Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp for a Comforting Vegan Dessert


Crisp is one of my favorite desserts. Something about tender fruit topped with a sweet, firm, crumbly topping gets me every time. Usually I go with apples or berries, since Tony isn’t a pear fan. But organic pears and walnuts were on sale for insanely good prices, so I decided to go for it with this maple-walnut pear crisp. Fortunately, Tony emphatically approved. He said, “I usually don’t like pears, but this is really good!” Needless to say, the entire crisp was devoured far too fast.

Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp Recipe (Vegan, Optionally Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Butter-Free & Oat-Free!)

Recipe Tips: Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp

Not All Flour is the Same – Many different flours can be used in this recipe with satisfactory results. But do not be tempted to just swap in coconut flour, almond flour, or garbanzo bean flour. These are not the types of flours that can easily be swapped in a dessert recipe in a 1:1 ratio. If going gluten free, it’s best to use a gluten-free baking blend (I used Jovial, which is heartier than most) or just stick with a simple option like certified gluten-free oat flour.

Getting the Topping Just Right – I purposely make this a moister topping to create bigger crumbles. But some flours might produce a topping that’s a little too wet. If so, don’t hesitate to add just a little more flour (usually 1 to 2 tablespoons) to give it that chunky consistency.

Choose the Fruit Wisely – I’ve read many crisp recipe reviews with complaints of a mushy filling. This is NOT the fault of the recipe. Choose your fruit wisely, because not all varieties perform alike in baking. Some are firm, and hold their shape when baked, others turn to mush. For this pear crisp recipe, I recommend D’Anjou (or just Anjou) Pears. They are firm, smooth, easy to peel if desired, and readily available.

Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp Recipe (Vegan, Optionally Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Butter-Free & Oat-Free!)

Reader Raves: Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp

Thanks to Melissa for providing feedback on our Facebook page: “It was big hit at our house!!”

Special Diet Notes: Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp

By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, optionally gluten-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, plant-based, vegetarian, and optionally refined sugar-free.

5.0 from 5 reviews
Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This delicious crisp is definitely a dessert, but it isn’t overly sweet. It's perfect on its own, or with a scoop of dairy-free vanilla ice cream. If you prefer a sugary topping, you can increase the brown sugar or coconut sugar to ⅔ cup.
Serves: 6 servings
  1. Preheat your oven to 350ºF.
  2. Place the walnuts in your spice / coffee grinder, and pulse them 4 or 5 times to coarsely grind with some chunks remaining. I do this in two batches.
  3. Place the walnuts, flour, brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, ginger, and salt in a large bowl, and whisk with a fork to combine.
  4. Add the coconut oil and 3 tablespoons maple syrup and stir with a fork to create a coarse meal. It will be a wetter, chunky crumb. Just make sure you mash in any large chunks of coconut oil. If it is too wet, add 1 to 2 tablespoons flour.
  5. Put the pears in a large bowl and drizzle with the lemon juice. Add the starch, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, and ¼ teaspoon cinnamon and stir until combined and no dry starch is visible.
  6. Transfer the pears to an 8x8-inch baking dish and shake to help the pears settle in and level out.
  7. Evenly top the pears with the walnut topping.
  8. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the topping just begins to brown.
  9. Let the crisp cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.

Key Pantry Supplies: Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp

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Maple-Walnut Pear Crisp Recipe (Vegan, Optionally Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Butter-Free & Oat-Free!)

About Author

Alisa is the founder of, Food Editor for Allergic Living magazine, and author of the best-selling dairy-free book, Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook for Milk Allergies, Lactose Intolerance, and Casein-Free Living, and the new cookbook, Eat Dairy Free: Your Essential Cookbook for Everyday Meals, Snacks, and Sweets. Alisa is also a professional recipe creator and product ambassador for the natural food industry.


  1. This recipe is really good! Easy to make and I served it to non-vegans, and they all approved! Thanks got the delicious recipe, I plan to make this again.

  2. I actually made this without the walnuts and starch, but added 1/4c quick oats in each the pears and mixture. It was amazing… better than any crisp I’ve ever made with butter. Thanks!

  3. I made this today, increasing quantities to feed our early Christmas group of 8. Served warm with vanilla bean ice cream (regular & coconut milk options) on top! It was a huge success!! I used Bosc pears and they worked great! Thanks for sharing!!

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