Cherry Cream Cheese Pie
This easy cherry cream cheese pie is a favorite among many. Made with a buttery graham cracker crust, rich cream cheese filling and sweet cherry topping, this no-bake dessert is perfect for any time of year!
Sometimes you just need a homemade dessert that is quick and easy to make ahead of time and will be enjoyed by everyone. This cream cheese pie with cherries does just that! It’s perfect for summer since it’s meant to be served cold, but also a good option for holiday meal prep.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Easy to make ahead of time. Since this recipe requires a few hours of chilling time, it’s meant to be made ahead of time!
- Only 9 ingredients. It’s easy to find the ingredients for this recipe at your local grocery store.
- Perfect for special occasions. Whether it’s Valentine’s Day with your partner, Fourth of July with friends or Thanksgiving with family, this pie will be the perfect addition to the menu.
- Versatile recipe. While cherries are the topping of choice, you can also use different canned pie fillings or toppings.
- No baking required if you use a store-bought graham cracker crust!
- Graham crackers: Use regular honey graham crackers to make the crust.
- Cream cheese: Block-style cream cheese that is full fat works best for this recipe.
- Cherry pie filling: Place a 21-ounce can of cherry pie filling in the refrigerator so it’s chilled before topping the pie. You can use regular or sour cherries.
- Sweetened condensed milk: One 14-ounce can of sweetened condensed milk adds sweetness to the filling while keeping it creamy.
- Lemon juice: To brighten the flavors, use freshly squeezed lemon juice.
Refer to the recipe card for ingredient details and measurements.
Use a different crust. You can swap out the graham crackers for Nilla wafers or Oreos, or use a store-bought, pre-made crust.
Try a different topping. Any canned pie filling will work! I suggest apple or blueberry. You could also add a drizzle of salted caramel or chocolate ganache.
How to Make Cherry Cream Cheese Pie
- Make the graham cracker crust. In a food processor, pulse graham crackers until fine crumbs form. Add sugar and melted butter and pulse until mixture resembles wet sand.
- Press graham cracker mixture into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Bake crust at 375℉ for 10 minutes or until fragrant. Set aside to cool completely.
- Beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
- Add the sweetened condensed milk and use a spatula to combine. Stir in the lemon juice, vanilla and salt.
- Transfer filling to cooled crust and spread evenly. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for at least 4 hours, but ideally overnight.
- Spoon the chilled cherry pie filling over the top of the pie right before serving. Serve cold.
Use block-style cream cheese that is full fat. This makes a huge difference in the texture of the pie. The kind from the tub has more air in it and won’t thicken properly.
Mix the filling ingredients properly. Use an electric mixer for the cream cheese and mix just until creamy (not light and fluffy). Then switch to a spatula to stir in the remaining ingredients. This helps prevent too much air from being incorporated in the mixture.
Chill the cherry pie filling. While the pie is chilling, put the can of cherries in the fridge as well. This will create a thicker topping that is the same temperature as the rest of the pie.
Serve the pie cold and wipe knife clean between cuts for clean slices.
Storage and Make Ahead Tips
Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Keep in mind that the cherry juices will bleed into the filling after a few hours so it’s best to add the topping a few hours or right before serving.
Freeze the pie for up to 3 months. After it has chilled for at least four hours, wrap the entire pie in plastic wrap and aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight before adding chilled cherry topping and serving.
Make ahead the pie and store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Keep cherry pie filling in the can in the refrigerator until ready to assemble and serve.
The pie may turn out runny if you don’t use block-style cream cheese that is full fat. You also have to chill the pie for at least 4 hours, but ideally overnight for it to truly set.
Make sure it is at room temperature before mixing. It also helps to press the cream cheese against the side of the bowl with a rubber spatula to remove lumps.
Technically, yes. However, the lemon is barely noticeable and it is used to brighten up the flavors in the rest of the pie. So I do recommend using it if you have it on hand.
If you enjoyed this recipe, try these sweet treats next!
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Get the Recipe: Cherry Cream Cheese Pie
Graham Cracker Crust
- 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs, (about 12 sheets)
- 6 Tablespoons (85 g) unsalted butter, melted
- ¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
- One 21-ounce can cherry pie filling, chilled
- 1 cup (8 ounces) block-style cream cheese, room temperature
- One 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- Preheat oven to 375℉.
- In a bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter and sugar until mixed and moist. If using whole graham cracker sheets, you can put all the ingredients in a food processor to combine.
- Transfer mixture to a 9-inch pie plate. Firmly press into the bottom and up the sides of the pie plate.
- Bake at 375℉ for 10 minutes or until fragrant and golden. Cool completely.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (or using a hand mixer), beat cream cheese until smooth and creamy.
- Switch to a rubber spatula and stir in the sweetened condensed milk. Add lemon juice, vanilla and salt, then stir just until combined (don’t over mix). Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Transfer filling to cooled graham cracker crust and spread into an even layer.
- Place plastic wrap over pie and press down gently. Chill for at least 4 hours or ideally overnight. This is a good time to make sure the cherry pie filling is refrigerated too.
- Right before serving, top with chilled cherry pie filling. Slice and serve.