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Made with fresh, seasonal ingredients, this healthy and festive Cranberry Pear Crisp is the perfect fall and winter dessert!
Sometimes it is hard to get in the mood for fall and winter when you live in the south, since most fall days are still in the 80’s and sometimes even creep up into the 90’s. But when a major cold front blows through, you better believe we bust out the sweaters and boots and dive head first into a pile of fall leaves!
Cold weather, the ability to wear cute fall clothes, colorful fall leaves magically floating down the street and delicious fall foods totally makes me giddy! From comfort food classics like Apple Bacon Lentil Soup, to hearty Slow Cooker Turkey White Bean Pumpkin Chili and a White Chocolate Mocha or two; the foods that celebrate this cozy season fills me with delight!
Not only does the cooler weather have me giddy about autumn, it has me super excited for all the upcoming holidays!
Since the holidays are known for over indulging, I created this healthy and better for you Cranberry Pear Crisp a few years ago for Friendsgiving and it was a huge hit! It is inspired by my Easy Pear Crisp with Vanilla Bean Frozen Yogurt; but is packed with more fall flavors, with the addition of cranberries, and has a healthy homemade crisp topping.
Not only would this festive and healthy dessert be perfect for a small and intimate Thanksgiving dinner; this pear crisp recipe only serves four and can easily be halved for a dessert for two. That means you can make it all holiday season long and even into the New Year whenever you get a craving for a sweet treat!
Helpful Tips and Information:
What to serve with a Cranberry Pear Crisp?
Gluten Free Pear Crisp – To make this Healthy Pear Crisp recipe gluten free, use certified gluten free rolled oats and substitute the whole wheat flour with almond flour or additional rolled oats.
How to make a Cranberry Pear Crisp for two – This Cranberry Pear Crisp recipe serves four people and I prefer to make it in individual ramekins for easy portion control. However, you can also make this dessert recipe in an 8×8-inch square baking dish, 9-inch round pie pan or cast-iron skillet. It also can be easily doubled for a larger family or halved for a simple dessert for two.
Does a pear crisp need to be refrigerated?
Yes, any leftover pear crisp should be thoroughly wrapped and stored in the refrigerator. To reheat, cook in the microwave for 30-60 seconds or in the oven at 350-degrees Fahrenheit for 8-10 minutes, or until heated through.
Can a pear crisp be frozen?
Yes, you can freeze an unbaked pear crisp and it makes a great make ahead dessert! Simply prepare the Cranberry Pear Crisp as directed in the recipe below and then wrap the pear crisp thoroughly in plastic wrap and aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. The pear crisp can then be kept frozen for 3-4 months.
To heat, remove Cranberry Pear Crisp from freezer and remove plastic wrap and foil. Bake from frozen in a preheated 350-degree Fahrenheit oven for 25-30 minutes or until crisp is heated through and the topping is golden brown.
Precooked pear crisps can also be frozen for later, just note that the crisp topping will get darker brown when reheating the precooked pear crisp.
Note: To extend the freezer life of the pear crisp and ensure maximum freshness, I highly recommend using a Foodsaver Vacuum Sealer to wrap up the Cranberry Pear Crisp.
What’s the difference between a fruit crisp, crumble and cobbler?
Crisp: A crisp is a fruit dessert that is made with a sweetened fruit filling that is then topped with a streusel-like topping, usually made from nuts, rolled oats and/or flour.
Crumble: A crumble is very similar to a fruit crisp in that it has a sweetened fruit filling, however, it is then topped with a streusel-like topping made with only flour and does not have rolled oats or nuts.
Cobbler: A cobbler is a fruit dessert that has a sweetened fruit filling that is then topped with a biscuit or cake like batter that is “dropped” over the fruit filling and then baked. See my easy Blackberry Cobbler in a Mug!
If you like this old-fashioned pear crisp recipe, then you’ll love these other fruit dessert recipes:
Easy Apple Crumble – Looking for a simple, crowd pleasing Thanksgiving dessert? Make this family favorite Easy Apple Crumble recipe, that takes Apple Dump Cake to a whole new level!
Cranberry Pear Cobbler – Filled with juicy pears, tart cranberries, nutty almonds and warm fall spices, this new version of a classic cobbler recipe will surely be a hit at any fall gathering.
Breakfast Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp – Get your day started with this Breakfast Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp! This recipe uses fresh spring ingredients and is topped with protein packed ice cream!
Do you like to make healthier versions of classic comfort foods? If so, what is your favorite food to make better for you?
- For the cranberry pear filling:
- 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries*
- 3 cups peeled and diced Anju or Bartlett pears
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 lemon, juiced and zested
- For the crisp topping:
- 3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
- ¼ cup sliced almonds
- 1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease four (8-ounce) ramekins with coconut oil or cooking spray.
- For the cranberry pear filling: In a bowl, stir together cranberries, diced pears, maple syrup, nutmeg, cinnamon, cornstarch, lemon juice and zest. Divide cranberry pear filling evenly between prepared ramekins. Set aside.
- For the crisp topping: In another bowl, stir together rolled oats, whole wheat flour, sliced almonds, coconut flakes, salt, maple syrup and melted coconut oil. Evenly divide crisp topping between the four ramekins, completely covering all of the fruit.
- Place filled ramekins on a baking sheet and bake in preheated 350-degree F oven for 15-20 minutes or until crisp is hot and bubbly and golden brown.
- Serve immediately, topped with all-natural frozen yogurt or homemade whipped cream, if desired.
*If using frozen cranberries, no need to thaw.
Please see the "Helpful Tips and Information" section above for additional recipe notes.
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