Delicious Spiced Wine Poached Pears Recipe

Welcome to my kitchen, wine lovers! Today I’m going to share with you my recipe for Spiced Wine Poached Pears. I’ll show you how to prepare a mouth-watering dessert that’s perfect for any dinner party or romantic evening at home.

There’s something special about poached fruit. It’s soft and tender, full of rich flavor, and just a little bit decadent. But when you add in the flavors of spiced red wine, cinnamon, cloves, and star anise, the result is absolutely magical.

This recipe is not only delicious; it’s also incredibly easy to make. It requires just a handful of ingredients and can be prepared in under an hour. Plus, once the pears are poached, they can be stored in their liquid for several days, which means you can enjoy them throughout the week.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started on this unforgettable Spiced Wine Poached Pears recipe!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Spiced Wine Poached Pears
Spiced Wine Poached Pears

Let me tell you why this spiced wine poached pear recipe is going to be your new favorite dessert. First of all, it’s a sweet and indulgent treat that’s perfect for any season. And who doesn’t love a tasty dessert every once in a while?

Secondly, the combination of red wine, spices, and citrus in the poaching liquid adds depth and complexity of flavor to the pears. The subtle notes of cinnamon, clove, and star anise complement the sweetness of the pears perfectly.

But that’s not all – this recipe is also incredibly easy to make! With simple ingredients like Bosc pears, port wine, and sugar, you can create a rich and flavorful dessert that your friends and family will love. Plus, it only takes about 30 minutes from start to finish!

Lastly, this recipe is versatile enough to be served with a wide variety of dishes. Try pairing it with a pear cake or tart for an elegant after-dinner treat. Or add some vanilla mascarpone cream or whipped cream for an even more decadent experience. The possibilities are endless!

So there you have it – all the reasons why you’re going to love this spiced wine poached pear recipe. It’s simple to make, packed with flavor, and can be served alongside a variety of different desserts. Trust me when I say that this is one recipe worth trying!

Ingredient List

 The perfect winter dessert: spiced wine poached pears!
The perfect winter dessert: spiced wine poached pears!

Here are the ingredients you’ll need to create this delicious Spiced Wine Poached Pears Recipe:

  • 4 bosc pears
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup port wine
  • Juice and zest of 1 orange
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • Peel of 1 orange
  • 1 vanilla bean, split in half
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 1 piece of crystallized ginger, about an inch long and sliced thinly
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cup sugar

Make sure to have all of these ingredients on hand before starting the recipe. You can find most of these items at your local grocery store.

The Recipe How-To

 When pears meet spiced wine, magic happens.
When pears meet spiced wine, magic happens.

With this recipe, you’ll be able to create an impressive dessert that will impress your guests! These Spiced Wine Poached Pears are both elegant and simple to make. Let me walk you through the process.


  • 4 Bosc pears
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 star anise
  • Juice and zest of 1 orange


  1. In a large saucepan, combine the wine, water, sugar, orange juice, and zest, cinnamon stick, cloves, and anise. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.

  2. Peel the pears but leave stems intact. Using a small melon baller or teaspoon, scoop out the core of each pear from the bottom.

  3. When the wine mixture has reduced to a syrupy consistency, add the pears to the pot in an upright position. The wine should just cover the pears.

  4. Simmer gently over low heat for about 20 -25 minutes until pears are tender but still firm enough to hold their shape.

  5. Remove pan from heat and allow to cool slightly with pears still in liquid.

  6. Remove pears from poaching liquid carefully with a slotted spoon and set aside on a plate covered with plastic film.

  7. Discard spices from poaching liquid in pan and return poaching liquid back to medium heat setting.

  8. Reduce poaching liquid until it thickens up into a syrupy condensed wine sauce.

  9. Spoon some of the poaching sauce over each pear before serving.

Congratulations! You have successfully made Spiced Wine Poached Pears–a fabulous dessert perfect for any occasion!

Serving Suggestions:

Enjoy your wonderous poached pears just as they are or add some mascarpone, whipped cream, or vanilla ice cream on top for a luxurious dessert. Alternatively, place the pears over freshly baked pound cake or pear tart for an incredible taste duo.


Q: Can I use other fruits besides pears for this recipe?

A: Yes, any firm and not super-ripe fruit can be used.

Q: Can I keep the poaching liquid to reuse?

A: Absolutely! The remaining poaching liquid can be strained and saved to poach additional fruit or make into mulled wine.

Now you know how to create this simple but delicious dish that will wow anyone who tries it!

Substitutions and Variations

 These poached pears are the epitome of comforting indulgence.
These poached pears are the epitome of comforting indulgence.

