Last weekend we stocked up on pears for something a little different to spice up our lunches and late night snacks. Sadly, they looked much better than they tasted. Not wanting to let them go to waste, I whipped up a nice lower-sugar fresh pear crisp.

Pear Crisp

Dessert in our house is a complicated topic – I love cake (well, mostly frosting!) and my husband loves pie. I try to make pie for special occasions, but for some reason I never feel as efficient at pie making as I do with cake baking. As a result, my go-to method for answering a weeknight pie craving is usually in the form of a crisp. Crisps are great on all fronts – no special ingredients necessary, quick to toss together, and really versatile (I have yet to find a fruit that won’t work, and dealing with dietary restrictions is a breeze!)

Most crisp recipes include sugar both in their streusel and in their filling, but I decided to let the fruit stand on its own and only sweeten the topping.  This results in a filling that is a little less sticky and thick, but it’s a worthy tradeoff! This is easily veganized with vegan butter (Mattie’s recipe is amazing), and gluten-freeafied with almond or walnut flour and gluten free oats.

I made these into individual servings in large ramekins because I think it feels a little more special, but a 9×13 pan works great too.

Pear Crisp



  • 8 pears (peeled and diced)
  • 1/4 cups orange juice (about 1 orange)
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon (ground)
  • 1 teaspoon ginger (ground)
  • 1 teaspoon allspice (ground)


  • 1 cup oatmeal (gluten free if desired)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (almond or walnut flour for a gluten free option)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (ground)
  • 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cups butter (cold)


Mix together filling ingredients. Place in greased 9x13 pan or 12 greased large ramekins.

Mix together topping ingredients until crumbly. Sprinkle over filling.

Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until golden and bubbly. Serve warm with vanilla or cinnamon ice cream.

Recipe and photographs from Mayhem in the Kitchen!



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