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Baked Camembert with Pear (5-MINUTE prep!)

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Baked camembert is the perfect winter dip, especially for cheese lovers. It’s comforting during the cold months and only takes 5 minutes to prep! It’s also a simple, quick, and gorgeous appetizer for parties!

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Hi winter! you’re not my favorite season of all, I can’t lie to you…

It got a little colder these weeks, Christmas has just passed and we’re right into winter. I’m more of a summer, warm weather person (not to say a real beach bum) but if there is one thing I love about winter, it’s FOOD!

Here in Belgium and France, December is a synonym for warm chestnuts, glazed chestnuts, raclette, vin chaud, yule log (bûche de Noël), cougnou (sugar, raisins, chocolate), etc. All these are exclusively found in winter, in particular December. Oh, and not to mention cold weather is also a good excuse to abuse hot chocolate and hot chai tea lattes 🙂

I’ve been visiting my family who lives a 5-minute drive from France, so I took the opportunity to pop at the supermarket in France and got myself some camembert. Christmas was just yesterday so I thought I’d bake a camembert as an appetizer before our Christmas dinner.

Baked camembert is the simplest (yet fancy) appetizer that I know of. It literally takes less than 5 minutes to prep. Pop it in the oven and you’ve got a stunning appetizer to share with friends or family.

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Brie vs. Camembert

Both are French cow’s milk cheeses that look alike but camembert has its origins in Normandy while brie comes from the Parisian region. In terms of flavor, camembert is slightly salty, it’s soft, and creamy and has earthy flavors and aromas of mushroom. It pairs well with some red wine or cider.

Brie has a softer and creamier texture than camembert. It has a higher fat content (60% milk fat while camembert has 40% milk fat) and its flavor is milder than camembert.

If I have to pick between both, my personal preference goes to brie. I’m not into intense-flavored cheese so the milder the taste the best for me. But this time, brie in a wheel shape was out of stock so I grabbed a camembert instead.

Which ingredients do I need to make Baked Camembert with Pear?

  • camembert – this recipe is suitable for a wheel of about 250g / 8.8 oz. For a bigger wheel, increase the topping quantities. I am using camembert in this recipe but you can as well replace it with a brie
  • pear – dice some pear. You’ll only be able to fit 1/4 of a pear on top of the camembert but I like to keep the leftover to finish off the camembert
  • honey – for one camembert, I use about 2 tablespoons of honey but feel free to adjust the honey quantity as per your liking. Maple syrup is also a great option and substitute for honey, it particularly goes well with pear
  • walnuts – chop some walnuts and sprinkle them on top of the camembert. You can use any nuts you like, pecan nuts also pair particularly well with pear
  • fresh rosemary – use fresh rosemary instead of dried rosemary to get the most out of its flavor. You can also substitute with thyme
  • bread or crackers – honestly, I love a good freshly baked baguette from the bakery 🙂 but you can also toast some bread or have this baked camembert with some crackers
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How to make Baked Camembert?

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  2. Unwrap the camembert from its packaging and place it back into its wooden box.
  3. In case the box is made out of cardboard instead, discard the box since it cannot go into the oven. Place the camembert in a somewhat larger oven-safe dish so that it holds the shape of the brie while cooking.
  4. Score the top rind of the camembert in a crosshatch pattern. Do not go all the way to the edge so that the cheese doesn’t ooze out during baking.
  5. Drizzle with 1 tbsp of honey. Place the diced pear on top. Sprinkle some walnuts. Add rosemary and drizzle again with 1 tbsp of honey.
  6. Bake 180°C/350°F degrees for 20 min.
  7. Serve with bread or crackers for dipping.

How to bake Camembert in an air fryer?

I bought an air fryer last year and ever since I am also testing most of my baked/fried recipes with my air fryer.

Baked camembert can easily be baked in an air fryer, no preheating is required. Follow the same recipe guidelines and bake the camembert for 15 minutes at 180°C/350°F.

The only difference is that I bake it for 15 minutes instead of 20 minutes. Due to the air fryer being much smaller than an oven, your food usually cooks faster. If baking a dish, the top gets golden brown much faster so it is best to decrease the baking time.

My camembert does not have a wooden box, how can I bake it?

