Fine Desserts

Unbelievable Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp

4.84 from 42 votes
My Unbelievable Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp recipe is one of my top 3 favorite desserts of all time — and if that isn't enough for you to try it, wait until you see how easy it is to make!

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my full disclosure for details.

Hi Bold Bakers!

No lie — this Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp is probably one of my top three desserts in the world. Ever. Pears aren’t even my favorite, but this homemade crisp completely blew me away! 

What I love about this dessert is its unique chocolate crisp on top. Throughout the streusel topping are big chunks of bittersweet chocolate. It feels like you’ve struck gold every time you find one of those pools of chocolate heaven! And the chocolate hidden throughout really balances the sweetness of the pears so perfectly. And textures of the crispy topping and soft pears make every bite incredible!

[ Looking for crisp with a different fruit? Try my Skillet Cherry Crisp! ]

You need to try this recipe! And now happens to be a perfect time—pears are in season! 

What Is A Chocolate Pear Crisp?

A chocolate pear crisp is a new spin on your classic crisp recipes, like my Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp and my Blueberry Crisp. For one, instead of using fresh summer fruits, this crisp has pears that transform into a juicy, flavorful dessert, topped with a crisp that has unsweetened cocoa powder and bittersweet chocolate chopped throughout. 

Top-down view of my Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp, with a serving removed.

What’s The Difference Between A Crisp And A Crumble?

Crisp and crumble get used pretty interchangeably, and I doubt you’ll ever serve someone who would correct you on your word usage! They’ll be too busy eating. 

But this is technically a crisp recipe. A crisp is usually made of brown sugar, flour, and butter, while a crumble is usually topped with rolled oast and brown sugar. 

What Pears Should I Use For Baking?

For baking, I would use either a Bartlett pear or a d’Anjou pear. Bartlett pears break down great when you bake them and have a lot of delicious flavor. D’Anjou pears are likely the ones you will find at your supermarket and are super juicy when they are ripe.

Whatever pears you pick up will work well in this recipe, however. But you do want to make sure they are ripe! 

What You Need To Make Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp

Two servings of Pear & Chocolate Crisp with vanilla ice cream, alongside the bigger dish of crisp.

How To Make Chocolate Pear Crisp

You have to try this chocolate crisp! It’s so delicious and so easy. Here is how you make it (and don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, on the page down below):

  1. To make the chocolate crisp topping, mix the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, and salt in a bowl. 
  2. Add the cold butter and rub in the butter using your fingers (or a dough cutter) until the dry ingredients start to resemble coarse breadcrumbs. Cold butter is key here!
  3. Mix in the chopped chocolate and set it aside in the fridge until you are ready to bake your crisp.
  4. For the pear filling, peel, core, and chop the pears into chunks. 
  5. In a bowl, mix the pears with the cornstarch and lemon juice. Pour into a 9-inch baking dish. You will want a wide and shallow dish so there is a lot of the crisp topping.
  6. Top the pears with the chocolate crisp mixture. It will look like a lot, but it bakes down.
  7. Bake in a preheated 350ºF (180ºC) oven for around 45 to 50 minutes, until the pears are soft and the top is baked.

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips For Making Chocolate Pear Crisp

  • You can make the crisp topping for up to 3 days in advance, or you can freeze it for up to 2 weeks.
  • If pears aren’t your favorite, apples work really great in this recipe as well.
  • Be sure to use a wide, shallow baking dish so you get a lot of crisp topping spread evenly.
  • Use unsweetened cocoa powder. Do NOT use hot chocolate powder.
  • Bittersweet chocolate is the best for this recipe, as it really balances the sweetness of the pears. 
  • Make your own brown sugar!

A bowl of chocolate pear crisp.

How Do I Store Chocolate Pear Crisp?

Any leftover pear crisp can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 

Make More Dessert!

