ how awesome strawberries are. I never dreamed in a million years that I’d have a berry-hating kid. Mind you, I shouldn’t complain as he’s always loved a myriad of veggies. I guess you can’t have it all ways 😉

  5. I’m so excited to try these.
    We are going strawberry picking tomorrow, so along with homemade jam and ice cream I’ll add these to the list.
    Thank you so much for the recipe.

    1. Thanks Lauren! I don’t think I’d been since I was about 5! It was so much fun 🙂 If you get a chance, you must go. There’s still plenty of time for berry picking xx

  6. Amazing how kids (and young adults) keep amazing us with changes big and small! We were laughing about that the other night at dinner with our formerly fastidiously clean-shaven son is now sporting a beard. ‘No bake’ is certainly the order of the day with the hot weather we’ve been having, and there just can’t be too many recipes right now to take advantage of the abundance of fresh berries!

    1. Oh gosh is the beard fashion worldwide? I thought it was some crazy trend exclusive to the UK. I must admit I’m not mad keen on them so I really hope my hubby doesn’t decide to join in. He definitely won’t be getting any kisses if he does haha 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.