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This dessert is as elegant as is it is easy.

A chilly night calls for a warm dessert with a hint of spice. We’re catching the tail end of Seckel, Bartlett and Concorde pear season, so what better time than now to poach these friendly fruits? Our friends at ChefSteps wrote in this week with a classic recipe for red wine poached pears. We recommend serving these beautifully tender and spiced pears with ice cream and whipped cream. Think of it as a gluten-free pear pie a la mode!

Red Wine Poached Pears

45 minutes to 1 hour; serves 4-8


  • 4 pears, whole
  • 750 milliliters red wine
  • Whole mace, as needed
  • 1 gram nutmeg
  • 5 grams cinnamon stick
  • 2 grams clove
  • 1.5 grams allspice
  • 135 grams granulated sugar
  • Lemon juice, optional, as needed


  • Sous vide setup
  • Potato peeler
  • Sponge, optional (for buffing pears)
  • Vacuum sealer bag
  • Vacuum sealer, such as a FoodSaver
  • Large pot
  • Strainer


  1. Preheat Joule or sous vide. For tender and toothsome—pretty much perfect—we recommend cooking at 176 °F / 80 °C for 30 minutes.
  2. Combine all the ingredients, except for the pears, in a saucepan and mix thoroughly.
  3. Simmer wine mixture over medium-high heat until liquid has reduced to about a fifth of its original volume, or until it coats the back of a spoon. Strain and transfer to the fridge or an ice bath to chill.
  4. Fill a bowl or container with cool water. Peel pears, submerging each fruit in the water once skin is removed. TIP: If your pears are very ripe, adding a few tablespoons of lemon juice to the water can help reduce browning.
  5. With a clean scrubbing pad, sponge, or kitchen towel, scrub the surface of each fruit; this will give pears a more even appearance.
  6. Add the pears and poaching liquid to the bag. Seal the bag according to the directions that came with your vacuum sealer.
  7. Cook pears for 30 min, or until soft to the touch when squeezed.
  8. Open bags and carefully remove pears, reserving juices. Transfer juices to a pot and reduce on the stove until they form a light syrup.
  9. Drizzle the reduced sauce onto sliced pears and top with ice cream, whipped cream, or a sweet sauce of your liking!

ChefSteps comprises a team of award-winning chefs, filmmakers, scientists, designers and engineers focused on revolutionizing the way people cook by inspiring creativity and encouraging expertise in the kitchen. You can also get access to all of ChefSteps’ Premium content — including paid classes and dozens of recipes available only to Premium members for a onetime fee of $39. Classes include Sous Vide: Beyond the BasicsFluid GelsFrench Macarons and more!