Pear Butter Spice Cake

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Last Sunday was perfect.

Pear Butter Spice Cake Recipe,

With two young kids, let’s just say the last fives years of dining out has taken on a whole new meaning. It’s unusual if we don’t spill something (or multiple things). More often than not we’re the noisiest table. And to just sit, visit and leisurely enjoy our meal has become a thing of the past. But this last week, I think I saw the light at the end of the tunnel table. It was my dad’s birthday and my brother and his daughter joined myself, my husband, our kids and my parents for a late breakfast at our favorite local spot. Minus the one cup of coffee that went down early, breakfast was actually pretty mellow. We weren’t rushed. The kids played, the adults talked and we actually left the joint in decent shape. Dare I say it was enjoyable?

family hike Park City,
Hiking in Park City, Utah 2012.

We left the restaurant on a mission to burn off some the bacon we just consumed.
Because there is always bacon.
Not far from our house is a great hiking trail with a little loop that is never crowded. It is so tree laden that when the colors are changing, this places goes off. This year was no exception. If Katy Perry were ever to do a music video in the mountains while hiking, (unlikely) this would so be her jam. It almost looked fake there was so much color. Like someone had spray painted all the leaves hues of red and pink. It was the most spectacular display of color I can ever remember during a Utah fall. Both the boys were troopers hiking a good part of the trail and my husband wasn’t in his usual “let’s race to the top” mode. Just like breakfast, we had a leisurely pace and took many breaks to stop and enjoy the colors.
2012 Fall foliage, Park City, Utah.

After hiking we went straight home where stayed for the rest of the day- a rarity in our busy lives. The afternoon was lazy and I mean it in the best sense of the word. The big boys lounged on the couch and watched football while the little one napped. I spent the afternoon in the kitchen baking cake and watching the Katy Perry Documentary. Obviously I was inspired by the pink leaves. Like feeding the teenage pop queen in me that never was. I just can’t help myself. Please don’t be too harsh.

Pear Butter Snack Cake with Cinnamon-Sugar Topping,

After my best rendition of “baby you’re a firework………”, I ate cake. Alone. In silence with a cup of hot tea. If you’re a parent or someone who happens to live with demanding little creatures than you know how precious this moment was. I felt like I’d hit the lotto with my pear butter cake and Earl Grey. I actually got through a few of the endless amount of food magazines and catalogues that are stacked neatly by my bed. The perfect ending to a damn good day.

Cinnamon Pear Butter Spice Cake,

This cake is a riff on the ever popular applesauce cake. Made with some homemade pear butter I put up last month, it’s full of warm spices and the perfect way to welcome fall. The crunchy topping, made of turbinado sugar and cinnamon, is a great balance to this ultra moist cake.
This cake would be great for breakfast or as an after school snack but but if you can sneak a half an hour in for yourself, eat it alone. Rocking out to pop music if you can.

This is a high altitude recipe made and tested in my kitchen which sits just about 7000 feet. If you’d like to make it and don’t need to adjust for altitude, try increasing the brown sugar to 1 cup, increasing the baking powder to 2 teaspoons and decreasing the vanilla to 1/2 teaspoon.

Pear Butter Spice Cake

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 9-12 servings 1x


A moist fall inspired cake with pear butter and plenty of cinnamon. Perfect for breakfast or brunch, this is best served slightly warm.


  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon each, cloves and ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups pear butter (or applesauce)
  • 3 tablespoons turbinado sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon


  1. Preheat the oven to 350F degrees.
  2. In a medium bowl, sift together both flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and mix well to incorporate each one.
  4. Add vanilla and apple sauce and beat on low just to combine.
  5. Stir in dry ingredients and mix with a wooden spoon just until flour mixture is incorporated. Don’t over mix.
  6. Pour batter into a prepared (butter & floured or baking spray) 9×9 inch baking dish. In a small bowl, combine turbinado sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over the top of the cake batter. Bake cake in preheated oven for 35-40 minutes until center is set cake is lightly browned on top.
  7. Remove from oven and let cool completely before cutting and serving.