Cherry Basil Orzo Pasta


PREP TIME: 8 to 10 mins | COOK TIME: 8 to 10 mins


  • 1 cup frozen Montmorency tart cherries

  • 1/2 cup dried dates, pitted and chopped

  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced

  • 1/2 pound orzo pasta

  • 4 ounces feta cheese

  • 1/4 cup fresh basil chiffonade

  • Salt to taste


Makes 6 to 8 bowls of pasta


  1. Mix together Montmorency tart cherries, dates and garlic in a small sauce pan on low; heat until dates are rehydrated.

  2. Meanwhile, boil orzo pasta in salted water for 8 to 10 minutes.

  3. Drain pasta, stir in tart cherry mixture and feta cheese.

  4. Season with salt and garnish with fresh basil.


Cherry Glazed Chicken


PREP TIME: 10 mins | COOK TIME: 45 to 50 mins


  • 1 16-ounce can Montmorency tart cherries, unsweetened

  • 1 broiler-fryer chicken, cut up

  • 1/2 cup milk

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • Salt and pepper, to taste (used 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper)

  • 1 to 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar

  • 1/4 granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon prepared yellow mustard


Makes 6 servings


  1. Rinse chicken; pat dry with paper towels. Pour milk into a shallow container.

  2. Combine flour, thyme, salt and pepper. Dip chicken first in milk, then in flour mixture; coat evenly.

  3. Heat oil in a large skillet. Add chicken; brown on all sides.

  4. Put chicken in a 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Bake covered with aluminum foil, in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 30 minutes.

  5. Meanwhile, drain Montmorency tart cherries, reserving 1/2-cup of Montmorency tart cherry juice. Combine Montmorency tart cherry juice, brown sugar and granulated sugar in a small saucepan; mix well.

  6. Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat. Add mustard; mix well. Cook 5 minutes, or until sauce is slightly thickened. Stir in Montmorency tart cherries.

  7. After chicken has cooked 30 minutes, remove from oven and uncover. Spoon hot tart cherry mixture over chicken.

  8. Bake, uncovered, 15 to 20 minutes, or until chicken is tender. Serve immediately.


Pork Chops with Cherry Sauce


PREP TIME: 5 mins | COOK TIME: 15 mins


  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup dried Montmorency tart cherries

  • 2 boneless pork loin chops, about 1-inch thick

  • Salt and black pepper, freshly ground, to taste (used 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon pepper)

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

  • 1/2 cup onion, chopped

  • 1 cup reduced sodium chicken broth

  • 2 tablespoons orange marmalade

  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

  • Dried red pepper flakes, to taste (used 1/8 teaspoon pepper)


Makes 2 entreés


  1. Season pork chops with salt and pepper.

  2. Heat oil in a large skillet on high heat. Add pork chops; brown well, about 3 minutes per side. Remove to plate.

  3. Add onions to skillet; cook until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Add chicken broth, dried Montmorency tart cherries, orange marmalade, vinegar and red pepper flakes. Bring to a boil; boil rapidly on medium heat until broth is reduced by half. Reduce heat.

  4. Add pork chops to pan to heat through, 5 to 6 minutes. (Cook pork chops longer on lower heat if pork chops are very thick or have a bone in them.) Internal temperature of the pork should be about 160 degrees F.

  5. Add chicken broth or water, if needed.

  6. Serve pork chops with cherry sauce spooned over them.


Wholesome Granola Bars


PREP TIME: 15 to 20 mins | COOK TIME: 20 to 25 mins


  • 3/4 cup dried Montmorency tart cherries

  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat granola (store-bought)

  • 1 cup quick oats, uncooked

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour

  • 1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 2 egg whites, slightly beaten

  • 1/3 cup honey

  • 1/4 cup (firmly packed) brown sugar

  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil


Makes 8 to 10 granola bars


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  2. Line bottom and sides of an 8 x 8 x 2-inch baking pan with foil. Spray the foil lightly with nonstick spray. Set aside.

  3. Combine dried Montmorency tart cherries, granola, oats, flour, almonds and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl.

  4. Stir together egg whites, honey, brown sugar and oil. Add to granola mixture, stirring until all is coated. Press mixture evenly into the prepared pan.

  5. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until bars are light brown.

