Homemade Spiced Pear Custard Pie: Celebrate Fall With Creamy Deliciousness

Have you ever had a pie with pears? I hadn’t.

Horizontal image of a slice of streusel-topped pie on a white plate with a fork next to a whole fruit on a green polka-dot napkin.

Actually, I’d never even heard of it until last week, researching pear recipes for the fall season.

People say it’s a little like apple pie or, as in this version, like a Dutch apple because of the creamy custard filling and sugary, crunchy streusel topping.

Vertical close-up image of slices of pie on a wooden surface.

Since I like pears more than apples (but we do have an apple version, as well!), and since there’s nothing quite like the sweet and creamy taste of an amazing custard, this dessert is a brilliant combination.

I like to add a little yogurt to my custard base – it gives the dessert a delectable tang, almost like a cheesecake!

Vertical image of a pear on a green polka-dot napkin with more pears in the background.

So if you like pears AND apples AND sweets, be sure to try this recipe.

You can use a simple store-bought crust, so all that will be involved with making this treat is to peel and slice the pears and mix the ingredients together.

Vertical image of two slices of pie on a wooden cutting board next to pieces of fruit.

For a homemade crust, you can use a pate brisee version found in our pie crust guide.

It bakes for about an hour. Fresh out of the oven, it’s hard to slice – so if you can wait, it’s better to let it cool and set before serving it either chilled from the fridge or warmed slightly and cutting a piece.

Vertical image of a slice of pie with leaf cut-outs on a white plate.

But if you can’t wait (hey, we’d get along well), then scoop it out and enjoy the creamy goodness right away.

It might not look pretty right from the oven, creamy filling oozing everywhere on the plate, but it’ll taste out of this world.

And eating it with someone you like even more than the dessert? That’s entirely optional.

Horizontal image of a whole pie topped with streusel on a wooden cutting board next to three pears.

Homemade Spiced Pear Custard Pie

  • Author: Shanna Mallon
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 8 slices 1x


Creamy and tangy, this pie uses fresh pears and a spiced custard filling. Topped with a crumbly streusel, it’s a tasty way to celebrate fall.



For the Crust:

  • 1 9-inch unbaked pie shell, or homemade single crust

For the Filling:

  • 5 large Bartlett or Anjou pears, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup plain yogurt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • dash of cinnamon

For the Streusel Topping:

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons turbinado sugar
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces


For the Filling:

  1. Place the sliced pears in a bowl and toss with the lemon juice. In another large bowl, stir together the powdered sugar and the flour. Add the sliced pears and toss to coat.
  2. In a separate bowl, stir together the yogurt, egg, cream, vanilla, and a dash of cinnamon. Add this to the pear mixture, and stir until evenly coated. Pour the whole mixture into the unbaked pie shell.

For the Streusel Topping:

  1. Mix together the flour and the sugar in a small bowl. Cut in the butter with a fork or pastry cutter until the mixture is crumbly.
  2. Sprinkle evenly over the top of the pie.

For Baking and Serving:

  1. Bake for 10 minutes at 400°F, then reduce the temperature to 350°F. Bake for an additional 45-50 minutes, or until pears are tender and the streusel topping is golden brown.
  2. Remove from the oven and let cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes. Let chill completely in the refrigerator for 8 hours, or overnight.
  3. Serve chilled or warmed. Enjoy!

  • Category: Pie
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Keywords: pie, pear, cinnamon, fall

Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prep the Pears

Horizontal image of a metal bowl with slices of pear on a wooden board next to pears and a green polka-dot napkin.

Peel the pears with a vegetable peeler. Cut and core each one using a sharp knife and a sturdy cutting board.

Place the sliced pears in a bowl and toss with the lemon juice to prevent excessive browning.

In another large bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar and the all-purpose flour. Add the sliced pears and toss to coat.

Need a little more help? Learn more about how to select, store, and prep these fruits.

Step 2 – Prep the Crust

Horizontal image of an unbaked pie shell on a wooden board next to fruit and a green polka-dot napkin.

If using a homemade dough (try our whole grain spelt flour crust for something tasty and different!), roll out and measure the dough to fit a 9-inch pan. Decorate the edges as you wish!

Step 3 – Make the Custard

Horizontal image of a custard filling in a white bowl next to fruit and a green polka-dot napkin.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the yogurt, egg, heavy cream, and vanilla. Add a dash of cinnamon. To really amp up the fall theme, use a pumpkin spice mixture instead.

Step 4 – Mix Together Custard and Fruit

Horizontal image of sliced fruit covered in a custard in a white bowl.

Pour the custard into the bowl with the prepared fruit. Stir until evenly coated.

Step 5 – Make the Streusel

Horizontal image of a bowl of unbaked streusel topping in a white bowl next to fruit and a napkin.

Mix together the flour and the sugar in a small bowl. Cut in the butter with a fork, pastry cutter, or your hands until the mixture is crumbly.

Step 6 – Assemble

Horizontal image of an unbaked pie with pear and custard filling on a wooden board.

Pour the pear and custard mixture into the unbaked dough. Evenly sprinkle the streusel over the top.

Step 7 – Bake

Horizontal image of a whole pie topped with streusel on a wooden cutting board next to three pears.

Bake for 10 minutes at 400°F, then reduce the temperature to 350°F. Bake for an additional 45-50 minutes, or until pears are tender and the streusel topping is golden brown.

Step 8 – Chill and Serve

Horizontal image of a slice of pear custard pie on a white plate next to two whole fruit on a green polka-dot napkin.

Remove from the oven and let cool on a cooling rack for 15 minutes. Let chill completely in the refrigerator for 8 hours, or overnight. Cut into 8 slices, and serve chilled from the refrigerator or slightly warmed.

The Perfect Pome for Pie

I do love a good apple pie.