Some camembert will be sold in a wooden box. If that’s the case this is great, remove the plastic wrapping the camembert and place it back into the wooden box for baking. It will hold the shape of the camembert once the cheese has melted. For serving, it’ll also give it this rustic and fancy look.

Sometimes camemberts come in a cardboard box. In this case, make sure you remove both the plastic wrap and the box. Best not to set fire to your house. Use an oven-safe dish slightly larger than the camembert so that it fits perfectly and holds the edges of the camembert. Once you dip your bread in, it’ll help the cheese not to flatten out.

In case you do not have any baking dish with the right size, you can use some foil and wrap several layers around the bottom and edges of the camembert. So it holds the camembert, just like a box or baking dish.

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Don’t overbake your Camembert

Make sure you set a timer if you’re busy doing something else. Baking camembert for too long will result in a dry and hard camembert. I used to think that leaving it a little longer wasn’t a problem, it would still be melted. But this is a big mistake, make sure you remove it from the oven once the 20 minutes are up.

What to serve with Baked Camembert?

  • Fruits go really well with camembert, they bring a sweet and fresh touch. I am a big fan of pears and apples with camembert or brie, but figs or berries such as raspberries, blueberries or a mix of red berries are also delicious.
  • Dried fruits such as dried figs, dried apricots, dried dates, etc. taste amazing with camembert. They’re even sweeter than fresh fruits so they counterbalance perfectly the savory flavors of the camembert. Sometimes, if I have some home, I’d combine fresh fruits with dried fruits.
  • Nuts add texture and a nutty flavor. I usually go for walnuts or pecan nuts but any kind of nuts will taste great with camembert.
  • For some variations, I also like to add some jam, my all-time weakness is fig jam. I love love love fig jam and walnuts. Nothing more. When using jam, I usually skip honey since jam is already sweet enough.
  • Baguette, toasted bread, crackers. Whichever you prefer to dip into the cheese. But as you know, I can’t resist a freshly baked baguette still warm with a crunchy crust 🙂
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Can I reheat Baked Camembert?

If you’ve got some leftovers, place them in an airtight container and refrigerate them for the next day. You can either reheat it in a preheated oven (180°C/350°F) for 5 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Or a quick alternative is to microwave it on high for 1 minute.

In any case, it’s best to finish it off when you bake it first. Reheating camembert won’t taste as good as when you baked it first.

Looking for more December comfort food? Try these

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baked camembert with pear, French baked camembert, baked cheese, camembert with pear

Baked Camembert with Pear

Baked camembert is the perfect winter dip, especially for cheese lovers. It's comforting during the cold months and only takes 5 minutes to prep! It's also a simple, quick, and gorgeous appetizer for parties!
5 from 8 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: French
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 1 camembert
Calories per serving: 901kcal
Author: Emma Choi

Ingredients

  • 1 camembert (Note 2) | wheel of about 250g / 8.8 oz
  • ¼ pear , diced
  • 2 tbsp honey (Note 1)
  • 1 tbsp walnuts , chopped
  • 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
  • bread or crackers

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  • Unwrap the camembert from its packaging and place it back into its wooden box.
  • In case the box is made out of cardboard instead, discard the box since it cannot go into the oven. Place the camembert in a somewhat larger oven-safe dish so that it holds the shape of the brie while cooking.
  • Score the top rind of the camembert in a crosshatch pattern. Do not go all the way to the edge so that the cheese doesn’t ooze out during baking.
  • Drizzle with 1 tbsp of honey. Place the diced pear on top. Sprinkle some walnuts. Add rosemary and drizzle again with 1 tbsp of honey.
  • Bake 180°C/350°F degrees for 20 min.
  • Serve with bread or crackers for dipping.

Notes

1. Honey: maple syrup is also a great substitute for honey and goes perfectly with pears.
2. Camembert: you can choose any camembert or wheel cheese of your choice. Brie is one of my favorites and a little less strong in taste than camembert for those who prefer a milder cheese flavor

Nutrition

Calories: 901kcalCarbohydrates: 45gProtein: 47gFat: 62gSaturated Fat: 35gPolyunsaturated Fat: 6gMonounsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 163mgSodium: 1906mgPotassium: 548mgFiber: 2gSugar: 41gVitamin A: 1896IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 897mgIron: 1mg
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