Caramelized Pear Quick Bread

4.50 from 8 votes

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Caramelized pears with cardamom makes this bread delicately aromatic and irresistible! This quick bread recipe is easy to make and customize!

Overhead shot of pear bread on black cutting board with a few slices.


 

What is a quick bread?

Quick bread is any bread that is leavened with baking soda or baking powder instead of yeast.

Texture-wise, quick breads are more like a denser cake than a traditional yeast-leavened or sourdough bread, yet they’re still delicious and so quick and easy to make!

Why you’ll love this recipe:

This caramelized pear quick bread is a perfect recipe to ease into the fall baking!

  • Super quick and easy to make one bowl recipe – no mixer required.
  • Aromatic cardamom and pears are a match made in heaven!
  • And most importantly, it’s customizable!! Not into pears? No problem, make it apples or something.
Closeup shot of pear bread slices on black cutting board.

Baker Bettie’s “Better Baking Book”

I made this pear bread using “quick bread master recipe” from my friend Kristin’s upcoming book “Better Baking Book”. She is known by her popular Baker Bettie baking blog and I’m so excited for her cookbook!!

Kristin Hoffman is a trained chef and baking educator and she not only shares reliable recipes, but she also breaks down foundational baking skills to build baking confidence for beginner and seasoned bakers alike. Her new book is packed with approachable baking science, step-by-step methods, and completely customizable master recipes for cookies, pies, and breads.

And this quick bread is a tiny testament of how amazing her recipes are!

Baker Bettie’s Better Baking Book will be published on November 16th, 2021 and it’s now available for pre-order on Amazon and everywhere books are sold!

Closeup shot of pear bread slices on black cutting board.

How to make this recipe:

1. Make the streusel topping:

This step is completely optional, but I loved the added texture from it.

3-image collage of making streusel.
  1. Simply whisk together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt together.
  2. And stir in the melted butter and mix with your hands until crumbly.

2. Make caramelized pears:

I first made this bread with fresh pears, but I wished for more pear flavor. And since caramelized pears were top of mind, it was no brainer to use it! Boy, was it worth the extra step!

3 step by step photos of making caramelized pears.
  1. Chop the pears into 1-inch cubes and cook them in a melted butter and brown sugar over medium heat for about 8 minutes.
  2. Then stir in vanilla extract and cardamom. Cook for another minute. Then remove from heat and cool slightly.

3. Make the batter:

And things just get easier from here…

  1. Mix dry ingredients in one bowl.
  2. Mix wet ingredients in another bowl.
  3. And combine the two! Stir until just combined and pour into a loaf pan.
  4. Bake the bread for about 1 hour at 350°F.
Uncooked pear bread in a loaf pan topped with streusel top and fresh pear chunks.
Freshly baked pear bread in a loaf pan.

Tip

You can also convert this recipe into muffins!

Simply bake the muffins for 16-20 minutes at 400°F.

Closeup shot of pear bread slices on black cutting board.
4.50 from 8 votes

Caramelized Pear Quick Bread

Caramelized pears with cardamom makes this bread delicately aromatic and irresistible! This quick bread recipe is easy to make and customize!
Prep: 35 minutes
Cook: 1 hour 10 minutes
Total: 2 hours
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients

For streusel:

  • 1/4 cup (50g) brown sugar, light or dark
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup (40g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons (30g) unsalted butter melted

For bread:

  • 3 medium pears Note 1
  • 1/4 cup (50g) brown sugar light or brown
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 2 cups (240g) all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup (150g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup (120ml) vegetable oil Note 2
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 6 tablespoons (90ml) milk at room temperature Note 3

Instructions 

To make streusel topping:

  • In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt together.
  • Stir in the melted butter and mix with your hands until crumbly.

To make caramelized pears:

  • Quarter the pears and remove the cores. Cut into 1/2-inch cubes.
  • In medium skillet, melt butter and brown sugar over medium heat.
  • Add chopped pears and cook for 2 minutes. Once the juices start to release, increase the heat to medium high and continue to cook, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes.
  • Stir in 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract and cardamom. Cook for another minute. Then remove from heat and cool slightly.

To make bread:

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Spray 8.5 x 4.5-inch loaf pan with non-stick cooking spray, or line with parchment paper.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  • In a separate large bowl, lightly whisk together the oil, eg, milk and remaining teaspoon of vanilla extract until well combined.
  • Add cooled caramelized pears and stir to combine.
  • Add the dry ingredients into the batter and stir with a spoon or silicone spatula until just combined. This should only take about 30-45 seconds of mixing. The batter will be pretty thick and lumpy. Do not over-mix or the bread will become tough.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Sprinkle the streusel topping liberally on top.
  • Bake the loaf for 60-70 minutes until lightly golden brown and the tops spring back when gently pushed or a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Check on your bake at about the halfway mark, and if it looks as though it is not baking evenly, rotate the pan.
  • For a loaf, transfer the baked loaf out of the pan onto a cooling rack about 10 minutes after taking it out of the oven. Let it cool for at least 20 minutes before slicing. This will help the texture of the bread to solidify.
  • Store leftover bread covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days.

Tips & Notes

Note 1: I used Bartlett pears. You can use ripe or semi-ripe pears. Semi-ripe pears will hold their shape better, but I liked it better the softer texture of ripe pears better.
Note 2: You can use any neutral oil, such as canola, grapeseed oils) for this bread recipes.
Note 3: You can use any kind of milk: skim, 1%, 2%, whole, or dairy-free.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 340kcal, Carbohydrates: 51g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 38mg, Sodium: 245mg, Potassium: 114mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 30g, Vitamin A: 180IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 91mg, Iron: 2mg
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American

Hi, I’m Shinee!

Welcome! I’m so happy you’re here! I believe anyone can cook restaurant-quality food at home! And my goal is to help you to become a confident cook with my easy-to-follow recipes with lots of tips and step-by-step photos.

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9 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe as written. Caramelizing the pears added so much flavor. So happy to have found this tasty bread recipe. Will definitely make again.

  2. 4 stars
    A great recipe that held up to my improvisations due to not having some ingredients on hand. Wonderful idea to caramelize the pears! The pears I had on hand were hard, but tasted wonderful after this step. Improv: I substituted melted butter for oil, (which I don’t keep on hand, except for olive oil), and greek yogurt (thinned with water) for milk. Plus I only put in 1/2 cup of sugar, and yet they were still too sweet for my taste. Even still, the muffins rose beautifully and were delicious! Next time, I’ll try 1/3 cup of sugar and hope that doesn’t throw the chemistry off.

    1. 4 stars
      This will be my 3rd time baking this bread and hasn’t disappointed yet. Absolutely love this bread paired with a coffee in the morning and the afternoon. I did substitute the cardamom with nutmeg before and this time I used allspice. Both changes have tasted delicious! Added bonus it makes the house smell fantastic!

    2. 3 stars
      After putting in the oven i discovered i’d left out one egg and the cake-side white sugar. While it baked up ok i think the caramelizing and topping made it too sweet even w/o the omitted sugar and the pear flavor was overshadowed. i’d skip the topping which was dry and crunchy and mostly fell off, and use some ginger i stead maybe w/o the cardamom.

  3. 5 stars
    I made this because I had three way overripe pears to use up. It turned out great! I know it will become a regular treat when pear season comes around!

  4. 5 stars
    Great recipe with thorough and simple instruction. Leave it sit a day after baking for the flavors to really infuse.