Wine Poached Pear

Wine Poached Pears are simple yet so elegant and perfect to show off at any party. Simmering pears in red wine and some spices enhances the sweetness of the fruit and adds warm flavor. Wine poached pear takes some time as you want to slow cook but overall it is very effortless. 

Poached pears are perfect Fall desserts, and you don’t have to restrict to wine. Although, wine poached pear does have its charm.

Wine Poached Pear is a classic French dessert, and I believe it started as a way to enjoy unripe pears. A great way to maximize their harvest without wasting or throwing away unripe fruits.

I love to serve it mildly warm and then topped it with reduced red wine sauce and some whipped cream. You can make it extra special by adding mascarpone cheese too.

Wine Poached Pear - Perfect for Holiday Parties

What Pears are best for Wine Poached Pear

I personally prefer Bosc Pears for two different reason.

  1. The texture is smooth and not too fibrous. It is dense and crunchy. Makes it easy to cut through and melts in the mouth at every bite.
  2. The shape is gorgeous and stands tall when served. Looks utterly incredible, like a showstopper dessert.

KEY POINT – You want to pick pears that are not over ripe. As the pears poach for a while in the spiced liquid, it will cook and soften. So you definitely don’t want the over ripe ones.

Just feel the pears and it should feel firm. Also, the skin should be smooth. Wrinkled skin means over ripe pears.

Wine Poached Pear - Fall Favourite

Wine selection for Wine Poached Pears

Preferably fruit-forward red wine. I used Merlot. But if you are using lots of whole spices for the aroma then go for any good red wine, something not too expensive, probably.

It is said that Zinfandel, Shiraz, or Merlot works best. I prefer Merlot!

Spices used: 

Star Anise


Bay leaves

Cinnamon Sticks


Wine Poached Pear - Perfect for Holiday Parties

The Red Wine Sauce 

After the pears are poached to the perfect texture, I take it out and reduce the sauce further, add little butter to turn into this delicious red wine sauce.

The red wine sauce is not only delicious on the poached pear, you can also save it and use it with grilled steak.

What other sauce can be used ?

Instead of reducing the red wine, you can strain it and drink it as warm mulled wine.

A simple chocolate sauce works great too on wine poached pears.

How to use poached pear? 

You can enjoy it as it with whipped cream or mascarpone cheese.

Poached pears are great with waffles or pancakes.

You can also use the poached pears on chocolate cake. Here is a recipe you can try.

This Holiday Season, wow yours friends and family with this simple but gorgeous looking dessert. You won’t believe how easy and flavorful this dessert is, until you give it a try!

Reduced Red Wine Sauce

Wine poached Pear with Chocolate and Mint sauce

Wine poached Pear with Chocolate and Mint sauce

Yield: 4 pears


  • 4 ripe and firm pears, I used bosc pears
  • 1-1/2 cup red wine, I used Merlot
  • 1/2 cup white/brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2-star anise
  • 2 bay leaves
  • few cardamoms
  • 2 tablespoons butter (this is for the red wine sauce)


  1. Peel the pears and try to retain the stem.
  2. In a sauce pan big enough to fit all the pears, pour the wine, lemon juice, vanilla extract along with sugar and all the whole spices. Bring it to boil and then bring down the heat to let it simmers for 5 minutes.
  3. After 5 minutes, gently place the pears and let it simmer in medium low heat for 15 minutes.
  4. Toss the pear to the other side very gently and let it continue to simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. Gently poke the pear with a knife. If it feels soft, it is ready.
  6. Carefully remove the pears to a serving plate.
  7. Continue simmering the wine until it's reduced a lot. When it starts to look sauce like consistency, add the butter and whisk. The butter will add a creamy, rich taste to the wine poached pear.
  8. Strain the sauce to a serving cup.
  9. Whipped heavy cream or mascarpone cheese to serve along with the wine poached pear and red wine sauce.


You can poach pears in advance and let it refrigerate for a couple of days. You can either serve it cold or boil the sauce for 2 minutes and serve it warm. If you don't like wine, you can use pomegranate juice or cranberry juice, and that will give the gorgeous red color. If you however don't care for color you can choose any citrus juice. 

