Healthier Cream Cheese Frosting

This healthier cream cheese frosting uses a fraction of the sugar in traditional recipes and tastes really similar to cheesecake batter!

With it being carrot cake season, I thought I ought to share this amazing frosting recipe. Because carrot cake and cream cheese frosting just belong together.

Below you see it on my Healthy Carrot Cake – my family’s favorite Easter-time treat.

Frosting is hard to make healthy and have it actually taste just like regular frosting. My Paleo Chocolate Frosting is delicious, but I definitely wouldn’t call it healthy – just healthier. Like this cream cheese frosting!

If you manage not to eat it all straight from the bowl, you have to try it on these Pumpkin Cupcakes. Or these Gluten-free Chocolate Cupcakes, which are so unbelievably moist, dark and chocolaty.

Why not Greek yogurt or low-fat products?

I used to add Greek yogurt to make my frostings a little healthier, but then I realized I needed to add more sugar to make up for the extra sourness from the yogurt. So that was kind of pointless.

Looking at other healthier cream cheese frosting recipes, I noticed people using 1/3 less fat or even fat-free cream cheese. If you haven’t heard, low-fat diets can make you overweight and unhealthy, so I don’t see any point in reducing the amount of fat unless your worry is calories.

But even then, I wouldn’t want to use low-fat products, because unhealthy ingredients are often added to make up for the lack of fat. So I figured the only thing I could really do to make it a little healthier is to reduce the amount of powdered sugar.

Why not use a natural sweetener?

Quite simply, none of them work the same way in cream cheese frosting.

  • Honey – the frosting has a weird texture and a very strong honey taste. A bit too runny.
  • Maple syrup – same as above but with a strong maple flavor. It’s also too runny to spread.
  • Maple sugar – this works the best. Good texture, maple flavor (I’d only use it on something that pairs well with maple. So not lemon or orange cake, but yes to pumpkin cake) and it’s firm enough to spread. However, it’s SUPER expensive and not readily available outside of the US and Canada. And it needs to be powdered, or at least very fine. Big granules won’t dissolve nicely, which would result in a crunchy frosting.
  • Coconut sugar – better texture, but the frosting is more coconut sugar-flavored than cream cheese-flavored. Also needs to be very fine in texture.
  • Sugar subs – I’m not a big fan of these, so I haven’t tried them. I would like to try a keto version one day, but can’t recommend anything for now.

I have tried doing half liquid sweetener + half powdered sugar, but the result was still too runny to spread on top of anything.

So this is why I went with powdered sugar but massively reduced the amount.

Only 1/6th the sugar!

This popular cream cheese frosting recipe on Allrecipes calls for 8 ounces of cream cheese and 4 cups of powdered sugar. That’s kind of crazy.

My recipe calls for 12 ounces of cream cheese and 1 cup of powdered sugar. If you used 8 ounces of cream cheese, that’d be 2/3 cup of powdered sugar. That’s 1/6 the amount of sugar!

So instead of super sweet frosting with some cream cheese taste to it, you have something that’s more like cheesecake filling.

It is richer, but not overly so, and I think way more satisfying.

Also, there’s a range in the amount of butter. You only need 3 tablespoons if you want it a bit softer and you’re not planning on piping it. If you want to pipe it, then use 6 tablespoons of butter.

How much does it yield?

Because there’s so much less sugar, the yield is a lot smaller.

This recipe yields a little more than 2 cups of frosting, which is enough for 2 tablespoons (32 grams) of frosting on 16 cupcakes or for about 12 piped cupcakes.

The below pumpkin cupcakes had a nice dome to them, so it actually looks like more frosting than it really is. I tried to make the mound of frosting as small as I could.

Doing it this way yielded enough frosting for 16 piped cupcakes.

I normally don’t like cupcakes with a huge mound of piped frosting on top, because it’s just too sweet, but I didn’t have that issue with this icing. Go ahead and pile it on! 😀

It really tastes a lot like cheesecake batter before you add the eggs. I couldn’t stop eating it.

