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5-Star Cherry Pie with fresh Bing cherries and a hint of citrus flavor has a thick and delicious filling that’s perfectly sweetened and irresistible.
A classic all-American dessert, this easy homemade cherry pie boasts a secret ingredient that absolutely shoots it over the top. As far as cherry desserts go, you simply can’t be beat this deliciously decadent pie.
Bake this fresh cherry pie recipe in a double pie crust—refrigerated or homemade—with a lattice top to allow the sweet, bubbly filling to peek through. Then serve it plain or a la mode with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
5-Star Cherry Pie
Last week, though, I couldn’t resist buying a big bag of cherries—they looked so good—and decided cherry pie was in our future. And honestly, making a cherry pie is so much EASIER than apple, even with pitting the cherries!
Well, after baking this deep dish cherry pie, I put it to the hubby taste test. What did he say?
“Man, these cherries are phenomenal!”
“I’ve never tasted a cherry pie like this one. Usually the cherries are mushy.”
“Does this pie have orange in it? There’s something different, and really very good, about it!”
Oh, and later on… “Is there any of that pie left?”
So you see, this cherry pie passed the test, and big time, too! I predict another one in our future before cherry season is over.
- Fresh sweet Bing cherries — The darker cherries are the sweetest, but avoid any that are overly ripe. I have found that the too ripe cherries don’t work as well with my cherry pitter.
- Granulated sugar — add sweetness to the filling and also used to sprinkle on top of the pie dough before baking for a lightly sweet crunch.
- Fresh lemon juice and zest — really brightens up the flavor
- Luxardo cherry juice — from a jar of candied maraschino cherries, not the ice cream sundae kind. See below for more about this special ingredient!
- Cornstarch — to thicken the filling. Some people like to use tapioca, but for this pie I prefer cornstarch for the texture.
- Unsalted butter — just one tablespoon, cut into small cubes
- Egg wash — 1 egg white + 1 tablespoon water brushed over the crust gives the crust a little shine as it bakes.
My SECRET cherry pie ingredient
Most oftend used by mixologist for fancy cocktails, Luxardo maraschino cherries are sour marasca cherries that are candied in a special cherry syrup until they are deep red and the syrup is thick and rich. Although the flavor may remind you of a liqueur, there is no alcohol in Luxardo cherries.
Adding just a couple tablespoons of the thick, rich syrup to the cherry pie recipe elevates it to 5-star status. If you like, you may also add a quarter cup of the Luxardo cherries, but I think just using the cherry juice works perfectly fine.
How to make a fresh cherry pie
STEP 1 | Pit the cherries
- Rinse the cherries under cool running water and remove the stems. Use a cherry pitter to remove the pits — this is one of the most amazing kitchen gadgets! Pitting a big bowl of cherries can be done in just a few minutes!
STEP 2 | Line the pie plate with dough
- Use either pre-made refrigerated pie dough or make homemade pie dough. You’ll need enough for a double crust pie.
- Roll out one disc of the dough and carefully transfer it to a 9-inch glass pie dish.
STEP 3 | Prep the filling
- Toss the pitted cherries with sugar, lemon juice and zest, Luxardo cherry juice, and cornstarch until well coated.
- Spoon the filling into the pie dish and dot the top with small cubes of butter.
STEP 4 | Lattice
- Unroll another refrigerated pie crust and slice it into strips.
- Carefully lay the strips on top of the pie, weaving them over and under to make the lattice.
- Lightly brush the crust with an egg wash and lightly sprinkle with sugar.
STEP 5 | Bake
- Bake the pie on a rimmed baking sheet for 20 minutes at 400 degrees, then reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue baking another 30 minutes, until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling.
- Cool the pie completely on a wire rack before serving.
Frequently asked questions
There’s a big debate on whether sweet or sour cherries are better in homemade pies. Frankly, I like them both, but for this pie with the Luxardo cherry juice, I prefer to use dark, sweet Bing cherries. On the other hand, sour cherries in this tart are delicious!
If you can’t find fresh cherries, you can use frozen for this pie, but don’t let them thaw before making the pie filling.
Some recipes use tapioca to thicken the pie, but this one is made using cornstarch. As the pie bakes and the cornstarch is heated up, the starch releases to thicken the filling. Unlike tapioca, a cornstarch filling is smooth.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, fruit pies, such as cherry, can be stored at room temperature for 1 to 2 days or can be stored for up to 7 days in the refrigerator.
- Individual Cherry Pot Pies with Flaky Pie Crust are made with canned sour cherries so this easy cherry dessert can be enjoyed year-round!
- A pretty fluted pastry shell, delicate sour cherries, and a splash of orange liqueur combine to create this delicious Sour Cherry Tart.
- Rustic Cherry Tart with sweet Bing cherries and an easy 5-minute pie dough, any novice baker can master this delicious Summer dessert.
- Mom’s Apple Pie with Granny Smith apples in a flaky crust — there’s nothing more perfect than that!
Instead of refrigerated pie crust, you can make your own pie dough ahead of time. This recipe for flaky pie crust from my Cherry Pot Pies is my favorite. You’ll need to double the recipe to make enough for the bottom crust and the lattice top crust.
5-Star Cherry Pie
- 1 box refrigerated ready-to-bake pie crust or homemade
- 4 1/2 cups fresh sweet cherries pitted
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons Luxardo cherry juice
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 large egg white + 1 tablespoon water
- extra sugar for sprinkling
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the refrigerated pie crust from the refrigerator and allow to soften as directed on the box.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl, toss together the pitted cherries, sugar, lemon juice and zest, Luxardo cherry juice, and cornstarch until well coated.
- Unroll one of the pie crust and place it in a 9-inch glass pie dish. Spoon the cherry mixture onto the crust and dot the top with small pats of the butter.
- On a lightly floured surface, unroll the second pie crust. Using a pizza cutter, cut the dough into 10 strips. Carefully lay the strips on top of the pie, weaving them over and under to make the lattice. Trim any excess and tuck the strips under the bottom crust, pressing together to flute the edges.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the egg white and water with a fork. Lightly brush the crust with the egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.
- Place the pie in the oven on top of a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Without opening the door, reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue baking another 30 to 35 minutes, until the crust is golden and the filling is bubbling. Cover the edges with a pie crust shield during the last 10 minutes of baking to prevent over browning.
- Allow the pie to cool completely on a wire rack before serving to allow the filling to set up.
About Sheila Thigpen
Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer
Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.