Delicious Pear Poached in Red Wine Recipe

Hello there, foodies! Today I have a recipe that will tantalize your taste buds and take you on an exotic adventure of flavors. I present to you my recipe for Pears Poached in Red Wine and Cardamom.

This recipe is perfect for those who love rich, indulgent desserts with a little bit of spice. It’s the perfect way to end a meal with a light yet satisfying dessert that will leave your guests wanting more.

Poaching pears in red wine and cardamom adds warmth and depth to the fruit’s natural sweetness. The juicy pears absorb all the flavors of the wine and spices, making them soft, fragrant, and luscious. The result is an elegant dessert that looks good enough to be served in any fine-dining restaurant.

Cooking is all about experimenting with different ingredients and combining them in unique ways. This recipe showcases an example of how two seemingly different ingredients like pears and red wine can create magic when combined correctly. Trust me; you won’t find anything like this at your local bakery or patisserie.

So why don’t you grab your aprons, measuring cups, and let’s get started on this exotic culinary journey together? This dish is not only easy but also quick to make, which means it’s perfect if you are running short on time or expecting guests over at short notice. So let’s dive in!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Pears Poached in Red Wine and Cardamom
Pears Poached in Red Wine and Cardamom

When it comes to dessert recipes, nothing quite compares to the elegance and simplicity of wine-poached pears. And with this recipe, you’ll be able to take that classic dessert up a notch by infusing the poaching liquid with fragrant cardamom pods, spicy cinnamon sticks, and a touch of honey for sweetness.

But why will you love this recipe? Let me count the ways.

Firstly, the combination of red wine and cardamom gives the pears a complex and intriguing flavor that will make your taste buds sing. The interplay between the earthiness of the wine and the robust spiciness of the cardamom is truly divine.

Secondly, this recipe is incredibly easy to make. All you need to do is combine a few ingredients in a saucepan, let them simmer for a bit, then add in some ripe yet firm pears and let them simmer until they’re tender and infused with flavor. It’s so simple that even novice cooks can create an impressive dessert.

Finally, this dish is incredibly versatile. You can serve these poached pears on their own, garnished with some chopped walnuts and crumbled blue cheese for added texture and depth of flavor. Or you can pair them with other indulgent desserts like cardamom cake or chocolate sauce for an extra special treat.

So what are you waiting for? Make this wine-poached pear recipe today and experience all the deliciousness that this classic dessert has to offer – with a twist!

Ingredient List

 Red wine and cardamom create an intoxicating scent in my kitchen.
Red wine and cardamom create an intoxicating scent in my kitchen.

Ingredients you will need:

  • 4 ripe firm pears, peeled and cored
  • 1 bottle of dry red wine (e.g. Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 2 1/2 cups of water
  • 2 cups of red wine
  • 3 cups of sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 whole cardamom pods
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • Juice of one orange
  • Zest of one orange, peeled in wide strips using a vegetable peeler
  • 1 tablespoon of orange juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Orange cardamom sabayon, for serving (optional)

Ingredients for the Red Wine Sauce:

  • Red wine poaching liquid from recipe above
  • 3 tablespoons of sugar
  • Strip of orange zest, about an inch wide and three inches long
  • Strip of lemon zest, about an inch wide and three inches long

You might also need some extra ingredients to serve alongside your poached pears like blue cheese, walnuts or a slice of pear chocolate cake.

The Recipe How-To

 These pears are about to take a luxurious bath in a red wine concoction.
These pears are about to take a luxurious bath in a red wine concoction.

Step 1: Prepare the Pears

To start this pears poached in red wine and cardamom recipe, gather your ingredients first. Ripe firm pears are perfect for this recipe because they hold their shape once cooked. You will need to peel and core the pears, but leave the stems as a pretty handle.

Step 2: Poach the Pears

In a saucepan, combine 2 cups of red wine, 2 cups of water, 1 cup of sugar, a cinnamon stick, cardamom pods, orange zest, and whole cloves. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer.

Once your poaching liquid is simmering nicely, you’ll need to add in the prepared pears carefully. Make sure they’re completely submerged in the liquid so they cook evenly. Simmer the pears for 25-30 minutes.

Step 3: Cool and Chill Pears

After simmering for half an hour, remove from heat and let the pears cool down in their cooking liquid. Once cool, transfer the pears and liquid into a container with a lid and chill in the fridge for several hours or overnight.

