Introducing Korean Pears, and 10 Things to do with Them!

by Dorothy Reinhold on November 5, 2012

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As soon as Halloween is over, it’s time for one of my favorite fruit seasons – fall fruit just bursts forth if we will only look away from the candy, doesn’t it?

Among the plethora of fresh apples and a variety of pears dotting the produce shelves, you’ll soon find Korean Pears. A Korean Pear is like the love child of a big green apple and a Bosc pear — round, bigger than typical pears, with a crisp, sweet, white interior with a brownish-yellow skin. It’s hard and crisp when ripe, not like other pears that must soften to be ripe.

It’s no wonder these are sometimes referred to as apple pears.

The beauty of Korean pears is they are superbly crisp, juicy and sweet with the thinnest skin (no need for peeling). They’re good in any salad where you might use chopped apples, or simply sliced and eaten for a snack or dessert.

A plus is they don’t tend to darken when cut, unlike lots of apple varieties and some pears, so they hold up well in a salad or lunchbox, even when sliced or chopped. Another plus is they’re only about 50 calories per fruit!

Korean Pears -- 10 things to do with them. Go here: Pears are what we might call pampered produce – grown purposefully with fewer pears per branch, they wear little jackets while they are still on the tree (ensuring thin, smooth, perfect skin), are coddled on the packing line, and encased in different little jackets for shipping and displaying in the store. These pears have better outerwear than I do!

Korean Pears in a boxEach pear is quite large, about 14-16 ounces each! They retail for about $2.50 per pound, and are most often sold individually, although some retailers (like Asian markets) might sell by the case.

What to do with Korean Pears?

10 things to do with Korean Pears. Go here: I most often slice one and put it on our dinner plates, for variety and crunch.

2. Eat them for dessert, simply cored and sliced (leave the skin on). Maybe a simple shortbread cookie alongside…maybe not.

3. My Korean Pear Turkey Salad (use chicken if you don’t have turkey available).

4. Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto is a big fan of Korean Pears and uses them in this Asian-Pear Salad at his New York restaurant Morimoto

5. Pair this pear (ha ha!) with cheese for an easy appetizer, or put them on your grazing boards.

6. Speaking of appetizers, wrap a Korean pear slice in prosciutto, spear it with a toothpick and call me for cocktails and appies!

7.  Use it as a palate cleanser between spicy dishes or at the end of a meal.

8. Core and chop in a salad in place of apples.

9. Core, chop and sprinkle the pieces over your bowl of morning oatmeal, for a crunchy textural change.

10. Core, slice thinly and put in your Pear, Brie Panino!

If you’ve never tried a Korean pear before, now is the time since they’re just arriving in stores. The season will peak in December and continue until February or March. They’ll make a wonderful addition to holiday feasts this month and next, as well as family dinners and lunchboxes.

A sample of this fruit was sent by Melissa’s Produce. I was not compensated for this post, and all opinions are firmly my own. 

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Olga February 26, 2019 at 8:57 am

what a gorgeous idea! We absolutely love Asian Pear Salad! Definitely need to try these!


Jay December 8, 2018 at 8:19 am

core it or half it crumble granola bar on it or in it -bake or microwave it with a little butter


Dorothy Reinhold December 10, 2018 at 6:42 am

I like that idea!


Anthony Allen November 17, 2018 at 12:17 am

Lovely! This is officially one of my favorite fruits! thanks for your recipes with this fruits. Thank you so much!


Pat September 27, 2017 at 9:08 pm

our neighbor has a Korean pear tree, I tried one and it was quite tart and sour. Wasn’t it ripe yet? And how do you tell when it is ripe?


Robert February 2, 2016 at 6:15 am

Found this same pear in a market in Texas very crisp
best pear


Dorothy Reinhold February 2, 2016 at 10:52 am

Thanks for coming back to tell me! Crisp, juicy, perfect pears!


Abduvakhob Turgunov December 30, 2015 at 8:47 pm

I like korean pears I want plant saplang korean pears


karamat khan October 30, 2014 at 10:23 am

i have graftinng in azad kashmir 12000 plants .now i am very is my favourite pear .south korea korea pear


Anonymous February 9, 2014 at 10:31 am

If you get your hands on these pears..use them to make a korean bbq sauce. its so good.


Dorothy Reinhold February 9, 2014 at 11:32 am

Great, I will!


Jeanette November 6, 2012 at 6:46 pm

I love the sweetness and crunchiness of Korean pears – great ideas!


JollyTomato November 6, 2012 at 8:09 am

Great list! You’ve given me lots of ideas, and now I’m getting hungry. Off to make some oatmeal with Korean pears now…


Laura Hunter November 6, 2012 at 7:01 am

Growing up in Hong Kong these were the only pears I knew for most of my life. They are absolutely amazing and far superior to other pears. Looking at your amazing photos is making me want one right now.


Jerry | Simply Good Eating November 5, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Korean pear (pureed) is also good to use with marinating meats as well.


Dorothy November 5, 2012 at 3:41 pm

Thanks Jerry!


kirsten@FarmFreshFeasts November 5, 2012 at 12:09 pm

I remember seeing all the pampered (pricey!) fruit in their own individual wrappers in Japan.

Thanks for the memories!


Connie Kaiser November 5, 2012 at 10:56 am

I closed an escrow last year and the broker – who worked out of Koreatown – sent me a whole box of these as a gift. Magnificent! I had not tried them before and shared them with friends and family – each one is HUGE! So delicious!


Dorothy November 5, 2012 at 11:00 am

Now THAT is a fantastic closing gift! You know the broker was happy, since this is a special fruit.


diabeticFoodie November 5, 2012 at 9:14 am

Are these also known as Asian pears or are they somehow different?


Dorothy November 5, 2012 at 10:57 am

Diabetic Foodie,
There are lots of varieties of Asian pears, of which Korean Pears are one subset. The ones distributed by Melissa’s and shown in this post are “Korean Giant.”


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