I actually had to remake this frosting because I kept going back to the fridge to sneak bites as it was firming up.

Healthier Cream Cheese Frosting – with only a fraction of the sugar used in most traditional recipes! Can be piped.

Chill time

If you’re just slathering on the frosting, you can do that immediately after making the frosting (and when your cake has completely cooled). If you want to pipe it, I recommend refrigerating it for about an hour so that it firms up a bit more.

Don’t let it chill too long before frosting your cake, though, because it gets quite firm, like a cream cheese tart filling. If that happens, just bring the frosting to room temperature and then frost.

That also means you should bring your cupcakes to room temperature before serving if you want the frosting soft. Don’t heat them up, though! The frosting would melt really quickly.

Cupcakes to slather your frosting on

That’s it! I hope you enjoy this frosting. If you make it, I’d love for you to leave a comment below and let me know what you think!

Healthier Cream Cheese Frosting

Healthier Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 0 min
  • Ready in: 10 min
  • Yield: just over 2 cups


  • 12 ounces (340 grams) cream cheese, room temperature1
  • 3-6 tablespoons (42-84 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature2
  • 1 cup (120 grams) powdered sugar (you can add more, if desired)
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. In a medium mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and butter together with an electric hand mixer at medium speed until well combined. It’s okay if it looks a little crumbly.
  2. Gradually beat in the powdered sugar until totally combined and then beat in the salt and vanilla. If it’s firm enough for your needs, frost your cake / cupcakes.
  3. If you want it firmer, refrigerate for about an hour, stirring the frosting after about 30 minutes. Don’t let it chill too long before frosting your cake, though, because it gets quite firm, like a cream cheese tart filling. If that happens, just bring it to room temperature and then frost.
  4. Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 3 days and refrigerate anything you frost with this frosting. The frosting firms up once refrigerated so if you want the softer frosting texture (rather than a cream cheese tart filling kind of texture), let the cupcakes come to room temperature before serving.


  1. If you live outside of North America and have the kind of cream cheese that’s meant for toast (that comes in a little plastic tub) rather than American style brick cream cheese, then get 450 grams of cream cheese, place it in the center of a cheesecloth, and wring out the liquid until you have 340 grams of cream cheese left.
  2. If you want to pipe this frosting, use 6 tablespoons of butter and if you just want to slather it on, use 3. Or 6 if you just want it a little firmer!
  • This recipe yields a little more than 2 cups of frosting, which is enough for 2 tablespoons (32 grams) of frosting on 16 cupcakes or for about 12 piped cupcakes.

Recipe by Texanerin Baking |

Garlic Herb Roasted Olives with Burrata.

Garlic Herb Roasted Olives with Burrata

Garlic Herb Roasted Olives with Burrata.

These Garlic Herb Roasted Olives with Burrata cheese are the easiest appetizer you can make. Herby-salty roasted olives served with warm, creamy burrata cheese and sweet honey. This is the simplest of appetizers, yet so amazingly GOOD. Serve this dish at all of your upcoming spring and summer gatherings. It’s perfect with toasted ciabatta bread…

READ: Garlic Herb Roasted Olives with Burrata.

Bacon Gruyere & Tomato Tartlets


Such a perfect little bite to eat – these little bites of loveliness are just right whether they’re a snack for hungry hoards after school or gracing the table at an afternoon tea.

Just one word of warning from me, do not eat one warm from the cooling rack, you won’t be able to stop at just the one and half will have disappeared before anyone else gets a look in!

Ingredients :


225g plain flour

100g butter, cold diced

Pinch of salt

1 egg, medium beaten

1-2 tbsps cold water


80g sweet tomato relish

200g thick cut bacon (approx. 4 rashers)

50g Gruyere cheese, grated (use a good strong cheddar if you’d prefer)

100ml single cream

1 egg, medium

Salt and pepper


Oven Temp:       180c(fan)/200c/Gas Mark 6.

Makes: 12 tartlets

Freezing:  Suitable for freezing for upto 1 month.


To make the pastry place the flour and cold diced butter in a large mixing bowl or for speed in the bowl of your food processor.


