Duck + Mushroom Pizza with Pears and Honey-Herbed Goat Cheese is decadent, delicious and perfect for a cozy night in.
Why You’ll Love Duck + Mushroom Pizza
This is the kind of pizza you make when you want something a little fancy, but also comforting!
Duck breast is rich, hearty and flavorful. Caramelized mushrooms bring umami to the party. Pears provide a slightly sweet, fresh texture. Honey-herbed goat cheese…because goat cheese! And then, you drizzle a little balsamic reduction over everything at the end.
Your taste buds will be singing!
Ingredients You Need for Duck + Mushroom Pizza
Grab those pantry staples: olive oil, kosher salt + black pepper. In addition, you’ll need:
- Fresh goat cheese —the soft, spreadable variety that comes in a log.
- Fresh herbs — parsley, thyme and rosemary.
- Honey — your favorite variety.
- Moulard Magret duck breast — You can find these in higher-end groceries or at your local butcher. It will be boneless, with the fat cap + skin intact.
- Mushrooms — I’ve made this with a single variety and a blend of wild mushrooms. Both great!
- Naan bread — this is my go-to for making pizza easy. They’re the perfect size for a generous single-serve pizza, or great for sharing as an appetizer.
- Seckel pears — I love these little gems when they’re in season. They hold up great when cooked. If you can’t find them, try a Bosc pear instead.
- Balsamic glaze — store-bought, or make your own reduction.
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Prepare the Honey-Herbed Goat Cheese
Start with room temperature or softened goat cheese. In a medium bowl, combine the cheese with chopped herbs and honey until well mixed. That’s it! Set this aside until it’s time to assemble the pizzas.
Sear the Duck Breast
The first time I cooked duck breast, I was a little terrified. I mean, it’s not a cheap cut of meat and what if I ruined it? Here’s the reality…it’s kind of hard to screw it up. Really!
The first thing you’re going to do is score the skin of the duck with sharp knife. Make really shallow cuts. You want to just cut through the skin and maybe a tiny bit of the fat layer, but don’t cut all the way down to the meat.
Do this diagonally in one direction, then in the opposite direction to create a cross-hatch pattern. Season all over with salt + pepper and let it rest for 15 minutes.
Now, place the duck in a cold skillet, skin side down, then place it on a burner set to medium. As soon as the skillet comes up to temp, you’ll see the duck fat begin to render. It happens pretty quick. Leave it alone for 6 to 8 minutes so the skin gets really crisp. Adjust the heat down just a bit if it appears to be getting too hot.
Flip it over and cook for an additional 4 to 5 minutes. Remove it to a cutting board and allow it to rest for 10 minutes. After rested, make thin slices across the grain.
Drain the duck fat from the skillet, returning 1 tablespoon back to the skillet.
Caramelize the Mushrooms
Put that skillet with the reserved duck fat back on the burner over medium heat. Add the mushroom and season them with salt and pepper. As they cook, they’ll release water. Allow the water to evaporate and the mushrooms to turn a golden brown on the surface.
Assemble the Duck + Mushroom Pizzas
Place the naan on sheet pans (you can line with foil or parchment for easy cleanup). Brush the surface with olive oil. Divide the duck, mushrooms, and sliced pears between the naan.
Drop dollops of the honey-herbed goat cheese over each pizza (I just use my fingers to do this), and bake in a 400°F oven for 10 minutes.
Slice the pizzas into wedges — I recommend a large, sharp knife for this — and drizzle with balsamic glaze.
Common Questions for Duck + Mushroom Pizza
That’s just my preference because I love the ease and flavor — plain, garlic, whole grain. You can bake your own pizza shells or use your favorite store-bought pizza crust or flat bread.
Yes! When you remove it from the skillet, drain it directly into a small freezer safe container. Once it cools, cover and freeze. Here are 10 ways you can use that duck fat.
Start with 1 cup of balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan. I don’t typically add any sweetener, but if you want, you can add a tablespoon of brown sugar, honey or maple syrup. Bring it to a boil over medium-high, then reduce to medium-low and simmer. You can gauge when it’s ready if it coats the back of a spoon. How far you reduce it is up to you, but keep in mind that it will thicken as it cools.
If You Like This Recipe, Check Out…
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- Steak Sliders with Caramelized Pears, Onions + Gorgonzola
Duck + Mushroom Pizza with Honey-Herbed Goat Cheese
- 4 oz goat cheese softened
- 2 tsp flat leaf parsley finely chopped
- 1 tsp fresh thyme finely chopped
- 1 tsp fresh rosemary finely chopped
- 1½ tsp honey
- 1 lb Moulard Magret duck breast boneless
- kosher salt + fresh cracked pepper
- 1 tbsp rendered duck fat reserved from searing the duck
- 8 oz mushrooms sliced
- 4 loaves naan
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 Seckel pears thinly sliced (or 1 Bosc pear)
- balsamic glaze store-bought or homemade (see notes)
- In a small bowl, combine goat cheese with all three herbs and honey until thoroughly mixed. Set aside until you're ready to assemble the pizzas.
- Prepare the duck breast by making very shallow diagonal cuts across the skin of the duck breast. Repeat in the other direction to create a cross hatch pattern. Avoid cutting all the way through the fat layer. Season with salt + pepper and let it rest for 15 minutes.
- Place the duck breast in cold skillet, skin side down. Set it on the burner over medium heat. Sear for 6 to 8 minutes on the skin side, then flip it and cook an additional 4 to 5 minutes (it will be medium rare at this point, and will ). Remove it to a plate to rest.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Reserve 1 tbsp of the duck fat in the skillet. (Drain the rest into a small freezer safe container. Allow to cool, then freeze for another use.)
- Saute the mushrooms in the duck fat over medium heat until they are golden brown, season with salt + pepper. Don't fuss with them too much while they cook. While the mushrooms are caramelizing, cut the duck breast into thin slices.
- To assemble, place naan loaves on a sheet pan and brush with olive oil. Divide the duck, mushrooms and pears between two loaves. Top with dollops of goat cheese.
- Bake for 10 min. Slice and drizzle with balsamic glaze.
Nutritional values are estimated and provided as a general guideline only.