If you’re an apple butter fan you’ve got to try this with pears. A fuss-free recipe utilizing the slow cooker, simply dump in the ingredients and let the slow cooker work its magic. The result is a wonderfully deep, caramelized flavor that comes from slow cooking the pears with brown sugar for hours and hours.
Use this Caramel Pear Butter on your favorite scones, muffins or toast; stir some into your favorite barbecue sauce; use it as a glaze for ham, pork and chicken; add some to your apple pie; use it in place of oil in your cakes, muffins and cookies for added sweetness, flavor and moistness; spread some on your ham & cheese sandwiches for a tasty twist!
Let’s get started!
Wash and quarter the pears. Discard the cores and stems. There’s no need to peel them. Place them in a slow cooker.
I’ve been using my Hamilton Beach Stay or Go Slow Cooker for several years and love it. Since buying mine they’ve come out with a programmable version which, for just an extra $10, is a super convenient feature to have.
Add the brown sugar and the spices.
Close the lid and cook on LOW for 8-10 hours or on HIGH for 5-6 hours.
Use an immersion blender (or transfer to a countertop blender) and puree until smooth.
I’ve had my Cuisinart Immersion Blender for 7 years and it’s still going strong – I love it!
The pear butter will be very watery. Leave the lid open and continue to simmer on LOW for 6+ hours (or on HIGH for 4+ hours) until the pear butter has thickened to the desired consistency.
Taste the pear butter and if you’d like it sweeter you can add more brown sugar and let it simmer for another 30 minutes or so.
Optional: Pears have a bit of grittiness to them and if you want a smoother pear butter you can run it through a food mill before canning it. They’re not cheap but you can often find them in your local thrift shops. I picked up two of them at Goodwill for about $6 each.
At this point you can either simply ladle the pear butter into jars and keep it in the fridge for up to two weeks or give it away as gifts, OR can it for long-term storage.
To can you Caramel Pear Butter ladle the hot pear butter into sterilized jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace from the top.
Screw on the washed lids and rims.
Now it’s time to process them in a water bath.
I use and recommend the Granite Ware Enamel-on-Steel 9-piece Canning Kit
Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Be sure the jars are covered by 1-2 inches of water.
Remove and let sit undisturbed for 24 hours before moving them. Store in a dark, cool place for up to a year. For best flavor consume within 4-6 months.
Caramel Pear Butter
- 6 pounds ripe pears ,quartered and cores and stems discarded (no need to peel the pears)
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 cup apple juice
- Place all the ingredients in a slow cooker and cook on LOW for 8-10 hours or on HIGH for 5-6 hours. Use an immersion blender (or transfer to a countertop blender) and puree until smooth.
- Leave the lid of the slow cooker open and continue to simmer on LOW for 6+ hour, or on HIGH for 4+ hours, or until the pear butter has thickened to the desired consistency.
- Taste the pear butter and if you prefer it sweeter add some more brown sugar and let it simmer for another 30 minutes or so.
- Optional: Pears tend to be a little gritty. For a smoother taste, process the pear butter in a food mill.
- If you're not canning the pear butter, it will store in the fridge for about 2 weeks.
- To can for long-term storage: Ladle the hot pear butter into sterilized jars and screw on the washed lids and rims. Process in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Remove and let sit undisturbed for 24 hours before moving the jars. Store in a dark, cool place for up to a year. For best flavor consume within 4-6 months.