Pear and Cranberry Rustic Tart

You can either cut up the pears into cubes, or halve them and core them, and use pear halves. The halves will make a prettier presentation, but the cubes will be easier to prepare.

  • Yield: Serves 6


  • 4 pounds (about 8) Bosc or Bartlett pears (ripe but still quite firm, NOT soft), peeled, cored, cubed into 1-inch pieces (or halved)
  • 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled, chopped
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar (do not sub brown sugar, it will change the taste too much)
  • 1/4 cup (half a stick) butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 pie crust recipe
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract


1 Make the pie dough from one recipe of a butter crust, or buy the kind of frozen pie crust that is folded in a box and lays out flat.

2 Roast the pears: Heat oven to 400°F. Line a roasting pan with aluminum foil. Toss together in the pan the cubed pears (or pear halves if using), ginger, and sugar, and spread out evenly in the pan. Dot the top with butter.

Roast for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, until the pears are tender when pierced with a fork, and starting to get brown and caramelized around the edges. Remove from oven and let cool.

3 Combine roasted pears with cranberries and almond extract: Use a slotted spoon to lift the pears out of the roasting pan, and place in a large bowl. Stir in the cranberries and almond extract.

4 Roll-out pie dough and fill with pear cranberry filling: Heat oven to 350°F. Roll-out the pie dough to a 13-inch diameter. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Mound the pear and cranberry filling in the middle of the dough round, leaving a 2 to 3 inch border.

Fold up the edges over the fruit, pleating the crust around the edges, leaving most of the fruit exposed in the center.

5 Chill for half an hour before baking.

6 Bake: Bake at 350°F for 1 hour, or until the crust is nicely browned.

Cool on a rack for at least an hour before serving.

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  • Sarah K Hamilton

    This recipe is absolutely amazing! 10/10. Rave reviews from all who ate it!

  • Kirzania

    I, too, am late to the party but I have to say I found your recipe about three years ago and I have been making it ever since. I had some ups and downs in the beginning (mainly with the pie crust – boo) but this is now our staple at Thanksgiving. And, if everyone is good, at Christmas too. It has officially replaced our apple pie tradition, this is SO good. I appreciate that I can do quite a bit ahead of time, like roasting the pears and throwing them and a pie crust dough in the fridge a day before, assembly the morning of, and then throw it in the oven as we sit down to eat, maybe a little before. Then it’s ready to go after dinner, clean up and a bit of “resting.” I’d say it’s on par with the prep work I have to do for apple pie, so not that I save much time there, but the taste… Oh, the sweetness of the pears and the way the cranberries follow it with a burst of tartness. I am eating my second helping as I type. As a side note, I’ve found I prefer the Bosc to the Bartlett, though Bartlett will do in a pinch. I can’t put my finger on the reason.
    … Did I mention that, if there’s any left, it makes a FANTASTIC breakfast?


  • Michelle

    Way late to the game here but I wanted to thank you so much for the way you write your recipes. I love how you add practical advice (e.g., in the linked pate brisee recipe talking about freezing the butter) without it being too wordy. It really helps! I love baking but I’m not particularly experienced at it (yet) but I was still able to make this from scratch and not only did it taste AMAZING but it looked beautiful. I was so impressed with myself and I know that much of that has to do with your straightforward and well-written recipes. Thank you thank you thank you! You are my go-to for pretty much all recipes now!

  • Wildwood Girl

    This indeed is a WONDERFUL recipe! I too, wondered about the length of time required for the roasting and the baking, but all that heat yielded a fabulous flavor (and texture), and is necessary in reducing the amount of juice given off by the pears. Everything you suggested was perfect: the ginger, the almond extract, the roasting time (better watch the pears closely as you approach 55 minutes). I did change a couple of things: reduced the sugar to 1/4 of a cup, but added a ground walnut, flour, and sugar mixture which I spread on the pastry dough before piling on the fruit. Also, I cut the pears lengthwise into 6ths –sort of a compromise between halves & cubes. Thank you so much for your research and inspiration! I’ll be checking your blog regularly for more fab ideas!


  • Nancy

    Wah! It looked great going into the oven, but it breached one side of the crust while baking, spilled over, and made a big mess. Too much filling? I’m glad I made a back-up dessert for today…

  • Kristin G

    I made this tonight and it was wonderful! I loved the ginger… I could have eaten the roasted pears straight out of the oven! The only thing I changed was that I ended up pressing it into a tart pan. Next time I will try it galette-style.

  • Granny Smith

    How could this be prepared ahead of time? I cook and serve just about everything just before serving, and yes, I’m always exhausted, but otherwise I feel like food tastes like leftovers the first time it’s served. I’d love to bake this on Sunday for Thanksgiving; can I do this? I worry that having it all done ahead of time will result in a soggy bottom crust, and it’ll just tast “old.” And how would I reheat.

