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Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Thanks for sharing!

It’s that time of year when fresh fruits and vegetables are readily available, which includes deliciously sweet pears. These tasty morsels are fabulous in many different desserts, but you just can’t beat this recipe for Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty!

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First, I need to let you know that this recipe is extremely versatile. Therefore, if you do not have pears readily available, feel free to use other fruits.

As when making Mini Cast Iron Skillet Rustic Fruit Pies, you can use blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, plums, peaches, rhubarb, or apples in place of pears.

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Before you begin creating this tasty dessert, you’ll need a mixing bowl, a sauce pan, and an 8-inch baking pan.

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Your home will be filled with the most fabulous aroma as Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty bakes in the oven. Yes, I promise!

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Notice the many flecks of cinnamon in the picture? Cinnamon spice really can be detected in every single bite!

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Top off Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or freshly whipped cream.

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Yields 9 servings

A delicious pear dessert that can easily be modified to be gluten-free.

20 minPrep Time

50 minCook Time

1 hr, 10 Total Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe


  • 2 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (GF Option - use gluten free flour)
  • 5 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup cold butter
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Filling:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cornstarch, divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (GF Option - use a gluten-free brand of vanilla)
  • 5 cups chopped peeled ripe pears


  1. In a large bowl, combine flour, 3 tablespoons sugar and salt; cut in butter until crumbly. In a small bowl, whisk egg yolks and lemon juice; stir into dry ingredients with a fork. Remove 1 cup to another bowl; stir in the remaining sugar and set aside for the topping.
  2. Press remaining crumb mixture onto the bottom and up the sides of a greased 8-inch square baking dish. Bake at 375 degrees for 10 - 12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.
  3. Meanwhile, for filling, combine sugar, 2 tablespoons cornstarch, salt and cinnamon in a small saucepan; slowly stir in water and lemon juice until smooth. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from the heat; stir in butter and vanilla.
  4. Toss pears with remaining cornstarch; spoon over crust. Top with filling. Sprinkle with reserved topping; run a table knife through several times.
  5. Bake for 35 - 40 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is lightly brown. Cool.
  6. Serve warm with dollop of vanilla ice cream or whipped heavy cream.


Feel free to use blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, rhubarb, peaches, or apples in place of pears.

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

To make my desserts even more attractive I like serving them on my ceramic dessert plates. 

Old-Fashioned Pear Brown Betty

Because this recipe is so deliciously flexible, I think you’ll agree that it’s definitely a keeper.



More great ideas: 

apple pie oatmeal


Thanks for sharing!

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • beth August 30, 2017, 7:29 am
    This recipe doesn't say how to divide up the flour/sugar mixtures. How much do you save and I'm assuming we'll add the egg mixture to it and put in on the top?
    • Blessed Beyond Crazy August 30, 2017, 8:33 pm
      Hi Beth, Hey, thanks for pointing out that error and I've updated the recipe. To answer your question, set aside 1 cup of the flour/sugar mixture for the topping and yes, you do add the egg mixture to it. Please let me know if you have more questions. Thanks again! Linda

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