Discover the delight of cherry crumble, a perfect balance of juicy, tart cherries and a sweet, crunchy topping. This easy-to-make dessert is suitable for bakers of all skill levels. It is both simple and adaptable, allowing for creative twists and personal touches. Whether it’s a special occasion or a cozy family dessert, this cherry crumble is sure to be a hit.

If you love cherries, you absolutely must try cherry dump cake, cherry delight, and the classic cherry pie!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Quick and easy prep time.
  • Fresh cherry flavor balanced with cinnamon and a crispy, buttery topping.
  • Easily customizable with different fruits or toppings.
  • Can be served warm or cold, with or without ice cream.
Cherry crumble in a round pie plate with a serving spoon resting in.

Cherry Crumble Recipe Ingredients & Substitutions

  • Cherries: The star of the dish, providing a juicy, tart flavor. Can substitute with thawed, frozen cherries if fresh are unavailable.
  • Sugars: Add sweetness to balance the tartness of the cherries. You may substitute with coconut sugar if desired. You may adjust the amount to your preferred sweetness level.
  • Cornstarch: Thickens the cherry filling. Arrowroot powder is a suitable alternative.
  • Flour: Forms the base of the crumble topping. A 1:1 gluten-free flour blend can be used if desired.
  • Butter: Provides richness and helps form the crumbly texture. A plant-based butter substitute can be used for a dairy-free option.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between a crisp and a crumble?

The main difference between crumbles and crisps is in the toppings, which result in different textures and flavors.

Crumble Topping: A crumble typically has a topping made from a mixture of flour, sugar, and butter, which is combined until it reaches a crumbly texture. This mixture is sprinkled over the fruit before baking. The result is a rich, buttery, and soft topping that, as the name suggests, crumbles easily.

Crisp Topping: A crisp, on the other hand, includes oats in the topping mixture, along with flour, sugar, and butter. The oats provide a more textured, and as the name implies, a crispier finish to the topping. Some recipes may also include nuts or spices, such as cinnamon, for additional flavor and crunch.

Both desserts are baked until the topping is golden and the fruit filling is bubbling. While crumbles and crisps are similar in concept and often use similar types of fruit fillings, the difference in the topping textures and ingredients gives each a distinct taste and mouthfeel. Crumbles tend to have a denser, cake-like topping, whereas crisps offer a more granola-like chew with a bit more crunch.

Can I double this recipe?

Yes, you can easily double this cherry crumble recipe. Here’s how:

Ingredients: Double the amount of each ingredient.
Baking Dish: Use a 9×13-inch baking dish instead of a 9×9-inch.
Oven Temperature: Keep it the same at 350°F.
Baking Time: Add an extra 10-15 minutes, then check for doneness. The crumble should be golden brown and the filling bubbling.
Mixing: Ensure all ingredients are thoroughly mixed, possibly in a larger bowl.

Can I make cherry crumble in advance?

Yes, you can prepare it a day ahead and reheat before serving.

Can I use canned cherries?

Yes, but drain them well and reduce the sugar as they’re often pre-sweetened.

Kitchen Tools & Equipment

A few key tools can make preparing cherry crumble even easier:

Cherry Crumble Variations

  • Fruit Variations: Try apples, peaches, or a mix of berries for a different twist.
  • Add-ins: Mix nuts or oats into the crumble topping for extra crunch.
  • Spice It Up: Experiment with spices like nutmeg or ginger in the filling or topping.

Seasonal Adjustments

  • Spring and Summer: Use fresh cherries when they’re in season for the best flavor.
  • Fall and Winter: Opt for frozen or canned cherries, adjusting sugar as needed.


  • Crumble too dry? Add a bit more butter to the mixture.
  • Filling too runny? Increase the cornstarch slightly next time.
  • Not browning? Increase oven temperature slightly or place under the broiler for a few minutes.

Tips From the Chef

  • Use ripe, but not overripe, cherries for the best flavor.
  • Chill the butter before making the crumble topping for a flakier texture.
  • Let the crumble cool slightly before serving to allow the filling to set.
Close up view of a serving of cherry crumble with vanilla ice cream on top, in a white serving bowl.

How to Know Cherry Crumble is Ready

  • Color: The topping should be a golden brown.
  • Texture: The crumble should be crisp to the touch.
  • Filling: Look for bubbling around the edges of the pan.
  • Aroma: A sweet, rich cherry aroma indicates it’s done.

Storage & Reheating Instructions

  • Room Temperature: Keep it covered for up to 2 days.
  • Refrigerator: Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  • Freezer: Freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before reheating.
  • Reheating: Warm in a 350°F oven until heated through, about 15 minutes.

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