Fall Fruit Dessert

Did you enjoy this Wine Poached Pear? Share your creation by tagging @playfulcooking on Instagram with the #playfulcooking and I will re-share in my story!

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Comments are closed.

  • Grishma
    February 15, 2012 at 8:30 PM

    Kankana, it’s just perfectly gorgeous! Today only i bought some fabulous pears thinking will make poached pear and here u r with this delicious looking poached pears! Making it very soon babe! Thank u!
    BTW what can I use to substitute red wine?

    • Kankana Saxena
      Kankana Saxena
      February 15, 2012 at 8:34 PM

      Thanks 🙂 If you are looking for color use cranberry juice or pomegranate juice but if you don’t care for the red color.. use any fruit juice you like or vanilla with water. Hope this helps babe. Let me know hoe it turns out 🙂

      • Grishma
        February 15, 2012 at 8:37 PM

        Aahh make sense! And yes it helps. Will let u know once I make it. Thanks!

  • Ambika
    February 15, 2012 at 8:33 PM

    Absolutely gorgeous poached pears! I have been seeing these for a while and have been wanting to try them! We also like it quiet and cozy, I cooked up a Indo-Chinese meal for hubby dear and happily ate at home, no dessert trouble because he doesn’t really have a sweet tooth! I also need to try out mint and chocolate together, its not one of my favorites either. I only like the breath mints at olive garden :D, nothing more than that!

  • Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen
    February 15, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    Love the gorgeous color the wine gives the pears.

  • Nami | Just One Cookbook
    Nami | Just One Cookbook
    February 15, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    I honestly didn’t know poached pear is this easy. It always looks fancy so I assume it requires some technique or special skills. I’ll need to try with wine for my husband and maybe if it’s too much alcohol taste, I use the method you just answered in earlier comment. That way kids and I can share. 🙂 I like the chocolate sauce pouring on the pear. The plate is small, so you only had a few seconds to take a perfect shot before overflowing from the plate…and you nailed it! 😉

  • Liren
    February 15, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    I agree that Valentines is all the more sweet when celebrated at home! It has always been like that for us, even before the kids and the difficulty of finding a sitter presented itself. These pears are just jewels under your hands…you make it look so easy! And gorgeous!

  • Amy Tong
    Amy Tong
    February 15, 2012 at 9:45 PM

    Looks lovely. I’ve never made poached pear before and it sound super easy and delicious. The mint chocolate sauce sounds wonderful with these pears too. Love your photography! Simply stunning. 🙂

  • Reem | Simply Reem
    Reem | Simply Reem
    February 15, 2012 at 9:50 PM

    I totally agree with you, Valentine and eating out is a combination for stress…
    B/W with 2 kids we prefer celebrating low key…

  • Reem | Simply Reem
    Reem | Simply Reem
    February 15, 2012 at 9:52 PM

    Opps sorry pressed enter in mid… LOL
    These pears look fantastic, i have to agree with nami, with juice or flavored water kids can share them too…
    Lovely pics babes…

  • Kulsum at JourneyKitchen
    Kulsum at JourneyKitchen
    February 15, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    Love the color here! So pretty.

  • Maja
    February 15, 2012 at 10:39 PM

    Oh my God, Kanakana, this looks truly spectacular: nothing can beat this fancy dessert, pears and red wine 🙂 I love the sauce, too!
    I love your photos, they are truly amazing!

  • Rosa
    February 15, 2012 at 10:46 PM

    A gorgeous dessert! I love poached pears. Lovely color.

    We keep Valentine’s Day low key and always stay home.



  • Medeja
    February 16, 2012 at 12:44 AM

    That is something I always wanted to try 🙂

  • Rose ( Magpie's Recipes)
    Rose ( Magpie's Recipes)
    February 16, 2012 at 12:55 AM

    How pretty is that?! happy Vday girl! So waiting to see you and the others 🙂

  • Soni
    February 16, 2012 at 2:37 AM

    I also make poached pears,aren’t they just fantastic!! But haven’t tried them with the chocolate sauce.Sure looks delicious!!

