Wine Poached Pears: A Delicious and Elegant Dessert

Welcome, my fellow gastronomes, to my wine-poached pears recipe. If you are in search of a sophisticated dessert that will impress your friends and family, look no further! There is something irresistibly romantic about the idea of poaching fruit in wine that is sure to delight even the most demanding palates.

Poached pears are a classic dessert that dates back to medieval times. However, there is an infinite number of variations to this treat depending on what kind of wine and spices you use. In this recipe, I will walk you through how to make two different types of poached pears: one cooked in red wine with cinnamon and cloves, and the other made with white wine and vanilla bean.

What makes this recipe so special is how easy it is to make without any fuss. The hardest part is peeling the pears, but once that’s done, all you have to do is place them in the pot with your chosen wine and let them simmer away until they’re tender.

Trust me; this dessert earns its place as an elegant final course. When you poach the fruit in a spirited blend of a favorite bottle of red or white wine and gentle flavors such as cinnamon sticks, cloves or grated nutmeg, they develop a rich flavor that complements any holiday meal or fancy dinner party.

So preheat those ovens and break out those slow cookers, because this wine-poached pear recipe will become a regular favorite at your dining table.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Wine Poached Pears
Wine Poached Pears

If you’re looking for a luxurious sweet treat that will make your taste buds dance, this wine poached pears recipe is an absolute must-try. This dish consists of soft, juicy pears that have been slowly cooked in a blend of red wine, spices, and sugar until they are infused with deep and complex flavors. The texture is perfectly tender yet still firm enough to hold its shape, creating an elegant appearance on the plate.

But this recipe isn’t just about substance over style; it also has plenty of great health benefits! Pears are packed with vitamins and minerals, such as Vitamin C and Potassium. They are also low in calories and high in fiber, making them an ideal choice for those who want to snack healthier while still treating themselves. Plus, the red wine used in this dish contains antioxidants that can help lower blood pressure and protect against heart disease.

In addition to its delicious taste and health benefits, this recipe is incredibly versatile. It can be served chilled or warm and makes for a great dessert or even breakfast with yogurt on top. You can also add whipped cream, ice cream or mascarpone cheese to create an indulgent twist to your serving.

The ingredients for this recipe are simple yet perfectly balanced: red wine, sugar, cinnamon stick, whole cloves, orange peel – all available at any grocery store! So why not give it a try?

If you’re craving something sweet yet sophisticated without having to invest hours into fiddling around with dessert sauces or crusts – this recipe will deliver flavorful results in practically no time at all. Trust me – once you try these poached pears, you’ll know precisely why you love it too!

Ingredient List

 Delight your senses with this elegant and luscious dessert.
Delight your senses with this elegant and luscious dessert.

Here are the ingredients you will need to make this delicious poached pears recipe:

  • 4 cups of red wine
  • ½ cup of port wine
  • ½ cup of honey
  • 1 large piece of orange peel
  • 8-10 whole cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 whole vanilla bean
  • 1 lemon, juiced and zested
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 6 ripe, firm pears

You may also choose to substitute the red wine with a sweet white wine, such as Riesling or Moscato, to achieve a lighter flavor for the poached pears. Likewise, you can adjust the level of sweetness by adding or reducing the amount of honey called for in the recipe.

The Recipe How-To

 These wine-poached pears make a mouthwatering and impressive dessert for any occasion.
These wine-poached pears make a mouthwatering and impressive dessert for any occasion.

What you need:

  • Ingredients:
  • 4 firm pears (such as Bosc or Anjou)
  • 2 cups of red wine (such as Cabernet Sauvignon or a spiced red wine mix)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large piece of orange peel (about 8-10 strips)
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

  • Utensils:

  • Large, non-reactive saucepan with lid
  • Cutting board and knife
  • Vegetable peeler


  1. Prep the Pears: Peel the pears, leaving the stem intact. Cut about a quarter-inch off the bottoms so they can stand up straight.

  2. Combine Wine and Sugar: In the saucepan combine the red wine, sugar, orange peel, lemon zest, cloves, cinnamon sticks, nutmeg and ginger.

