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From scratch cherry delight is the ultimate crowd favorite dessert! Made with a perfectly fluffy whipped cream and cream cheese layer, a simple graham cracker crust, and a homemade cherry topping, you’ll wow your guests with this sweet and tart treat every time.

Close up view of a slice of cherry delight with a bite taken out.

Cream cheese, fruit, and graham crackers go together wonderfully, and we’re always on the hunt for recipes that include them! Enter: old fashioned cherry delight. It uses simple and easy-to-find ingredients, and (with a little prep work) comes together in just a few steps. This dessert is such a crowd-pleaser. Every time we bring it to a party or gathering, the dish comes back clean! Seriously — people can’t get enough of this stuff. The secret is that we make everything in this cherry dessert from scratch. Between the yummy fruit filling, the fluffy cream layer, and the crunchy graham cracker crust, the results are fresh and tasty! You’ll have to make this dish in pieces for the best results. Start with the fruit filling, then make your crumbly crust, and finally move on to the cream cheese layer. Put them all together and you have a great addition to your dessert lineup!

Is From Scratch Cherry Delight Like Cheesecake?

You can definitely think of this old fashioned cherry delight recipe as a no bake cheesecake! It’s a lot less labor-intensive and the flavors are quite similar. The addition of cherries adds a bit of fruitiness to the final cherry dessert, and the graham cracker crust is exactly like the one you may find with cheesecake. 

Cherry Filling Options:

You can of course use store bought cherry filling from a can, but we always prefer homemade! You can also work with frozen cherries, but make sure to thaw them in the fridge overnight before you get started. Another thing to mention — always start by making the cherry filling first. This will give it a chance to cool down while you make your crust and cream cheese layer! You can also make it in advance and let it sit in the fridge overnight. 

Cornstarch:

Cornstarch is an essential ingredient for the cherry dessert filling. It will ensure that it thickens up nicely and that you don’t end up with watery results. If you don’t want to use corn starch, you can replace it with:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Rice flour
  • Almond flour
  • Ground flaxseeds

Can I Make This Dessert In Individual Portions?

We love the idea of turning this recipe into individual-sized desserts. You can follow the instructions on the recipe card and use a cupcake tin instead of a baking dish. Just be careful to bake the crust for just 5-6 minutes instead of 10 minutes.

Easy-To-Make Variations:

Use this old fashioned cherry delight recipe as a base for several other dishes! You can switch up the fruit and crust to create any of the variations below:

  • Fruit: Blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, or peaches.
  • Crust: Vanilla wafers, Oreos, saltines, or pretzels (follow the instructions for Grandma’s strawberry pretzel salad to create a pretzel crust!)

Equipment Options:

You need a few pieces of special equipment for old fashioned cherry delight. Below are some easy-to-find substitutions:

  • Food processor: The easiest way to make our homemade graham cracker crust is with a food processor. If you don’t have one, you can simply put the graham crackers into a plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin. Remove the crackers and place them in a bowl to mix with the butter and sugar.
  • Standing mixer: To make the creamy layer of this dessert recipe, you can use a standing mixer or a hand mixer.
Overhead view of cherry delight dessert.

Make-Ahead Instructions:

Remember: you can always make this dish in advance. The cherry and cream cheese fillings will keep for about 2 days when stored in the fridge separately. When you’re ready to assemble, make the graham cracker crust, then add the rest of the layers. It’s best served cold!

Storage Instructions:

If you miraculously end up with leftovers, you can store them in the fridge. Make sure to cover them with plastic wrap or place them in an airtight container. This cherry dessert will keep for about 4 days. 

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious dessert recipes:

Watch the video below where Caytlin will walk you through every step of this recipe. Sometimes it helps to have a visual, and we’ve always got you covered with our cooking show. You can find the complete collection of recipes on YouTube, Facebook Watch, or our Facebook Page, or right here on our website with their corresponding recipes.

From Scratch Cherry Delight
Servings

24 bars

Close up view of a slice of cherry delight with a bite taken out.
From scratch cherry delight is the ultimate crowd favorite dessert! Made with a perfectly fluffy whipped cream and cream cheese layer, a simple graham cracker crust, and a homemade cherry topping, you’ll wow your guests with this sweet and tart treat every time.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Chill 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 40 minutes
Ingredients

Crust

  • 24 graham crackers crushed, about 3 cups worth
  • 3/4 cup butter melted
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Cream Layer

  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 16 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar divided

Cherry Topping

  • 3-4 cups cherries pitted, can use frozen (needs to be thawed)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
Instructions

Graham Cracker Crust:

  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a 9x13 baking dish.
  • In a food processor, finely chop up 24 graham crackers.
  • In a bowl combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter, and sugar. Mix all together until well combined.
  • Press into a 9x13 oven-safe dish.
  • Bake for 10 minutes until it has become a touch more golden.
  • Cool completely.

Cream Layer:

  • Beat together whipping cream, 1/2 cup sugar, and vanilla until stiff peaks form.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together softened cream cheese and 1/2 cup of sugar.
  • Mix together the whipped cream mixture and the cream cheese mixture.
  • Spread carefully across the cooled graham cracker crust, ensuring that all of the edges are sealed and there are no voids or holes. Chill for 1 hour minimum.

Cherry Topping:

  • In a saucepan combine cherries, sugar, water, lemon juice, and cornstarch. Mix until combined then place on stove over medium-high heat.
  • Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and cook, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes until the liquid thickens. Pour into a jar or bowl and cover and let chill.
  • Pour the chilled cherry topping over the cream cheese layer when ready to serve.
Notes

Nutrition

Calories: 565kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 40g | Saturated Fat: 25g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 133mg | Sodium: 422mg | Potassium: 166mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 34g | Vitamin A: 1489IU | Vitamin C: 28mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cherry Delight
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