The Most Luscious Pear Crisp Recipe

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The Most Luscious Pear Crisp Recipe

a photo of a bowl of pear crisp with juicy tender pears, topped with crunchy oat topping and two scoops of vanilla ice cream on the side.

Warm gently spiced pears topped with a crunchy buttery oat topping, this pear crisp recipe is my new favorite way to fruit crisp!

Whenever I run into our readers at grocery stores or even at event bathrooms, haha, I often get asked what my favorite recipe is. 

I don’t have an answer. 

It depends on my mood and the time of year and life to be honest. If life is feeling heavy or stressful versus fun and alive then I’ll probably give you a different answer. However, 9/10 times a fruit crisp is one of my absolute, cannot resist, please-scoop-me-more favorites. I am especially loving the delicate sweetness of pears under a pile of crunchy, chewy, cinnamon-y goodness that is a crisp.

There’s something forever about a crisp recipe.

It never goes out of style. 

It is good with and without ice cream. 

It’s craved from fall (apple crisp) through summer (marionberry crisp or peach crisp). An all year dessert that will always make you feel at home, my home. Where Mom is lifting the lid off a dutch oven with steam billowing out as we all sit anxiously in our tents waiting for the ultimate camping moment, dessert under the stars. 

So, let’s make our houses smell amazing, remember yesterdays full of safety and happiness and savor every single bite together. 

Ingredients for Pear Crisp

If you’re headed to the grocery store this week, grab a few pears and make this comforting fall dessert! Double check this list in case there are other ingredients you need to grab while you are there…

For the Pears

  • Pears: we prefer Bosc or Bartlett
  • Butter: adds flavor, richness, and the necessary fat for the pear filling
  • Flour: helps thicken all the natural juices that the pears produce as they bake
    • If you want to make this recipe gluten free, you can use cornstarch instead (see recipe card for details).
  • Lemon Juice: cuts through all the sweetness and adds a nice bright flavor
  • Heavy Cream: adds richness and creaminess to the pear filling
  • Vanilla: adds flavor
  • Brown and White Sugar: adds sweetness to the pears
  • Cinnamon: adds warm flavor
  • Nutmeg: just a pinch goes a long way and adds such a nice warmth to the dessert
  • Salt: enhances all the flavors

For the Topping

  • Flour: just regular all purpose flour will be great for creating the structure of the crispy topping
  • Old Fashioned Oatmeal: the base of the crumbly toppings and I love the added texture old fashioned oats give
  • Brown Sugar: adds sweetness to the topping
  • Cinnamon: adds flavor
  • Salt: enhances all the flavors
  • Butter: binds all the ingredients together and helps them bake to a nice crisp

This is just meant to be an overview of the ingredients needed to make this recipe. Scroll down to the recipe card at the end of the post for all the measurements.

How to Make the Best Pear Crisp Recipe

One of the things I love the most about fruit crisp desserts is how easy they are make. Here is a simple description of the steps:

  1. Preheat the oven and grease a square baking dish.
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the filling (except the pears) and stir everything together.
  3. Fold in the pears and then spread them in the baking dish.
    • PRO TIP: When you cut the pears, try to cut them similar size so that they cook evenly. You also don’t want them to be cut too thin or they will overbake.
  4. Prepare the topping by mixing all the ingredients together (except the butter) and then cutting the butter in with a pastry blender or fork.
  5. Sprinkle the topping all over the top of the pears. Bake and serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

The complete instructions can be found in the recipe card at the end of the post. You can also save or print the recipe there.

Which Pears are Best for Baking

When it comes to using pears for baking, Bosc or Anjou hold shape and texture and have great flavor. Bartletts work great too.

How to Pick a Good Pear

Picking a good ripe pear is super easy. Surprisingly, pears don’t ripen super well on the tree, but they ripen great at room temperature after being picked. Pears ripen from the inside out, so you will want to gently press on the top of the pear next to the stem. If it starts to give a little, then it is ripe and ready to eat. A ripe pear will be perfectly sweet and juicy.

How to Ripen Pears

I often buy boxes of pears at Costco and there are always some pears in the box that are more ripe than others. To ripen the others, I just set them out in our fruit bowl with other ripening fruit like our bananas or citrus.

Do You Leave the Skins on?

