As we hit peak cherry season, we have more cherries than we know what to do with! Perfect opportunity to make this super amazingly delicious and easy Candied Cherries Recipe. With just a couple ingredients, you’ll have delicious sweetened cherries to last you all winter long (think holiday cooking guys)!
When cherries are on sale for $1.99 a pound, it’s time to buy ALL the cherries. But when you buy all the cherries, you have to use them all too.
I spent a good amount of time Saturday morning just pitting cherries. No, I don’t have a cherry pitter. I basically cut the cherry in half around the pit, pop it in half, and dig the seed out. Is that the most efficient way? prob not. For some good tips on pitting cherries, check out this post from The Kitchn on how to pit a cherry without a cherry pitter.
So why not candy up some cherries? Like cherries aren’t already delicious enough, we simmer them in some sugar water and they become the BEST TREAT EVER.
This candied cherries recipe is just so good guys. And the syrup you get from making them….good god I am ready to pour it on everything.
What is a candied cherry?
A candied cherry is a cherry simmered in sugar water/syrup until all the natural moisture in the cherry is replaced by the syrup. This results in a very sweet “candied” cherry.
Are Maraschino cherries and candied cherries the same thing?
Yes and no. Maraschino cherries are a type of cherry from the Croatia region that are typically preserved in a liqueur made from the cherries. Candied cherries are cherries that have been simmered in syrup until all the natural moisture has been replaced by syrup. Maraschino cherries can be candied like any other cherry, and are called glace cherries when candied.
How do you make candied cherries?
You won’t even believe how easy this is. You guys are going to be candying cherries for DAYS this is so easy!
This recipe calls for just 2 cups of cherries, which results in about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of candied cherries. This recipe can be easily doubled, tripled quadrupled…whatever your heart desires.
Place your pitted cherries in a saucepan with the sugar, water and lemon juice. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for about 75 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Honestly, I usually set my timer to 15 minute increments just to remind me to stir. It’s more important to stir near the end when much of the liquid has absorbed. This is when burning is most possible.
Remove the cherries from the heat and let cool. At this point, you can store the cherries as is, or you can drain the liquid and store the cherries and liquid separately.
I prefer to drain the liquid and keep that separate. It’s delicious as a topping for ice cream, pie, cake, or used in drinks, or just dipping your fingers in.
Store the cherries and the syrup in jars in the fridge. They should last for up to one year (probably even more, but you’ll eat them before that!).
Can I substitute dried cherries for candied cherries?
You can, but I would not recommend it, depending on the recipe. If you’re making a fruit bread or muffins, or something similar, you will likely be fine substituting dried cherries. However, if you are making a topping, glaze, compote, etc., you will want the candied cherries. And for the best flavor? Use the candied cherries!
Summer fruit is just the best. Check out some of my other favorite recipes using the season’s best fruit!
Lemon Souffle with Raspberry Sauce
Easy Homemade Strawberry Shortcake
Grilled Peach Tortellini Salad with White Balsamic Vinaigrette
Strawberry Almond Galette
Meyer Lemon Creme Brulee
Grilled Fruit Skewers with Chili Lime Dressing
Did you make this candied cherries recipe? Leave a comment below and let me know how they turned out!
Make this super amazingly delicious and easy Candied Cherries Recipe with just a couple ingredients, and you'll have delicious sweetened cherries to last you all winter long.
- 2 cups pitted cherries
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- Combine all the ingredients in a 2 quart sauce pan and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat and simmer for 75 minutes, stirring periodically to make sure they don't burn. Let cool and strain the liquid from the cherries. Store the cherries and the syrup in airtight containers in the fridge for up to one year.
NOTE: you can store the cherries and syrup together, I just prefer to separate them so I can use the syrup on different things.
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