Pear & Walnut Cake

This super easy-to-make Pear and Walnut cake is for my little guy, aka Cake Loather. Yep, if you’ve been following this blog then you know his aversion to all things cake, cupcakes and frosting.

Pear & Walnut Cake via Bakers Royale

Make it a muffin or call it muffin– he’s all over it—of course it can’t be too sweet and no frosting. Forever pushing sweets on him, I kept those two things in mind and then dropped some fat pear halves into the batter.

The verdict. “Mom, I don’t like cake”.

Pear & Walnut Cake from Bakers Royale

Not even his favorite fruit could coax him into eating a sample properly. By properly, I mean one good hearty forkful. Nope, like Matt, he picked through the cake and went for the pear. Now the odd thing is, I’m gonna convert this to a muffin and I betcha the kid will be all over this.

Pear and Walnut Cake | Process Shots via Bakers Royale

photos via Matt Robinson

this recipe
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Pear & Walnut Cake

Yield: Makes 1 8 inch cake


  • 1 3/4 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup of almond meal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup (2oz) Diamond of California chopped walnuts
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3-4 Bartlett pears (medium size, about 6oz. each), halved and cored


Preparation: Heat oven 350 degrees F. Lightly cover a round 8 inch cake pan with bake spray and dust with flour, then line the bottom of the pan with parchment.

  1. Place flour, almond meal, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ground ginger and walnuts in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
  2. Place eggs and sugar in a food processor and pulse until well blended and mixture is pale and fluffy. Add in buttermilk and olive oil, and again, pulse until well blended and batter is thick. (Note: The wet ingredients can also be mixed in a stand mixer with the whisk attachment). Fold in dry ingredients into wet mixture and pour batter into cake pan. Place halved pears into cake.
  3. Bake for 90 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean when inserted into center of cake. Start checking for doneness around 70 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cook for five minutes before removing cake from pan. ***Optional: Garnish with raspberries and dust with confectioner sugar.

A few notes:

  • No need to poach or peel the pear if you make sure to use ripe pears (they should be yellow, not green, and slightly bruised is fine).
  • You can use canola oil instead of olive oil, but I prefer the slight grassy taste the olive oil imparts.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Diamond California® Nuts as part of an ongoing ambassadorship. However, all opinions are my own.

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33 Responses to “Pear & Walnut Cake”

  1. #
    Caroline @ Pass the Cocoa — January 21, 2014 @ 6:48 pm

    If your son doesn’t want this cake, I’ll totally take his piece, it looks amazing (: I’m curious if you taste the olive oil in the finished cake? And I think the process shots you included are gorgeous; they capture the magic of turning some simple ingredients into a really great cake!


    • Naomi Robinson replied: — January 21st, 2014 @ 7:00 pm

      There is a the slightest taste. I personally like it. If you don’t like it, use canola or vegetable oil.


  2. #
    Laura (Tutti Dolci) — January 21, 2014 @ 7:45 pm

    Beautiful, I love the pears peeking through! Matt is a quick study – love the bright shots! :)


  3. #
    Tieghan — January 21, 2014 @ 8:28 pm

    I cannot even imagine not loving cake!! He is going to grow and and learn that he loves cake and be so sad he missed out all these years! Oh well, more for you! Yay!

    Love the cake and the gorgeous shots. Love the process ones and I cannot believe Matt took them. Amazed!


  4. #
    Maria@PinkPatisserie — January 21, 2014 @ 8:34 pm

    I love cakes, just like this. Really beautiful. And I happen to really like the process shots, super cool and even more awesome that your husband did them! It’s extra work to make things look effortless :) but I think they’re great!


  5. #
    Belinda@themoonblushbaker — January 21, 2014 @ 10:35 pm

    I am sure your son will grow up to be a lover of food. How can he not when he has a mother who cooks and takes photography like this?
    I love the placement of the pears in this cake. Your husband should go into photography too; you both are so talented


  6. #
    Averie @ Averie Cooks — January 21, 2014 @ 11:40 pm

    What a pretty cake and I’m jealous of those fresh raspberries & that wood surface! pinned


  7. #
    Norma @ Allspice and Nutmeg — January 22, 2014 @ 3:28 am

    This sounds incredible. I’m going to put this on my must make, I love pears and I love cake! I like the process shots too.


  8. #
    Taylor @ Food Faith Fitness — January 22, 2014 @ 3:32 am

    I can’t believe your little guy does not like cake! That is crazy talk!
    But, that means more for you right? I wouldn’t mind a few extra pieces of this yum!
    I love the process shots and these pictures…that wooden board is fantastic!


