Pusties Pastaciotti Recipe

Sunday, August 11, 2019
Italian Pusties Pastaciotti Pastry, is usually made around Easter time.

Delicious sweet dough with various pudding fillings in the center.

Very famous in Upstate Utica, New York where the Italian bakeries are spectacular.

Everyone in the airport can smell these pastries in the box when I bring them back to Florida and get so jealous.

Homemade is great, but the memories of the Utica bakeries always have that special place in my heart and the taste lingers in my mind.

Utica is also famous for Tomato Pie, Italian Greens, Italian Lemon Ice, Pizza Fritta, Chicken Riggies, Manny's Cheesecake, Oscugnizzo Pizza, Pusties and Rosato Chocolate Cookies

For now, while living away these will have to be the best thing until I make a visit.

Scroll down for our family recipe for Pusties, Utica Style.

Holiday Pastry Time

My mom always made these at Easter time. I would just love to watch her roll the dough, fill them and in awe of how perfect they baked every time! She was so talented when it came to making baking anything.

Even though these are a little time-consuming, you really know they are an all Italian specialty. We couldn't wait to bite into them, sitting there patiently waiting for them to cool.

Just by the smell of them, baking drove us all crazy to break one open.

I personally love warm pudding, so I can remember burning the roof of my mouth a few times be impatient to eat one of these and the pudding was still scorching hot. I didn't care though I would do it all again at 12 years old. We really don't listen much at that age.

I now make these every year also at Easter. More vanilla is requested than chocolate, which really changed over the years. Chocolate was always the most asked for.

To tell which ones are chocolate they are plain brushed with egg washed. The vanilla has a little button in the center, we always called them a belly button.

this is an Italian pastry with black coffee

Filling Flavor Suggestion for Puddings

  • Pumpkin Custard
  • Vanilla
  • Chocolate
  • Lemon Pudding Recipe
  • Any Pie Fillings
  • Almond Paste with added jams
  • Lemon
  • Coconut Cream
  • Banana Cream

this is a pan of baked chocolate filled tarts

Ingredients for Pusties Pastaciotti Recipe

For the Crust:

  • flour
  • baking powder
  • light brown sugar
  • extra-large eggs
  • shortening or lard
  • cold water or more if the dough is too dry

this is a cookie dough for making pusties which is a tart and pudding filled Italian pastry famous in Utica New York bakeries

Chocolate Pastry Filling Ingredients You Will Need

  • white granulated sugar
  • flour
  • milk
  • egg yolks
  • squares (1 ounce each) chocolate, unsweetened
  • vanilla

this is three kinds of pudding homemade vanilla chocolate and lemon

Vanilla Pastry Ingredients You Will Need

  • sugar
  • flour
  • milk
  • egg yolks
  • vanilla or rum

these are raw cookie dough tarts filled with chocolate pudding

Pastaciotti aka Pusties

Pusties are the round tart pastries you will find in Upstate NY in local bakeries.

Cassata Italian cheesecake, struffoli which is normally only for Christmas, but requested this particular year, cannoli all homemade.

Hope you enjoy them as much as our family does during the holiday.

Here is the recipe we have used for many years now.

The one with the button is Vanilla and the plain tops are chocolate to know the difference in flavors. 

Make the fillings first and set them aside to cool.

this is a vanilla and chocolate filled tart there are two of them


  • Oil spray tins for easy removal
  • Any pudding will work except instant do not use them
  • Homemade pudding is best
  • Always seal with egg wash and press edges down for sealing
  • Place on Silpat mat or parchment paper on the cookie sheet for any spillage
  • Keep these pastries in the refrigerator 
  • These freeze well

these are chocolate filled raw tarts ready to get backed


You can use silicone made tart pans or use old fashioned tins,

I have them in my tab above for Shop with me, it's an affiliate link I do make commissions on.

these are vanilla filled tarts

Pastry Shop Quality

Even though these take a little effort to make, these taste just like any well-known bakery in Upstate New York, but better.

The crust is always perfect, the fillings are thick pastry creams and there is no comparison to homemade pusties made with love
and our family recipe, to me.

this is a collage on how to make pusties and Italian tart filled with pudding

Pin for later

this is a pin for later for making Italian tarts which are a filled pastry dough with cream of chocolate of vanilla

Pusties Pastaciotti Recipe

Yield: 12
prep time: 25 Mcook time: 45 Mtotal time: 70 M
This is a tart filled with various puddings and baked in a cookie kind of crust called pusties, an Italian pastry.