Rub the butter into the flour using your fingertips  or blitz with the processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.


Stir through the pinch of salt and make a well in the centre.

Add the beaten egg and work into the mixture until the pastry begins to come together, adding a little extra water if necessary.


Knead lightly  until smooth.


Cover with clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

While the pastry rests prepare the filling.  Grill the bacon and allow to cool.


Yes I have 5 rashers, the extra one is going on a sandwich for my lunch!

Trim away the fat and dice into small pieces.


In a jug beat together the single cream and egg and season well with salt and pepper.

Once the pastry has chilled grease the recesses of a 12 hole bun tin.

Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured worksurface to approx. 4mm in thickness.

Cut out 12 rounds using a pastry cutter and use to line each recess of the tin.


As you cut them out set them on the top of the recess and then carry on cutting out.  As the pastry relaxes it will start to shape into the hollow.


Once all 12 are cut out, press them very lightly so that they line the recesses neatly.


Add ½ teaspoon of tomato relish to the base of each pastry case.


Divide the bacon pieces and grated cheese between each.

dsc03613 tarts1

Pour the cream mixture into each case, taking care not to overfill, you just want to surround the fillings.



Bake in the oven for 20-22 minutes until golden.

Release from the tin and allow to cool on a wire rack.

Serve warm or cold.


Bacon Gruyere and Tomato Tartlets

Ruth Clemens, Baker Extraordinaire

The post Bacon Gruyere & Tomato Tartlets first appeared on Baking, Recipes and Tutorials – The Pink Whisk.

Homemade Whipped Cream

Homemade Whipped Cream is easy to make and tastes way better than store-bought. Follow simple step-by-step instructions to make stabilized whipped cream perfect for pies, tarts, crepes, cakes and so much more.

slice of bluberry pie on a plate with a dollop of whipped cream

I once worked in a restaurant that required we whip cream by hand, sometimes more than once a shift. I never understood why the chef was so adamant about hand-whipped cream, but he was. I would whine and complain about it. However, I loved working there and learned so much -including how to make sweet, light, and fluffy whipped cream.

Knowing how to make homemade whipped cream is an incredibly useful skill to have because it’s basically the perfect dessert “condiment.” Flavored with vanilla, this dreamy whipped topping is delightful served with ice cream, pie, cobbler, fresh berries, or simply with a spoon.
If you’re thinking you don’t really need a recipe for whipped cream, think again. I felt the same way until I learned how to stabilize homemade whipped cream so it stays firm, fluffy, and lasts longer. Why didn’t someone tell me this ages ago? I don’t stabilize every batch of homemade whipped cream, but if I need it to decorate/frost a dessert, stabilized whipped cream is the way to go.

What is stabilized whipped cream?

Stabilized whipped cream is just as sweet and delicious as non-stabilized whipped cream. However, stabilized whipped cream includes a secret ingredient that helps whipped cream last longer and hold its shape.

Stabilizing Whipped Cream Methods //

There are a few different techniques you can use to stabilize whipped cream so it lasts longer and its shape stays cohesive.

Whip-it: Whip-it is a packaged stabilizer. You simply sprinkle it over the cream and then whip, but it can be hard to find sometimes. It’s sometimes in the British/German foods section or available on Amazon. A reader mentioned spotting it at Wal-Mart.

Whipped Cream Stabilizer from King Arthur Flour: This is the stabilizer I’ve been using and it is the best. It doesn’t clump or have any taste. Instructions are on the package.

Cornstarch: Or you can use the cornstarch method. First, make the whipped cream and then add 1 tablespoon of cornstarch per 1 cup of cream AFTER the cream forms soft peaks.
Gelatin: There is also the gelatin method in which you add 1 teaspoon of “bloomed” gelatin to peaked whipped cream.

