After a 15-pound influx of fresh peaches and a two-week intense baking spree, I was in the market for a more healthy-leaning peach dessert; one that left room for vanilla ice cream, of course. The answer: Baked Peaches!
Fresh peach halves that are split, then spooned full of a heaven-sent mix of maple syrup (or honey), brown sugar, cinnamon, and—if you are feeling dangerous—a touch of brandy, bourbon, or rum, this simple but spectacular summer dessert is destined to be a go-to.
Whether you want an easy dessert to wow your guests, an excuse to buy another box of fresh peaches before summer ends (15 pounds later, and I might not be done yet!), or a healthy way to treat yourself, look no further than Baked Peaches in maple syrup.
Baked Peaches taste like the purest, most intense version of what a fresh peach can be. They’re tender, juicy, and guaranteed to drip down your chin.
Baked Peaches — A True Peach of a Recipe
This recipe is all about the peaches themselves. Let them enjoy the diva status they deserve. We’re going to take a few simple ingredients that highlight and elevate peaches’ flavor, but it’s the fruit itself that stars in this dish.
You can top the Baked Peaches with ricotta or mascarpone if you are feeling fancy, with a drizzle of caramel sauce for extra sweetness, or keep it classic with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
A Baked Peaches and cream situation with a topping of whipped cream or a simple pour of heavy cream would be not be remiss either.
Since Baked Peaches are good for you (relatively!), sometimes I’ll even mix the Baked Peaches with raspberries, yogurt, and granola for a special Baked Peach crumble breakfast treat.
Peaches contain vitamin C, potassium, calcium, fiber, and other nutrients. Further, this is a recipe for Baked Peaches without butter, and it is naturally sweetened with maple syrup and coconut sugar. Don’t you love it when dessert-goes-breakfast is a possibility?
Baked Peaches are also very diet friendly and allergy friendly. This recipe is naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, and nut-free too. Baked Peaches for all!
How to Make Baked Peaches
The recipe takes only five minutes to prep and is one of the best desserts I’ve eaten all summer!
- Start by finding the best, freshest, juiciest ripe peaches you can. To tell if the peach is ripe, press it very gently. It should give a little. Be careful not to press too hard or the peach may bruise. Ripe peaches should also smell very fragrant.
- Split the peaches in half, and remove the pits. No need to peel the skins! They’ll soften up just fine when you cook the Baked Peaches in the oven. Further, peach skins also contain some vitamins, so you’re doing yourself a tasty favor leaving them on.
- Arrange the peaches in a baking dish, cut-sides up. You can use any size of dish, as long as it holds the peaches comfortably. I’ve written this recipe for three peaches (six halves), but you can scale it up or down any way you like.
(One of the halves didn’t make it all the way to the baking dish…apparently I was hungry when working on this recipe.)
- Mix up the Baked Peach filling. In a bowl, whisk together olive oil (no butter needed for Baked Peaches! The olive oil has a nice, fruity flavor that’s perfect here), cinnamon, maple syrup (or you can cook the Baked Peaches in honey), coconut sugar or brown sugar (if you’d like this to be a Paleo Baked Peaches recipe, use a bit of extra honey or maple syrup instead), and your alcohol of choice.
I opted for brandy Baked Peaches and imagine that bourbon or rum would also be fantastic.
Cooking Baked Peaches in alcohol is totally optional, of course! You can leave it out and still have ultra scrumptious results.
- Spoon the filling inside the peaches. Be generous! Whatever doesn’t fit right inside the peaches, spoon over the tops and let it run down the sides into the dish.
- Bake the peaches at 350 degrees F for 30 minutes, or until they are so tender you can cut them with a spoon. The filling will bubble and caramelize, and your entire kitchen will smell like a cross between a bakery and a peach orchard.
How to Store and Reheat Baked Peaches
Baked Peaches are also delicious leftover!
- To refrigerate: Store your Baked Peaches in an airtight container in the refrigerator for four to five days. You can also place any maple cinnamon topping you may have leftover in the refrigerator and use it to top the peaches when you reheat them.
- To reheat: Lay your Baked Peaches cut side up in a bowl or on a plate, and microwave gently for 30 seconds or longer as needed. You can also reheat your peaches in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes.
You can freeze Baked Peaches also. They will soften even more after freezing and thawing, but since fresh peaches are meant to be soft, the texture is not as off-putting as it would be with other desserts.
- To freeze: Let your Baked Peaches cool completely. Then, arrange them in a single layer in an airtight container and place in the freezer.
- To reheat from frozen: Let the Baked Peaches thaw overnight in the refrigerator. To reheat, follow the oven directions above. I suggest making a fresh batch of the maple cinnamon topping, then spooning it over the peaches. You don’t need to make a full batch of the topping—just whatever feels appropriate for the amount of peaches you are reheating.
More Favorite Peach Dessert Recipes
These Baked Peaches are a bit like having a mini peach pie of your own, without all the fuss of a crust. They are one of the best easy, healthy dessert recipes to come out of our kitchen this summer. If you try this recipe for Baked Peaches, don’t forget to comment below, and let me know how they turned out. I always love hearing from you!
- 3 fresh, very ripe peaches - halved and pitted
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup or honey
- 1 tablespoon brandy - bourbon, or rum (optional)
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar or light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- Vanilla ice cream, Greek yogurt, or heavy cream, for serving
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat a 9x9-inch or similarly sized baking dish that’s large enough to hold the peach halves in a single layer with nonstick spray. Pick a dish that's sized to where your peaches fit comfortably side by side, but there isn't too much excess room around them. Arrange peaches cut-side up in the dish.
- In a medium mixing bowl, stir together the oil, maple syrup, brandy, coconut sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt. Spoon the mixture over the peaches, filling the center and letting it run over the sides.
- Bake peaches, uncovered, until the peaches are cooked through and fork-tender, about 30 minutes. Serve warm, topped with vanilla ice cream, Greek yogurt, or a pour of heavy cream, as desired.
- TO STORE: Place your Baked Peaches in an airtight container in the refrigerator for four to five days. You can also place any maple cinnamon topping you may have leftover in the refrigerator and use it to top the peaches when you reheat them.
- TO REHEAT: Lay your Baked Peaches cut side up in a bowl or on a plate, and microwave gently for 30 seconds or longer as needed. You can also reheat your peaches in a baking dish in the oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes.
- TO MAKE VEGAN: Use maple syrup.
- TO MAKE PALEO: Omit the coconut sugar and use an extra tablespoon of honey or maple syrup.
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