Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble

What is it with crumble that it looks so totally not sexy in photos? This Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble has taken me so long to post because of the images but in the end, I gave up and these photos will have to do. All that matters is the recipe – your proof is in the pudding!

chocolate hazelnut pear crumble

This Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble is so quick to make and ticks all the autumn-winter-spring pear comfort-food dessert boxes. We love this not just for dessert but any leftovers are pounced on for breakfast, weekend brunch and – typically French – for teatime too as a crrrrumbeulle with a pot of tea.

Comice pears Parisian market

All throughout Autumn and Winter, we’ve had a constant supply of ripe-firm pears at our local market, which are just right for this crumble.  In February, and now in March, they’re still going strong! For this recipe I use Comice pears but you can use Williams, Conference – any of the winter varieties.

Pears, Apples and Chocolate Heaven

chocolate hazelnut pear crumble recipe method

As I was developing the recipe, I found that adding some apple helped soak up the juices, as pears for a crumble do tend to be rather wet and juicy, which could make it a bit soggy if used on their own.  However, the mixture of the two together and cooking them lightly at the beginning will prove to be just right.

Chocolate hazelnut pear crumble method

To make this recipe a little less in gluten than my classic apple crumble, I’ve replaced some of the flour with oats and the hazelnuts just add that incredible flavour.  It’s like having a homemade Nutella crumble but much healthier.

Although I add unsweetened cacao powder to the hazelnut crumble, the real secret is hidden underneath: good quality dark bittersweet chocolate (at least 64% cacao), in cooking disks or grated, just merges in to the fruit. It’s a perfect marriage in a baking dish.

Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble

This one is ready to go in the oven. Just ensure that the chocolate and fruit are hidden underneath the crumble.

Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble

Chocolate Hazelnut Pear Crumble
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
50 mins

An easy chocolate oat crumble that's a great compromise for a family dessert with fruit - the ultimate comfort-food with extra dark chocolate and lower in gluten than the classic crumble.

Course: Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert, teatime
Cuisine: British, French
Keyword: baking with oats, chocolate crumble, chocolate hazelnut recipes, low gluten, pear recipes
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 318 kcal
Author: Jill Colonna
Chocolate Hazelnut Crumble
  • 50 g (2oz) Ground Hazelnuts
  • 50 g (2oz) Plain (all purpose) flour
  • 75 g (3oz) medium oats (porridge oats)
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 100 g (4oz) butter unsalted
  • 1 good pinch salt (fleur de sel)
  • 40 g (1.5oz) soft light brown sugar (cane sugar)
Fruity Filling
  • 10 g (0.5oz) unsalted butter
  • 3 firm to ripe Large Williams or Comice pears peeled, cored, chopped
  • 5-6 Granny Smith apples peeled, cored, chopped
  • 10 g (0.5oz) vanilla sugar or cane sugar with 1/2 tsp vanilla powder
  • 50 g (2oz) dark bittersweet chocolate (min 64%) (good quality, in button form or grated)
  1. Combine all the crumble ingredients in a large bowl, lightly rubbing through your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Set aside.

  2. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan/400°F/Gas 6.
  3. Peel, core and chop up the apples and pears roughly into chunks. Melt the butter in a large non-stick frying pan, toss in the fruit chunks and sprinkle over the vanilla sugar. Leave to cook over a medium heat, turning the apples and pears now and again, for about 5-8 minutes. The fruit should not be mushy, just lightly cooked. Drain off any excess fruit juice if there is any (set aside and reduce over medium heat to serve apart with the crumble later so that there's no waste).

  4. Transfer the fruit to a gratin or pudding dish (no need to butter it) and scatter over the dark chocolate. Sprinkle on a generous amount of crumble until the fruit and chocolate are completely covered.

  5. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until the top is toasted or lightly browned. Leave to cool slightly before serving.

Recipe Notes

Serve warm or at room temperature.

Replace the dark chocolate with milk chocolate according to taste.

We normally serve this chocolate hazelnut pear crumble on its own but if you prefer, add some vanilla ice cream, pouring cream or an adult boozy ice cream such as this non-churn Calvados ice cream (replace the Drambuie with Calvados).


Jill Colonna


More Crumble Love

If you love crumbles, have you tried these yet?

More Pear Recipes

chocolate hazelnut pear crumble

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20 replies
  1. Peggy
    Peggy says:

    This sounds like such a delicious recipe. I can’t wait to give it a try. Dark chocolate, pears, and apples with a crumble topping…yum!

  2. Linda
    Linda says:

    This looks scrumptious. I’m eating a lot of pears just now – they are good even up here in north east Scotland, tho imported from that distant area on the edge of the world, about to become even further away – Europe. Sorry to be political, but I remember food in the 1960s before we had imports from Europe. Not sure that a return to cabbage and turnips is what Brexiteers voted for. So for the moment I’m enjoying my pears!

    • Jill Colonna
      Jill Colonna says:

      I hear you, Linda. If anything, it will encourage more local produce – and I’m sure it’s not all cabbage and turnips. Bon courage, my friend. You’ve inspired me to add a quick list of pear recipes here, just for you!

      • Linda
        Linda says:

        Ooh thank you, Jill. More pear delights! I’ll try the Bourdaloue Pear Tart this weekend I think. My husband is a big fan of tinned fruit (the impact of a Dundee childhood), so he should love this. We don’t have any rum – presume I can just use whisky? which we have far too much of so I need to make a dent in the stocks.

        • Jill Colonna
          Jill Colonna says:

          Whisky – why not? Sounds good. We also have a stock, since our French friends that used to drink it before dinner now have switched to wine! Whisky it is – for Scotland!

  3. Christina | Christina's Cucina
    Christina | Christina's Cucina says:

    Oh my, it’s taken me days to get here, but what a stunner! LOVE the hidden dark chocolate discs as well as the dark cocoa in the crumble! Not to mention my favorite: hazelnuts! Looks like a winner, Jill! I’m sure your family cleaned the lot! Lucky them!

  4. Betty
    Betty says:

    I haven’t the first idea where I’m going to get hazelnuts, but I am going to have to try because this sounds so good! Super creative recipe, Jill!!!

    • Jill Colonna
      Jill Colonna says:

      Thanks, Betty. I didn’t state it in the recipe but of course you can use whole hazelnuts and crush them (close them in a freezer bag and whack them with a rolling pin – it’s great to let out any frustrations!).

    • Jill Colonna
      Jill Colonna says:

      We love them both too – add some pears with extra dark gooey chocolate and I guess it’s healthier! Cheers, Sherry.

  5. Thomasina
    Thomasina says:

    Good idea to mix pears with apples in the crumble. I love William pears and Cox apples but never thought to add chocolate. I am imagining the taste and will definitely put this recipe on my to do list.

    • Jill Colonna
      Jill Colonna says:

      Thanks, Thomasina. Hope you make this soon, as the taste is so good! Still perfect comforting winter food…

  6. Bea
    Bea says:

    Another recipe that’s right in my comfort zone. I keep many Asian pears will have to try them with this recipe. I like crumbles, cobblers & pies. Happy St Patrick’s Day.

    • Jill Colonna
      Jill Colonna says:

      This will be incredible with Asian pears – love it, Bea. As a Scot, I celebrate St Andrew’s Day but a very Happy St Patrick’s Day to you and all my wonderful Irish friends!



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