Ingredients & Equipment//

how to stabilize whipped cream

Whichever method you choose, the technique is pretty much the same. For this particular recipe, I used the gelatin method. The ingredients are as followed:

  • Unflavored Gelatin – is the stabilizing agent that creates density and perfect soft, fluffy peaks.
  • Cold Water – is used to “bloom” the gelatin.
  • Whipping Cream or Heavy Whipping Cream (cold) – COLD cream will result in the best results. If the cream isn’t cold enough, it can make the whipped cream fall flat.
  • Sugar – You can use powdered or granulated. Keep in mind that granulated sugar can make a slightly gritty-texture, especially if you’re making a large batch of whipped cream.
  • Vanilla – Using pure vanilla extract in sweet treats is the trick to the best tasting finished recipe. Feel free to mix and match extracts to your liking (almond, maple, orange, lemon, peppermint, etc.).

Recommended Equipment

  • Medium/large METAL Bowl – A metal bowl is recommended because it will keep the cream cold, resulting in it fluffing up easily. For the best results, chill the bowl first.
  • Electric or Stand Mixer – While you can whip cream by hand, using an electric or stand mixer will save you so much time and energy (trust me).

How to Make Whipped Cream // The Steps

What do you mean by bloomed gelatin? Gelatin needs to be heated to go from the granulated form to the liquid form.

whipped cream on angel food cupcakes with berries and powdered sugar

Step 1: Sprinkle the gelatin over cold water.

Step 2: Let the gelatin stand for a minute or so until the gelatin is absorbed by the water.

Step 3: Microwave the gelatin for about 30 seconds at high heat. The gelatin will be clear and melted. Now you can use it to stabilize your whipped cream.

Step 4: In the bowl of a mixer, beat the cream until it gets thick and starts to form peaks. Gradually make your way to high speed otherwise you will be wearing it. And so will your counters, ceiling, floors, you get the idea.

Step 5: Gradually add in your sugar. I used confectioners sugar here, but usually I am too lazy and use plain old granulated sugar.

Step 6: Add in your stabilizing agent of choice. (If you are using Whip-it though, that goes in first.)

Step 7: Flavor it however you want. I am loving vanilla bean paste right now so I am using it in everything. You use the same amount of paste as you would extract. I love seeing vanilla bean specks in everything. There is something so extravagant about vanilla beans. Maybe because they are just so expensive?

Step 8: Look at all of those gorgeous vanilla bean flecks. Oh my. When the cream holds peaks it is done. Do not over whip or it will start to curdle.

Step 9: From this point, you can either just dollop it on things, or you can be fancy and put it in a pastry bag and pipe it on things. When you stabilize the whipped cream, you get more time out of it before it starts to get watery.

Seriously, why didn’t anyone tell me about this years ago?

how to stabilize whipped cream

Tips & Tricks

  • The beauty of making whipped cream from scratch is you can keep it simple and sweet or you can flavor it up. Add citrus juice or extract, warming spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, cocoa powder, flavored liqueur, etc.
  • Do not over-whip cream. As soon as the soft, fluffy peaks form, stop whipping and promptly add a stabilizer (if you’re using Whip-it, it should be added before whipping).
  • A reader mentioned using a little bit of instant vanilla pudding powder to stabilize whipped cream. I have not personally tested that method, but I do not see why it wouldn’t work.
  • Keep everything cold. Make sure the cream is as cold as possible before whipping. If you have the extra time, chill your mixing bowl first. Whipped toppings tend to stabilize longer when the cream is kept as cold as possible before, during, and after whipping.
Peppermint Marshmallow Whipped Cream

Why is Whipped Cream So Good?

  • Learn how to make homemade whipped cream that lasts. By using a stabilizing agent, whipped cream will not get watery and will hold up for at least 24 hours to up to 2 days in the fridge.
  • Making whipped cream from scratch only seems fancy. It’s actually super quick and easy!
  • Rich, fluffy, and perfectly sweetened, this stuff rivals any store brand.
  • This stabilized whipped cream has the perfect amount of density to be used as frosting and topping on delicious baked goods.
easy key lime pie recipe topped with whipped cream and sliced with fresh limes on the side

Serving Suggestions //

A dollop of whipped cream is the perfect companion to many baked goods and desserts. Check out the following serving ideas:

How to Store //

Storing: Stabilized whipped cream won’t last more than a few hours at room temperature but it will hold up 1 to 2 days stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

Make-Ahead and Freezer Options //

Freezing: is not recommended because of the dairy.

whipped cream in glass bowl with vodka and vanilla on side

FAQ //

How do you know if you have soft peaks?

