Have you ever had a pie with pears? I hadn’t.
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.Print
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:
- 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.
- 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:
- 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.
- Sprinkle evenly over the top of the pie.
For Baking and Serving:
- 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.
- 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.
- Serve chilled or warmed. Enjoy!
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 55 minutes
- Category: Pie
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Dessert
Keywords: pie, pear, cinnamon, fall
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Prep the Pears
Place the sliced pears in a bowl and toss with the lemon juice to prevent excessive browning.
Need a little more help? Learn more about how to select, store, and prep these fruits.
Step 2 – Prep the Crust
Step 3 – Make the Custard
Step 4 – Mix Together Custard and Fruit
Pour the custard into the bowl with the prepared fruit. Stir until evenly coated.
Step 5 – Make the Streusel
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
Pour the pear and custard mixture into the unbaked dough. Evenly sprinkle the streusel over the top.
Step 7 – Bake
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
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.
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.
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.