poached pears in red wine
poached pears in red wine

Red Wine-Poached Pears

5/5
Bosc pears are firmer than other pear varieties, making them ideal for poaching in liquid. Look for firm-yet-ripe pears that yield slightly when you press the end opposite the stem. Perfectly ripe pears need little more than a slow simmer in wine with spices. Despite their simplicity, these pears look incredibly gourmet served in a shallow bowl surrounded by the burgundy sauce.

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes
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Recipe Rundown

Bosc pears on cutting board

Poached pears, when done well, are such a treat.

Your fork should glide through the flesh and every bite should have the essence of the spices and poaching liquid playing in the background.

In writing my new cookbook: Easy Dutch Oven Cooking, I simply had to include this elegant dessert recipe for red-wine poached pears. It’s a great example of how convenient dessert can be.

red wine poached pear in red wine sauce

As you can see, the poaching liquid (the red wine) becomes a sticky, sweet sauce for the pear. You can reduce the red wine as much or as little as you like. I recommend simmering until it coats the back of a spoon.

About The Recipe

This recipe is one pot, made in a moderate side Dutch oven. It’s gluten free, dairy free, nut free, vegetarian/vegan and low sugar. I recommend using the star anise pods, which have a nice anise flavor, but you could just as easily use vanilla bean, cardamom pods, or a cinnamon stick.

recipe for red wine-poached pears from Easy Dutch Oven Cooking cookbook

Best Wine For Poaching Pears

During my culinary school days, we were tested on poaching pears. At that time, I used apple juice as the poaching liquid (SO GOOD!).

Since then, I’ve enjoyed experimenting with different types of red and white wines. I like the way the pear takes on the color and flavor of red wine the most.

Ingredient Tip: For this recipe, choose a wine that is somewhere between dry and sweet, such as Cabernet Sauvignon. Although you could try a sweet wine like port, I recommend leaving the added sugar out because the sweetness intensifies as the sauce reduces.

Serving Suggestions

This is truly an impressive dessert for any occasion and can even be made a day or two in advance. It can be served hot or cold; I often just serve mine at room temperature. I recommend a half a pear per person and a spoonful of the red wine reduction sauce.

For garnish, toasted nuts, blue cheese, or whipped cream are all good options.

More Dutch Oven Eye Candy

Red Wine-Poached Pears

Bosc pears are firmer than other pear varieties, making them ideal for poaching in liquid. Look for firm-yet-ripe pears that yield slightly when you press the end opposite the stem. Perfectly ripe pears need little more than a slow simmer in wine with spices. Despite their simplicity, these pears look incredibly gourmet served in a shallow bowl surrounded by the burgundy sauce.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: dairy free, dessert, gluten free, nut free, paleo, pears, poached pears, red wine
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 126kcal
Author: Chef Sara Furcini

Ingredients

  • 3 Bosc pears
  • 2 cups red wine such as Cabernet or Merlot
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 star anise pods optional

Instructions

  • Prepare the pears. Peel the pears and halve them lengthwise. Remove the seeds and core. Set the pear halves in the Dutch oven and pour the red wine on top. Add the vanilla, sugar, and star anise (if using).
  • Poach. Bring the wine to a low simmer over medium heat. Cover the pot, leaving the lid slightly ajar. Cook for 8 minutes, checking frequently to ensure the liquid is bubbling only slightly. Flip the pears and cook for about 8 minutes more, until a skewer pierces the pear flesh very easily. Transfer the pears to shallow serving bowls.
  • Reduce the wine. With the lid off, bring the liquid to boil. Cook for about 15 minutes, just until the sauce thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Drizzle a large spoonful of sauce over each pear and serve. Refrigerate leftovers with the sauce for up to 3 days.

Notes

This recipe is from my cookbook: Easy Dutch Oven Cooking (available here).

Nutrition

Serving: 1pear half with sauce | Calories: 126kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 205mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 22IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 14mg | Iron: 1mg

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