poached pears with chocolate sauce and ice cream

Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce and Ice Cream

It’s the holiday season, so that means it’s also dessert season.  Whether you’re having company, or just treating yourself, this poached pear recipe with chocolate sauce and ice cream is going to be a hit. The long name makes it sound kind of complicated, but it’s really easy.

First, you poach the pears by letting them simmer gently in a bit of sugar and water.  Let them cool off a bit, then put them on a plate with ice cream and drizzle chocolate syrup over them.  It feels like you’re doing something fancy for company, but you don’t have to share!

Pears were on sale this week(three pounds for only three dollars!), and I just couldn’t resist making this recipe.  I used Bosc pears  but Bartlett or Anjou will work just fine.

The pears were exceptionally sweet, and that plus the sugar, and the ice cream made the original recipe (from The New York Times cookbook), a bit cloying.  Sweet is good, but not that sweet, so I reduced the sugar.  The full amount of sugar is 1/4 cup.  Use that if your pears aren’t that good.  If you have sweet, juicy pears, cut the sugar by a teaspoon or two.

Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce and Ice Cream

Prep Time: 1 minute

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Category: dessert

Cuisine: French

one serving

poached pears with chocolate sauce and ice cream

Poached pears with chocolate sauce and ice cream. A fancy-looking dessert that's easy to make.


  • 1 pear
  • 2/3 C water
  • 1/4 C sugar, minus one or two teaspoons
  • 1/3 tsp vanilla extract
  • One scoop vanilla ice cream
  • Drizzle chocolate syrup (a teaspoon or two)


  1. Peel the pear, cut it in half, and remove the core with a paring knife.
  2. Add the water and sugar to a small saucepan (less than one quart) and stir the mixture to combine them together.
  3. Turn the flame to medium and bring the sugar/water mixture to a boil.
  4. Once it's boiling, add the pear halves, and reduce the heat to medium-low.
  5. Let them simmer for three minutes. Turn the halves over and then simmer for another two minutes. Test to see if they're soft enough. If they are, a small knife should go through the pieces easily.
  6. Add the vanilla extract, stir it into the mixture and let everything cool for 15-20 minutes.
  7. To serve, add a scoop of ice cream to a plate, then the pear halves, then drizzle chocolate syrup (or hot fudge sauce) on top.


This takes about 15 minutes to cook, but allow time for the pear halves to cool off after you cook them.

Substitutions and Variations for Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce and Ice Cream

  • Sprinkle some sliced or slivered almonds on top of the pears
  • Poach the pears with a pinch of ginger and a slice of lemon
  • Make your own hot chocolate sauce: combine 1/2 C cocoa, 1 C sugar, 1 C light corn syrup, 1/2 C light cream, 1/4 tsp salt, and 3 tablespoons butter in a saucepan.  Cook on medium heat.  Stir the mixture constantly until it boils.  When it’s boiling merrily, you can cut back to stirring only occasionally. Let it boil for three minutes.  Take the pan off the burner and add  1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Serve the sauce warm over the pears.  You can store the rest in the refrigerator and serve it with more pears, or over ice cream. Or, be really decadent and serve it over small batch brownies.

More Dessert Recipes

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Peach Crumble Recipe for One

Small Batch Cinnamon Sugar Apple Bread


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