    I would make the pie dough and bake the pears ahead of time (steps 1 and 2). That way you can easily roll out the dough and bake the tart the day of. ~Elise

  • Christina

    This was delicious! I made an apple pie last weekend and, as usual, I ended up with extra dough – not enough to make a full pie, but enough for this. Of course, I had to reduce the amount of filling I made, but that’s what’s nice about something like this as opposed to a pie, which you can’t really do that with… I ended up using a mix of pears and apples, which were quite nice with the cranberries, and instead of almond extract, used amaretto instead. Thank you!

  • Liane

    I doubled the recipe to make two tarts for a group and used pears plus a few apples since I had some at home. Roasted everything together and you couldn’t tell which were apples or pears. My pears were even straight from the store, no extra ripening time, but they tasted lovely. The only thing I changed was that I didn’t have time to make my own crust. That’s on the list for next time. It was funny, I liked the ginger touch and my husband liked the almond touch. This is a very beautiful, easy dessert (the only thing not really easy about it is the time spent waiting for things to roast/bake, but I watched a movie in between) that is just sweet enough and looks professional. Friends kept asking, “You MADE this?” It was a hit.


  • dianne

    I am making this today. Yours looks gorgeous! I do have a question….I have just finished baking the pears so they are cooling right now. Most of the pears I used are a small local variety from a farmer’s market, maybe Forelle? I think these may be a juicier variety so there is a lot of juice left in the baking dish. I hate to waste the juice but don’t want a soggy tart. I am thinking of reducing it and tossing the fruit in a small amount of it before putting them in the pastry. Did you have much juice in the pan after roasting your pears? I did roast them uncovered. Thanks.

    The first time I made the tart, with halved pears, I didn’t include the juice. The second time, with the cut up cubes I did include the juice. When I baked the pie the second time the juice ran out of the pie and all over the pan. Then it caramelized, making clean-up a bit of a pain. But I do like your idea of reducing it and adding it back to the pears in the pie. ~Elise

  • Elise Lafosse

    This tart looks wonderful. One question, i am a little bewildered by your statement that you can halve the pears, then core them, and then use the pear halves which will make a prettier presentation, but the cubes will be easier to prepare. To me, it sound like it is easier to just cut the pears in half as it is less chopping. Do you mean to cut the pear in half and then slice them thin and then lay them out in a nice way? Or do you mean just cut the pears in half, after peeling, from top where stem is to bottom and then lay them down? Not sure that is prettier. Or do you slice them and lay them down. To me that sounds easier, but I am not sure it is prettier…the cubes seem prettier, but take a longer time because it is more chopping…Just want to clarify…I like to keep chopping to a minimum if I can..I apologize for being picky hewn here…more a question of curiosity. Elise

    I’ve done it both ways, and for me, cutting up the pear around the core is easier than cutting the pears in half and carefully cutting the cores out. The pears should be rather hard, so getting the cores out requires a small sharp knife, very careful knife work, and sometimes a spoon on top of that. If you want to see what the pie will look like with the pear halves, click on one of the links to the Globe article and watch the slide show presented on making the recipe. ~Elise

  • Anne Vicari

    This is my go to dessert for all seasons.
    Almost any fruit will work, seasonal is best.

  • Karen

    Made this tonight and it’s AMAZING. Fiancee and I LOVED it….a definite add to our recipe arsenal!

  • Sara

    How do you think this would be with apples instead of pears? I have so many apples!

    Cranberries and apples are great together. I would give it a go. ~Elise

  • Katie

    I am planning on making this tart today (to enjoy with the World Series and a house full of rabid Giants fans). Question: Roasting the pears at 400 for an hour or more AND then baking the assembled tart at 350 for another hour seems like a lot of baking time for pears. Am I missing something (or just being chicken)?

    Yes, I know it seems like a lot of time. I was surprised too when I made it. I did attempt this tart without the pre-baking and frankly it just wasn’t as good. The pears need that extra baking to get the caramelized flavor. I even made caramel separately and poured it over the raw pears the time I made it without pre-baking. It didn’t work. The flavor didn’t come through. So, yes, you need to do the long baking. ~Elise

  • Ru

    Is there a way to get the almond flavor without using almond extract? What about using almond slices or ground almond?

    You can substitute 1/4 cup of the flour in the crust with finely ground almonds. ~Elise

  • Sofia

    I love galettes. This looks yummy. What do you think about quince, pear and cranberry? I have a surplus of poached quince this year.

    Quince has such a strong flavor on its own, it might overwhelm the others. Love quince. ~Elise