Pear-Cranberry Crumble

Two cup filled with pear-cranberry crumble, two pears, on a metal plate

You could also make the crumble in individual ramekins or ovenproof mugs; just be certain to check on it, as the wee crumbles will likely bake more quickly.–Gordon Hamersley

LC In Place of Pumpkin Pie Note

This is not quite your classic Thanksgiving dessert. And that’s what we love about it. The whole unexpectedness of it. Well, that and the fact that some will construe it as heresy to find this in place of pumpkin pie on the table. Heh. Call us rebels.

Pear-Cranberry Crumble

  • Quick Glance
  • (2)
  • 15 M
  • 55 M
  • Serves 8
5/5 - 2 reviews
Print RecipeBuy the Bistro Cooking at Home cookbook

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  • For the crumble topping
  • For the filling


Make the crumble topping

In the bowl of a stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, combine the flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, and salt. Add the cold butter and mix on low speed until the topping just begins to come together and resembles large bits of chunky dough. Be careful not to mix so long that the dough comes together in a single large clump. Transfer the topping to a bowl, using a fork to break it up a bit. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Make the filling

Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).

In a large bowl gently toss the pears, cranberries, lemon juice, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, salt, and flour just to evenly coat the berries. Turn the filling into a 1 1/2-quart baking dish. Top with the crumble topping, breaking up any large clumps with your fingers and spreading it evenly. There may be patches that aren’t completely covered with crumbs, but don’t worry as the topping will spread a bit as it bakes.

Bake until the topping begins to brown and the filling is bubbling, about 40 minutes. Remove the crumble from the oven and let it cool somewhat before scooping and serving.

Print RecipeBuy the Bistro Cooking at Home cookbook

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Recipe Testers' Reviews

This crumble is a simply scrumptious dessert that I will make again and again. The tender cinnamon and nutmeg tinged pears coupled with the chewy cranberries become even more irresistible with the sweet blanket of buttery oat topping. This is a dish that piques and satisfies all the senses, from the mouth-watering appearance as the juices bubbling up through the crumble topping, to the luscious texture that melts in your mouth with every bite. Dollop with sour cream for an even more surreal dessert experience.

This dessert would make a perfect ending to any meal, especially on a cold winter’s night. The filling ingredients blended perfectly allowing each taste to still be noticed. The tart cranberries and sweet pears paired beautifully. A hint of cinnamon and nutmeg rounded out their flavors. The topping filled the kitchen with a butter-and-brown-sugar aroma while baking and added just the right amount of crunch to the tenderness of the fruit. Served with freshly whipped cream, this crumble was a warm comfort-food treat!

Pear crumble sounded like a terrific comfort food for a cold winter evening. And it was. This treat can easily be put together in minutes on a busy work night. The not overly sweet crumble is a do-ahead dish. (I had mine in the fridge two days waiting for the pears to ripen.) And the filling couldn’t be simpler. Just toss it all together and bake. Since the recipe didn’t specify, I used six large pears, half Bartlett, half Anjou. Luscious, sweet pear juices bubbled up through the buttery topping. Fragrant with nutmeg and cinnamon, it needed no embellishment, but we indulged in a little scoop of vanilla ice cream alongside anyway. Truly a satisfying bistro finale.

Amazing!! This dessert is absolutely fantastic. The rich crumble topping melts in your mouth while the burst of flavor from the pears and cranberries puts a satisfied smile on your face. Everyone will be asking for seconds!??This was an easy, homey, satisfying dessert that can be done partially ahead of time. The steps were very simple, and seeing the pinch of salt added to the topping made me trust the author, as I firmly believe in judicious additions of salt to sweet dishes. Finally, my guests really enjoyed the combination of mild pears and intense cranberries (a nice change from apples), especially with vanilla ice cream.

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  1. This was a winner! Hamersley’s Bistro is one of my all-time favorite restaurants in Boston because of the wonderful homey food. This dish is exactly the type of dessert that is on their menu which I have a hard time resisting! The beauty of this recipe is that it tastes wonderful but it is very simple to prepare. It is not time consuming and does not call for ingredients which are hard to find. I will prepare this dish many times. Everyone enjoyed this dessert!

  2. The pear-cranberry crumble tasted much better after spending 24 hours in the fridge than it did an hour out of the oven. The first night it really didn’t appeal to me—tasted too sweet and I couldn’t differentiate the flavors. The second and third nights, after being slightly reheated, it tasted much better. The crumble was crunchy, and the light taste of the pears was nicely balanced by the cranberries.

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