Poached pears might seem like a fancy dessert, but they’re really easy to make. All you need is a few simple ingredients and a slow cooker.
Plus, poaching pears gives them a delicious caramel-like flavor that’s sure to impress your friends and family. So why not give it a try? You might just be surprised at how much you enjoy them.
Easy Elegant Fruit Dessert
Poached pears are so simple, yet so elegant. My family loves to eat pears, so we are always looking for a good pear recipe. I thought why not give them a fancy spin.
This classic French dessert would even make for a great option for a delicious dish to impress your guests.
I find the best time of year to make poached pears is in the fall, as you use so many of the delicious tastes of fall to flavor the sauce. Your house will be smelling like warm fall spice in no time.
Slow Cooker Dessert Recipe
While you can poach pears quickly on the stovetop, I find that it is so much easier and time saving to prepare them in the morning and place the whole pears in a slow cooker for the day. This makes them super tender and they get a nice color from the cinnamon all day. It also makes your house smell lovely.
Why Choose a Fruit-based Dessert?
Fruit based desserts are a great way to enjoy something sweet while getting some health benefits at the same time.
They are a lower calorie option than many other desserts, so it can help you to control your weight. Fruit-based desserts are a delicious and healthier option for satisfying your sweet tooth, so long as you pay close attention to the number of toppings you choose.
What are the Benefits of Eating Pears?
Pears are a delicious and nutritious fruit that offer a range of health benefits. For instance, pears are a good source of fiber, which can help to regulate digestion and prevent constipation.
Fruit is packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber, which is important for keeping your digestive system healthy. Fiber can also help to regulate blood sugar levels, making fruit a great choice for people with diabetes or pre-diabetes.
They are also rich in antioxidants, which can help to protect cells from damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer.
Additionally, pears contain vitamins and minerals that are essential for maintaining good health. For example, pears are a good source of vitamin C, which is needed for immunity, and they also contain potassium, which is important for heart health.
So next time you’re looking for a healthy snack, reach for a pear!
Which Pears are right for Poaching?
You can use almost any pear variety for poaching. Some pears are naturally softer than others so the cooking time would have to be adjusted for Bartlett pears.
We are able to buy Anjou pears easily locally so that is what we usually use.
Bosc pears would be another great option. You also need to pay attention to the ripeness of your pears and adjust cooking time as necessary.
Underripe pears are not good for poaching, and if you have overripe pears, you will need to reduce the cooking time, so they don’t disintegrate.
Preparing Fruit for Slow Cooker Poaching
It is easy to prepare the pears for the slow cooker. You will need a paring knife and a vegetable peeler.
Peel the pears from top to bottom. Next, use the paring knife or a similar sharp knife to cut the bottom of the pear flush or flat. I only took off about an eighth of an inch. This is so they will stand up in the pot. Place your peeled pears in the slow cooker.
Cooking Liquid and Sauce for Poaching Pears
It is important to flavor the cooking liquid to your liking because after your pears are done cooking, you will want to use that cooking liquid and make a reduced sauce for your topping your pears.
Truthfully, I do not always have time to reduce my sauce, so you can also drizzle maple syrup, simple syrup, or caramel sauce over them.
However, the best way to dress them up is with a reduced sauce. Seasonings for your sauce can include: a cinnamon stick or two, vanilla bean, vanilla extract, star anise, fruit juice, brown sugar, orange zest, lemon juice, and honey. You really want warm spices in your reduction.
Once your pears are poached to your liking, remove them from the ceramic pot gently with tongs or a slotted spoon and pour the cooking liquid into a large saucepan.
Turn the pan to medium-high heat and cook to a gentle simmer. Simmer the sauce down until it’s the right amount of thickness to your liking, typically that is a thick syrup consistency.
How to tell Poached Pears are Done Cooking
Check your pears every few hours to check their tenderness. You want your pears somewhere between fork tender and fall apart. When your dinner guest runs their fork through the pear, you want it to remove the flesh effortlessly, so it is easy to eat without much fuss. Tender and soft is the right doneness of a poached pear. If you are concerned about the softness of your pears, check them more frequently towards the end of cooking. A fork, or toothpick should poke into the pear with ease.
Plating Poached Pears
Plating your poached pears can be so much fun. They make a beautiful statement piece on a pretty dessert plate.
You can place a scoop of vanilla ice cream with them, whipped topping or whipped cream, frozen yogurt, or white or blue cheese.
Pear halves can be pretty on a plate, but I prefer to stand them up on their flat bottoms just like they were in the pot. It may be cute to put whipped topping and a cherry on top of the pears.
If you reduced your own sauce, now is the time to pour it over your pears generously so it combines with the melty ice cream or your topping of choice.
You can also dress them up with any flavored syrup, sprinkle of sugar, orange zest or lemon zest, wine syrup, or even fresh ginger.
Storing Poached Pears
Cooked pears can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. If you’re not planning on eating them right away, you can also store cooked pears in the freezer. Cut pears should be wrapped in plastic wrap or placed in a freezer bag before being stored in the freezer for up to six months. When you’re ready to eat them, simply thaw the pears at room temperature or in the microwave.
When storing poached pears, be sure to store them separately from any toppings so they don’t get soggy from the additional moisture. Hopefully this tasty, simple dessert will not last long in your home.
Slow Cooker Poached Pears Recipe
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- 6 Pears
- 2 Cups Water
- 1 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon or 2 Cinnamon Sticks
- 1 Tablespoon Honey or to taste
- Peel pears. But the bottoms flat to allow them to stand up. Place in slow cooker and cover with 2/3 of the way up with water.
- Add the cinnamon and honey. Gently stir if you want.
- Cook on low 5 – 7 hours checking occasionally with a fork for tenderness.