- When possible, preserve fresh, locally-grown pears for the best quality and nutritional value.
- Know when fresh pears are available in your state with this seasonal food guide.
1. Selection & Ingredients
- Select fresh, ripe, firm fruit. Do not use fruit that show signs of decay or mold.
- Use 2-2 ½ lbs of pears per quart container.
- Anti-darkening treatment:
- Ascorbic acid (Vitamin C) –or-
- Commercial ascorbic acid mixture (follow manufacturer’s directions for treating fruit)
- Sugar for syrup pack
- NOTE: Unsweetened, dry packed fruits will lose quality faster than those packed in sugar or syrup.
- Cooking pot (if using liquid pack method)
- Cutting board
- Ruler/headspace tool
- Use clean packing containers and materials that are moisture and vapor-proof/resistant:
- Rigid containers (glass jars and hard plastic containers) are especially good for freezing foods with liquid. Covers for rigid containers should fit tightly.
- Square or rectangular, straight-sided rigid plastic containers make the best use of freezer space.
- Wide-mouth, dual-purpose glass jars made for canning and freezing are tempered to withstand extremes in temperature and allow for easier removal of partially-thawed foods.
- Narrow-mouth dual-purpose glass jars can also be used but require greater headspace (to avoid expansion breakage at the shoulder) and foods must be completely thawed before removal.
- Flexible bags (plastic freezer bags) intended for freezing food products with liquid
- Vacuum packaging removes more oxygen than other freezing methods (Refer to manufacturer's instructions).
3. Prepare Equipment
- Before use, wash containers in hot soapy water and rinse well. Dry.
4. Prepare Fruit
- Thoroughly wash pears.
- Peel, core, and cut into slices or halves.
Syrup (Liquid) Pack-
- Prepare fresh 30-40% syrup solution by dissolving sugar in lukewarm water and mixing until the solution is clear. (see Sugar Syrup Recipe table below).
- Plan for 1/2 to 2/3 cup syrup for each pint of fruit.
- Cool syrup.
- To prevent browning, add 3/4 teaspoon (2250 mg) ascorbic acid to each quart of cooled syrup.
- If using commercial ascorbic acid mixture, follow manufacturer’s directions.
- Prepare additional 30-40% syrup and heat pear pieces for 1-2 minutes, depending on the size of the pieces.
- Add 1/2 cup syrup/pint container or 1 cup syrup/quart container.
- Add sliced fruit, pressing down firmly, and cover with additional syrup, as needed, leaving the proper headspace for the container type (see Headspace table below).
- If using rigid containers, place a small piece of crumpled water-resistant paper on top to hold fruit down.
- If using flexible bags, remove as much air space as possible.
- Before sealing, make sure sealing edges are free of moisture or food.
Sugar Syrup Recipe
||Yield (cups syrup)
Headspace for Freezing Fruits
Container with wide top opening
Container with narrow top opening
Flexible bags and wraps
||1 ½ inches
||Remove as much air as possible
||Remove as much air as possible
- Freeze packaged fruits as quickly as possible to 0°F or below.
- For quickest freezing, place containers in single layer in freezer.
- Label with the name of food, date, and type of pack.
- Most fruits will maintain high quality for 8-12 months at 0°F or below.