Spiced Poached Pears

Spiced poached pears may sound like the perfect winter treat (and they are!), but they can be enjoyed at any time of the year. They work well served cold in the summer and warm in winter. And they smell so delicious. They leave that spiced scent of the holidays around the whole house when preparing. It’s the kind of scent that’s just as good as the dessert itself!

Spicy poached pears, plated

Just a little hint of cayenne pepper powder is used here. It’s enough to add a delicious warmth but not overwhelm the flavor. Feel free to adjust (or omit) to your liking.

For the best results, soak the cooked pears in the juices overnight as instructed in the recipe.  However, if you are short of time or need to prepare on the same day, you can get away with two to four hours.

The red wine is a delicious addition to this recipe which adds depth of flavor as well as eye-catching color.  Don’t worry – the alcohol content will be greatly reduced during the cooking process leaving just super-tasty pears anyone can enjoy. When cooking, use a deep pan that will only allow a small amount of space around the pears to ensure they can be submerged as much as possible.

See it being made:

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Spiced Poached Pears

Spiced Poached Pears

Delicious served hot or cold
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Soaking 12 hours
Total Time 13 hours 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Servings 4 servings
Calories 279 kcal


  • 4 pears
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder


  • Place a small deep pan over a medium heat
  • Add the orange juice, red wine, sugar, cinnamon, allspice powder, and the cayenne to the pan.
  • Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer.
  • Peel the pears only when you are ready to poach them as they will turn brown otherwise (keep the stems on).
  • Place the pears into the pan and boil for 25 minutes turning occasionally if there are any parts out of the poaching liquid.
  • Remove from the heat and cover with some foil until cooled completely.
  • Refrigerate overnight to allow the juices to soak into the pears completely.
  • When ready to serve the spiced poached pears remove the foil and take the pears out of the liquid.
  • Place the remaining liquid over low heat until it has reduced down to around a third of the original volume.
  • Slice the pears and drizzle over the syrup you have created with the poaching juices.
  • Serve immediately.


If time is of concern, you can opt to poach the pears for a minimum of two to four hours. It won’t be as good, but still plenty tasty!


Calories: 279kcalCarbohydrates: 61gProtein: 1gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 8mgPotassium: 407mgFiber: 6gSugar: 48gVitamin A: 221IUVitamin C: 39mgCalcium: 33mgIron: 1mg
Did you make this?Mention @PepperScale or tag #PepperScale so we can see what you made!

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on April 30, 2023 to include new content.
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