  • Joanne
    February 16, 2012 at 4:42 AM

    I don’t typically LOVE V-Day but a day dedicated to decadent desserts? I’ll take it! This looks SO good.

  • Soma
    February 16, 2012 at 5:35 AM

    Happy Valentine’s Day. Poached pears are one of our fave. and easiest desserts to make. Love it. Beautiful photographs Kankana.

  • sally
    February 16, 2012 at 7:12 AM

    What a beautiful dessert! It looks perfect for Valentine’s Day.

  • Jeno @ Week Nite Meals
    Jeno @ Week Nite Meals
    February 16, 2012 at 7:50 AM

    Awww, it’s so sweet that your husband brought your favorite flowers to celebrate V-Day! The poached pears turned out absolutely gorgeous, I am not a big fan of mint and chocolate, though I am sure it was a wonderful combination with the pears. Thank you for sharing, as always, I love looking at your photography works!

  • Priya
    February 16, 2012 at 8:13 AM

    Happy pear couple, celebrating the Valentines day!

    So wet and wild…I’m left alone infront of my computer with a great treat for eyes, a longing taste buds and sweet tooth. Food porn, like prerna says, is an apt word!

  • Vijitha
    February 16, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    I have been wanting to try this dessert for a long time. But kept it for the future days. Sounds simple and easy na? Gorgeous clicks. I loved the pears with a rustic backdrop the most. See you soon. Hugs!

  • nipponnin
    February 16, 2012 at 10:43 AM

    Absolutely fantastic and sophisticate looking! You are so good!

  • Charles
    February 16, 2012 at 10:58 AM

    Hi Kankana, I love poached pears – I find reducing the remaining wine with extra sugar to create a thick wine syrup, and pouring in a bit of cream on top at the end makes an amazing sauce as well, though I love the idea of chocolate and mint sauce too. I think chocolate alone would be quite rich, but with the added “freshness” of the mint it must be a wonderful combination!

  • mustardseed
    February 16, 2012 at 6:23 PM

    This looks so elegant! Love the color and that chocolate!!

  • Angie@Angie's Recipes
    [email protected]'s Recipes
    February 16, 2012 at 9:36 PM

    What a fabulous dessert! My husband loves pears, but usually just eating them raw…must try to make some desserts for him next time.

  • Chrissy
    February 16, 2012 at 11:08 PM

    Congrats on top 9, also! Yay for our red wine-poached pears! Love the chocolate sauce on yours. I was strongly debating this, so now I am so excited for this version the next time I make this ridiculously good dessert. 🙂

  • Jennifer (Delicieux)
    Jennifer (Delicieux)
    February 17, 2012 at 1:24 AM

    I love poached pears…that red colour the wine has given them is just so gorgeous! And that photo of your chocolate mint sauce is just so beautiful.

  • nisha
    February 17, 2012 at 4:22 AM

    i absolutely agree…its one of the easiest desserts possible..i love how the mulled spices mix in with the wine..lovely pics as usual 🙂
    And lilies…used 2 be my fav, till the pollen started staining my pretty table cloth and such :O

  • Kitchen Belleicious
    Kitchen Belleicious
    February 17, 2012 at 4:36 AM

    Ummm. DROOOL! My keyboard is all wet now! Wow, those pears look amazing and I love the combo of chocolate and pears. Can’t be beat! Great recipe and job and as always the pictures are phenomenal.

  • Tes
    February 17, 2012 at 5:43 AM

    What a beautiful dish, Kankana! Your pear looks really perfect 🙂

  • Deepa
    February 17, 2012 at 6:22 AM

    You are killing me with these gorgeous looking pears !! seriously drool worthy pictures..

    Hamaree Rasoi

  • Matt @ RecipeLion
    Matt @ RecipeLion
    February 17, 2012 at 6:38 AM

    This dessert looks great! I would love it if you linked up this recipe to my blog hop for a chance to win a cookbook prize package:

  • Purabi Naha
    Purabi Naha
    February 17, 2012 at 7:12 AM

    Hey Kankana, just buzzed this to 97. Congrats on being at Top 9 once again! This really looks so so so tempting! Well-deserved success!

