Torte vs Tart

By | December 9, 2019

What is the difference between a torte and a tart? Aren’t they the same? Well, the lines between tortes and tarts are often blurred. People often mistakenly call a torte as a tart, and vice versa. Even so, there are still some key distinctions that set a torte vs tart apart.

In this article, you can learn more about:
– The definitions of “torte” and “tart”
– The key features or distinctions of a torte vs tart
– The ingredients for making tortes and tarts
– The variations of tortes and tarts


“Torte” is a word that is derived from the Italian “torta”, which means “cake”. A torte is a rich multilayered cake which is filled with buttercreams, whipped cream, mousses, fruits, or jams. Usually, a cooled torte is garnished and glazed. There are, however, dessert tortes (which are sweet) and savory tortes.

On the other hand, a tart is actually very different compared to a torte. A tart is actually more similar to a pie. According to Wikipedia, a tart is a baked dish which consists of a pastry base, some fillings, and an open top that is not covered with pastry (this is in contrast with a pie, which has a pastry top).

You can say that a tart is an open-faced pie. The fillings may be savory or sweet, but modern tarts nowadays are often fruit-based. Sometimes, tarts come with custard. You can read also Tart vs Pie.


A dessert torte usually consists of multiple layers of sponge cake. The sponge cake layers are light and airy, as they are made from egg yolks, stiffly beaten eggs whites, and sugar. Between the layers, people usually use buttercreams, mousses, meringues, jams, or sweetened nut pastes. Meanwhile, a savory torte usually consists of crepes or other thin pancakes, with creamed meat mixtures, cheeses, or roasted vegetables between the layers.

An element that is common to many tortes is sweet icing. There is almost always some icing on the top and side of a torte.

On the other hand, a tart is not layered! Tarts do not have layers. A tart only has one pastry base instead of multiple layers. The pastry base is usually made of flour. Compared to pies, tarts have thicker and sturdier perpendicular sides.

The fillings vary, depending on the recipe. A dessert tart may be filled with custard, fruits, and flavored creams. Meanwhile, a savory tart may be filled with custard, cheeses, vegetables, or pieces of meat. Due to the open top, you can stack as many food items as possible on it. People sometimes top their tarts with fruits, such as strawberry, blueberry, and blackberry.

And, of course, tarts rarely have icing. They usually don’t have icing. But there are some variations that put some icing on the top to accompany the fruit slices.

Torte vs Tart

- Rich multilayered cake- Baked dish with a pastry base, some fillings, and an open top
- Has multiple layers- Doesn’t have layers
- May use sponge cake or thin pancakes for the layers- The pastry base is made from flour
- Often has some icing on the top and side- Usually doesn’t have icing on the side


Tortes and tarts are two different things. A torte is a rich multilayered cake, usually with icing on the top and side. Meanwhile, a tart is more like an open-faced pie. A tart is a baked dish which consists of a pastry base, some fillings, and an open top.

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