Sep 10, 2020

Pear Preserves

Some of my fondest memories are of eating some with one of my grandmama's homemade biscuits. I liked them a lot! Funny thing is in all these years I've rarely made them. 

This year I'm excited to have a bumper crop of Kieffer pears. They are a rather hard pear at first. Actually, they are ready for picking before they ever turn soft. You have to pick when ready and place in cold storage until ripened. This took a few weeks, sorry I didn't time it but some were ready in a couple of weeks sitting in front of an air conditioning vent. I'd move them around separating and removing some with overripe spots. 

This post is how I made the preserves and there are many ways to make but this is how I remember the grandmother's making theirs with one big exception. It seems they simmered theirs forever until canning This is simple just combine sugar with fruit put in the fridge overnight and make preserves the next day.


Fresh Ripened Pears



RealLemon Juice

Fruit Fresh

*optional Fresh Ginger

Easy Directions

Gather/pick fresh pears

Ripen more if needed

Prepare your hot water bath jars/lids and all canning supplies

Have ingredients ready

Peel & cut fruit, place in treated water,

Mix fruit & sugar place in the fridge for 12 hours or overnight

Remove fruit add ginger if wanted cook until tender 15-30 minutes, cook syrup a few minutes more if needed to thicken.

Ladle into hot sterilized jelly or pint canning jars

Wipe, place lids on, and water bath for 10 minutes, remove pot/canner lid turn the stove off and let sit for 5 minutes. Remove jars sit in a draft-free location cover with a tea towel

Leave untouched for 24 hrs, then gently check for seal, remove screw caps, wipe with a clean wet cloth, wipe dry label then store for up to 1 year.

NOTE*Can you believe that canning jars and lids have gone up in price like crazy? What the heck is up with that? Pandemic I suppose. Well, Tractor Supply has better prices for now. (no, I don't make any money sending you in their direction. Sharing because I would want to know)

Detailed Directions

1. Pick pears and let ripen * this could take a little time in cold storage or under refrigeration for some pear varieties.* You can feel them and notice color changes as they ripen. You will want to use them when they feel soft-firm to the touch.

2. Have a large bowl filled with cold water on hand. Put RealLemon juice into this bowl. Give a few heavy squirts plus add a tablespoon or so of Fruit-Fresh. You may also use just one of these I happen to use both.

*the amount depends on the size bowl you have, use your own judgment. This prevents fruit from turning brown.

4. Peel cut in half or into slices remove the center seed portion and place pears into the treated water bowl as you work. 

5. Remove pears from treated water and roughly measure the amount.  Taste to check for natural sweetness. 

6. Add the same amount of sugar as pears. NOTE *If your pears are very sweet then cut your sugar measurement down. Use your own judgmentTaste as you add. Preserves are meant to be sweet but you don't want a double overload.
Example: I used for my pears approximately 1 cup sugar per quart jar of sliced fruit. That is how it worked out for one of my batches.

The preserves will be especially sweet as it is. Taste as you go. Stir gently. Leave the mixture on the counter for a short while until the sugar is dissolved. Stir gently after 10 minutes or so.

7. Cut the lemons very thinly and add to the pear and sugar mixture. Place in a large pot, cover, and place into the refrigerator overnight. 

8. Remove from the fridge the next morning  *if you choose you may add peeled and finely cut fresh ginger now.* 

Heat on medium-low heat until pears become translucent and tender. This could take 15 to 30 minutes depending on the ripeness of the fruit.


Put a large pot with a wire rack inserted or canning water bath pot with a rack filled with 1/2 to 3/4 water heating on the stove. You will need to have top space for water to boil over the size jars you are using. Warm canning lids and screw tops in a pot of water on very low heat *do not bring to a boil at any time. Have clean sterilized jars heated and ready for the hot water bath. Have your canning supplies such as a magnetic lid lifter, jar lifter, clean cloth, hot pads for safe handling. Have your workspace clean sterile for safe canning

Back to Directions

9. Check to see how thick the syrup is. If it isn't thick then remove all of the tender fruit and set aside. Continue cooking with the lid off the pot to thicken. Stir, turn up the heat if needed, and watch until softly thickened. Skip this step if your syrup is thick already. This could take 3 to 10 minutes.

10 Add fruit back into syrup and heat until very hot slightly boiling.

11. Ladle fruit into hot jars and add more syrup if needed. Leave 1/2 inch headspace at top of the jar. Wipe the rim and top of the jar with a clean wet cloth to remove any syrup or fruit, wipe with a clean dry cloth. Add canning lid and gently place screw top on But Not Too Tightly this will make the jar lid buckle when heated in the water bath and warp/preventing jar from sealing.

12. Carefully place your filled jar with a jar lifter into the hot water bath. Fill the pot with as many jars as it holds and place the lid on the pot to bring to a boil. When water is boiling adjust heat as necessary to prevent boiling over, but keep medium boil going. 

13.Time for 10 minutes. Remove the lid turn off the heat and let jars sit in water for 5 minutes. Lift carefully and place in a draft-free spot. Cover with a light tea towel and do not disturb for at least 24 hours. 

13. After 24 hours lightly check with pointer finger the center of the lid on each jar to see is sealed. If not refrigerate the unsealed jars. 

*I don't expect you will have any but it does happen and you don't want to leave unsealed product outside of refrigeration. Eat within 2 weeks or so.* 

Remove screw tops and wipe gently with dishcloth if needed. Label and store single in cabinet/cupboard for up to a year.

Keep in mind these are a thickened pear preserve and not a jam

You can make pear jam and I've done so in the past it is delicious but different from this
You know pears can be canned as well. They are delicious.

Left Canned Pears, Top Right: Jam, Bottom Right Preserves
These were a different variety of pear 

Grow, Preserve
Eat and Enjoy!

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  1. I think we are kin somehow. We think the same. I made a post on pear preserves today too.
    Yours look so good. I tried to make some with just vanilla so they would stay white but they were not as good as my first batch.

    1. Hey Lisa I hope we are kin! I know yours are delicious! I loved seeing yours! I made one batch without ginger and one with and somehow I think I like the plain better. The ginger is not strong and is okay though.