Chocolate Pear Cake

Pears and chocolate may be an unfamiliar pairing, but it is one worth exploring. The delicate sweetness of the pear balances the richness of the chocolate, creating one of my favorite combinations. While pears and chocolate are no stranger to this blog (check out these recipes for pear & chocolate scones and brown butter pear & chocolate muffins), it has been awhile since I've played around with these flavors.

For this cake, I mixed ripe pears into the cake and layered them on the top for both aesthetics and for my personal preference (I will openly fight for the pieces with the most pear). The chocolate cake itself is light and moist. To bring out a deeper chocolate flavor, I also tossed chopped chocolate into the batter.

This cake lasted only a brief time in my house, and I hope you'll find the same is true for you.

With this recipe (and many that involve pears), canned pears can be substituted for their fresh counterparts as a quick and easy alternative. If you don't have ripe pears on hand, dice the canned pears and fold them into the cake batter instead of layering on top—the flavors will taste the same. 


Chocolate Pear Cake is a sweet snacking cake. Diced pears and chopped chocolate are folded into a chocolate cake batter. Before baking, the top is covered with pear slices and sprinkled with more chopped chocolate and raw sugar to add additional sweetness and texture. Serve the cake warm or chilled with a scoop of ice cream or a dreamy spoonful of whipped cream.

Two Years Ago: Quick Puff Pastry (Tutorial) 
Three Years Ago: Chocolate Orange Cake
Four Years Ago: Almond Cake 
Five Years Ago:  Blueberry Lemon Pancakes, Lavender Lemon Shortbread, & Grapefruit Margaritas
Six Years Ago: Basic Caramel Sauce, Rum  Raisin Ice Cream, Butternut Squash & Spinach Tart, & Rosemary Crackers
Seven Years Ago: Lemon Chocolate Tart, Coconut Cream Cupcakes, Italian Popcorn, & PB Chocolate Chip Cookies

Chocolate Pear Cake

Yields 9-inch cake

2 large ripe pears*
1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar
1/3 cup (78 ml) vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (180 grams) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup (120 ml) milk of choice
4 ounces (113 grams) semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 tablespoon raw or demerara sugar, optional
Chocolate shavings, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C). Grease a 9-inch spring-form cake pan. Set aside.

To prepare the pears, peel them, if desired. Cut in half and remove the core. Dice one pear into small cubes. Quarter the other pear lengthwise and thinly slice. Set aside.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, vegetable oil, and eggs for several minutes, or until lighter in color. Whisk in the baking powder, salt, and vanilla extract. Using a spatula, stir in the flour, cocoa powder, and milk. Mix until the batter is smooth and uniform. Fold in the cubed pear and chopped chocolate.

Pour batter into the prepared baking dish. Top batter with folded pear quarters and chocolate shavings. Sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Run a knife around the edges and remove outer springform. Allow to cool before serving.

* Canned pears can be substituted in a pinch. Dice all the pears and fold them into the batter instead of layering over the top.