Grain-free, Italian Pear Cake (Torta di Pere)

Adapting recipes to be grain free is a very tricky thing. My husband and I ate quite a few versions of this before I settled on this particular one. Even so, you need to understand, when the cake is baked the first day, it may seem a little dry. Serve it with good, full fat, plain yogurt, the mascarpone as described below, or a little cream poured over. If there is some left for the second day, the juices from the pears will have soaked in and have softened the texture so much it will be almost creamy. So, depending on how you like the texture of the cake, bake it the day of use, or the day before!

(Please note, I use metric measuring spoons and weight to make this recipe.)


• 3 eggs

• 150g caster sugar

• 1 1/4 teaspoon vanilla

• 75g coconut flour

• 75g almond flour/meal

• 30g arrowroot or tapioca flour/starch

• 1 pinch salt

• 90 g butter, melted

• 2 ripe, but not soft, pears peeled, cored and cut into halves, lengthways, then cut the halves into four pieces lengthways (I only end up using about one and a half pears)


  1. Pre-heat the oven 160°C (325F).
  2. Grease sides and line bottom of a 24 cm (9.5-10 inch) cake pan with baking paper.
  3. Cream the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy, this will take five or so minutes. Add the vanilla.
  4. Use a whisk to stir the flour, tapioca starch, and salt together. Add to the egg batter and stir well, but don’t use a mixer, then add the melted butter and stir until the batter is smooth. Pour batter into greased/lined cake pan and spread evenly.
  5. Place the pear pieces on the cake, gently pushing down each piece into the batter leaving a little exposed. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the top is golden and the cake is set inside. Leave to cool before serving.

To Serve

Icing sugar to dust. Whipped cream or mascarpone lightened with cream or good vanilla ice cream to serve.

(This recipe has been adapted from Francesca’s recipe on her blog Almost Italian.)

Here is a close up photo of the texture and crumb of the cake on the second day:IMG_1218