Step 4: Serve Chilled Pears

When you’re ready to serve these wine-poached beauties, take them out of their red wine bath and plate them up carefully. If you’d like some extra sauce with them on your plate, you can strain the leftover cooking liquid through a sieve to remove any bits and pieces.

These poached pears are stunning looking and taste just as good as they look! Perfectly tender with just the right amount of sweetness from honey and sugar melded together with notes of cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, star anise, and orange juice in your juicy wine-poached pears.

Step 5: Enjoy Your Poached Pears

These pears are so versatile and can be paired with a variety of flavors! Go classic with some blue cheese and walnuts, or get creative with a pear chocolate cake served alongside a luscious sabayon drizzled with chocolate sauce.

Regardless of how you decide to serve them up, these poached pears are sure to impress all who dine at your table!

Substitutions and Variations

 The perfect dessert for a cozy winter night in.
The perfect dessert for a cozy winter night in.

If you’re looking to switch things up or don’t have some of the ingredients on hand, don’t worry. This recipe is pretty flexible and can be adapted to your liking.


– Pears: If you can’t find ripe, firm pears, try substituting with apples or quinces. Just make sure they can hold their shape when poached.

– Red Wine: While cabernet sauvignon is a great choice for this recipe, any dry red wine will do. You can use merlot, pinot noir, zinfandel, or even a blend. Just make sure it’s a wine you would drink on its own.

– Cardamom Pods: If you don’t have cardamom pods, try using ground cardamom instead. Use 1/2 teaspoon in place of the whole pods.

– Cinnamon Stick: You can substitute the cinnamon stick with ground cinnamon. Use 1/4 teaspoon in place of each stick.


– Add star anise and orange peel to the poaching liquid for a deeper flavor.

– Serve the poached pears with blue cheese and walnuts for a savory twist on this dessert.

– For a boozy dessert, add 1/2 cup of brandy or cognac to the poaching liquid.

– Make a pear chocolate cake or cardamom cake with the leftover poached pears.

– Drizzle chocolate sauce or sabayon over the poached pears for an elegant dessert experience.

With these substitutions and variations, you can make this recipe your own and impress your guests with a unique flavor profile.

Serving and Pairing

 Poaching pears has never been so easy or delicious.
Poaching pears has never been so easy or delicious.

What better way to enjoy these delicious wine-poached pears than with a few slices of blue cheese and a sprinkle of walnuts? The creamy and tangy flavor of the cheese complements the sweetness of the pears, while the crunch of the nuts adds a delightful texture contrast.

When it comes to pairing them with wine, you can’t go wrong with serving the same red wine used in the poaching process. A full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot would be perfect to reveal the juicy and fruity notes that complement the dessert.

If you’re looking for something more adventurous, trying serving them with a sweet white wine like a Muscat or Moscato. The fresh aromas and flavors of grapefruit, orange blossom and apricot will enchant all the flavors in this dish.

It’s not only about cheese and wine though! This poached pear recipe can be transformed into an impressive dessert too. Slice it up and serve it on top of a creamy sabayon, sprinkle some cinnamon and drizzle rich chocolate sauce over it. You can also use these poached pears as a topping for your favorite fruit cake or as fancy fruit decoration around your favorite dessert recipes.

Whatever your choice is, be amazed by this elegant recipe that perfectly blends cardamom and orange peel undertones with magnificent softened ripe pears.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Wine not enjoy a dessert that is both sweet and boozy?
Wine not enjoy a dessert that is both sweet and boozy?

When it comes to poached pears in red wine and cardamom, you’ll be happy to know that it can be made ahead of time and stored for later. The great thing about this recipe is that the flavors only get better with time!

To make-ahead, allow the poaching liquid to cool completely before storing pears and liquid separately in airtight containers in the refrigerator. It can be made up to three days in advance.

For reheating, simply transfer the pears back into a saucepan with the poaching liquid and bring it to a boil over medium-low heat. Once it boils, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until heated through.

This recipe can also be frozen! Let everything cool down completely before transferring to freezer bags. When ready to use, thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating as per instructions above.

Storing this dish is as easy as pie; just pop the lid on the container and store it away in your fridge or freezer. Enjoy it later when you’re looking for an easy dessert that doesn’t require a lot of time!

Tips for Perfect Results

 The ruby hue of the poaching liquid is simply stunning.
The ruby hue of the poaching liquid is simply stunning.

To ensure the best outcome for your poached pears, there are a few tips that can guarantee a perfect result. First, when selecting your pears, make sure to choose ripe but firm ones. If they are too ripe, they will become mushy during the poaching process.

