This Baked Pear recipe with crunchy, sweet crumble topping is a healthy dessert perfect for a dinner party or any holiday meal. It's easy to make, full of natural sweetness and simple ingredients.
This favorite fall fruit is transformed into an elegant dessert with just a few delicious ingredients. Only 20 minutes baking time and you have the kind of dessert you can feel good about eating!
Use a variety of pears (we share our favorites) and enjoy this simple recipe anytime. Pears can be more difficult to find out of season so gobble this one up during pear season!
Somehow pear desserts feel fancy and perfect for a special occasion. This is a sister recipe to our baked apples which also have a sweet crumble topping. Both recipes are a reinterpreted version of a crumble or a crisp type recipe leaning heavily into the fruit as the star ingredient.
What makes this skinny?
Only 2 tablespoons of honey are used across four dessert servings. No additional granulated sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup or agave syrup is used in the recipe.
Leveraging the natural sweetness of the pears. Picking fully ripe, sweet pears allows using very little sweetener in this perfect dessert.
Using non-fat honey Greek yogurt as a topping. Instead of sweetened whipped cream or ice cream we added this as a topping. Plain yogurt can also be used but the honey flavor complements the flavors in the easy baked pears.
Recipe Ingredient Notes
Pears. The pears should be ripe but a bit firm. They should yield to a light squeeze but still be firm. No mushy spots or bruises. When cooked they will soften but we don't want them to fully breakdown.
Chopped Pecans. The chopped pecans mix best with the crumble topping ingredients (versus using whole pecans). To save time you can purchase chopped pecans and use those.
Rolled Oats. Regular or gluten-free rolled oats or old fashioned oats (different names for whole oats) for this recipe. Do not use quick cooking or instant oats.
Honey. Honey adds a light sweetener that doesn't overpower the flavor of the ripe pears. Some is used in the filling mixture and some is drizzled on top before baking.
Dried Sweetened Cranberries. These sweet-tart cranberries add a wonderful flavor and feel of the holidays. They are available all year making this recipe a great choice anytime pears are available.
Unsalted Butter. The butter is melted and brushed onto the cut side of the pears as well as mixed into the crumble filling to hold it together and give it some crispness when baked.
Spices. We used cinnamon and a bit of nutmeg for warming cozy spice flavor that goes great with the pears.
Salt. Kosher Salt is recommended as it's a less salty tasting salt. Just a pinch gives a balance to the sweet flavors in the recipe.
Pomegranate seeds. These add a bit of sweetness, a little crunch and beautiful color as a topping. They make this recipe an elegant dessert perfect for the holiday season.
Non-fat honey Greek yogurt. Adds some sweet honey flavor and creamy tang as a topping.
Best pear varieties to use
The type of pear used should hold its shape when baked; become softer but not fall apart. When they are cooked they should be able to be cut with the side of a fork or using a knife.
What kind of pears are those? Here are our picks of best pears for baking:
- Bosc pears
- Anjou pears
- Concorde pears
- French Butter pears
Bartlett or Comice pears are not the best choice for this favorite fall dessert. They tend to become overly soft (though we love them in our Cranberry Pear Sauce).
How to make this Baked Pear recipe
STEP 1. Preparation
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Scoop out the core and seeds of the pear creating a cavity for the filling (photo 1).
Place the pear halves in a small baking dish (they should have enough room for the pears but not be so large they can tip over) (photo 1).
Brush the cut side of the pears with butter (photo 2).
STEP 2. Prepare the Filling.
In a small bowl combine the rolled oats, pecans, dried cranberries, cinnamon, nutmeg, remaining melted butter, 1 tablespoon honey. Mix together well (photo 3).
Spoon the filling evenly between the four pear halves. Drizzle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of honey over the tops of the pears (photo 4).
STEP 3. Bake
Bake for 20 minutes or until the pears are cooked through. Pears should be warmed through but not mushy in texture.
STEP 4. Serve
Serve baked pears warm topped with pomegranate seeds and non-fat honey Greek yogurt (if desired).
Change the nuts. If you prefer walnuts you can swap them in.
Change up the spices. Other warm spices like ground ginger or allspice would be delicious in this easy baked pear recipe.
Use a melon baller. If you have a melon baller they work perfectly to remove the seeds and core of the pear. They cut easily into the flesh of the fresh pears without removing too much of the flesh.
How to store
Save any leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3-4 days. The pears will oxidize (change color) but will still be safe (and delicious) to eat.
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