This Easy Cherry Crumble is a shortcut dessert – made with canned cherry pie filling – that is a total crowd-pleaser! Basically, you get to enjoy cherry pie – without having to do all the work required for cherry pie. Win!

cherry crumble with ice cream in a white bowl.

Juicy, sweet-tart cherry pie filling is topped with a crunchy, buttery lid and baked until bubbling and golden brown, and it is SO good! Though, I have to say, Cherry Crumble is even better when served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.

Cherry Crumble is so easy to make and super portable – perfect to bring to potlucks, BBQs, and parties. Just beware, because this might be all people request from here on out!

Table of Contents

The Story Behind the Recipe

I don’t know what it is about cherry desserts, but they’re SO good! Especially recipes with canned cherry pie filling. I admit, I go back and forth on ingredients like canned cherry pie filling because I have sort of been conditioned to use “whole foods,” and store-bought canned cherry pie filling often contains a couple of ingredients that don’t necessarily fit into that category.

cherry crumble in a white casserole dish with a wooden spoon

But canned cherry pie filling is, frankly, absolutely delicious. And I now believe in more of an “everything in moderation” mindset. Plus, it’s such an easy shortcut for when you need a fast and easy dessert. So, I say, embrace the canned pie filling! (If you’d still rather go homemade, I suggest this homemade cherry pie filling recipe which uses frozen cherries. Brilliant!)

This cherry crumble could just as easily be called a cherry crisp, but because there aren’t a ton of oats in the topping and there is more filling than the crisps I’m used to, I decided to call it a crumble.

Ingredients for cherry crumble.
cherry crumble topping ingredients.

Cherry Crumble Ingredients

The list of ingredients for this cherry crumble is really simple! Here’s what we’ve got:

For the cherry filling:

  • Cherry pie filling – The canned stuff you find in the baking section at your local grocery store. This recipe calls for two cans – lots of cherries! Yum!
  • Sugar – Plain old white granulated sugar.
  • Cornstarch – This helps thicken the filling so it stays together a bit better.
  • Lemon juice & zest – Bright lemon flavor helps to balance the sweetness of the pie filling.
  • Vanilla – Pure vanilla extract adds an extra note of flavor. You can leave this ingredient out if you like.

For the crumble topping:

  • Flour – All-purpose flour is used here, though whole wheat flour would work.
  • Rolled oats – I use thick rolled oats, not quick cooking, though I’d imagine quick oats would be fine too.
  • Brown sugar – I prefer light brown sugar in this cherry crumble.
  • Cinnamon – This perks up the flavors in the crumble and pairs so well with the cherries.
  • Salt – Helps enhance the flavors and counteract the sweetness.
  • Butter – Make sure it’s cold!

Adaptations/Variations

  • Vegan option: All you need to make this vegan is to swap out the butter for vegan butter or coconut oil.
  • Gluten-free option: Replace the flour in the topping with oat flour or a one-for-one gluten-free flour substitute.

How to Make Cherry Crumble

First, add the cherry filling ingredients to a bowl and combine. If you have a few little lumps of cornstarch, it’s okay – they’ll dissolve when you cook your cherry crumble.

Mixing the ingredients together for the filling for cherry crumble

Then, pour the cherry filling into a casserole dish.

The filling for cherry crumble is placed in the casserole dish

Mix together the crumble topping by tossing together all of the ingredients except the butter. Then, cut the butter into small cubes and distribute it into the dry ingredients with a pastry blender or your fingers.

Spread it evenly over the top of the cherry filling.

cherry crumble assembled in a white casserole dish and ready to bake.

Now, it’s time to bake!

It takes a bit to bake, but it’s worth it. Cook for nearly an hour, until the cherry filling is deliciously bubbly and the top is browned.

Baked cherry crumble

Tips for Success

  • Start with cold butter, straight from the fridge. Room-temp butter won’t develop into crumbs for the crumbly topping, resulting in a soggier topping.
  • Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipping cream. The cool, creamy counterpoint goes perfectly with the sweet cherry crisp.
cherry crumble with ice cream in a white bowl.

More Cherry Recipes

cherry crumble with a wooden spoon
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Cherry Crumble

Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Total: 1 hour 10 minutes
Author: Kare
Yield: 8
Sweet, juicy cherry pie filling covered with a golden buttery brown lid. The ultimate easy fruit dessert! Best served with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Ingredients

For the cherry filling:

  • 2 cans cherry pie filling (21 ounce cans [for a total of 42 ounces filling])
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the crumble topping:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar (packed)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine-grain salt (or table salt)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (cold; cut into cubes)

Equipment

  • 1 9-inch casserole dish

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375°F and have an 8-inch or 9-inch square or round baking pan ready.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the cherry pie filling, granulated sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and vanilla extract. Mix until well combined. If there are a few cornstarch lumps, that's okay! They'll dissolve when baking.
  • Transfer the pie filling mixture to your 8- or 9-inch baking dish, pie dish, or small casserole dish. Spread it out evenly.
  • In another mixing bowl, prepare the crumble topping. Combine the flour, rolled oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Add the cold cubed butter and use your fingers or a pastry cutter to incorporate the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is well incorporated and the consistency of coarse crumbs (the butter can be pea-sized all the way to large blueberry-sized).
  • Sprinkle the crumble topping evenly over the cherry pie filling.
  • Bake until the filling is bubbling and the topping is golden brown, 50-60 minutes.
  • Remove the cherry crumble from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes before serving. Serve warm or cold with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.

Notes

Storage:

Cool cherry crumble and cover with plastic wrap or foil. Refrigerate for up to 4 days. 

Vegan/dairy-free option:

Substitute a vegan butter or coconut oil for the butter in the topping.

Gluten-free option:

Substitute oat flour or a one-for-one GF flour substitute for the all-purpose flour in the topping. 

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