  6. Let cool completely (about 10 minutes) on a wire rack. Use foil to remove from pan. Cut into bars.


Cherry Cacao Nib Snack Bars


PREP TIME: 45 mins | TOTAL TIME: 45 mins


  • 1 cup roasted unsalted almonds

  • 3/4 cup dried tart cherries, divided

  • 12 Medjool dates

  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 pinch kosher salt

  • 3 tablespoons cacao nibs


  1. Place the almonds in the bowl of a food processor and process until fully chopped.

  2. Add ½ cup dried cherries, 12 Medjool dates, 1 tablespoon cocoa powder, ½ teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 pinch kosher salt. Process until smooth. Add the remaining ¼ cup cherries and cacao nibs and gently pulse a few times to incorporate.

  3. Turn out the mixture onto a baking sheet and press it into a flat layer of the desired thickness. Roll a rolling pin over the top to smooth it to a uniform thickness. Place the baking sheet in the freezer or refrigerator for 30 minutes to harden, then slice into bars of the desired size. Store in a sealed container in the pantry or refrigerator.


Recipe courtesy of Sonja Overhiser,

Cherry-N-Cream Frozen Pops

Opt for a cherry pop for a refreshing warm-weather treat. 



  • (1) 8-ounce container low fat vanilla-flavored yogurt 

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped, frozen tart cherries 

  • 1/4 cup 100% tart cherry juice 

  • 1 tablespoon honey 

  • (6) 2-ounce frozen pop molds with handles


Makes 5 to 6 frozen pops.


  1. Stir together yogurt, cherries, juice and honey in small bowl. For easier chopping, chop cherries while still frozen. 

  2. Spoon yogurt mixture into 2-ounce freezer pop molds and insert handles. (If using paper cups, spoon mixture into cups and cover each with foil. 

  3. Cut a small hole in center of each foil top and insert a pop stick.) Freeze about 6 hours or until firm. 

Nutrition Facts

Per serving: 76 calories, 1 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat, 15 g carbohydrate, 4 mg cholesterol, 2 g protein, 0 g fiber, 31 mg sodium; Daily Values: 6% vitamin A, 0% vitamin C, 8% calcium, 0% iron.


Cherry-Berry Smoothie



  •  3 cups frozen pitted dark sweet cherries (unsweetened)

  •  3 cups frozen whole strawberries (unsweetened)

  •  3 cups cran-cherry juice


  1. In a blender, puree half the frozen pitted dark sweet cherries, half the frozen strawberries and half the cran-cherry juice, stirring as needed, until smooth.

  2. Pour into two serving glasses.

  3. Repeat with remaining ingredients for two more servings. 

Replace frozen cherries with 2 cans pitted dark sweet cherries, well drained, and 6 ice cubes. Yield: 4 (12-ounce) servings

Nutritional Information

266 calories, 2 g protein, 66 g carb, 3.5 g fiber, 0 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 2 mg iron, 8 mg sodium, 3% cal from protein, 96% cal from carbs, 2% cal from fat

Sweet Cherry Blondies



  • 1 1/3 cups flour

  • 1 1/3 cups packed light brown sugar

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

  • 1 cup pitted and halved Northwest fresh sweet cherries

  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)


Makes 16 servings


  1. Preheat oven to 325 F.

  2. Combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, oil, eggs and vanilla; mix on low speed of electric mixer until blended.

  3. Mix 1 minute on medium speed. Batter will be thick.

  4. Spread half of batter in oiled and floured 9-inch baking pan.

  5. Toss cherries in small amount of flour.

  6. Scatter cherries over batter; spread remaining batter over cherries.

  7. Sprinkle pecans over top.

  8. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean.

  9. Cool on rack and cut into 16 pieces.

Chocolate Chip Variation: Sprinkle 1/2 cup chocolate chips over batter with pecans.

Nutritional Information

Per Serving: 207 Calories, 2.2 g protein, 28.2 g carbohydrate, 9.9 g fat (42% Cal. from fat), 27 mg cholesterol, 0.6 g fiber, 88 mg sodium.

