Old-Fashioned Pear Dessert Recipe
Old-Fashioned Pear Dessert Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Old-Fashioned Pear Dessert Recipe

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This never-fails pear recipe turns out moist, firm and fruity every time. Some members of our family request these rich squares instead of cake for their birthdays.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 35 min. + cooling
MAKES:9 servings
Contest Winning Test Kitchen Approved
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 35 min. + cooling
MAKES: 9 servings


  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 5 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup cold butter, cubed
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1-1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 5 cups chopped peeled ripe pears

Nutritional Facts

1 serving (1 piece) equals 430 calories, 20 g fat (12 g saturated fat), 119 mg cholesterol, 511 mg sodium, 60 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 5 g protein.


  1. In a large bowl, combine the flour, 3 tablespoons sugar and salt; cut in butter until crumbly. In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks and lemon juice; stir into dry ingredients with a fork. Remove 1 cup to another bowl; stir in the remaining sugar and set aside for the topping.
  2. Press remaining crumb mixture onto the bottom and up the sides of a greased 8-in. square baking dish. Bake at 375° for 10-12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  3. Meanwhile, for filling, combine the sugar, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, salt and cinnamon in a small saucepan; slowly stir in water and lemon juice until smooth. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in butter and vanilla.
  4. Toss pears with remaining cornstarch; spoon over crust. Top with filling. Sprinkle with reserved topping. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack. Yield: 9 servings.
Originally published as Old-Fashioned Pear Dessert in Country Woman September/October 2006, p41

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Reviewed Nov. 26, 2013

"The taste of the filling and crust was good, however, the crust did not have enough liquid in it and I followed the directions exactly as written. Also, using an 8" by 8" baking pan is way too small. The crust was about 3/4 inch thick and was hard on the bottom of the pan, and falling apart on the sides. My son said it was like eating uncooked flour."

Reviewed Nov. 23, 2013

"This is delicious, it is great as a breakfast coffee cake or as a dessert with ice cream."

Reviewed Jan. 27, 2013

"This recipe was just okay for me.

The biggest problems was having the egg yolks in the crust. It tasted eggy, and that's never good to me.
As for the filling... It's really unnecessary. If you toss the pears with some cornstarch, sugar, and cinnamon, that should really be enough. there's no reason to add extra water to an already wet fruit. It will just end up putting extra goop in your cobbler, if I could call it that."

Reviewed Sep. 18, 2012

"Oh my gosh this is soooo good. My family loved it."

Reviewed Apr. 19, 2012

"This is a seriously EPIC dessert. It's like pie with an alternative to the same old crust. I've only tried it room temp with a dollop of whipped cream. AMAZING. Can't wait to taste it cold. And it doesn't scream "Pears!". Once it's cooked with that thick cinnamon filling, it's almost like apple pie in the middle. When the family gets home tonight, they will be all over this."

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