Urban Preserving: Pear Vanilla Drizzle

November 20, 2014(updated on August 30, 2021)

pears in a bowl

There a short list of canning recipes that I think of as my greatest hits. They are the preserves I come back to again and again, and are also the ones about which I’ve gotten the most feedback from readers and friends. This tomato jam is one. The roasted corn salsa in Food in Jars is another. And this time of year, I always make a batch of apple cranberry jam to share for Thanksgiving.

chopping pears

Another recipe that tops the greatest hits list? Pear vanilla jam. It’s a recipe I first made in early 2011 and I’ve since done it so many times that I can produce it entirely from memory. It’s a jam that works equally well on peanut butter toast or as part of a fancy pants cheese plate (try it with Delice de Bourgogne) and is always makes for a welcome hostess gift.

pan of cooked pear jam

Recently, I’ve been taking a slightly different approach to this jam. I start with just two pounds of pears, cut the proportion of sugar down a hair, and then, when it’s all done cooking, I scrape it into a heat-proof measuring cup and puree the heck out of it with an immersion blender.

pureeing jam

What the pureeing does is that it transforms it into a sweet, sticky glaze that retains a bit of the pear’s wonderful graininess. I call it a drizzle, though if the jar has been in the fridge, it can harden slightly past the drizzle point. I’ve taken to spreading micro-thin layers on toasted and buttered whole grain pancakes (I try to keep a stash in the freezer) and really like an afternoon snack that includes rice crackers, goat cheese, and little dabs of this sweet pear goo.

pear vanilla jam drizzle

It’s not a flashy preserve, but it’s one of my favorites. Maybe it will become one yours too!

5 from 1 vote

Urban Preserving: Pear Vanilla Drizzle


  • 2 pounds relatively ripe Bartlett Bosc or Anjou pears
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean split and scraped
  • 1/2 lemon juiced


  • Prepare a small boiling water bath canner and three half pint jars.
  • Core and chop the pears and place them in a low, wide pan. Add the sugar, vanilla bean seeds, and lemon juice.
  • Place pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring regularly, until the fruit softens and the jam thickens.
  • You know when a small batch like this is done because you'll be able to pull your spatula through the cooking jam and the space you cleared won't immediately fill up with jam.
  • When the jam is finished cooking (it shouldn't take more than 18-20 minutes), scrape it into a heat-proof measuring cup. Using an immersion blender, puree until smooth.
  • Funnel jam into prepared jars. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings, and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.
  • When time is up, remove jars from canner and let them cool on a folded kitchen towel.
  • When jars are cool enough to handle, check the seals. All sealed jars are shelf stable for up to one year. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used promptly.

Sharing is caring!

5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)

Leave a comment & rate this recipe

If you enjoy this recipe, please do give it a star rating when you post a comment. Star ratings help people discover my recipes. Thank you!

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

Recipe Rating

21 thoughts on "Urban Preserving: Pear Vanilla Drizzle"

  • Thank you for your recipes. This week has been a week of pears and pumpkins, and I used both your “pear cranberry preserves” and your “pear vanilla jam”. I also did a pear butter with cardamom. These will be great Christmas gifts!

  • If you don’t own an immersion blender, *lowers head in shame*, can you use a normal blender, or will you sacrifice the lovely consistency of which you speak?

  • I’ve been making your pear vanilla jam for two years now and we always use the immersion blender.
    I have to tell you this jam is my husband’s fave!

  • My neighbor told me that the Pear Vanilla Jam was one of the best things she has ever eaten. I’ll be making more!

  • I had waaaaaay overripe pears on the counter, calling my name, and so inspired by your pic of this on Facebook, I just made a version. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!

  • I’m hoping to make this for a friend with a citrus allergy – is this one of the recipes where the lemon is added for flavor rather than food safety? Can it be safely ommitted, and if so, is there a vinegar you might recommend for balance instead?

  • Can you use other kinds of pears? My tree is a Parker pear, greeny-brown skin, and this year has given me an embarrassment of pears.

  • How many teaspoons or tablespoons would you say are in half a lemon? I have lemon juice in my fridge that I would like to use up.

  • Can you peel the pears? Or are they better with the peel on? Also, how long will the jam last if refrigerated without processing? Anxious to try!

  • One of the more splatter-y things I’ve made this summer in the painful kind of way, so I was super happy to quit with a runny drizzle 🙂

    Yum. Worth it.

    I spooned some pumpkin spice into one of my jars and am looking forward to making again!