Gizzada (Coconut Tart) Recipe

Published on August 28th 2022 by Narandradath Jaikaran.
Last updated on April 1st 2024
This recipe, developed through the collective effort of at least six experts, underwent meticulous research and testing for over three months. Learn more about our process in the art and science behind our recipes. This post may contain affiliate links. Read our Disclosure Policy.
Close up shot of Gizzada (Coconut Tart) wth coconut on the side

Coconut inherently produces mouth-watering tasty desserts. This tart, Gizzada, also known as pinch-me-round, is a Jamaican dessert with its roots claimed from a Portuguese pastry. Spiced-up, shredded dried coconut, is contained in a pastry shell. It can be made from gluten-free ingredients as well as it is also a vegan dessert.  

Serve with your favorite ice cream, a cup of hot chocolate, coffee, or tea. Impress your friends or family with this delicious Jamaican dessert at home on your next get together. The spices in these coconut desserts extrude a tantalizing mouth-watering sensation. Be prepared to exhibit your culinary skills with your neighbors or family for the next gathering. 

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Time & Serves

Prep Time
60 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
90 mins
12 Tarts


Pastry Shell
  • 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons Unsalted Vegan Butter (cold) 

  • 1/2 cup Ice Cold Water

  • 1 3/4 cups Gluten-free All Purpose Flour, reserving 1/4 cup for dusting. 

  • 1/2 cup Cassava Flour 

  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt

  • 1/4 cup Light Brown Sugar

  • 2 teaspoons Baking Powder

  • 2 tablespoons Powdered Sugar (optional for dusting the baked Gizzada tarts) 

Coconut Filling
  • 1 1/2 cups Unsweetened Desiccated Coconut or Coconut Flakes

  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated Ginger Root

  • 1 cup Organic Brown Sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon Grated Nutmeg

  • 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon Powder

  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

  • 1/4 teaspoon Salt

  • 2 tablespoons Hot Water


Pastry Shell

Sift the gluten-free and cassava flour into a mixing bowl, add the brown sugar, baking powder and salt, mix well using a whisk

Overview of gluten free flour being sifted into a bowl

Add 1/2 cup of the butter into the bowl adding small pieces into the flour. Using your hands or a pastry cutter, crumble the flour & vegan butter together until it starts to stick together and form a crumble.

Pieces of vegan butter arranged on top of tart shell ingredients

Add the cold water a little at a time and knead flour until it becomes smooth and elastic.

Water being added to a bowl of dry tart ingredients

Form the dough into a ball and place it onto a piece of plastic wrap. Use a pastry brush to coat the dough all over with the remainder of the butter. Cover the with the plastic wrap and let it rest for 30 minutes in a refrigerator. Start making the filling while you wait for the dough to chill. 

A ball of tart dough brushed with vegan butter

Preheat the oven to 350 F and remove the dough from the refrigerator, placing it onto a lightly floured silicone baking mat or a piece of parchment paper.  

Tart shell dough on top of a lightly floured sheet of parchment paper

Add additional flour on the top of the dough and place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough.

Tart dough lightly floured with a sheet of parchment paper next to it

Evenly roll out the dough into a rectangular shape using a rolling pin until its 1/2 inch thick.

Tart dough being rolled with a rolling pin in-between two sheets of parchment paper

Use a cookie cutter lightly dusted with flour to cut out 12 circles. 

Tart dough cut out into circles

Line two baking trays with parchment paper and remove the excess dough from around the cut-out circles. Roll the dough back into a ball and repeating the rolling steps with the rest of the dough. 

Overview of circles of tart dough next to a lined sheet tray

Take one of the cut circles and pinch a small area at the outer end of the dough, using an index finger and thumb. Raise this pinched pieces upwards to build a wall all around about 1/4" high. The result will be a star-like shaped dish with the center cavity used to contain the filling. Repeat this process for all the cut circles.

Overview of a gizzada tart shell being formed on a tray

Arrange them onto the lined baking trays about 1" apart, and place the trays into the fridge to set for 15 minutes 

Gizzada tart shells arranged on two baking sheets

Remove from the fridge and poke the bottom of the shells using a fork, place the trays into the oven to par-bake the pastry shells for 5 minutes. 

A tray of tart shells being poked with a fork before going into the oven

After 5 minutes, remove the shells from the oven and add in 1 heaping tablespoon of filling into the center. Use your hands or back of a spoon to lightly press and even the filling out. Place the tarts back into the oven for 20 minutes until golden brown, rotating the tray after 10 minutes, so the tarts cook evenly. 

A tray of gizzada tarts being filled with coconut filling

Remove from the oven, leaving the tarts on the tray to cool for 5 minutes.

Cooked gizzada tarts cooling on a baking sheet

Remove from the baking sheet and onto a cooling rack to allow them to further cool down. 

Overview of gizzada tarts cooling on a rack

Dust with powdered sugar and enjoy your homemade Gizzada Tarts! 

Gizzada tarts dusted with powdered sugar on a cooling rack
Coconut Filling

In a medium-sized bowl, add the coconut, brown sugar, hot water, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon powder, salt, vanilla and water, mix well. Let it sit uncovered for 20-30 minutes, or until all the sugar has partially dissolved, stirring occasionally. Any undissolved sugar will melt while cooking the tarts.  

Narandradath Jaikaran

Precision meets Passion: A fusion of Narandradath's Engineering Expertise in Cake Design and Craftsmanship.

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coconut tart, recipe, Caribbean, virgin, how to make, mango coconut, Jamaican, Trinidad

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