Why Eat Pears? Featuring USA Pears

Prep

10 mins

cook

5 hrs

serves

2

Pears are the perfect healthy snack for satisfying your sweet tooth and complementing savory snacks and meals. These juicy fruits are filled with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that nourish your body. Pears contain fiber, which supports healthy digestion, along with natural sugars that won’t spike blood sugar levels. We’ve partnered up with our friends at USA Pears to offer fresh Bosc, Red Anjou, and Green Anjou pears in our Farmboxes this month. USA Pears are grown in Oregon and Washington and come in a variety of different flavors and textures. And in this month’s recipe, we’ll show you how easy it is to make a delicious, healthy snack using fresh pears and a few staple spices. 

Snack alternatives that taste good and are good for you are crucial for staying on your health journey. We recommend using healthy swaps in the kitchen so that you can eat foods you are familiar with but in a more health-conscious way. For example, if you enjoy eating rice try making cauliflower rice instead of white rice. You’ll get all of the vitamins, minerals, and benefits offered by this vegetable, all the while looking exactly like the rice you are used to.

Instead of choosing russet potatoes, try adding more sweet potatoes into your diet. They are just as comforting, filling, and even healthier for the body. Another example is with chips – a snacking staple. We’re not telling you to stop eating chips, we just want to encourage you to try out a healthier alternative, such as Spiced Pear Chips! They are baked as opposed to fried, making them a healthier alternative to traditional chips. Serve these chips during parties, while hosting game day, or when you’re watching a film. Let’s jump into a few benefits of eating this sweet fruit.

FILLED WITH FIBER

Pears have one of the highest fiber contents of any fruit. One medium-sized pear offers an impressive 21% of the recommended daily intake. Fiber is a necessary nutrient for the digestive system and proper gut health because it feeds the “good bacteria”. You’ve probably heard before that you should include more fiber in your diet. Diets that are high in fiber are typically much healthier than those without it. A fiber-rich diet can help you maintain a healthy weight. And because pears contain prebiotic fiber, they are beneficial for gut health. It can also help lower your risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, and certain types of cancers.

SUPPORT A STRONG IMMUNE SYSTEM

Vitamin C is one of the most important nutrients for keeping your immune system strong. The immune system is your body’s natural defense system, protecting your body from bacteria, viruses, and other foreign invaders. One medium-sized pear provides 8% of the recommended daily intake for vitamin C, also known as the “antioxidant vitamin.” This vitamin is vital for normal metabolism, tissue repair, proper immune function, and protection against infectious diseases, so eat up! When you have a strong immune system you are less likely to catch colds and other infections. This is especially important now more than ever. Pair healthy foods like nutritious pears with regular physical activity and lots of water, and you’ll help keep up your body’s strongest natural line of defense.

EXTREMELY VERSATILE

Pears are an easy snack to eat as-is. Give them a quick rinse under cool water and they are snack-ready! Throw one in your bag when you need a quick, mid-day calorie boost. Take them on a hike with you when you need a moment to rest and eat something lite, hydrating, and filling. You can add thin slices to a salad for a touch of sweetness and texture to your greens. If you are making a fruit salad, you can choose between any of the pear varieties to add some diversity to a classic fruit mixture. Add them into cookies for a unique take on a baked, on-the-go breakfast as well. Or, you can completely transform their state from a juicy, whole fruit to thinly-baked chips. The choices are endless! Not only are there several different ways to eat pears, but they also come in a variety of colors and flavors. Bosc pears are light brown in color and have a crisp, woodsy, and honey-sweet taste. Red Anjous are juicy with a fresh, sweet, and slightly tangy flavor, while Green Anjou pears are sweet and juicy with a hint of citrus.

MAY HELP WITH BRAIN HEALTH

An additional benefit of eating more pears is that they support brain health. According to a study from the Rush University Memory and Aging Project, eating more flavonols, which are found in pears, may be linked to a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. The study followed members consuming a food regimen with the highest flavonol levels. The top fifth percentile reduced their risk of receiving an Alzheimer’s diagnosis by 48% when compared to those in the bottom quintile. Among the top quintile, pears were one of the most consumed foods, being that they contain the flavonol isorhamnetin.