You have soft peaks when the cream has thickened enough so that soft, fluffy “peak” shapes cling to the whisk when it’s lifted before falling back into the bowl.

What will happen if you over-whip cream?

Whipping the cream past the point when the soft peaks form can result in a watery, curdled mess and you certainly do not want that.

Can you fix over-whipped cream?

You can try to fix it by adding more cream a little bit of time while whipping until the desired consistency is reached.

Is heavy cream the same as heavy whipping cream?

Not quite. Heavy cream has slightly more fat than whipping cream and will hold its shape longer. However, heavy whipping cream makes an aerated, softer texture. It is truly a matter of preference.

More Dessert Recipes //

Crackle Top Cream Puffs

Banana Cake with Vanilla Cream Frosting

Caramel Cupcakes with Caramel Icing

Tropical Fruit Tart

how to stabilize whipped cream

Whipped Cream

2 cups
Prep Time:
10 minutes
Total Time:
10 minutes

Homemade Whipped Cream is easy to make and tastes way better than store-bought. Follow simple step-by-step instructions to make stabilized whipped cream perfect for pies, tarts, crepes, cakes and so much more.


  • 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
  • 1 Tablespoon cold water
  • 1 cup cold heavy or whipping cream
  • 3 Tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. In the bowl of a mixer, beat the cream until it gets thick and starts to form peaks. Gradually make your way to high speed otherwise you will be wearing it. And so will your counters, ceiling, floors, you get the idea.
  2. Gradually add in your sugar. I used confectioners sugar here, but usually I am too lazy and use plain old granulated sugar.
  3. Add in your stabilizing agent of choice. (If you are using Whip-it though, that goes in first.)
  4. Flavor it however you want. I am loving vanilla bean paste right now so I am using it in everything.
Nutrition Information:

Yield: 6

Serving Size: 1

Amount Per Serving:

Calories: 163Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 12mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 0gSugar: 8gProtein: 1g

All information and tools presented and written within this site are intended for informational purposes only.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

The post Homemade Whipped Cream appeared first on Baked Bree.

Braided Easter Bread Recipe

This Braided Easter Bread Recipe is a tender, slightly sweet, vanilla-scented bread that is perfect to serve at a holiday brunch. Delicious with butter and jam or even as toast, it’s a homemade bread that’s destined to become an Easter tradition.

This recipe for Easter Bread creates such a tender loaf of egg bread that everyone will scramble for the last piece. It’s a spectacular addition to your holiday menu.

photo shows half of a loaf of Braided Easter Bread on a white platter


The post Braided Easter Bread Recipe appeared first on That Skinny Chick Can Bake.

Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake

Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake
I love it when I have lots of time to devote to baking up elaborate desserts, but most of the time I appreciate a baked good that comes together quickly and easily. After all – I always have time for something easy to put together, don’t you? This Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake couldn’t be easier to put together. It mixes up in one bowl and takes a bit less than an hour to bake, so you don’t have to wait long to enjoy a moist loaf cake that is bursting with lemon flavor.

The cake starts out with sugar and lemon zest. These two ingredients are whisked together to draw the lemon oils out of the zest. This gives you a more potent flavor than simply stirring zest directly into your batter. The other ingredients are added to the lemony sugar, including a generous amount of fresh lemon juice to add more citrus flavor, as well as buttermilk to tenderize and enrich the batter. I also added a splash of vanilla extract to add a hint of floral sweetness to the cake.

I often get asked how many lemons are needed for this recipe. The answer is that it depends on your lemons. At the peak of citrus season, lemons are bursting with juice and you might get away with just two large lemons. Other times, you may need four or more lemons to get as much juice as you need. When in doubt, be sure to have an extra lemon or two on hand! Fresh lemon is the key to getting the best flavor in this recipe, since you need both the juice and the zest.

