Hi Bold Bakers!

Cherries are a summertime favorite. By the end of the season, ideally, your fingertips should be stained red, and you should have had your fill of the somehow sweet and somehow tart fruit to last you through fall and winter. For me, the best way to enjoy cherries is in my classic Homemade Cherry Pie.

If you’ve had a couple of cherry pies in your life, then you know this — sometimes, they aren’t that great. A less than enjoyable experience is eating an overwhelmingly sweet cherry pie made by canned pie filling. This cherry pie recipe is nothing like that.

My Homemade Cherry Pie recipe gives you a deliciously simple and fresh pie, where the fresh (or defrosted frozen) cherries are allowed to shine through with nothing more than a flaky, buttery pie crust. The secret to a perfect cherry pie is this: trust yourself! Taste your cherries. If you happen to have sour cherries, compensate by increasing the sugar by a tablespoon or two. If your cherries are sweet, again, adjust the sugar.

Oh, and almond extract. Almond extract is actually the secret ingredient. Wait. Maybe the secret ingredient is the scoop of vanilla ice cream plopped on top of a warm slice? Okay, so there are a lot of delicious secrets! 

Close up of my Cherry Pie recipe.

What Is Cherry Pie?

Cherry pie, a pie with (you guessed it!) a cherry filling, is a beloved summertime dessert in both Europe and North America. According to the American Pie Council, the first cherry pie may have been served to Queen Elizabeth I, and the first seedlings arrived in the states with the first English settlers!

For a dessert to hold up since the 1500s means it has to be delicious. 

My Homemade Cherry Pie recipe calls for fresh, or defrosted frozen, pitted cherries and a simple pie crust. The cherries are transformed into a deliciously sweet filling by adding, among other ingredients, sugar, almond extract, and lemon juice. Before baking, the pie crust is topped with an egg wash and sprinkle of sugar, which will give it a bakery-quality crunch. 

What You Need To Make Cherry Pie

A slice of classic cherry pie recipe to show texture and color.

How To Make Cherry Pie

Pies can be intimidating for bakers who have never made them before, especially fruit pies, but in just a few easy steps, you’ll have a dessert that will wow a crowd at any BBQ. Here is a quick step-by-step guide (and don’t forget to get the full recipe with measurements, on the page down below):

  1. Stir cherries, cornstarch, sugar, vanilla, almond extract, lemon juice, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
  2. Line a 9-inch pie pan with one rolled out pie crust. Spoon the cherry filling into this crust and get rid of any liquid that has collected in the bowl. Dot the filling with the diced butter.
  3. Roll out your second pie crust and place it on top of the pie. Fold the excess top crust under the bottom crust and, with your fingers, or a fork, press and seal the crusts together.
  4. Cut vent holes in the top of the crust — you can get fancy here with your design. Place your pie in the refrigerator for 20 minutes to allow it to firm up. 
  5. Brush the top of the pie with egg wash and sprinkle on sugar. (This is optional, but worth it, in my opinion!)
  6. Bake in a preheated oven at 400°F (200°C) for 20 minutes. Then, reduce the temperature to 350°F (180°C) and bake for 30-40 minutes longer, or until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling.
  7. After letting the pie cool for 3 hours, cut and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

Gemma’s Pro Chef Tips for Making Cherry Pie

  • You can use defrosted frozen cherries for this pie! BUT be sure to reduce the number of cherries to 4 cups, instead of the 4 1/2 of fresh pitted cherries. Be sure to drain the juice that is released after defrosting!
  • If you have particularly sour or tart cherries, you can use an equal amount of both sour and sweet cherries. However, you may want to increase the sugar by a tablespoon or two. 
  • Baked fruit releases a lot of liquid! Save yourself the clean up by placing a foil-lined cookie sheet on a rack below the pie to catch any escaping juice. 
  • If the edges of your crust start to over-brown before the filling is done, place a ring of aluminum foil around the edges to prevent burning.
  • Use my Homemade Pie Crust recipe!
  • You can make the filling of this pie up to 2 days in advance.

A slice of cherry pie with ice cream on top.

How To Store Homemade Cherry Pie

Leftover cherry pie can be kept in the fridge for up to 4 days. However, you can make the cherry pie filling up to 2 days in advance or freeze the filling for up to 1 month. Be sure to thaw the filling in the fridge or at room temperature before baking!

Make More Pie!

And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!

Full (and printable) recipe below!

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