This is a super easy cherry cobbler that takes advantage of plump, fresh cherries, and is a guaranteed crowd pleaser! The topping is a cake-like topping that's great for any cobbler you make this summer.
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Cherry cobblers are hard to resist, no matter what your age. I can be very firm on a “no dessert for me” decision, until someone says they made cherry cobbler. In a flash, my resolve melts, and I'm totally on board for a big helping. With whipped cream AND ice cream. This seems to be particularly true in July and August when it's so hot outside…
The Difference Between Cobbler and Pie
Cobblers are much easier, for starters. Pie is made with a bottom crust and often a top crust. But with a cobbler, a biscuit or cake batter is scooped in dollops or spread over fruit, and everything bakes together in the oven. The biscuit topping, obviously, is much thicker than the cake-like batter with this recipe.
A great example of a Cherry Cobbler with a Biscuit Topping is this fancier version. It includes a little brandy in the cherry filling, and the biscuit topping wraps in shredded coconut and warming spices for an amazing dessert.
How Do You Make Cobblers From Scratch?
There are two parts to a cobbler. The fruit filling and a biscuit or cake-like topping.
The fruit filling is made with fresh fruit, simmered for no more than 10 minutes on the stove-top with some sugar, corn starch for thickening, and lemon juice to brighten and sharpen the fruit flavor. For a quick version, many people use store-bought canned pie filling.
The topping is a batter that is either spooned on top of the fruit if it's a thicker biscuit batter or spread on if it's a cake-like topping.
Everything bakes together in the oven.
Simplifying Easy Cherry Cobbler to Super-Easy
This recipe is my long version of an easy cherry cobbler. Why long? Because it includes pitting my own cherries. But there are a couple shortcuts that work fine if you're in a big rush.
- Swap in one 21-ounce can of Cherry Pie Filling for the Cherry Filling in the below recipe. There's no need to preheat it on the stove.
- Use frozen cherries that are already pitted. There's no need to halve them, but they'll give off a lot of liquid when simmered with the sugar and corn starch. A LOT. Be sure to drain a good 75% of the liquid off before pouring the cherries into the baking dish. They should look like this:
As a note, I didn't care the taste as much with frozen as compared to fresh, as they tasted overly ripe to me. But it's an option that will work that many like.
Prep Tips for Pitting Cherries
When using a knife, I've found that smashing the cherry first is messy, and the cherries lose juice on the cutting board. I prefer to slice them in half off-center, and then pop out the seed on the larger half. I graze the seed when slicing it, so it's close to halving it.
Even with a cherry pitter, I recommend slicing the cherries in half once they're pitted. This gives you a second chance to make sure you get out all the pits. Occasionally, the pitter may punch through the cherry off-center, and not quite push the pit out.
Make the Cobbler Filling ahead and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. You can also make the entire Cherry Cobbler dessert ahead. Cover and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Longer than that, and the cake may become too soggy on the bottom.
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Lactose-Free (ish) Cherry Cobbler
I swapped out the more traditional whole milk for coconut milk as I've become lactose-intolerant (much to my dismay!). The amazing thing about coconut milk is that once it bakes up in, say, a cake, all the coconut flavor disappears.
However, if you're fine with dairy and you prefer milk, just swap the dairy milk back in with the same amount. No further adjustments are needed.
The unsalted butter, also called for in the recipe, is dairy-based but contains only a very small amount of lactose. Most people who follow a lactose-free diet, like myself, can have butter without any digestive problems.
Want more vegetarian and vegan dish ideas? I can help you. I have three newsletters for different topics: 1) Weekly Recipes, 2) Vegetarian Meal Plans, and 3) Monthly Vegetarian Tips for helping you to move to a more vegetarian diet. Choose which newsletters are most relevant to your lifestyle and you'll also get my 5 SECRETS TO FUSS-FREE VEGETARIAN DINNERS.
Easy Cherry Cobbler
- Preheat the oven to 375˚
- Add the pitted and halved cherries to a medium pot over medium heat. Stir in the remaining Cherry Filling Ingredients and bring to a low simmer. Simmer for 7 – 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar and cornstarch dissolve into a liquid and thickens.
- Pour into a 9" X 11" baking dish, and spread evenly across the bottom of the dish.
- Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl.
- Whisk the egg, coconut milk and melted butter together in a small bowl or large measuring cup. Form a well in the center of the dry ingredients, and pour the wet ingredients into the well. Stir using a spatula or large metal spoon until smooth.
- Pour the batter over the fruit, spreading it evenly with a spatula.
- Turn the oven down to 350˚F, and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and a cake tester inserted into the cake-like top comes out clean.
- Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream. I use Ben & Jerry Dairy-Free Cherry Garcia, but vanilla works great too!