  9. #
    Abby @ The Frosted Vegan — January 22, 2014 @ 4:04 am

    I love love love the process shots! Keep them coming : )


  10. #
    Alice // Hip Foodie Mom — January 22, 2014 @ 4:43 am

    beautiful cake! love the pears poking out and love the process shot panel! it’s gorgeous how you styled it!


  11. #
    viviana@bonheurcuisine — January 22, 2014 @ 4:51 am

    Pear and walnut is a stunning combination, what a beautiful cake! Thank you for spoiling us with those amazing pictures, the styling is superb!


  12. #
    Katrina @ WVS — January 22, 2014 @ 5:19 am

    This cake is crazy unique!! Awesome idea!


  13. #
    Sophia@ NY Foodgasm — January 22, 2014 @ 5:23 am

    Oh my gosh this cake is gorgeous and the styling is BEAUTIFUL! I really love all the how to photos and they are just as beautiful, wish I had more natural light in my kitchen!


  14. #
    JulieD — January 22, 2014 @ 5:33 am

    So so beautiful!! I’m in love!!


  15. #
    marla — January 22, 2014 @ 5:41 am

    A beautiful cake!!!


  16. #
    Maria — January 22, 2014 @ 6:33 am

    Love this cake!


  17. #
    Jenny Flake — January 22, 2014 @ 6:52 am

    Lovely Naomi!!


  18. #
    Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen — January 22, 2014 @ 7:17 am

    I have a 7 year old Cake Loather too! I swear he didn’t even eat a piece of cake at his own birthday party. I had to make him pose for the camera. Kids! Love this cake by the way- and yes (big YES!) to the process shots. So much fun and I just love beautiful photos. xoxo- K


  19. #
    Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet — January 22, 2014 @ 7:36 am

    All of the photos are a real eye candy! Love them!


  20. #
    Alexandra @ Confessions of a Bright-Eyed Baker — January 22, 2014 @ 9:59 am

    The photos are stunning as always, including the process photos. I love that your husband has grasped photography so rapidly and so well; that’s creds to you for sure! The cake looks luscious. How can anyone NOT like homemade cake?


  21. #
    Angelyn @ Everyday Desserts — January 22, 2014 @ 12:15 pm

    My thighs wish I didn’t love cake …. this one looks fabulous!!


  22. #
    Melissa — January 22, 2014 @ 6:59 pm

    This looks great! I’m def going to make this tomorrow. Did I miss the step where I would incorporate the walnuts?


  23. #
    Sommer @ASpicyPerspective — January 23, 2014 @ 6:39 am

    This decadent Pear & Walnut Cake sounds amazing! The pictures are beautiful!


  24. #
    Mimi @ Culinary Couture — January 23, 2014 @ 9:38 am

    Love the pictures that Matt took! He definitely has an eye for photography!


  25. #
    Darcy Spiekhout — January 23, 2014 @ 5:18 pm

    I am allergic to almonds. What can I use instead of almond meal? I have no problem with walnuts.


  26. #
    Gaby — January 23, 2014 @ 8:21 pm

    Love the cake, love the process shots. All totally gorgeous!


  27. #
    Dorinda — January 23, 2014 @ 11:53 pm

    Love the extra detail shots, especially against all that bright white. :) Love looking at your pictures and getting inspired to try something new! Thank you.


  28. #
    Laura B. — January 24, 2014 @ 3:59 am

    Hi the cake looks fabulous! Would love to try it over this weekend!

    The only question I had was about the measurement unit for olive oil? It says ‘1/2 estra virgin olive oil’ on the recipe, do you mean 1/2 cup? The same as for the buttermilk?

    Thank you!


  29. #
    Emilie@TheCleverCarrot — January 25, 2014 @ 4:45 am

    I think it looks fantastic! Process shots are definitely a lot more work, but not so bad when someone else takes them for you, right?! Great job Matt! My kids love to ‘help’ with all kinds of shots ;) Pretty lighting, lovely cake :)


  30. #
    Yana — February 17, 2014 @ 6:45 pm

    I had a bit of trouble placing the pears at first, but overall everything went smoothly. Delicious, satisfying, and fairly easy to make! My first thought was wow, these would be great in muffin form.


  31. #
    Mari @ Bookworm with a View — February 19, 2014 @ 5:44 pm

    I’m making this for a dinner tomorrow night – thank you for sharing!

    Wish me luck (ha)

    ps: photography is simply stunning


  32. #
    Charlotte — February 26, 2014 @ 1:52 pm

    This cake looks absolutely fab!!
    Do you have any recommendations for substitutes to buttermilk?
    Cant wait to try this :)


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