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Cherry Pie with Crumb Topping

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Our Cherry Pie is full of perfectly sweetened cherries topped with a crunchy brown sugar crumb topping baked in a flaky, buttery crust.

This cherry pie is one of my family’s favorites. It uses fresh, sweet cherries and a crumble topping to create an amazing pie that’s full of fruit flavor. Some of our other favorite fruit desserts are this cherry vanilla ice cream, pineapple popsicles, and pineapple sorbet.

Cherry fruit pie on a small serving dish.

Cherry Pie with Crumb Topping

I’ve been a lifelong lover of pie. Everything from coconut to blueberry and everything in between. If given the option, I’ll choose a great pie over cake any day of the week.

Last year, I shared my cherry pie with crumb topping recipe. At the time, I couldn’t locate fresh cherries, so I grabbed a bag of frozen, dark sweet cherries and cooked the filling so it would be nice and thick. Don’t get me wrong, that pie was really good but fresh fruit is what I prefer.

This year, I was able to find tons of fresh cherries, so I’m sharing the same pie only now it’s made with fresh cherries. If you absolutely loved the frozen cherry version, no worries! I’ve got it listed below. I actually think this version is a tad bit easier, since the filling isn’t cooked. They’re both really, really good, so try and them out and see which one you like better!

How to Make Cherry Pie:

  1. Start with the crumb topping. Place the flour, brown sugar, and softened butter into a food processor. Pulse until the ingredients are well combined and begin to form balls.
  2. Transfer the topping to a bowl, and place it in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. Wash,dry, and pit the cherries. I like to use a cherry pitter, and go through them one-by-one. Place the cherries in a large bowl with the granulated sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt. Stir to combine.
  4. Transfer the filling to a prepared 9-inch pie crust. Use your fingers to form the crumb topping into various sized balls. Place the topping over the filling.
  5. Bake on a foil lined baking sheet on 400°F for 45 to 55 minutes or until the top is golden brown. If the top begins to brown too quickly, cover with a foil tent.
Collage showing how to make cherry pie.

Tips and Variations:

  • Cherries: Use your favorite variety of cherries or mix and match several different varieties. Some types of cherries may be sweeter than others, so it might be necessary to adjust the sugar slightly depending on the sweetness of the cherries.
  • Crumb Topping: I love this crumb topping and have found that it bakes better if it’s cold. I make the topping first, and pop it in the refrigerator while I’m preparing the filling. The topping needs to be very cold, so the butter has a chance to firm up. This keeps it from spreading when it bakes.
  • Pits: Double check the cherries to ensure you’ve removed all the pits. I like to use a cherry pitter, but occasionally some pits are leftover. It’s good to do a quick once over just to be sure all the pits have been removed. You can even slice the cherries in half to be 100% sure.
  • Foil Baking Sheet: I highly recommend lining a large baking sheet with aluminum foil and placing the pie on it to bake. Not only is it easier to transport, but in the event that the pie spills over, it won’t make a mess in the oven.
  • Macerate the Cherries: One of the downsides to using fresh cherries is that they have a lot of natural liquid. After you’ve mixed in the sugar and cornstarch, you can let the cherries sit for a while and macerate. The sugar will pull out some of the juice, then simply discard it before transfering the filling to the pie shell. Be mindful, you’ll lose some of the sugar, cornstarch, and extracts doing it this way. You can also add just the sugar, let the cherries macerate, and add the remaining ingredients after discarding the juices. It’s up to you! I don’t macerate mine, but that can result in a very liquidy pie.
  • Cook the Filling: If you don’t want a lot of liquid in the pie and don’t want to macerate the cherries, cook down the filling a bit. It doesn’t have to be a lot, but just enough to thicken it slightly. The cherries will be less plump and softer than “off-the-stem” cherries, but it’s a great option. If you choose to cook the filling, allow it to cool for 20 to 30 minutes before pouring it into the pie shell.
Slice of cherry crumble pie on a plate.

Storage Recommendations:

Room Temperature: The pie should cool at room temperature for about 1 hour before being transferred to the refrigerator.

Refrigerator: Cover the pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

Freezer: I tend to not freeze pies, but that’s just a preference. This pie can be frozen (take extra care if it’s especially liquidy and try to drain away some of the liquid). Wrap it in several layers of plastic wrap, then place it in a large, Ziploc bag. It will stay good for about 2 months. Thaw the pie by placing it in the refrigerator for 24 hours.

Other dessert recipes that you may love:

Don’t forget to check out our Cherry Pie web story!

Slice of cherry pie on a plate.

Cherry Pie with Crumb Topping

Yield: 1 (9-inch) Pie
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Cool Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 25 minutes

Our Cherry Pie is full of perfectly sweetened cherries topped with a crunchy brown sugar crumb topping baked in a flaky, buttery crust.

Ingredients

Crumb Topping:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup brown sugar

Filling:

  • 2 pounds fresh cherries, pitted (about 5-6 cups)
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅓ cup cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ⅛ teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt

Instructions

Crumb Topping

  1. Add flour, brown sugar, and softened butter to a food processor. Pulse until the ingredients are combined and begin to form balls.
  2. Transfer the mixture to a bowl, and place in the refrigerator until ready to use.

Filling

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F, and line a large baking sheet with foil.
  2. Prepare a 9-inch homemade or store bought pie crust, and place it into a pie dish. Refrigerate the pie shell in its dish until ready to use.
  3. Wash, dry, and pit the cherries. Place them in a large bowl with granulated sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla extract, almond extract, and salt. Stir to combine.
  4. Optional: Cook down or macerate the cherries to thicken the filling. See the post for additional information.
  5. Transfer the filling to a prepared 9-inch pie shell. Use your hands to form the crumb topping into small balls of various sizes and dot them over the top of the filling.
  6. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until the filling is bubbly and the topping is golden brown. If the top begins to brown too quickly, cover it with a foil tent.
  7. Allow the pie to cool at room temperature for about 1 hour before serving.
  8. See post for storage recommendations.

Notes

*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of 1 slice (⅛ of the pie). Actual calories will vary.

*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.

*This post has been recently updated and the filling for pie has changed. I've listed the filling for the old recipe in the post under the heading "How to make cherry pie using frozen cherries?"

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 419Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 139mgCarbohydrates: 65gFiber: 3gSugar: 45gProtein: 3g

*The calories are an estimate and are based on the ingredients and serving size listed. The calories can vary depending on the brand of product purchased.

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