• Brandied Pears

    by  • October 28, 2010 • Drink, Family, Local Food, Preserving, Recipes • 16 Comments

    canned brandied pears recipeMy aunt Deb picked and delivered a large box of pears from her farm.  We ate some fresh, but soon the pears begged to be preserved before they rotted.

    My thoughts turned to pear sauce and pear butter, but I have a large store of applesauce already in the pantry and I’m not sure I would enjoy pear butter.  Then I considered, what about brandied pears?  They contain alcohol, which puts them head and shoulders above most canned fruits in my book.

    I searched my regular Internet sources and found plenty of recipes but they all required refrigeration.  My fridge is full, thanks.

    eight pounds of home grown ohio pears

    The gold standard, the Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving, has one recipe that sanely recommends pantry storage.  I modified it just a bit by adding a few spices and adjusted quantities for the 8 pounds of pears I had versus the 10 pounds in their recipe.

    peeled and sliced pearsPeeling, coring and slicing the pears consumed about an hour of time.

    pears in syrup

    Then the pieces bathed in a sugar syrup gently flavored by whole allspice and clove.

    ladling pears into sterilized jars

    The syrup reduced while I filled sterilized jars with hot pears.

    Off the heat, I added brandy to the syrup and poured the liquid over the pears.

    recipe for six pints of brandied pears

    Fifteen minutes in the water bath canner and the brandied pears are complete!  They are resting in the pantry until I pretty them up for holiday gifts.

    Canned Brandied Pears

    makes about six pints

    adapted from Ball Blue Book of Canning

    8 pounds pears (approximately 30 small ones) aged at room temperature until ripe and tasty

    1-2 tablespoons lemon juice

    4.5 cups sugar

    3 cups water

    6-10 whole spices like cloves, allspice berries or cinnamon stick, optional

    2.5 cups brandy

    1. Peel and core pears.  Slice.  Toss with lemon juice to prevent browning.

    2. Heat sugar and water in a large stock pot until boiling.  Add spices if you wish.

    3. Add pears to sugar syrup and cook at boiling for five minutes.

    4. Ladle pears into hot sterilized jars.

    5. Meanwhile, continue to boil sugar syrup.

    6. Remove syrup from heat.  Discard spices.

    7. Add brandy to syrup and stir well.

    8. Ladle brandy syrup over pears in jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace.

    9. Fit sterilized rings and lids onto jars and place in hot water bath.

    10. Boil for 15 minutes.

    11.  Remove jars from water bath and allow to cool completely.

    12. Remove rings and wash any syrup leaks off rims.  Label the jars and store at room temperature for up to a year.

    This post is part of Simple Lives Thursday and Fall Fest.

    Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


    I live to eat and eat to live, planning every meal to include as much local and seasonal abundance as possible. I often wear purple and never refuse a drink.


    16 Responses to Brandied Pears

    1. October 28, 2010 at 8:03 am

      I do a lot of canning, but I have never made Brandied Pears, this will be saved for my next box of pears.


    2. October 28, 2010 at 8:46 am

      Um, YUM! Those look delicious.

    3. October 28, 2010 at 8:53 am

      Yum! I made some earlier in the season using the same recipe. They were wonderful.

    4. October 29, 2010 at 8:18 am

      Miss Nirvana, I’m glad to hear they are delicious – I haven’t opened a jar to try them yet!

    5. October 30, 2010 at 5:35 am

      I am generally not a fan of canned fruit – but, these look amazing!!

    6. Aaron
      December 19, 2011 at 5:19 pm

      can I use whiskey instead of brandy? or 92 proof Sailor Jerry rum?

      • December 19, 2011 at 5:32 pm

        Absolutely, Aaron. The alcohol can even be omitted. It’s the acid in the pear syrup that makes the pears safe to can.

        • lapin-rouge
          October 18, 2015 at 2:52 am

          Nope – its the sugar solution. Your recipe isn’t sufficiently acid (but pickled pears would work) and there isn’t sufficient alcohol for it to be the preservative.

    7. Cam French
      November 19, 2012 at 2:09 pm

      A friend and I brandied pears in early September according to Martha Stewart’s recipe. We sterilized the jars but we did not do a canning /water bath process. We put the syrup/brandy/pears together and shut the lids tightly. I did not put my jars in the refrigerator but down in our cellar. As of yet it has not been really cold in Wisconsin. Does my family risk botulism poisoning if we eat the pears?

      Thank you,

      Cam French

      • November 20, 2012 at 9:00 am

        I hate to be the bearer of bad news but I would not eat pears that hadn’t been canned with a hot water bath. The lids are not likely to be sealed and two months at cellar temperature is plenty of time to grow botulism or other nasty bugs.

        If you made a lot and really don’t want it to go to waste, you could pour everything out into a large pot and boil it for ages. The texture will probably dissolve to a sauce-like consistency, but at least you’ll be assured that you aren’t making anyone sick.

        In the future, if you aren’t going to can, put the jars into the refrigerator. They will probably keep there for several months.

        • Melody Bowers
          September 2, 2014 at 8:35 am

          Botulism spores and their produced toxins cannot be killed by boiling at 212 degrees, no matter how long you cook it. it would be safest to discard old food that was improperly canned. Ingesting the botulism toxin can be fatal. Better safe than sorry!

          I realize this is an old post from 2010, but these things live on on the Internet so I am commenting for safety’s sake.

    8. Pingback: National Brandied Fruit Day- 9 fancy recipes for holiday giving! | Daily Holiday Blog

    9. Pingback: Little Things | It’s mostly about the pears

    10. Leith
      June 17, 2014 at 5:21 pm

      Thank you, love it, gonna make these for my sisters 50th birthday pressy – she’s a cook and I’m not really, so I know she’ll love the thought that someone made her something different and yummy.

    11. Ellen
      September 23, 2015 at 4:31 pm

      Do you think that I would be ok if I didn’t use sterilization if the pears were kept under refrigeration? If so, do you have any idea how long they would be safe if refrigerated? I am fortunate enough to have a second refrigerator in our basement. Thanks!

    12. November 17, 2015 at 8:51 am

      A friend of mine used the Ball recipe but substituted a small handful of red hots for some of the sugar. They look beautiful and the syrup was tasty. I may try using amaretto and adding a touch of vanilla.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    CommentLuv badge