For a super simple but elegant appetizer, put together baked camembert with honey and add pears and pecans. Easily make it your own with different fruits and nuts.
If you're like me you are always on the lookout for an appetizer that everyone will love, but is easy to make and still impressive. The same old cheese tray just gets old, doesn't it?
Give baked camembert cheese a try
It's a different spin than baked brie because it's a heartier flavored cheese. It is by no means overpowering, but it does have an earthiness that Brie lacks.
For a full rundown on the difference between the two be sure to read Brie vs. Camembert. You may end up deciding to do a taste testing like we did.
Pears, pecans and honey make the perfect toppings
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Pears "pair" beautifully with camembert per our Flavor Bible as do nuts. We think that pears are the overlooked fruit, especially in the fall when apples take center stage, but they're equally delicious in their own unique way.
Now, don't get me wrong. We love apples too, and in fact, another flavor match made in heaven is our Baked Brie with Apples and Bacon. You could even make this recipe and that one for your taste testing.
Pears actually grow in the same region of France where camembert originated so that makes the two a heavenly pairing in our opinion. Add to that our love for our favorite nut - pecans - and you've got the ultimate cheese appetizer.
Customize to suit your fancy and pantry ingredients
Around here we are big believers in using what you have and making a recipe your own. Keeping that in mind other toppings for your Camembert might include:
- any type of jam - fig jam would be especially awesome
- other nuts like almonds or walnuts
- something else sweet like brown sugar or maple syrup
- other fruits - think cranberries, plums and more
- you could go in a savory direction with olive oil and balsamic or sherry vinegar and herbs like rosemary or thyme
FAQ's about oven baked Camembert
Yes! Absolutely you can. It is completely edible and in fact is an enhancement to the flavor of the cheese inside. However, if you prefer you can always cut the top off like we did in our Baked Brie with Sundried Tomatoes. Our favorite way to serve it is to score the top (see the photo). That way everyone easily gets what they like.
Keeping it warm is key. You could bake it in a small cast iron or heavy crockery dish and that keep it warm longer. Or you could set the dish with the cheese on a warming pad like we do in our post - Keeping Food Warm on a Buffet.
Of course, breads like small toast rounds or crackers are always good. Beyond that (and for a healthier option) use slices of some of the same fruits that are recommended for toppings. Apple and pear slices are ideal.
Yes, you can. You would need to take it out to remove the wrapper and then put it back in the box. We have actually never done that ourselves, but it is a common way to serve brie or camembert. Neither will be in a very hot oven for long, so this is a great option.
How to make baked Camembert
- We like to toast the pecans for best flavor. 8-10 minutes in a 350 degree oven is good.
- Dice about one to one and a half pears in pieces about ⅓ inch squre.
- Melt 1-2 teaspoons of butter in a small skillet over medium low heat. Add pears and ¼ teaspoon cinnamon and cooking 2-3, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
- If desired remove the top rind from a wheel of room temperature Camembert, or score with a knife in lines about ½ inch apart.
- Bake the Camembert 10-12 minutes in a preheated 250 degree oven.
- Remove from oven and top immediately with warm pears and pecans.
- Drizzle with honey.
Baked Camembert with Honey, Pears & Pecans
- 8 ounce Camembert Cheese wheel room temperature
- ¼ cup chopped pecans toasted
- 1-1½ fresh pear diced into ⅓ inch pieces
- 1-2 teaspoons butter salted or unsalted
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- Melt butter over medium low heat in small skillet. Add pears and sprinkle with cinnamon. Cook 2-3 minutes stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
- Remove top from Camembert or score with a knife in lines about ½ inch apart.
- Bake cheese in preheated 250 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.
- Remove from oven and top with warm pears, pecans and honey. Serve immediately.
- If starting with chilled Camembert you will need to add about 8 minutes to baking time.
- Toasting pecans is not necessary, but brings out the flavor of the pecans.
- If dicing pears in advance cover with water that has had 1-2 teaspoons of lemon juice added.