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Maple Pear Apple Butter with a deep, rich flavor and velvety smooth consistency
Enjoy the season’s best fruits in our Maple Pear Apple Butter recipe!
This is an easy and delicious apple butter recipe with a special homemade taste. It only takes a few minutes to prep the ingredients, then simmer for an hour and a half.
This is no wimpy apple butter, it’s rich with flavor like a crisp apple! The foundation of this recipe is fresh apple cider. Ripe pears, juicy apples and good quality maple syrup round out the simple ingredients.
The flavors become concentrated when the mixture is reduced, resulting in a luxurious taste. This apple butter recipe has just the right amount of cinnamon and fresh grated nutmeg to compliment the fruit, so all the flavors really shine.
Even though it might look like everyday apple butter, the pears and the maple syrup in this fruit butter are definitely not hiding in the background.
A family favorite since 2010.
I love this time of year. With a big variety of fresh apples, pears and squash available in the markets, it’s hard to know where to start! Some years ago a friend gave me a bag of fresh homegrown pears. We enjoyed as many as we could but when we got down to the last four pears, this recipe was born.
My mother used to make pear butter but somewhere along the way the recipe was lost. Since I didn’t have her amazing recipe I ended up doing tons of research into apple butter recipes. I finally decided on a hybrid of pear and apple butter, sweetened mostly with maple syrup instead of just sugar.
This recipe was one of the first I ever blogged in 2010 and has been our favorite ever since!
What kind of pears should you use in this maple pear apple butter recipe?
Bosc pears, with a sweet and complex flavor, are by far the most popular pear for baking and cooking. They’re also readily available in most grocery stores. Pear season starts in the summer with Bartlett pears arriving first. Next comes the Bosc and Comice varieties in the fall. From fall into winter you can find Anjou pears that are terrific for eating out of hand.
December is actually national pear month – but don’t wait until then to start enjoying fresh pears.
Should you use over-ripe pears in this maple pear apple butter recipe?
Pears actually ripen best after they are picked. They are easily bruised so take care when storing and handling pears. For this recipe you can use very ripe pears that may seem almost too ripe. Alternatively, you can use less ripe pears or hasten the process by placing them in a brown paper bag.
Don’t store pears in plastic bags as it will cause the fruit to ripen too quickly. Store fresh pears in a cool location and enjoy them when they a little soft when squeezed at the neck. Once a pear is ripe, store it in the refrigerator to slow the ripening process and stay edible for about 5 more days.
What kind of apples are best for apple butter recipes?
Any semi-tart cooking apple will be perfect for this apple butter recipe. We like Gala this time of year. You’ll want an apple that will break down and create a creamy, smooth apple butter.
Firmer apples like Honeycrisp (one of my favorite eating apples) are great for baking when you want an apple that will keep it’s shape and texture. Check out THIS great article for more information about the best apples for cooking apple butter.
Can you freeze this maple pear apple butter?
Yes you can! Be sure to leave a little head-room in the jar for the fruit butter to expand in the freezer. It will keep well for up to 3 months. This apple butter recipe will also keep for a month in the refrigerator when well sealed in a jar.
I have not canned this recipe but if you want to give it a go, consult your favorite hot water bath recipe for canning. Once opened, refrigerate the fruit butter and use within a month.
Here are a few suggestions for enjoying our Maple Pear Apple Butter Recipe:
- Slather on scones, toast, muffins or biscuits;
- Dollop on your morning pancakes or waffles;
- Stir a spoonful into your overnight oatmeal;
- Smear on a turkey, cheese and apple panini;
- Use our Maple Pear Apple Butter recipe as a filling for these soft and tender swirl buns;
- Mix with the buttercream filling in these soft ginger molasses cookies;
- Tie a ribbon around a pretty jar of this Maple Pear Apple Butter recipe as a thoughtful holiday gift!
- Don’t forget to save room for dessert! This maple pear apple butter recipe is pretty amazing on a slice of toasted Pound Cake or a bowl of ice cream 🙂
- And finally, add one tablespoon of your favorite bourbon at the end of cooking for a lovely twist on this breakfast staple.
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Maple Pear Apple Butter
- 4 ripe pears cored and diced (no need to peel)
- 2 apples peeled, cored and diced
- 1 ½ cups apple cider
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- pinch of salt
- juice of ½ lemon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Add all the ingredients to a high speed blender and process until somewhat smooth.
- Pour the puree into a heavy bottom saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer. As the fruit butter cooks, skim off any foam that accumulates on top during the first 30 minutes or so.
- Continue to simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
- (Optional) After an hour of cooking remove the pan from the heat and carefully process using an immersion or stick blender until smooth. Return to the stovetop and continue cooking until thick with most of the liquid evaporated.
- Carefully pour the apple butter to a heat-safe container and cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate.
- The Maple Pear Apple Butter will keep for up to a month.
- Ripe but firm Bosc or Bartlett pears are good for this recipe.
- Gala or another good cooking apple will work well for this recipe.
Here are a few more recipes you might also like:
Maple Pumpkin Butter – deliciously rich, velvety smooth, not too sweet, and perfectly wonderful slathered on toast, biscuits, muffins, pancakes, waffles or stirred into your morning oatmeal.
Juicy fresh pears and ground walnuts are the stars of these moist and delicious, cardamom scented Pear Walnut Muffins.
Originally published October 2010, updated September 2019