If you want to make some alterations or put your spin on this spiced wine poached pears recipe, I’ve got a few fun suggestions for you.

Firstly, if you cannot get hold of Bosc pears, feel free to use any other firm pear variety that’s available. Bear in mind, the cooking time may vary based on the ripeness of the pears.

If you don’t have port wine, replace it with red wine to make red wine poached pears. You can also experiment with using white wine or a combination of red and white wines.

For an added depth of flavor and texture, add dried fruits like raisins or currants to the poaching liquid. This will add sweetness to the sauce and an extra burst of fruity flavors.

If you’re looking for a non-alcoholic option, replace the wine with apple cider or grape juice. Instead of port wine, use grape juice or apple cider vinegar diluted in water and sugar to create a tangy and sweet poaching liquid that pairs well with seasonal spices.

To take things up a notch, try adding a boozy twist by adding 1/4 cup of rum or brandy to the poaching liquid. The end result will be full-bodied and intoxicatingly flavorful!

Lastly, after you’ve poached your pears in spiced red wine, slice them up and serve them over ice cream, alongside pear cake or tart, topped with mascarpone and chocolate shavings, or as part of a fruit platter with whipped cream. There are endless possibilities!

Serving and Pairing

 A glass of red wine in one hand, a forkful of spiced pear in the other. Heavenly.
A glass of red wine in one hand, a forkful of spiced pear in the other. Heavenly.

These spiced wine poached pears are simply stunning to serve and even better to eat! The beautiful deep red color of the wine-poached pears will look wonderful on your dinner table, especially during the winter months. I love setting these up as a beautiful dessert centerpiece to impress my guests.

You can serve the wine-poached pears as they are or pair them with different dishes, such as pear cake, pear tart, or even a slow-cooker pear crumble. A simple vanilla mascarpone cream would be perfect for garnishing the poached pears. If you are feeling indulgent, you could also serve them with a side of chocolate, fruit or some whipped cream for an added treat.

For pairing with wine, I recommend going for a red wine with medium tannins and some hints of spice like Zinfandel, Syrah, or Shiraz. The richness and juicy texture of the wine-poached pear and the boldness and depth of flavor found in these wines complement each other beautifully while also cutting through the sweetness of the dish.

Invigorate your taste buds with this spiced wine poached pears recipe – few things surpass its deliciousness except perhaps, one more serving!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 The warm aroma of cinnamon and red wine infuses these pears with pure holiday joy.
The warm aroma of cinnamon and red wine infuses these pears with pure holiday joy.

These wine-poached pears can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator. This make-ahead option is perfect for those who like to plan their desserts ahead of time. The poaching liquid can act as a preservative and keep the pears well-poached for up to a week.

To store the poached pears, simply transfer them to an airtight container and pour the poaching liquid over them. Make sure that the pears are completely submerged in the liquid. Then place the container in the fridge and chill until ready to use.

When ready to serve, gently heat the poaching liquid on low heat until it’s completely warmed through. Take out the pears from the fridge about an hour before serving, and allow them to reach room temperature. Carefully remove them from the poaching liquid and serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Additionally, these wine-poached pears can be reheated by placing them back into a saucepan with the poaching liquid on low heat. Simmer for a few minutes until they have warmed up.

These deliciously spiced wine-poached pears are perfect for any occasion and certainly make an impressive dessert display. So take advantage of this storing and reheating option and have yourself a scrumptious, hassle-free dessert every time!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Simple ingredients come together to create a spectacularly gorgeous dessert.
Simple ingredients come together to create a spectacularly gorgeous dessert.

To ensure a successful outcome when preparing spiced wine poached pears, consider the following tips:

1. Use firm and ripe pears: Selecting the right type of pear is crucial for the success of a recipe. I recommend using firm and ripe Bosc pears. They will hold their shape well during cooking and have a sweet flavor that pairs perfectly with the spiced wine.

2. Poach the pears in a non-reactive pot: When poaching pears, it’s important to use a non-reactive pot such as enamel or stainless steel. Reactive materials such as aluminum or copper can alter the taste of the wine and affect the final result.

3. Add sugar gradually: To ensure that the sweetness level is just right, add sugar gradually to the spiced wine mixture. Start with 1/4 cup and add more, if needed.

4. Use aromatics sparingly: A little goes a long way when it comes to cinnamon, cloves, and star anise. Adding too much of these aromatics can overpower the flavor of the poached pears.

5. Test for doneness: Piercing a pear with a sharp knife is an excellent way to check if it’s fully cooked. You want it to be tender but not mushy.

6. Store leftover pears in poaching liquid: To keep the poached pears moist and flavorful, store them in their poaching liquid in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.

