Pastiera (Italian Easter Tart)


Pastiera is among the most iconic of Italian desserts. Originally from Naples, it's most typical during Easter season, but it is served year around. The traditional filling is made of cooked wheat berries and sheep's milk ricotta. [Recipe originally submitted to]

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
1 hr 10 mins
Additional Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
8 servings


  • 1 ⅛ cups cooked wheat berries

  • ¾ cup milk

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 lemons, zested, divided

  • 1 (15 ounce) package pastry for a 9-inch double crust pie

  • 1 (15 ounce) container sheep's milk ricotta cheese

  • 1 ¾ cups white sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 2 tablespoons orange flower water, divided

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 4 ounces candied orange peel, diced

  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

  • 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar


  1. Combine cooked wheat berries, milk, butter, and zest of 1 lemon in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until creamy, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

  2. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease an 11-inch springform pan or aluminum pan and line with one of the pastry crusts.

  3. Combine ricotta cheese, sugar, eggs, egg yolks, 1 tablespoon orange flower water, vanilla extract, and cinnamon in the bowl of a food processor; mix until smooth. Mix in remaining lemon zest and orange peel. Fold in wheat berry mixture and pour over the bottom crust.

  4. Roll out remaining pastry crust and cut into 1/2-inch wide strips. Place on top of the pie in a lattice pattern and brush with beaten egg.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven until filling is cooked through and top is lightly browned, about 1 hour. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack. Cool for about 30 minutes.

  6. Remove pie carefully from the pan and place on a serving plate. Dust with confectioners' sugar.

Cook's Note:

You can also use citrus peel instead of orange peel.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

711 Calories
27g Fat
105g Carbs
17g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 8
Calories 711
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 27g 35%
Saturated Fat 10g 49%
Cholesterol 147mg 49%
Sodium 359mg 16%
Total Carbohydrate 105g 38%
Dietary Fiber 7g 23%
Total Sugars 46g
Protein 17g
Vitamin C 22mg 108%
Calcium 221mg 17%
Iron 3mg 17%
Potassium 304mg 6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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