Pear and Pistachio Crisp -A Simple Thanksgiving Dessert

I'm okay offering kids dessert. There, I said it.

I know plenty of parents who don't like giving their kids dessert unless it is a special occasion. I respect that, but I also believe in moderation in most things and, sometimes, you've got to live a little. When it comes to desserts, I've been know to whip up everything from seriously rich holiday treats like Holiday Baked Alaska to the less exotic Sugar Cookies, but I often try to prepare desserts made with less sugar, like this Pear and Pistachio Crisp -- which my kids in fact prefer to more sugary desserts.

I like this dish too, especially when I want a pie but have no time to make a homemade crust (which is all the time!). A fall crisp is a lot more simple to make and still delivers a lot of what I love about pie. This one has a crunchy topping made from oats, pistachios, brown sugar, and aromatic cinnamon, and a naturally nummy sweetness from all of the chunks of baked pear. It's got so much less sugar than a regular dessert that I even served this to my kids one morning on top of plain Greek yogurt and they went bonkers with excitement at the thought of getting dessert for breakfast!

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Pear and Pistachio Crisp -A Simple Thanksgiving Dessert (serves 6)

Prep Time: 10 mins Cook Time: 45 mins

egg free


  • 5 pears, peeled, cored and diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup chopped pistachios


1. Preheat oven to 350°F.

2. In a bowl, combine the pears and cinnamon and toss to combine. Toss in the lemon juice.

3. In a separate medium bowl, whisk together the oats, flour, brown sugar, and salt.

4. Add the butter and use your fingers to work the butter into the flour until the mixture comes together and the crumbles are about the size of peas. Mix in the pistachios and set aside.

5. Pour the pears into a greased 8-inch baking dish and cover with the oat mixture.

6. Bake until the top is brown and the pears are bubbly, 40 to 45 minutes.


Vanilla Ice Cream or plain greek yogurt

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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. I create simple, healthy recipes the whole family will love.