This Fresh Pear Cake is one of our favorite Fall cakes. It’s moist, delicious, and easy to make!

Fresh Pear Cake - The Southern Lady Cooks

If you love this one you have to try our Apple Spice Sheet Cake with Brown Sugar Cream Cheese Frosting. It’s really a wonderful cake to enjoy during the Fall season!


We don’t cook with pears very often but they work really well in this cake. Pears are naturally sweet so they add a wonderful flavor and keep this cake very moist. This cake is also made with lots of delicious spices so it’s perfect for Fall when the pears come into season.

Another great plus to this cake is no mixer is needed! You simply mix it all with a spoon and we love a simple recipe. It’s also made from scratch and it tastes like it is!


  • Fresh Pears – Any work for this cake, I try to buy ones that are stating to ripe and are a little soft.
  • All-Purpose Flour – we have never made it with gluten free or any other flour.
  • White and Brown Sugar – using both bring out a great flavor.
  • Butter, Sour Cream and Buttermilk – These add the fat you need and the moisture.
  • Eggs – You will need 3.
  • Spices – Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Ground Cloves and Vanilla.
  • Nuts – Pecans, Walnuts or whatever you prefer. You can leave them out if you like.
  • Powdered Sugar – for topping, see swaps for other ideas.


As far as the topping you can use whatever you like. Cream Cheese Frosting would be delicious on this cake and caramel sauce would be too. You can also just add a powdered sugar glaze too. We love it with any of these!


This cake is easy to make since you don’t need a mixer! Just organize your ingredients and peel, core and grate your pears. Grating them really makes them consistent throughout the cake.


Step 1
Whisk together flour, white sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves in a large mixing bowl until well mixed.  

Step 2
Add melted butter, sour cream, buttermilk, eggs,  vanilla extract and pears stirring with a spoon to mix well.  Fold in nuts. 

Step 3
Pour into a well sprayed 10 inch bundt pan.  Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 60 to 70 minutes checking to make sure cake is done on the inside.  

Step 4
Cool for 20 to 25 minutes and remove from pan. Let cool.  


After you grate your pears if there is a lot of moisture you can try to remove some with a paper towel. Just so they don’t make the cake soggy.

Fresh Pear Cake - The Southern Lady Cooks


What type of pears do you use?

I have made this cake with whatever is available at the store. I just make sure they are a little soft and not hard.

Can I use milk instead of buttermilk?

You can but the fat content will be changed in the recipe. We prefer it with buttermilk.


We just store this on a covered cake stand. We don’t put it in the fridge.

Old Fashioned Water Pie

Also known as Depression Pie, this one is so easy and so good!

Southern Jam Cake

This cake is a holiday tradition in our family! It’s fantastic!

Old Fashioned Tomato Soup Cake

This cake was on the back of a Campbell Soup can years ago!


This cake makes around 8-10 servings depending on how big you cut the slices.

This Vintage Cakes Digital Ebook is full of our most popular old fashioned cake recipes. Now in one ebook you can have all these recipes right at your fingertips! Any of these cakes are perfect for any gathering, from the holiday dessert table to any potluck! 

  • These cakes go back many generations are tried and true delicious!
  • Anyone can make these classics, from a beginner baker to someone who bakes all the time.
  • Great reviews on these cakes!

Fresh Pear Cake

Judy Yeager
This fresh pear cake is really easy to make and wonderful to enjoy with your family and friends.
4.50 from 20 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Course Cake
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings


  • 4 medium sized fresh pears peeled, cored and grated or about 2 cups
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 12 tablespoons butter or 3/4 cup melted
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped nuts walnuts or pecans, Optional


  • Whisk together flour, white sugar, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves in a large mixing bowl until well mixed. 
  • Add melted butter, sour cream, buttermilk, eggs,  vanilla extract and pears stirring with a spoon to mix well.  Fold in nuts.  
  • Pour into a well sprayed 10 inch bundt pan.  Bake in preheated 350 degree oven 60 to 70 minutes checking to make sure cake is done on the inside.  
  • Cool for 20 to 25 minutes and remove from pan. Let cool.  Sprikle with powdered sugar. 
Keyword Pear Cake
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Recipe Rating


  1. Donna Brinson says:

    My family loved this fresh pear cake. I will definitely make this again. Thanks5 stars

  2. Can I freeze this cake?

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      I have never tried to freeze this cake, but so no reason why you couldnt.