After baking, the cake is topped with a lemon glaze that bumps up the citrus flavor and adds an additional bit of sweetness to each piece. You can skip the glaze if you prefer a plain cake, but it really adds a nice punch. To dress up the cake, top the glaze with a handful of yellow sprinkles or even some coarse sanding sugar for a bit of sparkle!

Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake

Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon lemon zest (1 lemon)
2 large eggs
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

1 cup powdered sugar
1 to 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper and lightly grease.
In a large bowl, combine sugar and lemon zest and beat with an electric mixer for about 1 minute, releasing the lemon oils from the zest.
Blend eggs, vegetable oil and vanilla extract into sugar mixture. Blend in buttermilk and lemon juice. Add in flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt, then whisk until batter is uniform and no streaks of dry ingredients remain. Pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, or with only a few moist crumbs attached.
Let the cake to cool in the pan for at least 15-20 minutes. Then, use the parchment paper to lift out the cake and transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely before glazing.

To make the glaze, combine glaze ingredients in a small bowl and whisk until smooth. Start with 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and gradually add in a second until the glaze has a thick, yet pourable, consistency. Pour over cooled cake.

Makes 1 cake; serves 10.

The post Quick One Bowl Lemon Loaf Cake appeared first on Baking Bites.

My New Breville Oven & an Exciting New Technique for Melting Chocolate

Smart_Oven_Air_Hero_ Hig Res.jpg

It’s been over five years since I wrote about my first Breville oven, calling it the perfectly even oven. My test was to pipe a spiral of cream puff pastry to see how it browned and it was perfectly even.

I have been so enamored of this oven, I have since purchased one as a wedding gift and another to have in my weekend home.

A few weeks ago, I discovered the latest model, the Smart Oven Air. When I learned about the extra features this newer slightly larger model offers I had to have it. And I’m totally smitten! I’ve even put it to use for a newly developed terrific technique, which I will share at the end of this posting. First: here are the new features that I most value:

  • An oven light that can be turned off or on at will (oh joy!)
  • Two oven racks
  • A dehydrating setting and mesh basket (I’ll be using this for my citrus powder)
  • A proofing setting for bread dough between 80°F/27°C and 100°F°/38°C

(I tested it and it holds true to temperature with no more than 3°F fluctuation.)

Now here is my great new discovery: Anyone who has ever tried to melt white or milk chocolate without stirring it constantly, has learned the hard way that it will seed. This is caused by the milk solids in the chocolate. And there is no way of restoring the little specks of hardened milk solids. But, if you heat the chocolate at 100°F/38°C it will melt gradually to be as smooth as silk. In short, you can place it in a container in the Breville, turn it to the proofing setting, set the temperature to 100°F/38°C, and leave it to melt on its own.

Breville BOV900BSS The Smart Oven Air, Silver

Real Deal Cherry Pie

I had the good fortune of a day off right at the beginning of sour cherry season last week (What, you don’t mark the weeks of summer using hyper-seasonal fruit as a guide? Just me?) so I put on some sunscreen and a hat, hopped in the car, and went in search of a u-pick farm. I was not disappointed to find a row of trees, heavy with fruit and not a soul in site at a farm a few hours from Brooklyn. It was a hot, hot day and the scent of the last strawberries in the field nearby filled the air as I filled up my bucket with precious sour cherries. 


When I got home with my bounty, pie was the only choice. Instead of a traditional round, I went slab style and baked it in a quarter sheet pan. If you don’t have a quarter sheet pan or two, I highly recommend picking one up. At roughly 9x13x1, they are the perfect size to bake focaccia, a few cookies, toast nuts, or roast just about anything…but back to the sour cherries.

Pitting cherries can be kind of a pain, but since sour cherries are so soft, I usually skip the pitter and just use my thumb to ease out the pits. It’s a bit of a sticky, drippy process so you can move your operation to the sink to make clean up super easy.