When peeling the pears, leave the stems on for a beautiful presentation. To prevent discoloration of the flesh, after peeling, sprinkle some lemon juice over the pears or place them in a bowl of acidulated water.

Use the right wine for your poached pears. A full-bodied dry red wine like Cabernet Sauvignon is the perfect choice as it complements the sweetness of the pears and adds depth to its flavor. Make sure to use a wine that you would enjoy drinking.

When poaching the pears, add aromatics like cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, and whole cloves to infuse more flavors into your dish. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different spices such as star anise or black pepper.

Simmer the pears gently in low heat to avoid overcooking them. Overcooking can cause them to break apart or become too soft. Test their doneness by inserting a toothpick or knife into the base of each pear; it should glide smoothly through.

When preparing the syrup for poaching, use equal parts sugar and water and adjust according to your taste buds. Adding honey instead of sugar can also give it an extra layer of richness.

Lastly, if you want a sauce for your poached pears, reserve some of the poaching liquid and reduce it until thickened. You can also serve it with blue cheese and walnuts or pair it with a slice of pear chocolate cake topped with sabayon and chocolate sauce for a decadent dessert.


Now, let’s move on to some of the most frequently asked questions about this recipe for pears poached in red wine and cardamom. These may include queries about ingredient substitutions, cooking times, and storage options. Keep reading to find out everything you need to know to make this delicious dessert!

Should pears be peeled before poaching?

When preparing pears for poaching, it’s important to remove the skin as it contains tannins that can cause a bitter taste. To do this, simply use a vegetable peeler or paring knife to peel the skin away. Then, cut the pear in half vertically and scoop out the seeds with a small spoon or melon baller.

What spices go well with pears?

The list includes a variety of herbs and spices such as allspice, anise, black pepper, chives, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger, mint, nutmeg, rosemary, tarragon, and thyme. Additionally, it comprises other ingredients like almonds, caramel, chocolate, hazelnuts, honey, maple syrup, oils, pecans, pistachios, walnuts, brandy, wine (both red and white), and vanilla.

Should pears be cored before poaching?

It is advisable to remove the cores of pears before poaching to maintain their shape while being cooked.

Do you cover pears when poaching?

Gently place the pears into the simmering liquid and cover them with a circular parchment paper that has a tiny hole on top for ventilation. Allow the pears to cook through by maintaining the liquid at a very low boil. The cooking time may vary from 10 to 25 minutes, depending on the type of pears used.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, if you are looking for a simple yet elegant dessert that will impress your guests and satisfy your sweet tooth, look no further than poached pears in red wine and cardamom. With just a few ingredients and some easy-to-follow steps, you can create a flavorful and sophisticated dish that everyone will love.

Not only is this recipe delicious, but it is also versatile. You can customize it to your liking by adding different spices or substituting the wine or sweetener. Plus, it pairs well with a variety of cheeses, nuts, and desserts.

So next time you need a show-stopping dessert or just want to indulge in something sweet and comforting, give this poached pear recipe a try. Trust me, your taste buds will thank you.

Pears Poached in Red Wine and Cardamom

Pears Poached in Red Wine and Cardamom Recipe

Such a delicious dessert, the pears are so succulent after poaching in the wine - m-m-m-m-m-m!!
No ratings yet
Cook Time 40 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine European
Calories 494.4 kcal


  • 4 pears, firm, but not soft, with stems
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 2 1/2 cups local red wine (full-bodied)
  • 1/2 cup local honey
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 ounces walnuts
  • 2 ounces blue cheese, crumbles


  • Start with the pears; cut the bottom so they can stand in the pot to poach. Peel from stem down, to avoid cutting the stem. Place all 4 pears in a medium saucepan. Add water, wine, honey, cardamom, and cinnamon stick.
  • Bring to a boil then simmer until pears are soft but bet still hold their shape. Depending the firmness of the pear, this should take 30-40 minutes. Remove the pears and let cool in the refrigerator.
  • Remove the cinnamon stick and bring the liquid to a boil until it reduces to about 3/4 and starts to caramelize.
  • For serving, place pear on a plate, drizzle the wine reduction over the top of the pear and let it run down the sides.
  • Garnish with walnuts and crumbled blue cheese.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 596gCalories: 494.4kcalCarbohydrates: 67gProtein: 6.1gFat: 13.6gSaturated Fat: 3.5gCholesterol: 10.6mgSodium: 210.3mgFiber: 6.3gSugar: 52.4g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Fruit, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein, Pears
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