Originally published in August 2018; updated July 2020.
While I wish we could have fresh cherries always and forever, preserving them is the next best solution. Whether you are stocking up so you can enjoy these sweet summer gems in the midst of winter or you just have too many cherries to know what to do with, freezing cherries is a super easy solution that anyone can do.
Follow these simple steps and learn how to freeze cherries!
Step 1: Prep & Pitting
Lay out a piece of parchment or wax paper onto a baking sheet and flatten as much as possible. You don’t want the cherries rolling into each other while they are in the freezer, so it is important to get the surface as flat as possible. After the surface is flat, it is time to start removing the stems and pitting the cherries. Place those cherries into a bowl until you have enough to fill the tray. Once you have pitted enough cherries, start laying them out on the tray.
Can you freeze cherries with pits in them?
It is better to freeze cherries without the pits, especially if you intend to use them for baking later. (Learn how to pit cherries without a cherry pitter here.)
Step 2: Arrangement for Freezing
Place the cherries on the parchment paper (without touching one another) and place the tray into the freezer. Make sure the tray has a level section to rest in while the fruit freezes.
Step 3: Freezer Time
Freeze the cherries for about four to six hours (or overnight if you can).
Step 4: How to Store Cherries in the Freezer
After they have sat the appropriate amount of time, transfer them from the baking sheet to a freezer-safe gallon bag and voila! Frozen cherries that are ready for your enjoyment when the time is right.
Here are a few recipes to try with frozen cherries:
Frozen cherries taste delicious as a refreshing snack or you can thaw them out and use in a variety of different recipes! You can also freeze cherries for pie which allows you to enjoy one in the off season! Here are a few other recipe ideas that frozen cherries will work great in:
Cherry Frose: Toss some frozen cherries in with a bottle of your favorite Rose to get this must-try summertime drink!
Dairy Free Cherry & Apple Smoothie: This Dairy-Free Cherry & Apple Smoothie is a great way to utilize frozen cherries!
Easy Cherry Crisp: When you are the mood for a little baking, this easy Cherry Crisp is guaranteed to make your taste buds happy.
Also, don’t forget to check out our video on how to freeze cherries! And, of course, if you have a fun way to freeze cherries or other useful tips, let us know in the comments below!