BOOSTING THE NUTRITIONAL VALUE

Fruits and vegetables all have their own unique tastes and textures. These plant-based foods are filled with vitamins, minerals, and flavors that support a healthy diet and lifestyle. Eating farm-fresh foods like pears, for example, are rich in nutrient-value, low-calorie, and yet still delicious. While these foods have a unique taste on their own, you can increase their nutritional value by using natural spices. Cinnamon and nutmeg are two spices used in our Spiced Pear Chips recipe. Cinnamon is naturally anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, and anti-bacterial. It is one of the most used spices and is common in dessert recipes. When paired on top of fruits, a contrast is created between the sweetness of the fruit and the warm spice layer from the cinnamon. Nutmeg also has a warm, and yet slightly sweet, taste. It is used to flavor many baked goods and often teams up with cinnamon in recipes to enhance the taste of dishes. Both of these spices can elevate your dishes, so make sure to keep them in your pantry.

USA Pears - Spiced Pear Chips

Ingredients

2 USA Pears of choice

½ tsp cinnamon

⅛ tsp nutmeg

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 170℉. Prepare two large baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
  2. Slice pears into thin disks, removing the core or seeds as you go.
    1. Note: utilize a mandoline if possible.
  3. Add the sliced USA Pears to a large mixing bowl. Add cinnamon and nutmeg and toss until the pears are evenly seasoned.
  4. Place the pears onto the baking sheets in a single layer and bake for 4-5 hours, or until dehydrated.
    1. Test for doneness around 4 hours by removing one piece from the oven. Allow it to cool. Once cooled, bend the chip. If it snaps, they are done, if it bends, give them more time.
  5. Once chips are crisp, remove them from the oven and allow to cool before enjoying.
USA Pears - Spiced Pear Chips

HOW-TO ENJOY THE PERFECT PEAR

A little pear fun fact is that it is one of the few fruits that doesn’t ripen on the tree. When left at room temperature it will slowly reach maturity. It is also important to note that the best way to judge your pears’ ripeness is to Check the Neck. Use your thumb to gently apply pressure near the stem of the neck of the pear. If it yields to the pressure, it’s ripe and ready to eat! To speed up the ripening process, store pears near other fruits such as apples or bananas. Once you want to delay further ripening, store the pears in the refrigerator and they will last longer. 

At FarmboxRx, we love pear-ing (we couldn’t resist from at least one pear pun) up with partners that are passionate about what they do. That’s why we are featuring these fabulous fruits in our Farmboxes! We’re including our three favorite varieties: Bosc, Red Anjou, and Green Anjou. Our fresh produce delivery service brings you a variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables right to your doorstep. Whether you live in a food desert, are suffering from mobility issues, or simply don’t have the time to make it to the grocery store for fresh produce, we’ve made it easier for you to eat healthily. With fruits and vegetables delivered to your home, you’ll enjoy the luxury of saving time on going to the market, plus you won’t have to sort through the batches of each piece of produce to find the best. We do all of that for you when packing your box so that you can receive the freshest, tastiest produce available. Make sure to look out for USA Pears in your Farmboxes. Now let’s jump right into this recipe for Spiced Pear Chips!

Whoever says chips are a “waste of calories” has not tried pear chips. Not only are they the perfect substitute for the crunchy classic, but they also add a nutritious boost to your health. These thin snacks are baked to perfection and can be eaten at any time of day – be it breakfast, snack, or dessert.

 

USA Pears - Spiced Pear Chips

Spiced Pear Chips

Print Recipe Pin Recipe
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 hours
Servings: 2
Servings: 2

Equipment

  • 2 baking sheets
  • mandoline optional
  • mixing bowl large

Ingredients

  • 2 USA pears
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 170℉. Prepare two large baking sheets lined with parchment paper.
  • Slice pears into thin disks, removing the core or seeds as you go.
    Note: Use a mandoline if possible.
  • Add the sliced USA Pears to a large mixing bowl. Add cinnamon and nutmeg and toss until the pears are evenly seasoned.
  • Place the pears onto the baking sheets in a single layer and bake for 4-5 hours, or until dehydrated.
    Note: Test for doneness around 4 hours by removing one piece from the oven. Allow it to cool. Once cooled, bend the chip. If it snaps, they are done, if it bends, give them more time.

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Why Eat Pears? Featuring USA Pears