Pear Cranberry Crisp is a healthy way to satisfy your sweet tooth. This filling and comforting dessert is made with real whole-food ingredients. It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and perfect for holiday get-togethers or any day of the year.
This healthy pear crisp is a refined sugar-free dessert topped with a crumble made from old-fashioned oats, almond meal, maple syrup, coconut oil, and warming spices.
It’s the perfect, low sugar dessert that you can whip up quickly. Since we’re using overripe pears (which are naturally super sweet), you won’t need more than a 1/4 cup of maple syrup to sweeten it just right.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Prepare restaurant-quality pear cranberry crisp from the comfort of your own kitchen.
- Juicy pears and tart cranberries are a match made in heaven.
- The riper the pears, the sweeter the pears. This is a great way to use up overripe pears of any variety.
- It doesn’t contain any flour, so if you use certified gluten-free rolled oats, it’s totally gluten-free!
- It’s made with healthy ingredients, so feel good about going in for seconds.
- A great dessert that’s easy and quick to make.
Ingredients You’ll Need
For the Crumble Topping:
- Rolled Oats – You can use either 5-minute oats or slow-cooking rolled oats. To make this a gluten-free pear cranberry crisp, make sure the oats are certified gluten-free.
- Almond Meal – Helps create a topping with a crumbly texture without adding any flour.
- Pinch of Salt – A pinch of salt actually enhances the sweetness in desserts.
- Extra Virgin Coconut Oil – Adds moisture to the crumble topping and holds it together so it’s easily assembled. Make sure the coconut oil is melted before making the topping.
- Maple Syrup – is a great way to naturally sweeten foods without adding any refined sugar. You can also use agave or honey if desired.
For the Fruit Filling:
- Ripe or Overripe Pears – As the fruit ripens, it becomes sweeter. The riper the pears, the better, but make sure they are still firm.
- Cranberries (fresh or frozen) – The tartness of cranberries helps balance the sweetness of the pears and maple syrup.
- Cardamom, Ground Cloves & Nutmeg – Add classic warming, cozy flavors that go well with pears and cranberry.
What is Cardamom?
For this recipe, we’ll be using cardamom so let’s talk about it.
Just like cinnamon goes well with apples and allspice is a must in all pumpkin-based desserts, cardamom is the perfect spice for pears.
Cardamom is used frequently in Indian cuisine, but it’s also very popular in Scandinavian countries, where it’s often used in holiday baking.
Cardamom is a member of the ginger family and works really well together with other winter spices such as ginger, cloves, nutmeg, and allspice.
Cardamom, along with cloves and nutmeg, flavors this cranberry pear crisp beautifully.
How To Make Healthy Pair Crisp
Now that we’re familiar with the ingredients, let’s get started.
- In a bowl, combine rolled oats, almond meal, and salt. Mix thoroughly and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking dish with coconut oil (I used a 9×12 inch baking dish).
- Slice each pear in half lengthwise. Remove the core and cut each half into three to four pieces (about a 1/2″ thick). Spread the pear slices and cranberries in a layer at the bottom of the baking dish. It’s okay if they overlap.
- In a small bowl, mix the cardamom, nutmeg, and cloves. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the pears and cranberries.
- Add the melted coconut oil and maple syrup to the oatmeal mixture and mix well. The topping should be moist enough to spread.
- Spread the crumble topping in an even layer over the fruit mixture and place the baking dish into the oven.
- Bake for about 45 to 50 minutes or until the pears are cooked through, and the crumble topping is golden brown. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a perfect holiday dessert or with some Greek yogurt for a healthy snack.
D’anjou pears are great for baking. Make sure they’re ripened but still firm. If they are too ripe, they will turn to mush in the oven.
To peel the pears or not to peel the pears is a matter of preference. I prefer leaving the skins on for the pop of color and texture. It also increases the fiber content in the dessert.
Don’t forget the ice cream. A cool scoop of vanilla ice cream or freshly whipped cream or coconut cream along with baked pear cranberry crisp is heavenly.
- Make apple pear cranberry crisp. A few slices of firm, juicy apple are a great addition to this healthy pear crisp.
- Sprinkle some lemon zest over the pears to add a hint of freshness to the dessert.
- If you want to make this dessert sweeter, you can drizzle additional warm maple syrup onto the crisp before serving. A drizzle of caramel syrup or warm honey would also be fantastic.
- You could also bake pear cranberry crisp in single-serving oven-safe ramekins to really impress your holiday guests by making single servings.
- Bake using pumpkin pie spice for a kick of fall flavor.
Storing, Freezing, and Reheating
- Storing: Cover the baking dish with plastic wrap or a tight-fighting lid and store it in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days.
- Reheating: Reheat at 350 degrees until warmed through (20 to 25 minutes). To restore the crumb topping’s crispiness, drizzle with coconut oil before reheating.
- Freezing: To freeze, cool completely, then wrap tightly and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge before reheating.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is almond meal the same thing as almond flour?
Not quite. The meal is made with raw almonds, and flour is made with blanched. Almond flour tends to be finer in texture than almond meal. For this recipe, you can use either almond meal or almond flour.
Can I use canned cranberry?
I wouldn’t. Canned cranberry will release too much liquid and make the whole thing a big soggy mess.
Can I make pear cranberry crisp in cast iron?
Absolutely! Cast iron skillets are perfect for making baked-fruit desserts. Just be sure to grease the skillet.
More Fruit-Based Recipes You’ll Love
And if love baked fruit desserts, check out these healthy recipes:
- Apple Crisp without Flour
- Baked Apples with Ricotta Cheese
- Healthy Peach Crisp
- Fall and Winter Baked Fruit
- Winter Fruit Salad
For the crumble topping:
- 1 1/4 cup rolled oats (5-minute or slow cooking rolled oats, choose gluten-free rolled oats if needed)
- 1/2 cup almond meal
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup melted coconut oil
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
For the pears:
- 2 pounds of ripe or overripe pears
- 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- In a bowl, combine the rolled oats, almond meal, and salt. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Lightly oil a baking dish with coconut oil (I used a 9X12 inch baking dish).
- Slice each pear in half lengthwise. Remove the core and cut each half into three to four pieces. Spread the pear slices and cranberries over the baking dish.
- In a small bowl, mix the cardamom, nutmeg, and cloves. Sprinkle the spice mixture over the pears.
- Add the melted coconut oil and maple syrup to the oats and mix well to combine.
- Spread the crumble topping over pears and place the baking dish into the oven.
- Bake for about 45 to 50 minutes until the pears are cooked through and the crumble topping is golden brown.
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Nutrition InformationYield 5 portions Serving Size 1/5 of recipe
Amount Per Serving Calories 359.9Total Fat 15.2gSaturated Fat 9.5gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 2.09gCholesterol 0mgSodium 38.7mgCarbohydrates 55.5gFiber 9.2gSugar 28.3gProtein 4.6g
Nutrition facts provided on this website are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a qualified health care provider for personalized diet advice and make sure that each of the ingredients is allowed in your diet.