  3. Bring to Boil: Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to limit boiling to simmering.

  4. Add Pears: Add the pears and add in enough water to cover them completely.

  5. Poach Pears: Cover and let simmer for about half an hour until the pears are tender when pierced with a knife.

  6. Remove Pears from Saucepan: Remove pears from saucepan using tongs and place on a plate.

  7. Reduce Wine Sauce: Bring sauce back up to a full boil over high heat and reduce by half or two-thirds (about half-an-hour).

  8. Serve: Pour wine reduction over poached pears and serve hot or cold with ice cream, whipped cream, fruit, mascarpone cheese, or chocolate sauce.

Now you can savor the delicious Wine-Poached Pears that are sweet and spicy!

Substitutions and Variations

 Not only visually stunning, but also scrumptious and easy to make!
Not only visually stunning, but also scrumptious and easy to make!

Now that you know the basics of this wine-poached pear recipe, let’s explore some variations and substitutions to help you make the most of this delicious dish.

Firstly, if you don’t have pears on hand, try substituting them with other fruits like peaches, plums, or apples. Each fruit will bring its own unique flavor to the dish, so don’t be afraid to experiment!

If you are looking for a non-alcoholic version of this recipe, try using fruit juice instead of wine. Apple or pear juice would work particularly well in this recipe.

For a spiced red wine variation of the recipe, consider adding star anise or vanilla bean to the poaching liquid. These ingredients will add an extra layer of complexity to the flavor profile.

If you want a stronger wine flavor, you could use a full-bodied Cabernet Sauvignon or Port wine instead of white or sherry wine. Red wine-poached pears are just as delicious as white-wine poached ones.

To make this recipe even more decadent, serve your poached pears with mascarpone cheese or whipped cream. For added flair and complexity, add a spicy chocolate sauce or a drizzle of mulled wine over the top.

Lastly, try baking your pears instead of poaching them for a different textural sensation. Serve them warm with a side of ice cream and enjoy one of our top pear dessert recipes!

No matter how you choose to switch up this versatile dish, one thing remains certain- it’s just as tasty!

Serving and Pairing

 The juicy and tender pears are caramelized in a red wine sauce, for a sweet and tangy flavor.
The juicy and tender pears are caramelized in a red wine sauce, for a sweet and tangy flavor.

Now that your wine-poached pears are ready, it’s time to serve and enjoy them! This dessert is a show-stopper on its own, but if you want to elevate the flavors even more, there are plenty of pairing options to consider.

One of the most classic pairings for poached pears is mascarpone cheese. The creamy, slightly sweet cheese works perfectly with the delicate sweetness of the pears. You can serve the pears with a dollop of mascarpone on top, or even whip up a vanilla mascarpone cream to serve alongside them.

For those who prefer a more decadent dessert, chocolate sauce is another great option. Drizzle some warm chocolate sauce over the top of your pears for an extra layer of richness and indulgence.

If you’re looking to keep things light and fresh, consider pairing your poached pears with fruit. Fresh berries or sliced apples are a great option, as they add some tanginess and acidity to cut through the sweetness of the pears.

Of course, don’t forget about ice cream! A scoop of vanilla ice cream on top of your wine-poached pears is always a crowd-pleaser.

Last but not least, if you want to stick with the wine theme, consider serving your poached pears alongside a glass of mulled wine or a fortified wine like port. The spicy and warming flavors of mulled wine will complement the aromatic spices used in the poaching liquid, while port will bring out the richness and depth of the red wine used in this recipe.

No matter how you choose to serve your wine-poached pears, they are sure to be a hit at any dinner party or special occasion. Enjoy!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Indulge in the luxurious combination of a full-bodied red wine and juicy pears.
Indulge in the luxurious combination of a full-bodied red wine and juicy pears.

If you are planning to serve wine poached pears for a dinner party or special occasion, then this recipe will come in handy because it can be made ahead and stored easily. Once the pears are poached and cooked in the wine sugar mixture, they can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. This means that you can pre-make them before the party and have one less thing to worry about on the day of the event.

When serving, take the poached pears out of the refrigerator about an hour before you plan on eating them, so that they can reach room temperature. The wine sauce may have thickened or solidified due to the cold temperature, but don’t worry, as it can be reheated easily. You can either reheat it in a saucepan over low heat or pop it in the microwave for 30-second intervals until it returns to its liquid consistency again.

