Tart Cherry Pecan Crisp

This image courtesy of Chris Cassidy Photography Inc

Tart cherry pie is one of my favorite desserts, but making and rolling out the crust is time consuming, so this easy crisp is a good substitute. The Michigan tart cherry season is very short; sometimes they are at the Market for only two weeks. When that happens, I like to buy them in bulk, pit them, and freeze them in gallon-size freezer bags. For this recipe, I first soak the cherries in ice water for three hours in the refrigerator, which helps firm them up, making pitting easier. The versatile crumble topping can be used for any lightly sweetened fruit mixture, including peaches, pears, or a mixture of berries. —Carol Mighton Haddix, customer

Makes6 servings

Preparation Time40 min

Preparation Time - Text40 minutes

Cooking Methodbaking



Total Timeunder 2 hours

OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Family Get-together

Recipe Coursedessert

Dietary Considerationegg-free, peanut free, soy free, vegetarian

Moodstressed, tired

Taste and Texturefruity, sweet

Type of Dishdessert


  • 1 quart (4 cups) tart cherries, pitted
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • ½ cup chopped pecans


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

  2. In a large bowl, combine the cherries and granulated sugar and mix well. Set aside.

  3. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt and mix well. Cut in the butter using a pastry blender (or do so quickly using your fingers) until small peasized chunks form. Stir in the pecans.

  4. Place the cherry mixture in an 8- or 9-inch-square baking pan. Place the topping mixture on top of the cherries. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the topping is browned and the filling is bubbling. Remove from the oven and let stand 20 minutes before serving.

  5. Serve warm or at room temperature.


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I love this twist on cherry pie. This is such a great dessert for those who don't want to fuss with pastry dough.


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