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

Unbelievable Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp Recipe

4.84 from 42 votes
My Unbelievable Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp recipe is one of my top 3 favorite desserts of all time — and just wait until you see how easy it is to make!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 6 people
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
My Unbelievable Pear & Dark Chocolate Crisp recipe is one of my top 3 favorite desserts of all time — and just wait until you see how easy it is to make!
Author: Gemma Stafford
Servings: 6 people


Pear Crisp Filling

  • 7-8 ripe pears (Bartlett, D'Anjou etc)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (cornflour)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice

Chocolate Crisp

  • 1 cup (5oz/142g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¾ cup (4 ½ oz/128g) brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup (6oz/170g) butter, cold and cubed
  • ½ cup (3oz/85g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped


For the Chocolate Crisp Topping:

  • In a large bowl add the flour, cocoa powder, brown sugar, and salt and lightly mix together.
  • Add the cold butter and using your fingers (or a dough cutter) rub in the butter into the dry ingredients until the mix resembles coarse breadcrumbs. You can also use a food processor for this step.
  • Mix in chopped chocolate. Set aside in the fridge until ready to bake your crisp.

For the Pear Filling:

  • Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Set aside a 9-inch baking dish. You want a wide and shallow dish for this recipe as there is lots of the crisp topping.
  • Peel, core, and chop the pears into chunks. (It's very important you use ripe pears so they will soften while baking.)
  • In a bowl mix the pears together with the cornstarch and lemon juice. Pour filling into the baking dish.
  • Top with the chocolate crisp mixture distributing evenly. It will look like it's too much but it's fine. It will bake down.
  • Bake for roughly 45 to 50 minutes or until the pears are soft and the topping is baked.
  • Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. Any leftovers can be stored in the fridge for up to 4 days.
Notify of

most useful
newest oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Kiana Bhote
Kiana Bhote
3 years ago

Hi Gemma! I made this recipe last week and absolutely loved it.. I made it with apples since I didnt have pears and it was still amazing.. Thank you for the recipe!
– Kiana

1 year ago

Does canned pears work?

Parul Rambhia
Parul Rambhia
1 year ago

Is there a video of the recipe?

Donna Clayton
Donna Clayton
2 years ago

Fabulous, amazing, absinthe delicious!

2 years ago

Hi Gemma : I am not a huge fan of pears mostly because in Rwanda where I spend 10 to 11 months a year when they can be found they are insanely INSANELY expensive so I made this recipe to day with Rasberries and Blackberries and then also made a pitcher of warm birds custard to go with . My Rwandan collegues could not stop saying biraryoshye cynae meaning its VERY delicious . Thanks for the ways you have helped me introduce family and friends to really good Muzungu ( non Rwandan ) food to go along with really Yummy… Read more »

3 years ago

I was hesitant to make this, as pear and chocolate don’t sound super yummy to me. I went for it, because for Gemma to say its in her top three is kind of a big deal. OHMYGOODNESS stop everything you are doing and go make this right now!! This is far, far better than anything I could have ever imagined or even begin to describe. It is absolutely delicious!

Diana Borg
Diana Borg
3 years ago

Hi Gemma,

Can I use canned pineapple instead of pairs?

3 years ago

Hi Gemma! Me and my sister love to watch your videos and love seeing baby Georgie at the end of your videos. We are gluten and sometimes grain free. We really would love to make this recipe since we just bought some pears from the market the other day. How could we make this grain or gluten free? Thanks so much!

3 years ago

Delish! Rich, warm, and comforting. I love the smell when it was baking.. Chocolatey. Next time I’ll be sure to not over pulsate, and would leave the crumbs not as smooth for more texture. I ate it with chocolate cherry ice cream, yum. Thank you for the recipe, Gemma.

3 years ago

Just wondering if you can substitute semi chocolate for bittersweet. The only kinds I can find are unsweetened, semi sweet and sweet. No bittersweet

This Recipe Made By Bold Bakers

5 Images


Chris Brunke

Kelly Biggerstaff



About Us

Meet Gemma

About Us

Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, a cookbook author, and the creator of Bigger Bolder Baking. I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere with my trusted and tested recipes and baking tips. You may have seen one of my 500+ videos on YouTube & TikTok or as a guest judge on Nailed It! on Netflix or the Best Baker in America on Food Network. No matter your skills, my Bold Baking Team & I want to be your #1 go-to baking authority.


Weeknight Family Favorites Chapter from the Bigger Bolder Baking Every Day Cookbook

10th Anniversary Cookbook


 Recipes that have been loved by millions of real bakers!