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Blue Ribbon Prize-Worthy Easy as Cherry Pie

No-Pastry Pie that’s no-fuss and delicious

by: Paula Roy
With no pastry to fuss over, this cherry pie is super fast and really delicious

Although my family adores pie, ust about the last thing I want to struggle with when it's hot outside is rolling out pastry. With its shortbread base, gooey cherry filling and crisp crumble topping, this no-pastry tart is a trifecta of perfect flavours and textures. I like that it’s not overly sweet and is just as good a day or two after it’s been made. You can use either fresh or frozen sweet cherries to make this tart and still get the same results – just be sure to include the full amount of cornstarch if using frozen berries. This tart is delicious on its own, but also very nice with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. It’s a great way to enjoy all the best things about cherry pie without having to fuss with pastry! And honestly, its so delicious you could probably snag a ribbon at the county fair with this beauty of a dessert.

Blue Ribbon Prize-Worthy Easy as Cherry Pie |


For the crumble topping:
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup butter, softened
1/4 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup oats (regular or large flake)

For the shortbread crust:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup white sugar
3/4 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2″ pieces

For the cherry filling:
3 cups pitted cherries
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional but delicious)
1/2 cup white sugar
1 – 2 tablespoons cornstarch *
1 tsp cinnamon
* use 1 tablespoon with fresh cherries and 2 tablespoons with frozen cherries


For the crumble topping:

  In a medium bowl, cream together sugar, butter, cinnamon, and nutmeg until fluffy.  Gently mix in flour and oats just until it comes together but is still crumbly, similar to cookie dough.  Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the shortbread crust:

  Preheat the oven to 375F.

  Combine the flour and sugar in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture looks like coarse sand.  Press mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom of a 9″ springform pan.  

  Put the pan in the middle of the preheated oven. Put a baking sheet (a round pizza pan works well) on the rack below, to catch any butter that sneaks out of the pan during baking.

  Bake for 15 minutes or until the crust just is just beginning to turn light brown. Remove from the oven (don’t turn oven off).

For the cherry filling:

  While shortbread crust is baking, combine the sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon in a small bowl.

  Coarsely chop the cherries, either in a food processor or by hand. Put the cherries in a large bowl, drizzle lemon juice and almond extract on top. Stir gently to combine. Sprinkle sugar mixture over cherries, stir gently to coat cherries evenly.

  When shortbread crust has finished baking, spoon cherry mixture evenly on top of crust. With your fingers, break the chilled crumble topping into small clumps and sprinkle evenly on top of cherry layer.

  Bake for 45 – 50 minutes until topping is golden brown and cherry filling is bubbling.  Let cool in pan at least one hour before serving (refrigerate if needed to speed things up).

Serves 10 -12

Blue Ribbon Prize-Worthy Easy as Cherry Pie |

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