Discover the deliciousness of pear butter made with fresh pears and fragrant spices. Whether cooked on the stove, in a crockpot, or using a slow cooker, this easy pear butter recipe is the perfect way to preserve those fall pears.
And since my love for pears continues, I’ve decided to simmer them in butter. Making spiced pear butter is an absolute joy, as the entire kitchen fills with the delightful scent of Christmas when I add those festive spices.
This is a great way to enjoy fall comfort food when pears or apples are in season.
What is pear butter?
Pear butter is a smooth fruit spread made from slowly cooked and pureed pears and spices. It is similar to apple butter in its smooth texture and sweet taste. Whether spread on toast or filled in pastries, pear butter is a great way to enjoy pear.
Ingredients to make Easy Homemade pear butter
Look for ripe but not overly soft pears when making pear butter. Ripe pears are naturally sweet and flavorful, reducing the need for additional sugar in the recipe. Additionally, their soft texture makes them easier to puree into a smooth consistency.
On the other hand, if you have pears that are not enjoyable to eat fresh, transforming them into pear butter can enhance their taste. You can add various spices to infuse flavors and make them more palatable. With a longer cooking time, these pears will become soft and tender, offering a solution to salvage them into a delicious spread.
You can use ripe Bartlett Pears for their sweet and juicy nature and smooth texture. Bosc Pears or Anjou pears may also be a good choice.
Lemon juice helps balance the sweetness of the pears.
Brown sugar or honey (optional)
No need if you use sweet ripe pears.
I incorporated whole pieces of spices in the recipe, but you can also use ground spices. Whole pieces of spices release their flavors slowly, resulting in a more subtle taste, while ground spices provide a more intense flavor.
If you choose to use whole spices, removing them before pureeing the pear butter for a smooth texture is important.
Cinnamon sticks add a warm and aromatic flavor that complements the natural sweetness of the pears.
Nutmeg adds a subtle hint of earthy warmth and depth to pear butter.
Fresh ginger adds a delightful zing and a touch of spiciness.
Cloves contribute a rich and aromatic flavor.
With its unique and fragrance, cardamom brings a floral and slightly citrusy flavor.
Adding a vanilla bean to the pear butter recipe infuses the spread with a comforting aroma.
The distinct licorice-like flavor of star anise complements the sweetness of pears in pear butter.
Some people also like to use Pumpkin Spice Mix.
Homemade pear butter Recipe
First step – Prepare the pears
Core and peel the pears. I kept the skin on a side and added them to a cooking mixture for additional flavor. You better remove it before pureeing to get a smooth texture.
Second step – combine pears with spices.
Whether you use an instant pot, slow cooker, or a medium saucepan on the stove, combine the chopped pears with cinnamon sticks, nutmeg, fresh ginger, cloves, cardamom, vanilla bean, and star anise. Mix it well.
Third step – Cook the mixture.
Cook the mixture until the pears soften.
In Instant pot
Check if the lid is closed tightly and set the vent to the sealed position. Choose a cook time of 20 minutes on high pressure. Once the cooking time has elapsed, carefully perform a quick pressure release to release the steam.
slow cooker pear butter
Cover the slow cooker with the lid and cook on low heat for 8 to 10 hours or until the pears are soft and easily mashed with a fork.
Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and let the pears simmer for about 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally. The pears will soften and break down, creating a thick and smooth consistency.
Fourth step – Balance the flavors and texture
Take out all the spices and pear skin from the mixture. Add the lemon juice and taste it. You can sweeten it with brown sugar or honey at this stage; I didn’t use any. Also, check the consistency. If it appears too thin or runny, simmer the mixture without the lid until it reaches your desired thickness. Keep in mind that the mixture will thicken further once it cools down. Remove from heat once the pear butter has thickened, and let it cool.
Fifth step – Blend it
Use an immersion blender or transfer to a food processor to puree the mixture till smooth. Ladle the pear butter to clean, sterilized jars. Seal tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks, or process the jars in a water bath canner for longer shelf life.
Preserving pear butter in a water bath canner
is an effective way to preserve pear butter so you can enjoy it for a year long.
After preparing the pear butter, transfer it into sterilized canning jars, ensuring to leave about ¼ inch of headspace at the top of each jar. Use a clean, damp cloth to wipe the rims of the jars, removing any residue or debris. Place the lids on the jars, tightening them until they are just finger-tight.
Next, set up a water bath canner or a large pot of boiling water with a canning rack or folded towel at the bottom. Carefully place the filled jars into the canner with enough hot water to cover the jars by 1 inch. Once the water reaches a rolling boil, start a timer to water bath for 10 minutes.
After 5 minutes, turn off the heat and cautiously remove the jars from the water using canning tongs. Place them on a countertop lined with a towel and allow them to cool completely. As you set jars to cool, you can check the seals by pressing down on the center of each lid. The jar is properly sealed if the lid is firm and doesn’t move. However, if it pops back up, the jar is not sealed and should be refrigerated and used within a few days.
How should I serve this pear butter?
- It is perfect for spreading on toast or bread.
- Use delicious pear butter as a topping for these gluten free crepes, waffles, or French toast.
- Mix it into yogurt or oatmeal for added sweetness and flavor.
- Pair it with cheese and crackers for a delightful appetizer or snack.
- Incorporate it into baked goods such as muffins, scones, or cakes for a fruity twist.
- Enjoy it as a filling for pastries, tarts, or turnovers.
- Use it as a glaze for roasted meats, particularly pork or poultry.
- I love to add a dollop to my favorite matcha ice cream or frozen yogurt for a tasty dessert.
- Blend it into smoothies or milkshakes to enhance the flavor.
- Get creative and use it as a condiment in savory dishes like sandwiches, wraps, or charcuterie boards.
How to make pear butter thicker in consistency?
Continue simmering the butter without a lid over low heat to allow more moisture to evaporate, resulting in a thicker consistency. Be sure to stir occasionally to prevent sticking and burning.
Remember that fruit butter will naturally thicken further as it cools.
How long does this easy pear butter last?
When stored in an airtight container or jar, pear butter can last for 2 to 3 weeks in the refrigerator.
If you follow proper canning directions, such as using sterilized jars and achieving a good seal, pear butter can last for up to a year or even longer when stored in a cool, dark place such as a pantry.
Freezing is a great option if you have made a large batch or want to preserve it for an extended period.
Allow the pear butter to cool completely before freezing. Spoon the pear butter into the airtight containers, leaving a bit of headspace at the top to allow for expansion. Seal the containers tightly, label and place them in the freezer. You can store it in the freezer for 6 to 12 months or even longer.