Cherry Bonbon Cookies



  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa

  • 1/2 cup soft butter or margarine

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1-1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 large egg 

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons cherry flavoring (optional)

  • 48 sweet fresh cherries, pitted

  • 1 package (6oz.) semi-sweet chocolate chips

  • 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk


Makes 48 cookies


  1. Combine flour and cocoa; set aside.

  2. With electric mixer, beat butter, sugar and baking powder until blended.

  3. Add egg, vanilla and cherry flavoring; beat until well combined.

  4. Gradually beat in flour mixture.

  5. Shape dough into 1-inch balls; place 1/2 -inch apart on ungreased baking sheet.

  6. Press down center of each ball with thumb to create a small hollow; fill each center with a cherry.

  7. Heat oven to 350F.

  8. In small pan over low heat, combine chocolate chips and condensed milk; heat until chocolate is melted.

  9. Spoon about 1 teaspoon chocolate mixture over each cherry, spreading to cover cherry.

  10. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until done.

  11. Remove to wire racks and cool.

Quick Cherry Crumb Cake



  • 2 cups buttermilk baking mix

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel

  • 3/4 cup diary sour cream 

  • 2 tablespoons melted butter or margarine

  • 1 egg, beaten

  • 1 1/2 cups pitted and halved fresh Northwest sweet cherries, divided

  • 1/2 cup flour

  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 2 tablespoons butter or margarine (softened)

  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)


Makes 9 servings


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  2. Mix baking mix, sugar and lemon peel.

  3. Combine sour cream, melted butter and egg; mix well.

  4. Add sour cream mixture to baking mix mixture and stir only until moistened.

  5. Fold in 1/2 cup cherries.

  6. Pour into oiled and floured 8-inch square baking pan.

  7. Sprinkle remaining cherries and Streusel Topping over batter.

  8. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean. 

Cherry Streusel Topping: 

  1. Combine 1/2 cup flour, 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

  2. Mix in 3 tablespoons softened butter or margarine with a fork.

  3. Add 1/4 cup chopped walnuts and mix well.

  4. Makes about 1 cup.

Nutritional Information

Per Serving: 341 Cal., 5.1 g pro., 16.6 g fat (44% Cal. from fat), 42.8 g carb., 52 mg chol., 1.6 g fiber. 488 mg sodium.

Bing Cherry Thumbprint Cookies


Thumbprint cookies are just what the name implies, a cookie with a thumbprint in the middle which is filled will delicious homemade cherry filling.


Bing Cherry Jam:

  • 1 pound fresh California Bing cherries, washed and pitted (about 2 cups)

  • 1/8 cup water

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

  • 1 cup sugar

Cookie Dough:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

  • ¾ cup sugar

  • 1 egg

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla or almond extract

  • 2 cups flour


Makes 2 to 3 dozen cookies


Preheat oven to 350◦ F.

For jam: Combine cherries and water in a small pot and simmer over low heat until fruit is tender, about 10 minutes. Add lemon juice, zest, and sugar and stir gently until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil and boil rapidly for 10 minutes, stirring on occasion, until thick and syrupy. Pour into a shallow bowl and cool, or alternately refrigerate until jam is set. This can be made a day ahead.

For cookies: Beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla or almond extract. Add flour and mix until just combined. Form dough into 1-inch balls and arrange on an ungreased cookie sheet. Using your thumb, make an impression in the center of each ball. Fill each cookie with cherry jam making sure each has a cherry in the center. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until the dough is set and lightly browned on bottom. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.

Note: For more uniform cookies, refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes before forming into balls.

Nutritional Information (per cookie)

Calories-140; protein-1.25 grams; carbohydrates.-19.68 grams; fat-6.48grams; saturated fat-3.91 grams; mono-saturated fat-1.87 grams


Cherry Lemon Cooler



  • 3 cups water

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1 cup Northwest fresh sweet cherries, halved and pitted

  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice, refrigerated

  • Crushed ice

  • 1 bottle (1 liter) club soda or seltzer

  • Northwest fresh sweet cherries with stems

  • 4 long stems fresh mint


Makes 4 servings


  1. Combine water and sugar in small saucepan; add halved cherries.

  2. Bring mixture to boil; reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.

  3. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.

  4. Strain syrup into container with tight fitting lid; discard cherries.

  5. Refrigerate syrup until cold.

  6. Fill a tall 12 to 16-ounce glass with ice.

  7. Pour 1/4 cup lemon juice and 1/3 cup syrup over ice and top with club soda.

  8. Garnish with cherries and mint. Makes 4 servings.

Tip: Leftover syrup may be stored, refrigerated, up to one week.

Nutrition Information

Per Serving: 140 Cal., 0 g pro., 0 g fat, 37 g carb., 0 mg chol., 1 g fiber, 28 mg sodium.