Classic Cherry Pie

My favorite cherry pie recipe. No frills or extras, just packed with incredible cherry flavor wrapped in a buttery flaky crust.

Growing up my grandmother made the best classic cherry pies. No frills or extra ingredients and all the cherries came from the trees on her farm that we would hand pick. When our new house had a cherry tree, a cherry pie was the first thing on my list to really research and bake. Unfortunately, once the tree was covered in ripe cherries they were so bug-eaten that I wasn’t able to get enough cherries for a pie (you need 2 pounds or about 5 cups!). Still determined to make the pie, I started doing a lot of research on the best cherries for a pie. 

all about cherries for pies:

Tart Cherries: The classic cherry pie cherry is the tart Montmorency cherry and usually found in orchards and backyards (this is the tree I have). But unless you have a tree that you beat the bugs to, they are almost impossible to find fresh. You may be able to find them fresh at farmer’s markets or local orchards at the peak of cherry season (late July) but the easiest way to get them is frozen. While frozen cherries are still wonderful in pies and what I used, these cherries are still hard to find frozen and can be on the expensive side. This becomes a frustrating pie problem since these make the best pies. Tart cherries add so much depth of flavor when combines with the sugar (about 200g or 1 cup per pie), you get that classic combination of sweet and tart. I think that these cherries are fairly easy to find in cans, but most of the pie snobs said to never use the cans, so I didn’t try them. Morello are another type of tart cherry that may be easier to find in some regions. If you find these fresh, stock up and freeze them!

Sweet Cherries: These types of cherries (Bing, Rainier, Queen Anne) are very easy to find frozen year around and fresh during cherry season. They are perfect for eating but can be somewhat one note in pies since you don’t have the tart balance. They still make a good pie, but you’ll want to add less sugar (about 100g or 1/2 cup) and possibly add twice the lemon juice to help balance out the flavor. These would also be great to combine with other tart fruits like rhubarb. 

Mix of Sweet and Tart: This is what I did for my pie. I got a 2 lb bag that was half tart and half sweet frozen cherries (and added 150g or 3/4 cups sugar). I was able to get some of that tartness in a way that I could make pies year around and I didn’t have to pit which is always a plus! I could not find full bags of tart, but hopefully there is a similar option in one of your local grocery stores since it seems to be the most affordable and easy way to get your pie fix. 

I used my favorite pie crust, The Best Buttermilk Vegan Pie Crust, to make this recipe but left out the sugar so it wouldn’t be overly sweet. I love this recipe for rolling out and creating shapes. Try and keep the dough as cold as possible when working with it to make cutting and moving the dough around much easier. 

The pie dough can be combined in a food processor or with your hands, the hand method is my favorite since it is quick and saves you the trouble of washing yet another things. Combine the cold butter and flour until you have pea sized crumbles. They don’t need to be perfect, some can be a little bigger or a little smaller. I have also seen used a cheese grater for the butter instead of cutting it into cubes to keep the butter colder with less hand contact. Once your pie is completely done, put it in the freezer or fridge for a while. The colder the dough, the flakier it will be! 

Bake your pie at 400F for 65-70 minutes and let cool for at least 3 hours so your pie can fully set. I love using cookie cutters to create the edging and playing with different styles and sizes for the lattice work. If you don’t have time to play around with designs, you can roll out the dough and put a solid piece on top and poke a few holes for the steam to escape. It will still look and taste beautiful! 

Watch my video for step by step instructions!

Happy Baking!

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Classic Cherry Pie

A vegan cherry pie that is packed with classic homemade flavor.
Servings: 12

Equipment

  • 1 - 9-10" pie plate I used a 9.5" pie plate

Ingredients

Buttermilk Pie Crust

  • 360 g (3 cups) All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup Plant-Based Butter I use Country Crock sticks
  • 1/2 cup Plant-Based Milk or Buttermilk I use Almond
  • 1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar

Cherry Pie Filling

  • 2 lbs (about 5 cups) *See notes
  • 100-200 g (1/2-1 cup) Sugar *Depends on cherry type, see notes
  • 24 g (4 Tbsp) Cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp Lemon Juice About 1 large lemon
  • 2 Tbsp Melted Plant-Butter

Instructions

Pie Crust

  • Cut the cold butter into small cubes and place into the fridge. Combine flour and salt in a large mixing bowl. Combine milk and vinegar together and set aside.
  • Add butter cubes and mix with your hands for 2-4 minutes until the consistency is small pea sized. Add milk and vinegar mixture to the flour and gently fold just until the ingredients come together. The dough will be rough. Divide into two equal sections an refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. *See notes.
  • Roll out each ball of dough about 1/4" thick, one for the bottom of the pie and place in the pie plate. Save the other rolled out dough for the top.

Pie Filling

  • Cut about 1/2 - 1/4 of your cherries in half, you can leave the rest whole. In a large bowl, combine the cherries, sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice until completely dissolved. Break up any clumps of cornstarch with your fingers.
  • Pour the cherries into the pie pan over the bottom pie crust, making sure to scrap the bowl and add all the juice. Place the top crust over the cherries in the design you like. Brush the top with 2 Tbsp. of melted butter.
  • Preheat the oven to 400F and chill your pie until the oven is preheated. One preheated, place your pie in the oven for 65-70 minutes. or until the middle crust is golden. Check your pie after 30 minutes and if your outside crust is browning too quickly, place aluminum foil over the edges of the crust.
  • Let your pie cool for at least 3 hours before eating.
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Notes

Cherry types - There are tart and sweet cherries that can be used frozen or fresh. 
Sugar amounts - For all tart cherries, use 200g or 1 cup of sugar. For all sweet cherries, use 100g or 1/2 cup sugar. For an equal combination of tart and sweet cherries, use 150g or 3/4 cup of sugar. 
Pie dough - Pie dough can be made ahead of time and refrigerated up to 2 weeks or in the freezer for 3-6 months. 

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Michelle
Michelle
2 months ago

5 stars
Looks so delicious!

Welcome!

Welcome!

Hi, I’m Jamison! This blog is mostly a collection of my favorite recipes with some home/lifestyle stories thrown in for fun. I focus on creating plant-based recipes that will please the pickiest of eaters!

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