Recipe: Spiced Pear Coffee Cake


This spiced pear coffee cake, adapted from Joy the Baker’s “pear crumble coffee cake” (I opted for no “crumble”) is similar to the moist apple spice loaf I made last year in its spice profile and fruit chunks. It is almost healthy enough to eat for breakfast, and it’s certainly good enough for an afternoon snack with a mug of tea.


Cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg lend earthy, autumnal flavors to a spongy cake speckled with lots of pear chunks. Despite the denseness of the batter, the cake turns out surprisingly light and springy. The just softened pears impart a delightful, nutty flavor. (Speaking of nuts, I might add some next time, for texture.) The cake has a slightly crunchy, golden-brown top.

Spiced Pear Coffee Cake (adapted from Joy the Baker)


  • 2 cups plain flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg (freshly ground/grated is best)
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (8 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted & cooled
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 medium pears, cored & diced
  • optional: 1/3 cup chopped walnuts


  • Preheat the oven to 350F (175C) and grease a square baking pan.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (through nutmeg). Stir in the sugars.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter, eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add to the dry mixture and stir until combined — the batter will be quite thick.
  • Gently fold the pears into the batter, scrape everything into the baking pan.
  • Bake for 30-40 minutes or until an inserted knife comes out clean. Let cool for 20-30 minutes before serving.


3 thoughts on “Recipe: Spiced Pear Coffee Cake

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