This fruit compote recipe makes one of two things possible. Dress up those Ego Waffles or toaster pancakes -OR- put a the finishing touch on those homemade buttermilk pancakes, stovetop oatmeal, or custard soaked French toast. Any leftovers will hold for several days in the fridge if kept in an airtight container. Or make 2-3 days in advance if you’re prepping for an event like a ladies brunch, holiday dessert, or special birthday breakfast! In my experience, fruit compotes hold well for at least one week in the fridge.
When I said no fuss, I meant no fuss.
Just a handful of ingredients and about 15 minutes of time. Fresh or frozen fruit. And any type of sugar you so choose to use. Keep it simple, or add some dimension by adding fresh herbs and spices, such as black pepper. And even though I’ve geared this fruit compote recipe towards breakfast time, you can slather on shortcakes, angle food cake, toasted bread, or over ice cream!
12 servings per container
- Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
- Total Fat .7g 2%
- Saturated Fat .1g 1%
- Sodium 8mg 1%
- Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
- Potassium 518mg 15%
- Total Carbohydrate 65.3g 22%
- Dietary Fiber 7.6g 31%
- Sugars 52.9g
- Protein 2.5g 5%
- Calcium 10%
- Iron 9%
* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
What Even is a Compote?
Whole fruit and/or nuts that have been cooked in syrup. That’s it. While some recipes call for making a flavored syrup in advance and then simmering whole fruits (fresh, frozen, canned or dried), I’ve cut that corner for simplicity purposes. And the result is equally phenomenal. One you can enjoy year round as the seasons, and therefore produce, change accordingly.
This dish can be served hot, warm, or cold. Typically the fruit is not blended or mashed, but allowed to breakdown naturally which adds a surprising level of dimension. It can be served as a standalone dish or as a side. Personally, I enjoy this fruit compote recipe as a topping. It’s hearty enough to sit on top yet saucy enough to soak though. Kinda perfect if you ask me. And because I’m ALWAYS here for a good rabbit hole, you can learn all about the history of fruit compote- here. It involves the 17th century, the French, and sour cream.
We’ll move along to the important bits of creating a custom fruit compote of your own. Because I think my fruit compote recipe is the jam, I’m constantly changing it up with season fruits and invite you to do the same. Which you can easily do by simply picking 1 to 2 items from each of the below categories!
You will never ever regret sourcing a local fruit that’s in season. While canned, dried, and frozen fruit work great… there’s nothing like eating a fresh peach in a parking lot off some random highway in Georgia in June. Nothing like a basket of fresh cherries from a stand in Wisconsin in July. Nothing like a bucket of Arkansas strawberries from the market in April. And nothing like bags of fresh figs from a neighbors backyard. You can bet my compotes reflect the time of year. Because it all comes and goes so quickly.
Don’t have fresh? I use frozen ALL the time. Like these figs from a neighbors tree from last season. No need to unthaw. Just dump and simmer!
On the mashing and blending note… I simply use the back of a wooden spoon to gently flatten any larger bits of fruit that are not softening or are too large for my preference. I like the chunks! It give texture and chew that sits on top instead of the saucy drizzle that soaks into things. I am NOT team soggy carbs LOL
*Below, I’m providing you the EXACT scale I use to weigh fruits for compote, flour for bread, and sourdough starter for crackers!
When I tell you this revolutionized my baking... I honestly never considered myself a baker because everything came out so subpar. I thought I didn't "get that gene". Apparently, the gene is a proper food scale! I've had this for just over a year and I now confidently say I BAKE. And for the coffee connoisseur, this guy also happens to be perfect for brewing at home!
A key ingredient needed to successfully break down and liquify your fruit. You don’t need much here, and can honestly use a wide variety of sweeteners. This can be achieved by adding white sugar, cane sugar, maple syrup, honey, agave, orange juice, pomegranate juice, etc etc. A little goes a long way- make sure to check recipe for further details.