7. Reheat gently: When reheating leftover poached pears, do so gently over low heat on the stovetop or microwave them for a few seconds at a time until they reach your desired temperature.

8. Serve with complimentary toppings: Spiced wine poached pears are versatile and pair well with many accompaniments such as ice cream, whipped cream, chocolate sauce, mascarpone cheese, pear cake, pear crumble or even a slice of pear pie. Be creative and have fun with it!

With these tips in mind, you are guaranteed to achieve perfect and delicious results when making this spiced wine poached pears recipe.


Now, let’s answer some frequently asked questions about this Spiced Wine Poached Pears Recipe.

What wine goes well with poached pears?

When it comes to pairing desserts with wine, late harvest selections that are syrupy and honey-like are particularly divine with poached pears. Pinot Gris and Muscat are among the best choices for pairing with this type of dessert wine. Bosc pears, which have a thicker skin, are a great option for this dessert because their skin keeps the juice and flavor intact. Trust me, the combination of juicy poached pears and a luscious dessert wine is irresistible.

Should pears be peeled before poaching?

When it comes to poaching pears, it is important to remember that the skin contains tannins that could make the fruit taste bitter if left on. To get ready for poaching, use a vegetable peeler or paring knife to remove the skin of the pear. Cut the pear vertically in half and take out the seeds with a small spoon or melon baller.

Should pears be cored before poaching?

Removing the core of the pears before poaching them is recommended to ensure they maintain their form while cooking.

Do you cover pears when poaching?

To cook pears in liquid, gently place them into the pot and top with a circular piece of parchment paper, making sure to create a small hole in the middle to allow steam to escape. Maintain a low boil, and allow the pears to simmer until fully cooked, which can take anywhere from 10 to 25 minutes, depending on the type of pear used.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, this spiced wine poached pears recipe is an excellent choice for dessert lovers who appreciate the rich, warm flavor of red wine. Its unique combination of spices and sweet fruits make it a sophisticated yet approachable dish that will impress your guests. With its versatile pairing options, this dish is a must-try for anyone looking for an elegant and delicious dessert.

Whether you prefer to serve it alongside pear cake or tart, with mascarpone or chocolate, slow-cooked or crumbled, this spiced wine poached pears recipe is sure to be a crowd-pleaser. The velvety texture of the poached pears paired with the warm spiced wine makes for a perfect winter treat that will leave everyone feeling cozy and satisfied.

So next time you’re looking for a beautiful, flavorful and easy-to-make treat for your guests or loved ones, try out this amazing spiced wine poached pears recipe. And don’t forget to experiment with different variations and combinations to find your perfect match. Bon appétit!

Spiced Wine Poached Pears

Spiced Wine Poached Pears Recipe

This is a spiced version of the classic red wine poached pears. The remaining sauce is wonderful served over french toast the next morning, which my husband insists on every time we have these. Times listed do not include cooling time (I recommend at least 2 hours).
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Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine European
Calories 491.8 kcal


  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 star anise
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 750 ml red wine
  • 1 1/2 cups port wine
  • 1 tablespoon crystallized ginger
  • 1 orange, zest of, divided
  • 4 medium bosc pears
  • water
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice


  • Peel the pears and put in a medium bowl with the lemon juice and enough water to cover to prevent browning.
  • In a large heavy saucepan, combine the water, sugar, anise, cloves, and cinnamon stick.
  • Stir the sugar mixture over medium heat until the sugar dissolves.
  • Add the wine, port, ginger, and about 2/3 of the orange zest (the remainder will be used for garnish). Stir to combine. Bring to a simmer.
  • Add the pears. Place the lid on the pot so that steam can escape and simmer until the pears are tender when pierced with a toothpick. This will take about 25 minutes. Make sure that you turn the pears so that all sides are evenly cooked.
  • Remove the pears from the cooking liquid with a slotted spoon. Transfer them to a plate, cover with plastic wrap, cool in the refrigerator about 2 hours.
  • Pour the cooking liquid through a sieve to remove the cloves, zest, and other particulate. Return to sauce pan. At this point you can refrigerate the liquid if you plan on serving it within a day or 2.
  • To reduce the sauce, simmer until desired consistency is achieved (about 30 minutes to my taste). Taste as you are cooking it to adjust sweetness to your taste (I don't like things that sweet, so the sauce is tart when made according to the recipe).
  • Serve each pear with a little sauce drizzled over and sprinkle with remaining zest. Mint & dark chocolate also make good garnishes.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 488gCalories: 491.8kcalCarbohydrates: 67.9gProtein: 0.9gFat: 0.2gSodium: 17.2mgFiber: 5.2gSugar: 49.4g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Dessert, Easy, Fruit, Pears
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