Homemade Maraschino Cherries

Total Time
Prep 24 hrs
Cook 2 hrs

Blue Ribbon Preserves

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 3 lbs firm tart red cherries
  • 8 cups cold water
  • 2 tablespoons ascorbic acid, crystals
  • 1 12 cups water
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 1 tablespoon almond extract


  1. Remove pits from cherries.
  2. Combine 8 cups water and ascorbic acid.
  3. Stir until crystals are dissolved.
  4. Add cherries to the solution.
  5. Don't allow the fruit to remain more than 20 minutes.
  6. Rinse fruit; drain well.
  7. Combine 1 1/2 cup water and sugar.
  8. Bring to a boil.
  9. Stir in food coloring and add the cherries.
  10. Reduce heat; simmer for 5 minutes.
  11. Cool completely, allowing cherries to soak 24 hours.
  12. Next day, bring to a boil and then stir in almond extract.
  13. Pack hot cherries into hot jars leaving 1/2 inch head space.
  14. Shake jars to get firm pack.
  15. Bring syrup to a boil and ladle hot syrup into jars.
  16. Process in water bath for 15 minutes for 1/2 pint jars.
Most Helpful

4 5

Made these up with Bing cherries. Instead of the ascorbic acid I soaked the cherries in equal parts bottled lemon juice and water (works the same to preserve color etc). I only had 1 tbsp of food coloring but that was quite enough! The jars look nearly black until you get close. The jars are beautiful and I may try entering these in the fair this year. The flavor isn't much like store bought marachinos (which I LOVE, I could eat them by the jar) And they aren't as "crisp" either. Next time I'll try a little alum. But all and all I think these will work great in baked goods etc. I also had a lot of juice left over in the pot so I canned a couple 1/2 pints of just juice to use in smoothies and other random things lol.

5 5

So easy, so good- I actually like maraschino cherries now! Try them you'll be converted too;)