Buttery pears are roasted in the oven with a vanilla scented caramel syrup and served with a bourbon spiked coconut cream and glazed pecans.
Roasting pears is one of the simplest but oh so special ways to dress up pears for dessert. Elegant but effortless is how I would describe these vanilla roasted pears.
While a good, juicy pear is best eaten raw out of hand, there are times when a little help in the form of a fragrant vanilla bean, a drizzle of honey, a pat of butter and a hot oven can be just the thing; namely when you’ve got company coming and not enough hours in the day.
When it comes to simple seasonal desserts, few things are as comforting on a fall or winter day as baked or roasted fruit. In particular the delicate flavors of raw pears intensify in the heat of the oven becoming even more meltingly tender and silky. Roasting amplifies the best of the fruit while the vanilla scented syrup adds a complex caramel-like sweetness that pairs so nicely with the buttery pears.
While the butter provides a richness and lusciousness to the sauce and the wildflower honey a floral note, maple syrup and coconut oil work quite nicely here as well for a vegan or dairy-free version.
If you want to get even fancier I suggest you take a few extra minutes to make the coconut bourbon whipped cream and buttered pecans as they make a fine accompaniment. And although I’ve talked these up here as a party dessert, frankly they are just as likely to be devoured straight from the pan any old day of the week.
Vanilla Roasted Pears with Bourbon Cream (Paleo and Vegan Options)
Buttery pears are roasted in the oven with a vanilla scented caramel and served with a bourbon spiked coconut whipped cream and buttered pecans.
For the Glazed Pecans:
- 1 cup/ 120g pecans
- 1 Tablespoon/15ml raw wildflower honey (use maple syrup for vegan version)
- 1 Tablespoon/14g butter (substitute coconut oil for vegan version)
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
For the Roasted Pears:
- 4 ripe but firm bosc pears, cored, peeled and halved or quartered
- The juice of ½ a lemon
- 2 Tablespoons/30g of filtered water
- ¼ cup/60ml raw wildflower honey (use maple syrup for vegan version)
- 4 Tablespoons/56g butter (use coconut oil for vegan version)
- ½ vanilla bean, seeds scraped
- pinch of sea salt
For the Coconut Whipped Cream:
- 1 can of regular coconut milk chilled overnight in the fridge (or use chilled good quality heavy cream instead if you’d like in place of the coconut whipped cream for a non-paleo non-vegan version)
- 1 to 2 Tablespoons raw wildflower honey (use more if you like your whipped cream on the sweeter side) (use maple syrup for a vegan version)
- 1 to 2 teaspoons bourbon (or substitute Cognac or vanilla extract),
Make the Glazed Pecans:
- Melt honey, butter and salt in a heavy bottom skillet over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, add pecans stirring to coat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the syrup reduces and thickens, and coats the nuts (about 3 minutes). Remove from heat; scrape onto baking sheet and let cool until dry (about 30 minutes). Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks.
Make the Roasted Pears:
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Arrange the pears in a single layer in a medium oven proof baking dish and set aside while making the sauce.
- In a small saucepan or skillet over low heat, whisk together the honey, butter, lemon juice, water, vanilla seeds with the bean and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil and cook until it starts to thicken (about 2 minutes) and pour over pears.
- Roast pears for 30-35 minutes until tender, flipping the pears halfway through spooning the dish juices over occasionally.
- Divide the pear halves among serving dishes. Serve warm with the sauce at the bottom of the dish, the whipped coconut cream (recipe below) and buttered pecans (see above).
Make the Coconut Whipped Cream:
- Open and scoop the solidified cream that has risen to the top of the can of coconut milk, discarding the clear liquid underneath.
- Transfer coconut cream to a pre-chilled mixing bowl and beat on low with the honey and bourbon with a stand or hand mixer until lightened. Increase speed to high and continue beating until thick and creamy.
- Serve with the roasted pears and buttered pecans.
Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Refined Sugar-Free, Paleo Friendly (swap out butter for ghee or coconut oil if desired) Vegan (use maple syrup and coconut oil instead)
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 260Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 50mgSodium: 238mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 2gSugar: 15gProtein: 3g
Nutritional information for recipes contained on this website, such as calories, fat, carbs, etc. are only estimates and are not guaranteed to be accurate.
Sylvie Shirazi is the recipe developer and food photographer behind Gourmande in the Kitchen. For the last 10 years she's been making eating more healthfully easy and accessible with gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and vegan recipes that are free from processed ingredients.
This sounds and looks amazing! Can this be prepared in advance? Aka, will the pears be ok reheated and will the coconut bourbon cream last overnight? Thanks!
You can make the glazed pecans and the the bourbon cream ahead of time but I'd wait until you are ready to serve to roast the pears.
Nami | Just One Cookbook says
I just saw this on Pinterest - how gorgeous! I've never roasted pears before and that's a fantastic idea! Such an elegant look that I want to serve this to guests. Thank you for the recipe!
These pears look wonderful. Thanks for giving me the link to include in my upcoming Band Fruit Fundraiser Recipe Round Up! It will be published on 12/4/2013!
Jeanne @ Cooksister says
Bourbon. Spiked. Coconut. Cream. HELLO! I love roasting or poaching pears - such a great way to use up slightly under or over ripe fruits too!
We just started buying seasonal pears and my husband loves them. I have been trying to figure out how to cook or bake them for him and this is simple and delightful. I have actually never roasted pears before! Wonderful idea to balance them out with cream and sugary pecans.