Ehhh hehm…may I introduce you to my new favorite fall sip? This slow cooker pear cider has me wondering why I have only been giving apples the cider treatment for so long. I have actually been dreaming of pear cider for what feels like FOREVER!
When is pear season?
Literally, I’ve been waiting and waiting until the weather was just right and I had a day where I could stay at home all day and inhale its amazing aroma as it cooked. From August thru October you can find the most beautiful and delicious pears – largely coming from western states (California, Oregon and Washington). Some of the most popular varieties are the juicy and sweet Bartlett (green), firm and crunchy Bosc (brown) and the sweet Anjou (green or red). Learn more about them here at the FoodNetwork.
Last weekend I finally had that day – an entire Saturday with a house full of kids and nowhere really pressing to be. It had to happen!
I started the cider first thing in the morning before anyone else was stirring – I wanted to really savor the moment, play a little music and take in all of the spices. It was magical and for the next 8 hours our house smelled like absolute heaven!
Health benefits of pears
In need of an immune boost? Pears contain copper, potassium and other minerals that are beneficial to your immune system. Make sure you eat the peel! The pear peal contains 6 times more antioxidants than the flesh!
Pears (especially the peel) contain a lot of fiber which is not only good for your gut (including prebiotics) which help promote overall digestive health.
Pears are rich in potent antioxidants, such as procyanidins and quercetin, that can boost heart health by improving blood pressure and cholesterol. Eating pears regularly may also reduce stroke risk. (more here on HealthLine)
So, not only is my slow cooker pear cider delicious, but the health benefits of pears are just incredible. Even if you don’t make the cider, treat yourself to a pear (with the peel!) – you won’t regret it!Print
Slow Cooker Pear Cider
This pear cider is great on it’s own piping hot, but when you add a bit of spiced rum or bourbon it makes a pretty spectacular cool weather cocktail!
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 8 hours
- Total Time: 8 hours 20 mins
- Yield: 8 cups 1x
- 8 medium pears, assorted types ( I used Red Anjou, Bartlett, & Bosc)
- 1 orange, peel and pith removed
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 2 star anise
- 2–3 slices of fresh ginger
- 1 whole nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons whole cloves
- 6 cups filtered water
- 1/3 cup maple syrup
- Cut the pears and orange into quarters. Seeds, peels and stems are OK. Place the fruit in the bottom of your slow cooker Add the cinnamon sticks, star anise, ginger slices, nutmeg and cloves.
- Fill to the top of the slow cooker with water, leaving about an 1/4-1/2-inch of space at the top. Cook on high heat for 3-4 hours or on low heat for 6-8 hours.
- An hour before the cider is done cooking, use a potato masher to mash the fruit once it is softened. Cook for an additional hour.
- Strain the pear cider through a fine-mesh strainer or cheese cloth into a clean pitcher or pot, pressing on the solids to get all of the juice out of the fruit. Stir in the maple syrup until it is dissolved and serve hot.
- The cider can be stored in a heat-safe container for up to 5 days.