walnut pear sour cream cake

walnut pear sour cream cake

This was the first cake that I baked with my mother-in-law (although at that time she wasn’t my MIL, yet). At that time, I was (in my opinion) terrible at cake baking and could never get it right. My (future) MIL invited me over to her house to learn how to bake a proper cake. This was the recipe she chose. I love the texture and flavor of this cake. Before making this cake I only baked traditional chocolate or vanilla cakes with little to no success. Honestly, I am not a fan of a basic chocolate or vanilla cakes either. It was after making this cake that I realized I like my cakes with fruit in them.

This cake also has a delicious crumble on top which really brings it to another level. I usually make this cake (or this other cake) when I have ripe pears lying around that need to be eaten ASAP. The original recipe calls for walnuts but I have used pecans (as pictured) with success.

a slice of cake

Walnut Pear Sour Cream Cake

(taken from here)


For the crumble topping:

  • 1 cup broken walnuts/pecans
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup butter, diced
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour

For the cake:

  • 2 medium pears, peeled, cored, and sliced (about 2 cups)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 8 ounces sour cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Grease a 9-inch springform pan. You can also line the bottom with parchment paper.
  3. To make the crumble topping: In a small bowl, combine the nuts, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Cut the 1/4 cup butter into 1/3 cup flour to make coarse crumbs. Stir in 3/4 cup of the nut mixture. Set nut mixture and topping aside.
  4. Toss pears with lemon juice and set aside.
  5. In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, soda, and salt, set aside.
  6. In a large bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter for about 30 seconds.
  7. Beat in granulated sugar and vanilla.
  8. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition.
  9. Add flour mixture and sour cream alternately to batter. Beat on low speed after each addition until combined.
  10. Spread two-thirds batter into the prepared pan.
  11. Sprinkle with reserved nut mixture. Layer pears over top.
  12. Gently spread remaining batter over pears. Sprinkle with reserved topping.
  13. Bake about 60 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  14. Cool in pan on a rack for about an hour before removing the sides of the springform pan. You can enjoy the cake warm or at room temperature.

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