Total Time
Prep 0 mins
Cook 25 mins

My grandmother used to can cherry pie filling to use all winter long. The only thing different that I do is add a little red food coloring to give it some color. You can also freeze this pie filling if you prefer. I am not listing any prep time because it depends on how fast you can pit the cherries.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Blend the sugar, salt, and tapioca together.
  2. Add almond extract and water.
  3. Cook on medium high heat until thickened and bubbly, stirring constantly.
  4. Add lemon juice and cook an additional two minutes.
  5. Add the cherries to the sauce, stirring gently to keep from breaking the cherries up.
  6. Add enough food coloring to make the mixture a bright red.
  7. Bring the mixture to a rolling boil and cook for 1 minute.
  8. Ladle the mixture into hot, sterile jars.
  9. Leave 1/2 inch headspace.
  10. Seal the jars.
  11. Process in a boiling water bath for 25 minutes.
  12. Remove from water bath and place on kitchen towels on counter top to cool.
  13. When you're sure the jar is sealed, tighten the rings.
  14. If a jar doesn't seal properly, pour the pie filling into another sterile jar.
  15. Make sure the rim is clean before putting the lid on and reprocess.
  16. Or you could pour the pie filling into a freezer container and put in your freezer.


Most Helpful

We have a sour cherry tree and I've tried tons of pie filling recipes. This is the winner so far! I might reduce the water a little...I think my type of cherries have a higher water content because all the pie filling recipes turn out a little runny. I just freeze the pie filling so its a really fast recipe for me too!

ericaj February 11, 2011

Very impressed with this recipe. Made it exactly as written and got 14 pints from it. I used 6 quarts of cherries and 1/2 t. of almond extract. Got nice and thick and had wonderful flavor! It was very easy also!

Chef AngieW June 26, 2010

I scaled it down to just over 2 pounds of fresh cherries (around 6 cups halved/pitted). I reduced the sugar by 1/3, subbed vanilla for the almond and cornstarch for the tapioca. I agree with omitting the food coloring...even though I used raw sugar making the sauce look like caramel at first, after the cherries cooked it was a beautiful dark red. And it's plenty sweet enough! Thanks a've gotta appreciate grandma's recipes.

cause4chubbyhubby June 09, 2009

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