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Spiced pears with blue cheese

Updated: Tue, 23 January, 2024

Pears and blue cheese are a match made in heaven, so here are roasted pears spiced with cinnamon, baked under a coat of blue cheese, Gorgonzola or Stilton. They will make a great sweet-savoury starter, dessert or a side dish.

baked pears with blue cheese

Autumnal dish of baked pears

Pears are a harbinger of autumn, if you go for the seasonal, not imported varieties as I think you always should. And so let me tell you that my joy of pears often coincides with my biggest fear.

Autumn means spiders!

I am a sworn arachnophobe. The type that’s scared even of the spindly skinny ones. The type that runs screaming, and I mean RUNS. SCREAMING!!!! every morning I find a fat huge nasty one skulking in the bath ready to pounce and kill me.

I am the type that goes through the autumn forest with my arms stretched in front of me, like a blind person, lest I walk into a spider web. The kind that will shake violently a pair of boots that sat all summer at the back of the cupboard and then will vacuum the insides, just in case.

You might have guessed that I am seriously scared of spiders.

I could also tell tales about relationship crises, as I live with a rescue-the-spider type of person, while my approach is SPLAT!!! Unless I’m too scared to splat. So anyway I used to dread the beginning of autumn when the monsters would relocate into my house thirsty for my blood.

Not any more.


Conkers for spiders

Conkers are the answer. They absolutely work. They obviously contain and exude some chemicals that repels the creatures, but I swear it’s like a miracle – the last few years, since I started putting them out in the corners all over the house only a couple of spiders turn up and they tend to be seriously freaked out. Only hoovering is a bit of a pain with the conkers on the floor everywhere.

So when autumn comes, I can fearlessly focus on its joys, of which pears are one of the uppermost. And here’s a warming autumnal dish of spiced pears with blue cheese.

roasted pears with stilton

What pear variety is best for baking?

The most popular pear varieties in the UK are Williams, Comice and Conference. There is also a Concorde pear which apparently is delicious with cheese but I don’t recall coming across that variety in the shops or markets very often.

Comice and Williams are both quite soft when very ripe and, although those are usually recommended for cooking, my favourite is Conference. I like a pear that nearly breaks my teeth when I bite into it, whether raw or cooked. But if your personal faves are with Williams and co, go for it.

conference pears

How to prepare pears with blue cheese?

Peel them, halve them and use a small spoon to scoop out the core. Cleverly, that indent will be the perfect container for the cheese to melt and ooze into. If you’re preparing the pears in advance, keep them in cold water with a lemon squeezed into it, to stop them from oxidising (going brown).

The cheese can be any blue variety you like or have in a good amount. Stilton is arguably the sharpest and the best, or Gorgonzola picante, but Danish Blue or similar might be better value.

The pear halves should be seasoned all over with the spices, then drizzled with honey and balsamic vinegar. Nestle them in a buttered dish cut side down, dotting them with tiny knoblets of butter.

baking pears

They will bake for around twenty minutes to half an hour until softened, which depends on the pear variety. Remove the dish from the oven at that point, turn the pear halves carefully over and add a cube of cheese in the middle of each piece. Return the dish to the oven for about ten to fifteen minutes, until the cheese looks gorgeous and bubbles happily over the pears.

Serve the dish immediately, or let it settle a little to spare diners from burning their mouths.

pear halves baked with gorgonzola cheese

How to serve the pears?

This is such a versatile dish! It is a good starter, it can be served for lunch with a generous chunk of fresh baguette, but it also makes a splendid dessert. Especially for people who prefer to go savoury to complete their meals.

More pear recipes

Black rice risotto cooked Italian style, with poached pear quarters and gobbets of blue cheese, is the best way to enjoy the black or purple, ‘forbidden’ rice variety.

Pear and grilled halloumi salad with roasted parsnip and salty pumpkin seeds. Everything is there: the wholesome, the sweet, the salty and the crunch. A perfect salad?

Italian style pear tart with an easy sponge base, soft yoghurt filling and pear, cinnamon and almond topping. A cross between a pear tart and a pear cake.

More baked fruit recipes

Baked figs with blue cheese, a drop of honey and a drizzle of balsamic can be a gorgeous starter, side dish, lunch or even a healthy dessert.

Baked peach with blue cheese and cinnamon crumble. An unusual dessert: roasted peaches with honey, topped with blue cheese and simple savoury crumble. Something slightly different for afters.

Slow roasted strawberries become jammy but not too sickly, coated in luscious syrup, and they have a multitude of uses in desserts, cakes and afternoon tea confections.

pear and stilton starter

Spiced pears with blue cheese

Servings: 2-4Time: 1 hour
Rating: (1 reviews)


  • 3 conference pears
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp ras el hanout moroccan spice (optional)
  • a pinch of ground cloves
  • a pinch of ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 100g ( 4 oz.) blue cheese (Gorgonzola or Stilton)


1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas 6. Peel and halve the pears. Scrape out the core with a spoon to make a cavity for the cheese. If not baking straight away, keep them in cold water with a lemon squeezed in to stop them from oxidising.

2. Lightly butter a gratin dish large enough to fit the pear halves in a single layer. Place the pears in the dish and toss with the spices, honey and balsamic vinegar. Dot them with butter, arrange cut side down and bake for about 30 minutes until they start to soften.

3. Remove the dish from the oven, turn the pear halves over and place a portion of cheese on each. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted and bubbling.

Originally published: Tue, 23 September, 2014

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Anna @ CuisineFiend
Hi Brian - good to hear you've enjoyed them!
2 years ago
These were insanely good. very easy to make. I had a jar of ras el hanout but hadn’t used it yet. This was the perfect recipe to try it oil on. cayenne just adds a hint of heat in the background and the cheese added a nice savory note. I’ve made it twice already and it’ll be in the regular rotation
2 years ago

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Hello! I'm Anna Gaze, the Cuisine Fiend. Welcome to my recipe collection.

I have lots of recipes for you to choose from: healthy or indulgent, easy or more challenging, quick or involved - but always tasty.


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