  • 4 cups sifted flour not packed down
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups light brown sugar
  • 2 extra-large eggs
  • 1 cup shortening or lard
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons cold water or more if the dough is too dry


How to cook Pusties Pastaciotti Recipe

  1. You will need special tins, they have fluted edges. Try online and search for pustie tins. You will need 12 large fluted pusty tins or 24 small. Silicone molded tins work great also.
  2. Mix crust ingredients in a large bowl, careful not to work the dough too long, a mixer master with a flat beater works great ( if the dough doesn't come together add 1 teaspoon more of water at a time. Spray each tin or silicone tart with oil spray for easier release when using metal or even silicone molds.
  3. Roll dough 1/2 inch thick (not to thin) I break 24 pieces of dough evenly up so I have enough tops and bottoms. Roll out, pat down in each tin. Save scraps. Brush insides edge with an egg wash using whites or the whole egg has beaten that is the glue to seal the edges.
  4. Roll out remaining dough and cut into rounds to fit for the tops of each tin.
  5. Place cooled filling in each pastry-lined fluted pustie tin pan and cover each with a round of dough.
  6. Paint top of pusties with beaten egg yolk before baking crimp edges with a finger or a fork.
  7. Bake in preheated 400-degree oven for 20 minutes or until lightly brown on top ovens vary, sometimes as long as 35 minutes. Cool a few minutes, if they look like they stuck around the edges, take a knife to loosen, pop out of the tins onto wax paper and cool before completely flipping right side up.
  8. Fillings:
  9. Homemade pudding below is what I use however you can make packaged pudding below.
  10. For the Chocolate boxed: use chocolate cooking pudding and add only 1 1/2 cups of milk to a box which is thicker and works well. You will need two boxes for the whole recipe. Chocolate or Vanilla or both.
  11. For the Vanilla boxed: Add two egg yolks to a box of cooking Vanilla pudding with the 1 1/2 cups of milk and for added flavor a teaspoon of vanilla extract after thickened. This makes a richer pudding.
  12. Another variation is to add raspberry jam on the bottom and 1 teaspoon of almond paste on the top, add a little vanilla pudding cooked on top.
  13. Also, Lemon cooked pudding could be used and as above directions decrease the water to make a thicker pudding by a half cup to package directions.
  14. Any pie filling can be used or even pumpkin pie filling for other variations.
  15. Homemade chocolate pudding version and this pastry cream is what I use below:
  16. Chocolate Homemade Pastry Filling:
  17. 1 cup white granulated sugar
  18. 3 heaping tablespoons flour
  19. 2 cups milk
  20. 3 egg yolks
  21. 2 squares (1 ounce each) chocolate, unsweetened
  22. 1 teaspoon vanilla
  23. Vanilla Homemade Pastry Filling:
  24. 3/4 cup sugar
  25. 1/2 cup flour
  26. 2 cups milk
  27. 3 egg yolks, beaten well
  28. 2 teaspoons vanilla or rum
  29. Place sugar and flour in a saucepan. Slowly whisk in milk and egg yolks to incorporate and make smooth. Cook until thick, stirring frequently. Cool, then add vanilla or rum.
Fat (grams)
Sat. Fat (grams)
Carbs (grams)
Net carbs
Sugar (grams)
Italian pastry, pudding filled tarts, homemade pusties, Utica copycat pusties, tart dough, fluted edged pastry filled tarts with pudding
tarts, pastry dough, pudding tarts dough, homemade tarts, dough, pudding, Italian pastry
Created using The Recipes Generator

Pin for later

this is a pudding filled Italian pastry recipe pin for later

Other Desserts We Love

Italian Cannoli

Italian Mini Easter Cassata

Easter Egg Bread

this is a pastry made in an Italian bakery filled with pudding

Disclosure: This recipe was originally shared in 2009. It was edited and re-published in 2019.


  1. Yum Yum Yum....
    This looks incredible

  2. WOW...This looks great.
    I love tarts.
    Thank you so much for sharing.

  3. My husband is CRAZY over pusties! I made them once and they were ok...but I think you really have to enjoy them to know what you're doing and unfort. they aren't my favorite. But...they are good.

  4. These sound awesome, but I don't think a recipe's name should be longer than the recipe. :-)

  5. Wow, these look irresistible! The family would surely love these pudding filled gems!

  6. Paul and I just got back from Rome NY and had my first pustie at Ferlos. I decided to try making them. Googled Pustie and you popped up at the top of the list. I hope you and family made it through the hurricane safely.


  7. I always have trouble telling when they are fully cooked. Any suggestions?

    1. The filling is already cooked so the only thing to baked is the crust which takes at least 25 minutes or until browned on top. Once they are browned on top they are done. I have never had to cook them longer than 35 minutes and thats because my thermostat was not working right.

  8. Hi! What is the size dimensions (top width and depth) of what you consider small vs the large pustie tins?
    Thank you

  9. I was missing these forever, use to get them in Utica. I found your recipes and have made them a couple times. They came out as good as the ones back home love them .


Remember to use the search option for a recipe you're looking for and thanks for all your kind words and support. We love our readers all the best Claudia