Totally up to you. On a galette or tart, I prefer skin on, while a crisp or crumble I tend to peel them so that the peel doesn’t compete with the oat topping. Though I did leave the skins on for this photo shoot which totally goes against my general rule, but it really is just up to you.

Variations for a Pear Crisp

If you want to jazz up this pear crisp recipe, I have a few ideas…

  • Add spices to topping like more cinnamon or nutmeg
  • Add nuts to the topping or to the pears. Pecans, walnuts or almonds would be delicious.
  • Craisins or raisins mixed in with the pears…yum!
  • Shredded coconut flakes would be a delicious addition to the topping.

Storing, Freezing, Reheating, and Making Ahead

Leftover pear crisp can be stored at room temperature for 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Place a paper towel over the top to absorb extra moisture from the pears and to keep the topping crunchy. Then cover the dish with plastic wrap.

If you want leftovers to last a little longer, they freeze very well. Make sure it has cooled completely. Use the paper towel trick and wrap the whole dish in plastic wrap and then foil. It will keep in the fridge for up to 3 months.

To reheat both a cooled or a frozen pear crisp, bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, and a few minutes longer for a frozen fruit crisp.

This is a great dessert for making ahead of time. You can make the pear filling and the topping ahead of time, but don’t combine them until just before baking.

Pears, glorious pears! They are too often forgotten and underused as a fruit in dessert recipes. This pear crisp recipe is home, comfort, and the best fall dessert. Take me back to the mountains with my momma making this pear dessert in the dutch oven!


The Most Luscious Pear Crisp

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Course 500+ Best Dessert Recipes
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 779kcal
Author Sweet Basil


For the Pears

  • 5 Pears Bosc or Bartlett, sliced
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter melted
  • 4 Tablespoons Flour or 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 Squeeze Lemon Juice
  • 4 Tablespoons Heavy Cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon White Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
  • Dash of Salt

For the Topping

  • 1 Cup Flour
  • 1 1/2 Cups Old Fashioned Oatmeal
  • 1 1/2 Cups Brown Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • Dash of Salt
  • 3/4 Cup Unsalted Butter cut into small cubes*


  • Heat the oven to 375 and spray an 8×9″ baking dish with nonstick spray.

For the Pears

  • Place the melted butter in a large bowl, and whisk in the flour, lemon juice, heavy cream, and vanilla until smooth.
    4 Tablespoons Butter, 4 Tablespoons Flour, 1 Squeeze Lemon Juice, 4 Tablespoons Heavy Cream, 1/2 teaspoon Vanilla
  • Add the sugars and seasonings and whisk again until smooth.
    1/4 Cup Brown Sugar, 1 Tablespoon White Sugar, 1 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg, Dash of Salt
  • Add the pears and gently fold to coat entirely.
    5 Pears
  • Spread the pears in the bottom of a baking dish and set aside.

For the Topping

  • In a large bowl, add the flour, sugar, cinnamon and oatmeal.
    1 Cup Flour, 1 1/2 Cups Old Fashioned Oatmeal, 1 1/2 Cups Brown Sugar, 1 teaspoon Cinnamon, Dash of Salt
  • Stir everything together.
  • Add the butter cubes and using a pastry cutter begin to cut in the butter. As the butter begins to be incorporated into the mixture, switch to using your hands and squeeze and mix everything together until it is like a very thick dough and no flour remains. We like clumps so I squeeze together little clots of dough to sprinkle over the top.
    3/4 Cup Unsalted Butter
  • Top the pears with the mixture and bake for 18-20 minutes or until lightly golden in color.
  • Cool for 5-10 minutes and serve with vanilla ice cream.


*Note that your butter should be cold when you cut it into the topping mixture. If the butter is too warm, the crisp topping with be more like mush and it won’t sprinkle easily over the apple filling.  

this apple crisp can be prepared and frozen to bake later, or baked and frozen for up to 3 months.


Serving: 1cup | Calories: 779kcal | Carbohydrates: 115g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 92mg | Sodium: 88mg | Potassium: 348mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 79g | Vitamin A: 1128IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 98mg | Iron: 3mg

READ: The Most Luscious Pear Crisp Recipe


View posts by Spice-Rack-Maker
Dave the spice rack maker. Lived and worked in central MN for 50 years, Enjoy the lakes and woods surrounding the spice rack makers wood shop.
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