Cranberry Pear Tart with Walnut Shortbread Crust

If you’re looking for a festive cranberry dessert that will knock the thick, fuzzy socks off your guests this holiday season, look no further than this rustic cranberry pear tart.


This pear tart recipe has everything: a crunchy, buttery walnut shortbread crust laced with orange zest, a filling that’s chock-full of seasonal goodness and a streusel topping, just to seal the deal.

whole cranberry pear tart

It’s pretty much the bomb diggity of all wintertime desserts.

cranberry pear tart sliced on a cutting board

But a dessert doesn’t earn a title like that willy-nilly. You are hereby fairly warned that this recipe requires a little bit of elbow grease.

cranberry pear tart slices on plates

Why this Cranberry Pear Tart is the perfect addition to your holiday table: 

It’s not that this tart recipe is difficult by any means. But each layer of the cranberry pear tart is given special attention and care.

It’s not just a crust, it’s a walnut shortbread crust. Does this festive cranberry pear tart filled with seasonal fruits really need a streusel topping? No, but it adds an extra dimension of texture…do you see where I’m going with this?

It’s that little extra bit of effort taken in each step that makes the whole thing come together magically in one heavenly bite. Trust me, it’s worth it.

cranberry pear tart slices on plates

Baker’s Tips for the perfect Cranberry Pear Tart: 

  • Freezing the pastry shell before baking reduces the risk of shrinkage.
  • If the tart begins to get dark at the edges before the baking time is up, cover it with aluminum foil.
  • I recommend using a tart pan with a removable bottom and a non-stick finish. So basically a two-piece tart pan where the ring and base are separate. This means that you can simply slide the tart ring off of your baked cranberry pear tart and then move the tart off the flat pan disk onto a serving plate.
  • The recipe works for both15 a round 9 inch tart or a rectangular tart.

Variations on this recipe: 

  • Of course, the cardamom pods can be swapped for a cinnamon stick or a pinch of grated nutmeg.
  • Allergic to walnuts? Macadamia nuts can be used instead of walnuts in the shortcrust pastry recipe.
  • Not a fan of pears? This tart would also work quite well with thinly sliced apples.
  • Brandy can be swapped for rum. For an almond-scented version, use a splash of amaretto.
  • You can make this recipe gluten free by swapping out gluten free all purpose flour like Bob’s Red Mill or Arrowhead Mills.

cranberry pear tart slices on plates

Thanks for reading! To keep up with my kitchen escapades, follow me on FacebookInstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. If you make this Cranberry Pear Tart, please share it using the hashtag #LePetitEats!

cranberry pear tart
5 from 2 votes

Cranberry Pear Tart

If you're looking for a festive cranberry dessert that will knock the thick, fuzzy socks off your guests this holiday season, look no further than this rustic cranberry pear tart.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry pear tart, pear streusel tart, rustic pear tart
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Freezing 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 55 minutes
Servings 8 -10
Author Denisse


For the crust:

  • 1/4 cup walnuts very finely chopped
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick butter chilled and diced
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

For the filling:

  • 3 anjou pears cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 tsblespoon brandy
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoon flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the streusel:

  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • pinch salt
  • 2 tablespoon butter melted
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract


For the crust:

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Mix the egg yolk, cream and vanilla in a bowl. Pulse the walnuts in a food processor until finely ground. add flour, sugar, orange zest and salt and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse, then add the yolk mixture in a steady stream with the processor running. Pulse for another 10-20 seconds and transfer the mixture to a bowl.

  2. Pour the crumb mixture into a 9-1/2-inch round fluted tart pan or a rectangular tart pan with a removable bottom. Firmly press the crumbs against the bottom and sides pan to form the crust. Prick the bottom of the crust all over with a fork and freeze for 10 minutes. Bake for about 15 minutes or until the bottom is set. Transfer to a cooling rack. Reduce the oven temperature to 350°.

For the filling:

  1. Coarsely chop the cranberries and add to a bowl along with the pears and brandy, stirring to combine. In a separate bowl mix the sugar, flour, cardamom, ginger, cinnamon, and salt. Add to the cranberry-pear mixture, tossing to combine. Mound the filling into the par-baked crust.

For the streusel:

  1. Mix the flour, brown sugar and salt in a small bowl. Add the melted butter and vanilla. Combine with fingers until the mixture begins to clump together in small pieces when pressed. Sprinkle the streusel over the filling, breaking it into smaller pieces if necessary.

  2. Bake until the fruit is tender and the crust and streusel begin to turn golden brown, about 50 minutes (if the tart begins to get dark at the edges, cover with foil).

Homemade Cranberry Pear Tart | If you're looking for a festive cranberry dessert that will knock the thick, fuzzy socks off your guests this holiday season, look no further than this rustic cranberry pear tart. The best dessert to serve for Thanksgiving dinner or anytime around the holidays #dessert #fallrecipes #thanksgiving #thanksgivingdessert #fallbaking

Subscribe to Le Petit Eats


Leave a Reply

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

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.