  3. Do you want to use all the juice from the pears or just more the pulp? these pears are dripping juicy. Wondering if I should strain it

  4. Sharon Walker says:

    Made this pear cake exactly by the recipe and it was wonderful.5 stars

  5. Delicious cake! I subbed buttermilk for almond milk with a splash of distilled white vinegar. I left off the glaze so not to add extra sugar, but I know caramel would be so yummy since I make it for my apple cake.5 stars

  6. This was a delicious recipe! This is now my second time making it and I am wondering what kind of bundt pan do you use (glass, non-stick etc.)? If using a dark pan, should we decrease the temperature? Thanks!5 stars

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      I use a dark non stick pan and it has always worked just fine.

  7. Mollie L Flowers says:

    Can I substitute apples for the pears?

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      Yes, I’m sure you could!

  8. This cake is awesome. I replaced the buttermilk and sour cream with one cup of plain yoghurt since I always have yoghurt in the fridge. I also kept half the pears in chunks. Everyone loves it and the recipe works every time.5 stars

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      Yay! We’re thrilled you enjoyed it!

  9. Delicious! Alterations: Chopped the pears for a more rustic cake, replaced 3/4 cup butter with 1/2 c apple sauce and 1/4 c butter for a healthier cake. Reduced the sugars by 1/2 because we enjoy less sweet lower calorie desserts. Always love to round my spice teaspoon measures for extra flavor delight! Did not need to top w glaze, simple and delicious as is. Cooked in my mini Breville convection oven only took 40 minutes in a bundt pan.5 stars

  10. MommyOf3Girls says:

    Made this using up pear fruit cups my girls didn’t care for. Worked wonderful and they enjoyed the cake!5 stars

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      That’s wonderful! So glad they enjoyed the cake.

  11. Any chance I could do 1 cup of yogurt instead of the sour cream and buttermilk? I don’t have either, but I do have plain yogurt.

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      I think it might work but cannot advise you to do it since I have not tried it, Emily.

  12. susan militello says:

    loved it, took it to work & everyone loved it

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      Thank you so much, Susan! So happy you enjoyed the recipe.

  13. Excellent! Moist and not overly sweet. I made cream cheese frosting and thought it was just right for this cake! My cake took less time to bake than the recipe says. Thank you for this recipe.5 stars

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      You’re very welcome Pam. So glad you enjoyed this cake! The frosting sound perfect.

  14. The Southern Lady says:

    Clelia, I have no idea why it didn’t cook. You can see from the pictures the cake worked well for me and another from the comments. Not every recipe works for everyone, but I cant imagine why something in the over for 2 hours wouldn’t be done. So sorry.

  15. Hi, Can I use vegetable oil instead of butter?

    Tks! 🙂

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      Yes, I think you could do that.

  16. Can I use gluten free flour in this recipe. Love following you on Pinterest

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      So glad you’re following! I have never made this with gluten free flour so I can’t really advise. Sorry.

  17. I made this cake this week as my husband loves pears and I had some that were too ripe for just eating, so I made this and it was very good! We both enjoyed the cake very much. It was very moist and the powdered sugar topping was also very good. Thank you for the recipe!5 stars

  18. Would it be possible to use canned pears in this recipe? I really need to use some canned pears I have before they expire. I hope so! This looks awesome.

    1. The Southern Lady says:

      I have not tried it with canned pears so I really can’t advise you. I would make sure they were drained really good.

  19. This recipe is very timely for me! I just discovered a pear tree, on a vacant lot down the street, that is teeming with pears. They’re even scattered all over the ground. I pick up a few each morning, when I’m out walking. They’re so sweet and juicy! I can’t wait to make this delicious-sounding cake!