Your intended use will also determine how much sweetener to add. Since my compotes are normally served over carbs that aren’t naturally sweet (think toast, pancakes, oatmeal, goat cheese, Brie etc) I choose to be heavier handed on the sugar. However, if I was prepping for ice cream or pie or pavlova (meringue) I’d cut way back as those desserts are plenty sweet on their own!
If I wasn’t going to use sugar, THIS would be my go to. Always stocked in the house.
THIS is the sweetner I use for margaritas, dressings, sangria, fizzes and iced coffees at home. A little goes a looooooong way.
I’d dare to say that most folks have a few dried spices on hand. Such as ground cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and cloves tend to be fairly universal in the baking world. While dried spices are a cinch to keep on hand, there’s nothing quite like a sliver of fresh ginger or crushed cardamom pods. They’re not always something I have on hand, however, so most of my compotes use ground spices. After all this fruit compote recipe is supposed to be no fuss. So roll with it. You go this!
Think lime, lemon, apple cider vinegar and the likes. Not only does acid help break down tough fibers in your food, it also brightens and enhances while helping to balance flavor. Just a squeeze will do! If you are planning on simmering your fruit and sugar with juice, do not use water as recommended in my recipe. Too much liquid is not a friend of the compote. Remember, fresh and frozen fruit will release their own liquids while cooking!
You can choose to add a bit of zest instead of juice, or squeeze a bit on top once plated. Both are great ways to add a bit of complex flavor to an otherwise straightforward dish.
Heartier nuts like walnuts, pecans or almonds seem to hold up best. I highly recommend experimenting with any of your favorite nuts! It would be almost impossible to go wrong here. As long as you enjoy what you’re putting in, you’ll enjoy what comes out. A general rule of thumb I live and cook by. Rarely does it fail me. This can also be applied after serving as a topping to your topping. Which is what I’ve done down below! Just make sure they are bite sized. Nuts won’t break down like fruit in 10 mins. And I’m not here to ruin anyones breakfast with a cracked tooth.
Have Fun Creating Your Own Variations
I mentioned earlier that this recipe is easy to adapt to the seasons. Or desires. There are a few key components involved in creating a custom, personalized compote. Ranging from super simple to complex and delicate. Something you throw together with random leftovers from the freezer, OR something that you source specific ingredients for. Honestly that’s part of the beautiful of this fruit compote recipe. Make it simple. Make it fancy. Either way, it’s homemade and OH so delicious!
Let Me Know!
Now, it’s just time to create! What type of compote do you think you’ll make first? You feeling this for breakfast, appetizer or dessert? I’d absolutely love to hear what you come up with, so make sure to come back and share.
While you’re at it, Save to Pinterest or Share on Facebook. Because sharing is caring, and I’ll need all the support I can get to keep on growing this dream of mine. A place where practical is better than perfect and simple, delicious food is a lifestyle. A place where together, we can begin filling homes and tables with joy.
Hugs, because handshakes are awkward~
I had no idea what to do with the 2 massive bags of home-grown whole figs in my freezer. I didn’t want to “can” or have to use any pectin….then along came this recipe.
I chucked the frozen figs in a pot, let them thaw a bit (and then skipped adding the 2TBS water since they sweated so much), and followed the recipe. It came out fantastic! I did also add (and would recommend) a dash of cardamom. Next batch I may adding nuts, orange zest, or fresh ginger as suggested. Maybe even currants!
Thank you for such a simple, quick and DELICIOUS recipe for how to deal with my vats of frozen figs! I also appreciate that you offer options for modification, and make suggestions of how to serve and enjoy the compote when finished. You saved the day, and I will definitely make this again!
I’m thrilled that you chose my recipe to use up those frozen figs! So glad you enjoyed, and love that you added cardamom. What a wonderful addition, and something I’ll look to do myself next time. In fact… I’ve got one last bag of frozen figs from this past season I still need to use up!!
Appreciate your kind feedback and review 🙂 Cheers to figs, compotes, and new recipes XO Susanna
Your notes are always so practical and helpful. Thanks for adding those.
The notes/info part is my favorite part to write 🙂 So happy you find them helpful!