DessertPies & TartsProvencal RecipesStephanie VillegasTaste

French Dessert Tarte Tatin with Pears for a Seasonal Sweet

My husband arrived from the family orchards with a box of perfect pears. These medium-sized pears were bright green with hints of red and slightly but not too ripe. So I decided that Tarte Tatin aux Poires – Tarte Tatin with Pears- would be on the menu for my upcoming cooking class.

You may already know the story about the Tatin sisters who, in error, created the now-celebrated Tarte Tatin aux Pommes. They may not have been the first cooks to flip a dessert upside down. However, it certainly was the first time at the Hôtel Tatin in Lamotte-Beuvron near Paris. While aux pommes – with apples is the classic variation of tatin and the one on the menu at Maxim’s in Paris, there are other fruit options such as apricot, quince and even banana. Or try a savoury version with tomatoes.

French Dessert Tarte Tatin Pear Tarte Tatin Atelier Laurel

Tarte Tatin aux Poires

blankStephanie Villegas
It is a sweet treat made with fresh pears that is perfect for dessert. This dessert is also fun to make during a cooking class as part of the group can prepare the fruit while the rest make the dough.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 6 People



  • 6-8 Pears Any green/blush variety will do - possible varieties include William, D’Anjou, Bartlett, etc.
  • 100 g Granulated Sugar
  • 50 g Unsalted Butter cubed
  • 45 ml Water
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Ginger

Pâte Brisée Ingredients

  • 200 g All-purpose flour
  • 125 g Unsalted Butter very cold and cubed
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • 1 Egg
  • Water Amount varies

Optional ingredients to serve with

  • Vanilla Ice Cream
  • Whipped Cream


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F), no fan
  • Prepare the Pâte Brisée, if making from scratch and wrap and chill to rest. If not, move to the next step.

Prepare the Pâte Brisée:

  • In a food processor, combine 200g all-purpose flour, 125 g diced, very cold unsalted butter and a pinch of salt.
  • Pulse until the butter is pea-sized, and add 1 egg
  • Pulse to combine
  • Add 1 tablespoon of ice water at a time, pulsing between additions until the mixture forms a ball in the mixer. Once this happens, stop adding water.
  • Remove the dough from the bowl, forming a 5-inch x 1-inch disc, and wrap well with plastic wrap.
  • Place in the refrigerator to rest for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours. Beyond 4 hours, you risk drying out the dough. At this stage, you can wrap and freeze the dough for up to 1 month, defrosting it overnight before you want to use it.
  • Place the sugar, water, and butter in a medium skillet over medium heat and cook until the water has evaporated, the mixture is bubbling, and it is a light golden brown.
  • Cut pears in quarters, remove seeds and gently toss them with a few pinches of sugar and ground ginger, then carefully place them into the skillet to cook in the caramel for 5-7 minutes.
  • The pears will release their water and caramelize, which is good!
  • Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool
  • Once cooled, remove the pastry dough from the fridge and cut to fit the skillet. You’ll want about a finger width of the border around the skillet.
  • Lay the pastry on top of the pears and, using your fingers, gently tuck the pastry around the sides of the skillet, tucking in the pears to the pastry.
  • Using a paring knife, pierce the dough several times to allow air and steam to escape during baking.
  • Place skillet into oven and bake for 25 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and allow to cool before using a plate to invert.
  • Serve fruit side up with creme fraiche, whipped cream or ice cream on the side.


Pate Brisée is like pie crust, neither very savoury nor sweet.
Keyword Pate Brise, Pears, Tartes
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


More Tarte Tatin Recipes

Tarte Tatin aux Poires
It is a sweet treat made with fresh pears that is perfect for dessert. This dessert is also fun to make during a cooking class as part of the group can prepare the fruit while the rest make the dough.
Check out this recipe
French Dessert Tarte Tatin Pear Tarte Tatin Atelier Laurel
Apple Tarte Tatin
The wonderful thing about an upside-down dessert is that they are never too dry. Enjoy the caramelized flavours of this traditional apple dessert à la mode with vanilla ice cream.
Check out this recipe
Tarte Tatin aux Pommes
Banana Tarte Tatin
This delicate and flavourful dessert is a twist on the French Apple Tarte Tatin, a classic. Enjoy it with some creamy vanilla ice cream for a delicious treat that's sure to impress!
Check out this recipe
Banana Tarte Tatin with Gold Sparkle

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Stephanie Villegas

Stephanie Villegas

Born in San Francisco, California, Stephanie Villegas is a chef working and living in Provence. After a decade-long career in tech, Stephanie decided to follow her culinary passions and become a chef. She earned her culinary diploma at France's esteemed Ferrandi Paris and has worked in renowned restaurant kitchens from Paris to Provence. In 2022, she opened Laurel, a cooking school and private chef service located in the charming provençal village of Fontvieille.

With a mission to bring people closer together through food, her focus is on freshness and seasonality. As a Mexican-American, married to a Frenchman, living in Provence, you can be sure to find inspirations from around the world in her dishes.

On her table, you'll find ingredients you know, discover new ones and enjoy generous dishes of refined simplicity.

Explore Laurel here.

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