Amazing Pear Torte, adaptation from Smitten Kitchen

I am so obsessed with this cake.

Pear Torte slice

You’ll recall that I made Smitten Kitchen’s take on a famous plum torte recipe, which was amazing—lightly sweet, with a slightly crunchy cinnamon-sugar topping, and the plums turning into these pockets of soft, sweet, gooey goodness. And I remember wondering at the time whether pears would do the same. Because I love pears.

Pear Torte finished

I finally got around to giving this a try, and yes, it’s just as good!

pear torte pears

Man, pears are the best.

pear torte pears batter

You can either eat this straight out of the oven, or let it sit overnight and the juices from the fruit and the skin become even more entrenched in the cake. It’s hard to wait that long, but totally worth it.

pear torte cinnamon sugar

One of the great things about this cake is that it only takes about 15 minutes to put together and put in the oven. Rarely do you get a cake that seems so fancy and takes so little effort.

Pear Torte baked

Since I made this same recipe with only a different fruit, you can look at the step-by-step instructions and pictures on my plum torte recipe if necessary. But it’s super simple and fast.

Pear Torte

Oh man, I want to make it again right now!

Amazing Pear Torte

  • 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder (aluminum-free if you have it)
  • Large pinch of salt
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar (I’d back off this a little, maybe 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) of unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large or (recommended) 3-4 small, ripe pears, halved and cored
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cardamom
  • 1-2 tablespoons of sugar

Heat oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl, sift or whisk the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and salt) together. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and cup of sugar together until the mixture is fluffy and light. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping down the bowl as you go, then add the dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.

Spoon the batter into an ungreased 9-inch springform pan or a regular 9-inch cake pan (I sprayed mine lightly with cooking spray). Smooth out the top and arrange the plums, cut-side down, all over the batter. The plums should cover up as much of the batter as possible. Sprinkle the top of the cake with lemon juice, then the cinnamon and sugar.

Bake the cake for 45-50 minutes, until the cake is golden and a toothpick inserted into a center (non-plum) part of the cake comes out clean. Cool on a rack. Once cool, consider letting it stand at room temperature covered overnight, since it’s even better the second day.



  1. […] bears a striking resemblance to both the plum torte and the pear torte adaptation I’ve made over the past few months, but this is more of a pound cake—denser, not quite […]


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