This decadent, fresh cherry crisp recipe uses a simple homemade filling instead of canned cherry pie filling, and the results are incredible! There’s nothing quite like cherry desserts during spring and summer, and this is a perfect way to enjoy them. You won’t believe how easily this dessert comes together!
Is it just me, or has the price of cherries been inching up a bit every year? I can’t believe how much they cost at the grocery store and farmers’ market lately! Regardless, I have to get my hands on them a few times during the season for snacking and baking, and once I have them, I refuse to let a single one go to waste.
This cherry crisp is a great way to use cherries. If the price is holding you back, this recipe will also work with frozen cherries
- All-purpose flour
- Light brown sugar
- White granulated sugar
- Rolled oats
- Blanched or slivered almonds
- Unsalted butter
- Sweet cherries (sour will also work)
- Lemon juice
- Vanilla extract
- Optional: cherry liqueur
How to Make Cherry Crisp
Step 1: Combine the filling ingredients in an oven-safe pan
Place the filling ingredients in a 10 or 12-inch oven-safe skillet. I like to whisk the dry ingredients together first, but as long as you give everything a good stir in the skillet, you’ll be fine.
FYI: It doesn’t matter if you start with the filling ingredients or the crumb topping. If you mix the topping first, I recommend placing it in the refrigerator while the cherry filling cooks to keep the butter chilled.
Step 2: Cook on medium heat until juices are bubbling
This took me a little over 5 minutes. Don’t worry if the liquid seems a bit thin, because they’ll also be cooking in the oven and then thickening up as they cool.
Step 3: Combine crumb topping ingredients
Step 4: Spread topping over the filling
The filling will bubble up around the edges as it cooks, so don’t worry about being too precise.
Step 5: Bake the crisp
Bake for around 40-50 minutes, or until the topping is golden and the cherries are bubbling.
Recipe Substitutions and Variations
- I used sweet bing cherries since they’re the most readily available where I live. You can use sour cherries, but I recommend decreasing the lemon juice by half if you do.
- Rainier cherries, which can also be found around DC, are much sweeter than bing cherries and they don’t hold their texture as well in baked goods, so I recommend saving those for snacking.
- If you want to use fresh berries but don’t want to spring for cherries, this recipe would also work well with strawberries and blueberries (or a combo)!
- I love adding Kirsch (cherry liqueur) to cherry recipes for some added flavor depth. I wouldn’t run to the store and buy some just for this recipe! Use it if you have it.
I highly recommend serving this with vanilla ice cream. The creaminess of the ice cream pairs perfectly with the acidity of the cherries.
More Cherry Recipes
You can also see my full archive of cherry recipes here!
Fresh Cherry Crisp
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (6 1/2 ounces)
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1/4 cup blanched or slivered almonds, chopped
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 6 ounces unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
- 5 cups sweet cherries, stemmed and pitted (about 1 3/4 pounds when pitted)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- Optional: 1 1/2 tablespoon cherry liquor (I used Kirsch)
Optional for serving
- Vanilla ice cream
- Place an oven shelf on the center rack, then preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Prepare the topping: Combine the flour, sugars, oats, almonds, salt, and nutmeg in a small bowl, then work in butter. Cover and place in the refrigerator while preparing the filling.
- Prepare the filling: Meanwhile, in a large oven-safe skillet (10-12 inches), combine the cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla, and liqueur (if using). Cook over medium heat, stirring, until the juices are bubbling, 5 to 7 minutes.
- Scatter the topping evenly over the cherries. Bake for 40-50 minutes, until the topping is golden and the cherries are bubbling.
- Cool slightly. Serve with vanilla ice cream.
Please read my full post for additional recipe notes, tips, and serving suggestions!
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