If you find that there is leftover wine poached pears and sauce, then fear not, as they make an excellent breakfast treat when mixed with yoghurt or eaten alongside granola. Alternatively, you could use them as a topping for ice cream or add them to your morning oatmeal.

In conclusion, this recipe is a great choice if you want a dessert that is easy to make-ahead and store. Whether you are planning an intimate dinner at home or a large celebration, wine poached pears recipe is versatile enough to accommodate any occasion.

Tips for Perfect Results

 The warm spices and vanilla enhance the richness of the fruit, making this dessert a real
The warm spices and vanilla enhance the richness of the fruit, making this dessert a real

To ensure your wine poached pears turn out perfectly, there are a few tips I recommend following. First of all, choose pears that are firm and not overly ripe. Overripe pears can turn to mush during the poaching process.

When it comes to the wine, select a red wine that is fruity and not too tannic, such as a cabernet sauvignon or shiraz. You can also use a spiced red wine, which will add extra flavor to your poached pears.

To infuse even more flavor into your poaching liquid, don’t be afraid to get creative with your spices. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and ground ginger are classic choices, but you could also try adding a star anise or a vanilla bean.

When peeling the pears, leave the stems intact for an elegant presentation. This will also help prevent the fruit from falling apart while it cooks.

If you’re making a large batch of poached pears, consider using a slow cooker instead of a stovetop saucepan. This will allow you to easily cook a larger quantity of pears without having to worry about them sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Finally, be sure to let the pears cool completely in their poaching liquid before removing them. This will allow them to fully absorb the flavors of the liquid and ensure that they are perfectly tender throughout.

By following these tips, you’ll create wine poached pears that are flavorful, tender, and visually stunning. Enjoy!

Bottom Line

Now that you have discovered the indulgent pleasure of wine-poached pears, there’s no going back to boring and bland desserts. These pears are the perfect sweet treat for any occasion – from a sophisticated cocktail party to a cozy dinner at home.

With their luscious texture and the subtle notes of wine, cinnamon, and nutmeg, these pears will satisfy your cravings for both fruity and spicy flavors. And the best part? They are super easy to make! With just a few simple ingredients and minimal prep time, you can have an impressive dessert that looks and tastes incredible.

So, whether you’re a seasoned chef or an amateur cook, give this recipe a try and let your taste buds do the talking. You won’t regret it! Serve them with vanilla mascarpone cream or some chocolate sauce for an extra touch of decadence that will enhance the experience even further.

Overall, wine-poached pears are more than just a dessert – they are a work of art that showcases the versatility of wine in cooking. So don’t hesitate to experiment with different types of wine and spices to create your own unique twist on this recipe. The possibilities are endless!

In conclusion, I hope this recipe has inspired you to explore the exciting world of wine desserts and added some new flavors to your culinary repertoire. Trust me; once you try these wine-poached pears, you’ll be hooked for life!

Wine Poached Pears

Wine Poached Pears Recipe

A simple, light, and healthier dessert option, or great as a lunch hour snack. Also perfect for canning in large quantities to store away when pears go out of season and become more expensive. Add them to salads, mixed fruit bowls, or plain yogurt for an instant treat!
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Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 2 cups pears with syrup
Calories 357.1 kcal


  • 2 pears (Green or Bosc work best)
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sweet sherry wine
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 pinch cinnamon


  • Core and seed pears, and cut them into 1/2 inch cubes. It's okay to leave the skin on, but you can skin them if you wish. Set pears cubes aside.
  • In small sauce pot, bring white wine, water, and sherry to a boil. Stir in all remaining ingredients except pear cubes and continue to boil. Add pear cubes, and continue boil for about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, allowing syrup to reduce by about half. Pears are done when they are translucent and soft when poked with a fork.
  • Remove pot from heat. Pour contents into a glass bowl and refrigerate until chilled. Divide into two serving bowls and enjoy with a spoon.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 425gCalories: 357.1kcalCarbohydrates: 73.7gProtein: 1.1gFat: 0.3gSaturated Fat: 0.1gSodium: 10.9mgFiber: 7.3gSugar: 58.4g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Dessert, Easy, Fruit, Healthy, Low Cholesterol, Low Protein, Pears
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