Sour Cherry Pie

This pie combines sour cherries and almond frangipane to create a rich cherry pie with perfect sweet tart balance.

Cherry Pie
Photo: Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Margret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Christina Daley
Active Time:
40 mins
Cool Time:
3 hrs
Total Time:
7 hrs 10 mins

Sour cherry season is fleeting, so be sure to make this sour cherry pie while they are around. Almond and sour cherries have complimentary flavor profiles; together, they create a delicious and elegant pie with perfect flavor balance. The frangipane along with the sour cherries give the pie a tender and custard-y filling with a pop of tartness and textures.

This recipe uses an all-butter pie crust. Use a cookie cutter to cut fun shapes out of your dough for a fun and visually appealing topping. Turbinado sugar gives the top crust a little sparkle and lightly crisp texture.

You can use fresh cherries when they are in season but if you're yearning for an off-season sour cherry pie, feel free to use canned sour cherries.



  • 2 ½ cups (about 10 5/8 ounces) all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface

  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 1 cup (about 8 ounces) cold unsalted butter, cubed

  • 4 to 6 tablespoons ice water, as needed


  • ½ cup (about 1 3/4 ounces) almond flour

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 large egg yolk

  • ¾ cup granulated sugar, divided

  • ½ teaspoon grated lime zest, plus 1 tablespoon fresh juice, divided (from 1 lime)

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided

  • ½ teaspoon almond extract, divided

  • 3 cups fresh pitted Bing cherries (about 16 ounces)

  • 1 ½ cups drained canned pitted sour cherries (from 1 [14.5-ounce] can) or fresh pitted sour cherries (about 10 ounces)

  • ¼ cup cornstarch

Additional Ingredients

  • 1 large egg, beaten

  • 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar

  • Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream


Prepare the Crust:

  1. Pulse flour, granulated sugar, and salt in a food processor until combined, 3 to 4 pulses. Add butter; pulse until mostly pea-size butter pieces remain, about 6 pulses. Add water as needed; pulse until dough comes together, about 10 pulses. Turn dough out onto a clean work surface. Divide dough in half. Shape each dough half into a round disk; tightly wrap disks individually in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until chilled, about 30 minutes.

  2. Remove dough disks from refrigerator. Unwrap 1 dough disk; roll out on a lightly floured work surface into a 12-inch round. Transfer to a 9-inch pie plate, pressing firmly into bottom and sides of pie plate; fold excess dough under edges, and crimp as desired. Place in refrigerator until ready to use. Unwrap remaining dough disk, and roll into a 12-inch round. Cut out shapes using a variety of round cookie cutter sizes. Place dough shapes on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, discarding any dough trimmings (or reserve for another use). Place in refrigerator until ready to use.

Prepare the Filling:

  1. Beat almond flour, butter, all-purpose flour, egg yolk, 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of the lime zest, 1/4 teaspoon of the salt, and 1/4 teaspoon of the almond extract in a medium bowl at medium speed with an electric mixer until pale in color and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until firm, at least 2 hours or up to 12 hours.

  2. Preheat oven to 425°F with rack in lower third position. Remove pie crust and dough shapes from refrigerator. Toss together cherries, cornstarch, 1 tablespoon of the lime juice, and remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract in a medium bowl. Spread chilled almond cream mixture evenly into pie crust, and top evenly with cherry mixture. Arrange dough shapes on top in a decorative pattern.

  3. Brush dough shapes and dough around pie edges with beaten egg, and sprinkle evenly with turbinado sugar. Place pie on an aluminum foil-lined rimmed baking sheet.

  4. Bake in preheated oven until Crust edges and top begin to brown, about 20 minutes. Without opening oven door, reduce oven temperature to 350°F; continue baking until filling is bubbly, 40 to 50 minutes, covering pie with aluminum foil after 20 minutes to prevent crust from overbrowning, if needed. Transfer pie to a wire rack; let cool completely, about 3 hours. Serve at room temperature (alternatively, cover and heat at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes) with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

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