Vertical image of two slices of pie on white plates with metal forks with whole pears.

But this season, I’m in love with a different pome for my fall desserts – the perfect pear!

The creamy filling mixed with cinnamon and thin slices of fruit, the crunchy streusel crumble, the buttery crust… all of this combines to make for a delicious alternative to the typical apple or pumpkin version this fall.

If you want to explore even more sweet treats with this fruit, try these recipes:

And go ahead and take a peek at our favorite fall recipes – you won’t be able to resist!

Pear or apple? What’s your pome preference? Let us know in the comment section below, with your best recipes featuring either of them. And don’t forget to rate this dessert!

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Originally published on November 9th, 2010. Last updated: December 30, 2019 at 10:08 am. With additional writing and editing by Nikki Cervone.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Shanna Mallon

Shanna Mallon is a freelance writer who holds an MA in writing from DePaul University. Her work has been featured in a variety of media outlets, including The Kitchn, Better Homes & Gardens, Taste of Home, Houzz.com, Foodista, Entrepreneur, and Ragan PR. In 2014, she co-authored The Einkorn Cookbook with her husband, Tim. Today, you can find her digging into food topics and celebrating the everyday grace of eating on her blog, Go Eat Your Bread with Joy. Shanna lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with Tim and their two small kids.

31 thoughts on “Homemade Spiced Pear Custard Pie: Celebrate Fall With Creamy Deliciousness”

  1. “further gushing about things other than food” is so fun. Yahoo for gushable blessings. Sounds like you have a keeper…and the recipe sounds great, too. Now, if only I could find a tried and true GF pie crust recipe without actually having to make a thousand recipes, I’d be all set. 🙂

  2. Haha omgosh, I did not see the end of that story coming! What a boyfriend! Can you please find me a boy that will bake all-natural pies and such with me? Seriously….

    Also, I just made an apple pie last week with the frozen spelt pie crusts from WF. Great minds think alike 🙂

  3. sweet story! that pie looks delicious! i’m craving dessert right now, and i bet a slice of that pie would be sooo good!

  4. I made apple walnut bread on Sunday with B. Baking together is one of our favorite things. Love the writing in this post. Especially the last line! And love the pics. And oh, the recipe too! It all sounds absolutely lovely. x

  5. I love that he knew! I think that when a guy is so sweet and romantic like that, it’s awesome! Kudos to him!
    So I have to ask about this frozen spelt crust… How is the texture? I’ve been wanting to try it, but just a tab afraid it wouldn’t be as flaky and yummy as the traditional

  6. Great story! It sounds like you all had fun – you planning the surprise & him planning the counter-surprise 🙂
    I’m not super big on pears but this pie does sound intriguing…thanks for sharing the recipe!

  7. Okay, can I say something totally silly? First, I didn’t know you had a bf. I can’t tell you how fun it is to know that. Even before I met you, I thought, “This girl is awesome. Why has a great guy not snagged her yet?” So you have indeed been snagged, notably by a guy who makes pie. I mean, seriously. It’s silly but so fun to get that news today.

  8. Sweet post. I recently heard of pear pie for the first time reading Nancie McDermott’s Southern Pies–I love your addition of custard and the crust looks perfect. Glad you had a little getaway…and blog inspiration always manages to creep back in somehow.

  9. Lisa, Definitely!

    Jenny, I wonder if they make premade GF crusts too? They must! And yes, he is a keeper for sure. : )

    Jacqui, : )

    Hootenannie, Ha, well thank you!

    Alicia, Get out! I didn’t even know about those crusts until Tim told me. We should have a pie party! When do you want to come over? : )

    Whitney, I’m so glad!

    Blissful, I know. I could go for another piece right now, too.

    Susan, He’s so sneaky.

    Rachel, Ha!

    Tiina, oh you are so sweet. thank you for all your excitement. : )

    Jeannie, Amazing is the right word.

    Niki, that is a good question about the crust. Honestly, I felt like it was fine–healthier and easy and gets the job done, but it wasn’t like I looooved the crust, you know? It’s good in a pinch but homemade would be better.

    MaryAnn, We did have fun!

    Kendra, Oh gosh you are gracious. Thank you for your excitement and kindness and ability to make me laugh every time you say something. The truth is, I keep thinking he’s going to realize he got the short of the stick in this deal. Seriously. And even without the pie.

    Rachel, Thanks!

    Megan, the custard is seriously what MAKES it. Amazing. And you are right–you just gotta wait it out. I think that’s true of lots of things.

  10. What a sweet and awesome story! I love that he didn’t try and act surprised but just completely turned the surprise around on you with that meal. Brilliant.

  11. You know I’d be up for a pie party ANY time. Or any party that involves eating. We still need to go to Honey too! My schedules been crazy lately but maybe next week??

  12. I think my heart warmed ten degrees reading this post. You two really deserve each other — and I mean that in the best way possible. 🙂

  13. I am baking a pear pie right now. Mine is sliced pears with a crumble topping. I wondered where I got the idea, but now I think it came from your twitter feed. Kind of wishing I had some custard for this pie, but crumbles will have to do.

  14. Angharad, I love it, too.

    Alicia, Next week would be great! Any night but Monday! E-mail me!

    Maddie, : ) Thank you, sweet girl.

    Anne, Oh, I hope you’re enjoying a nice big slice of that pie by now, and I hope the crumbles wow you like this custard did me!

  15. haha! that’s adorable! and your pie looks delicious I was thinking of making an apple pie this week but I might go with this instead..

    oh and I agree with Alicia – someone find me a boy who will bake all natural things with me! ha! I’m glad you had a good trip!

  16. i have to say…it was so good on thanksgiving that i am cosidering making it again this week. homemade yogurt works GREAT in this recipe


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