An Elegant Autumnal Dessert

Although your kids might love the tender sweetness of these simple poached pears, their real appeal will shine through at your next dinner party. They don’t take much effort, they have no added sugar, and they’ll delight your palate from start to finish with notes of cardamom and vanilla mingling with the essence of a good Riesling to flavor ripe pears.

A Pair of Pears
A Pair of Pears / Sylphwood / CC BY 2.0

Poached Pears with Pomegranate Seeds

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An elegant and simple dessert, this poaching recipe relies on the spices and the natural sweetness of pears to bring a satisfying end to any dinner party. Tart pomegranate seeds finish the flavor palate with bright note to balance the tender-sweet pears.

Tip: The wine you use will make a substantial difference to the flavor of the finished dish. If Riesling is not an option, a fruit-forward rosé would make a nice substitute, but avoid drier whites like Pinot Grigio.

Servings: 4 (394 g )

Prep Time: 10 min.

Cook Time: 30 min.


  • 1 (750 ml.) bottle sweet white wine, such as Riesling
  • 4 very ripe pears, peeled and halved
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 whole vanilla bean
  • 2 cardamom pods, lightly smashed
  • 3-4 whole cloves
  • Seeds from one pomegranate half


  1. Add the wine and spices to a heavy saucepan. Heat the poaching liquid to a simmer over medium heat.
  2. When the liquid reaches a simmer, add the pears and cook until tender, 15-20 minutes. Do not allow the pan to boil over.
  3. Remove the pears and increase the heat, bringing the liquid up to a boil. Reduce to desired consistency (10-12 minutes). Strain spices before serving. Garnish pears (warm or cold) with pomegranate seeds and reduced poaching liquid.