  • Nancy/SpicieFoodie
    February 17, 2012 at 7:21 AM

    They turned out beautiful. I also posted poached pears this past Sunday. But I love how your red wine ones look. Congrats on the Foodbuzz top 9!

  • sukanya ramkumar
    sukanya ramkumar
    February 17, 2012 at 9:19 AM

    Nice pic… Congrats on ur success. Perfect clicks!!!!

  • Divya Yadava
    Divya Yadava
    February 17, 2012 at 10:22 AM

    Love the idea of pouring chocolate on top of poached pears. I usually poach my pears in herbal tea for a milder flavour, but wine sounds awesome too! Congrats on top 9.

  • Daisy@Nevertoosweet
    [email protected]
    February 17, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    This sounds great! I love poached pears but it’s so hard to make it properly >_< Congrats for being Top 9!

  • Sukanya
    February 17, 2012 at 11:04 AM

    Oh,dear this is just a fantastic and real fancy dessert, I love poaching the pears in wine too or sometime in amaretto, but never try pouring chocolate over it, guess it will make decadent, and rich

    we too prefer to make Vday low key, baked an Oreo Cheesecake for us, just posted it.

  • Magic of Spice
    Magic of Spice
    February 17, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    I adore poached pears…delicious and elegant!

  • rebecca
    February 17, 2012 at 4:22 PM

    wow stunning 🙂 first class and adore the way you celebrated

  • Tina (PinayInTexas)
    Tina (PinayInTexas)
    February 18, 2012 at 8:35 PM

    Simple but very attractive, Kankana! Just the perfect dessert for a lovely occasion!

  • Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking
    Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking
    February 20, 2012 at 10:17 AM

    What an elegant but easy dessert, Kankana! This looks so delicious. Thanks for sharing. You have a lovely blog and I’m glad to have found you!

  • Malli
    February 20, 2012 at 11:26 AM

    What a delicious poached pear dessert…looks awesome and tempting!

  • Asmita
    February 20, 2012 at 4:36 PM

    Hi Kankana,
    This looks like a gorgeous dessert. Very elegant and love the idea of chocolate sauce over the poached pears. As usual, your photographs are beautiful!!!

  • sweetsugarbelle
    February 20, 2012 at 4:37 PM

    This is stunning!

  • angela@spinachtiger
    [email protected]
    February 21, 2012 at 5:49 AM

    Very lovely pear recipe and pictures. Dreamy. I love chocolate sauce and I love pears. Beautiful blog.

  • Kiran @
    Kiran @
    February 21, 2012 at 12:50 PM

    Dreamy chocolate perfectly paired with poached pears — I don’t know how did I missed this recipe 😀

  • foodwanderings
    February 21, 2012 at 5:16 PM

    Simply elegant! Pinned my friend & I believe retweeted too!! Great post!

  • Sara{OneTribeGourmet}
    February 21, 2012 at 8:05 PM

    Wonderful delicious dessert! Love your photography!

  • Sawsan @ chef in disguise
    Sawsan @ chef in disguise
    February 23, 2012 at 12:37 PM

    I was going to ask if I can do this without the wine and I am really thankful you answered this in the first comment.
    This looks like an elegant dessert and yet it is so simple.
    Thank you for sharing and for the amazing pictures Kankana

  • Namitha
    February 23, 2012 at 2:41 PM

    Though I’m not a big fan of poached pears,your pictures are making me want to have them 🙂 Such an elegant dessert,K

  • Baker Street
    Baker Street
    February 25, 2012 at 1:07 AM

    I LOVE the shot of chocolate being poured over! Absolutely gorgeous.

  • Ananda Rajashekar
    Ananda Rajashekar
    March 5, 2012 at 9:16 AM

    Background stoles and min, complements the dessert so well, just gorgeous!

  • Athena
    March 18, 2012 at 7:36 AM

    I’ve never had poached pear but i really love the idea of pouring mint-infused chocolate on fruit. Yours looks beautiful!

  • Kajal
    April 23, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    This looks amazing!! Poached Pears are SO classy and yet so delish!

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