Frozen Café-Mochaccino Tart

frozen cafe-mochaccino tart topped with cocoa nibs
Photo: Con Poulos
Prep Time:
40 mins
Total Time:
7 hrs
10 to 12 Serves

A slice of this tart will taste just like the ideal version of your coffee shop's mocha frappé...only better. To make this elegant, crave-worthy dessert, simply combine coffee and chocolate ice creams into a chocolate-shortbread shell. While it is setting in the freezer, you'll whip up an airy caramel meringue to dollop on top.



  • ½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour

  • cup sugar

  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal)

  • 3 tablespoons Dutch-process cocoa powder

  • 3 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream

  • 1 pint coffee ice cream

  • 1 cup chocolate ice cream (½ pint)

Caramel Meringue

  • ¾ cup plus 6 tablespoons sugar

  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal)

  • cup heavy cream

  • 3 large egg whites

  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

  • Cocoa nibs or chocolate-covered espresso beans, for serving (optional)


  1. Crust: In a food processor, pulse flour, sugar, salt, and cocoa to combine. Add butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some pea-size pieces remaining. Stir together yolk and cream; drizzle over flour mixture, pulsing several times to combine. Transfer mixture to a 9-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom, pressing evenly into bottom and up sides. Refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes.

  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Prick bottom of crust at 1-inch intervals with the tines of a fork. Bake until set and dry, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

  3. Meanwhile, temper both ice creams in refrigerator until softened but not melting, about 20 minutes. Stir together ice creams until no streaks remain; transfer to cooled crust, spreading all the way to edges and smoothing top with an offset spatula. Freeze until firm, about 1 hour (or wrap in plastic at this point and freeze up to 1 week).

  4. Caramel Meringue: In a small saucepan, combine 6 tablespoons sugar, salt, and 1 tablespoon water. Cover; cook over medium heat, swirling a few times, until boiling and sugar has dissolved, about 5 minutes. Uncover; continue boiling, undisturbed, until mixture turns medium amber, about 3 minutes more. Remove from heat. Carefully add cream (it will bubble and splatter); stir until smooth. Transfer to a heatproof bowl.

  5. Combine egg whites, remaining 3/4 cup sugar, and cream of tartar in a heatproof mixer bowl set over (but not in) a pot of simmering water. Whisk constantly just until mixture is warm to the touch and sugar has dissolved (it should feel smooth when rubbed between your fingers). Remove from heat; beat on high speed until stiff peaks form and mixture is no longer warm to the touch, 7 to 9 minutes.

  6. Reduce speed to low and beat in a scant 1/4 cup caramel just to combine (do not overmix; caramel will still be warm). Spoon meringue over ice cream and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours (tart can be wrapped in plastic at this point and frozen up to 3 days). Cover and refrigerate remaining caramel until ready to serve.

  7. Remove tart from pan; transfer to a cake plate. Drizzle top with remaining caramel (or serve alongside); sprinkle with cocoa nibs or decorate with chocolate espresso beans. Cut into wedges, dipping knife blade in hot water and wiping clean between each cut to ensure clean slices.

Cook's Notes

For a savvy shortcut, you can use a good store-bought caramel sauce, such as Stonewall Kitchen.

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