Fresh Cherry Crisp

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Fresh cherry crisp is an incredible treat made with fresh sweet cherries cooked in a spiced sweet syrup topped with a brown sugar oatmeal crumble. It’s a delicious dessert served with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream. It’s perfect for the summertime or to serve during the holidays!

Cherry crisp with a scoop of ice cream on top.

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you. Please read the full disclosure here.

Homemade cherry crisp is such an easy and delicious cherry dessert. It’s perfect for cherry lovers and it’s a great way to use fresh fruit if you have an abundance of fresh summer cherries. 

This easy fruit dessert is made with simple ingredients like fresh cherries, brown sugar, vanilla extract, quick oats, and melted butter. 

Close up image of cherry crisp in a pie pan with a spoon.

Served with a scoop of ice cream this easy cherry crisp recipe is the perfect summer treat. 

If you love fruit crisps, check out my peach crisp and apple crisp next.

Recipe Ingredients

Fresh cherry crisp ingredient infographic.

Fresh ripe cherries – I use 5 cups or 1 ½ bags of fresh dark cherries for this recipe. 

Sugar – Cane sugar is used in the cherry pie filling and brown sugar is used to make the crumble topping.

Melted butter – to make buttery crumbles.

All-purpose flour – is used in the oatmeal topping and a little bit is used to thicken the cherry filling just a little bit. 

Baking powder and baking soda – used to puff the crumble up a bit and give it a firmer texture. 

Ground cinnamonused to give a warm delicious flavor to the cherry filling.

Salt – just a bit to help balance out the sweetness of this fruit crisp.

Vanilla extract – adds a rich depth of warm and comforting flavor to this crisp. 

Water – just a splash is used to keep the cherries from burning before they start to release their juices and create a sweet syrup. 

How to Make Homemade Cherry Crisp with Fresh Cherries

All ingredients, measurements, and instructions are in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Step one. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Cherry pitter set over a bowl with cherries in it.
Pitted cherries in a bowl.

Step two. Using a cherry pitter set over a large bowl, remove the pits from your fresh cherries. Then add them to a large skillet with sugar, salt, ground cinnamon, vanilla extract, and water. Mix to combine. 

Cherry pie filling in a pie pan.

Step three. Cook the cherry mixture for 5 – 7 minutes or until most of the juices have been released and the cherries are still firm but have started to soften. Remove from the heat then stir in the flour. Set aside while we make the topping. 

How to make the brown sugar oatmeal crisp topping

Brown sugar oat topping ingredients in a bowl.
Mixed dry ingredients for oat topping in a bowl with a spoon.

Step four. In a large mixing bowl combine all the dry ingredients –  flour, quick cooking oats, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Then add in the melted butter, mixing until large chunks form. 

Mixed oat topping in a bowl with melted butter.
Cherry pie filing topped with oat brown sugar crumble.

Step five. Pour the cherry filling into a 9 1/2-inch pie pan then top with an even layer of the brown sugar oat topping.

Step six. Place your cherry crisp into the center of the oven to bake for 20 – 25 minutes or until the cherries are tender and bubbly and the topping is golden brown on top. 

Overhead image of cherry crisp.

Step seven. Allow the crisp to cool for 10 – 15 minutes before serving warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!

Variations

Use whole wheat flour instead of all-purpose white flour

Use rolled oats instead of quick-cooking oats.

Make double the amount of the oatmeal topping if you want more oat crumbles. 

Recommended Tools

Large mixing bowl, for pitting the cherries

Medium bowl, to make the oat topping

Pie dish (9 1/2 inch), my favorite pie dish

Cherry pitter makes pitting cherries a breeze

Cherry crisp on a plate.

Pro Tips

Don’t overcook the cherry filling otherwise, the cherries will be too soft when baked in the oven. 

Place your pie dish on a sheet pan so that your cherry filling doesn’t spill over and make a mess in your oven. 

How To Store/ Reheat/ Make Ahead

Store the crisp inside the pie dish in wrapped in plastic wrap or transfer the crisp to an airtight container. Store for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.

Reheat crisp at 350 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes or until warmed through. 

You can make the cherry filling and oatmeal crumble up to 2 days in advance. Just make sure to store them separately.

Overhead image of cherry crisp with a melty scoop of ice cream on top.

Frequently Asked Questions  —

How long will fresh cherries keep in the fridge?

Fresh cherries will stay fresh for about a week. I usually just keep them in the bag they came in and they hold up just fine. 

Can you pit cherries without a cherry pitter?

Yes, it’s totally possible, but I would only recommend doing this if you need to pit just a few cherries. If you are making a pie I would suggest investing in a cherry pitter.
A few ways to do it is by pressing the thin end of a chopstick down through where the stem was until it comes out then pulling the pit out. You could slice the cherry and half and pull the pit out, or smash the cherry with the flat side of a knife like you are crushing a clove of garlic, then remove the pit. 

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Close up image of cherry crisp in a pie pan with a spoon.

Fresh Cherry Crisp

Fresh cherry crisp is an incredible treat made with fresh sweet cherries cooked in a spiced sweet syrup topped with a brown sugar oatmeal crumble. It’s a delicious dessert served with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream. It's perfect for the summertime or to serve during the holidays!
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 365kcal
Cost: $15

Equipment

Ingredients

Cherry filling

  • 5 cups fresh cherries washed and pitted
  • ½ - ¾ cup granulated sugar depending on your sweetness level
  • teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Brown sugar oat topping

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup quick-cooking oats
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter melted

Instructions 

  • Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Using a cherry pitter remove the pits from your fresh cherries. Then add them to a large skillet with sugar, salt, ground cinnamon, vanilla extract, and water. Mix to combine. 5 cups fresh cherries 1/2 - 3/4 cup granulated sugar ⅛ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1 tablespoon water 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • Cook the cherry filling for 5 - 7 minutes or until most of the juices have released and the cherries have softened but are still a bit firm. Remove from the heat then stir in the flour. Set aside while we make the topping. 
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, quick-cooking oats, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Then add in the melted butter, mixing until large chunks form. ½ cup all-purpose flour ½ cup quick-cooking oats ½ cup brown sugar ¼ teaspoon baking powder ¼ teaspoon baking soda ¼ teaspoon salt 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Pour the cherry filling into a 9 1/2-inch pie dish then top with the brown sugar oat topping, making sure to spread it out evenly. 
  • Place your cherry crisp into the center of the oven to bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until the cherries at tender and bubbly and the topping is golden brown on top. 
  • Allow the crisp to cool for 10 - 15 minutes before serving warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Enjoy!

Notes

Store the cherry crisp inside the pie dish in wrapped in plastic wrap or transfer the crisp to an airtight container. Store for up to 5 days inside the refrigerator. 
Reheat crisp at 350 degrees for 10 - 15 minutes or until warmed through. 
You can make the cherry filling and oatmeal crumble up to 2 days in advance. Just make sure to store them separately.
 

Nutrition

Calories: 365kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.5g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 225mg | Potassium: 309mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 49g | Vitamin A: 508IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 2mg

All nutrition information is automatically generated and should be only used as a rough estimate. This recipe card may contain affiliate links.

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