I like my fruit pie fillings pretty simple, especially when the fruit is so special (and hard earned). This one is just sweet enough to highlight the cherries without totally overtaking their tart bite. I also added a bit of vanilla bean paste to round out the flavor, but a little bit of extract will do the trick too.

The all butter pie crust has a bit of rye flour and brown sugar for toasty depth that is delicious with just about any fruit if sour cherries aren’t available where you live. It might be a little intimidating to roll out such a big piece of dough, but don’t you worry. To add both flakiness and structure to the dough, this recipe calls for a series of folds. The folds will make the dough both exceptionally delicious and easier to roll out and move around. Win-win. Check out the gif above to see how it’s done.


Don’t worry if your dough rips a bit when you roll it out though, you can always pinch it back together. If you have time, make your dough the say before you plan to use it. A long rest will hydrate the dough and make it easier to roll out.


I realize, it is a little unfair to share this recipe because sour cherries can be hard to get your hands on, but you still have a few more weeks to seek them out. Frozen will work in a pinch too, or substitute an equal amount of your favorite summer fruit – you will need a little less sugar for sweeter fruit.

Real Deal Cherry Pie

Makes one 1/4 sheet slab pie

This pie makes the best of one of summer’s most fleeting pleasures, sour cherries. They are only available for a few weeks in late June/early July, but they are worth the wait, and the trouble of pitting them. The crust uses a bit of rye flour which adds some nutty and creamy flavor to the crust, and pairs beautifully with fruit desserts. Use an equal amount of all purpose flour if you have rye flour on hand. This filling recipe was lightly adapted from Deb at Smitten Kitchen, who adapted from Martha Stewart, and loves sour cherries as much as I do. 

Rye Crust

340g/2 2/3 cups all purpose flour

170g/1 1/3 cups rye flour (I used Abruzzi Heirloom Rye from Anson Mills)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

10-12 tablespoons ice water

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

340g/1 1/4 cups unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon sized pieces


900g/about 6 cups pitted sour cherries

3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (165g) sugar (I used a natural cane sugar here, but granulated works too)

30g/1/4 cup cornstarch

Juice of 1/2 lemon

1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste

Pinch salt

 To finish

1 egg, for egg wash

Turbinado sugar to finish

To make the crust: Add the flours, brown sugar, and salt to a large bowl. Stir them together until combined. Add the apple cider vinegar to the ice water. Working quickly, add the butter to the flour and toss to coat. Then use your fingers or the palms of your hands to press each cube of butter into a flat sheet. Keep tossing the butter as you go to ensure that each butter piece is coated with flour. The idea is to create thin, flat shards of butter that range from about the size of a dime to about the size of a quarter. Sprinkle about 6 tablespoons of the water over the flour mixture and use your hands to mix gently, making sure to get all of the way down to the bottom of the bowl. Continue to add more water a couple of teaspoons at a time. 

You have added enough water when you can pick up a handful of the dough and squeeze it together easily without it falling apart. 

Press the dough together, then pat it into a rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds like a letter, then split it in to two pieces one slightly larger than the other, form each piece into a rectangle and wrap each piece in plastic wrap. Chill the dough for at least one hour before using, or overnight. I prefer an overnight rest if possible.

When you are ready to bake the pie, heat your oven to 400ºF.

Add the pitted cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla bean paste, and salt to a large bowl and stir gently to combine.

Roll the larger piece of the dough on a lightly floured surface into a rectangle about 11×15. Gently tuck it into a metal quarter sheet pan, letting the excess hang over the sides. Roll the other piece of dough into a rectangle about 10×14. 

Pour the cherries into the dough lined pan and top with other piece of dough. Gently fold the bottom dough up and over the top and press gently. Refrigerate the pie until the crust is firm, about 15 minutes.

While the pie chills, beat the egg with a few drops of water to make the egg wash. When the pie is nice and chilled gently brush the surface with egg wash and sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Cut a few vents in the top then bake until the crust is deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling, 45-60 minutes.

Let the pie cool on a rack before serving warm or at room temperature. Ice cream is optional, but highly suggested.