Pear-Walnut Coffee Cake

  • Active Time 10m
  • Total Time 1h 10m
  • Rating ****

Makes 8 servings

About baking soda and baking powder: Baking soda, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder give off carbon dioxide gas, which fizzes, creates bibbles and helps baking mixtures rise and get lighter. Baking powder is made of a combination of ingredients and it can be used in more recipes than baking soda. Both baking soda and baking powder should be added to the liquid in the recipe quickly and at the last minute and popped right into the oven or onto the griddle.
Don't substitute baking soda for baking powder indiscriminately; some recipes call for both.
If you run out of baking powder, you can substitute as follows: 1 teaspoon baking powder = 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar, 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda, and 1/8 teaspoon salt.


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3 cups canned pears, pieces drained (about two 16-ounce cans)


Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch cake pan.

In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a standing mixer or with a hand-held mixer at low to medium speed, cream the butter and the sugar together, until the mixture is light yellow and holds soft peaks. With the mixer running, add the eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each egg before adding the next one. Add the vanilla extract and chopped walnuts. Add the dry ingredients and mix at low speed or fold by hand, until just blended into a stiff batter. Do not overbeat the batter.

Fold the diced pears into the batter and spread the batter into the prepared cake pan. Smooth the top of the batter in the pan and bake for 50 minutes, or until golden brown and a cake tester or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool the cake on a rack for 10 minutes and then unmold. Serve at room temperature.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Doubleday. All rights reserved.

RecID 3412

nutrition information per serving

844 calories; 46g total fat; 173mg cholesterol; 265mg sodium; 101g carbohydrates; 4g fiber; 10g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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