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Brandied Cherries

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Last Updated on August 3, 2020 by The ‘Noms.

We adore these Brandied Cherries, and love to put them in cocktails, desserts, and really any other recipe we can! Hope you try them!




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Brandied Cherries in a jar




Over the past year I have become very interested in cocktails of all sorts.  I am constantly researching new ways to improve my drinks, and one of the most obvious ways is to improve what I put into the cocktails.



Brandied Cherries in a Jar



How to Make Brandied Cherries?

Getting rid of the artificially neon red cherries that are used in classics like the Old Fashioned or Manhattan and replacing them with homemade brandied cherries would make a great addition to these drinks. We wanted the homemade version, because we like making our own ingredients, but also because we wanted to see if we could do it!



Brandied Cherries in a jar



How do you make Drunken Cherries?

I have been researching how to make my own brandied cherries and when a surprise winter crop showed up for a reasonable price I decided to jump on the chance to start exploring a new food adventure. It is a fairly easy recipe, so make sure to try it out!



What Ingredients do I need for the Brandied Cherries?

  • water
  • vanilla extract
  • sugar
  • orange zest – the orange peel of the orange, not the white pith
  • brandy – any kind will do
  • nutmeg and allspice, cinnamon stick
  • lemon juice
  • cherries (any kind of cherries will do!)





What to Do With Brandied Cherries?




Brandied Cherries in a jar



Do Brandied Cherries Need to be Refrigerated?

This is a great way to preserve cherries and add a nice boozy depth and spice to these cherries, which can be used in cocktails or as a topper on ice cream. We have easily kept them 4-6 months in the fridge (if they last that long), and they will keep really well and ready to use!



How do you Pit a Cherry?

With a cherry pitter! But seriously, if you don’t have one, another option is a toothpick. Insert the toothpick into the stem-end of the cherry.  It should hit the pit. Then twist the toothpick around the pit and it should pop out.



What Kind of Cherries to Use for this Recipe?

You can use any kind of cherries for this recipe – sweet, sour, Mount Rainier, Bing, maraschinos, they all work! They all absorb the brandy and spices the same and turn out sweet and tart together, they are super tasty!



How Much Does this Brandied Cherries Recipes Make?

It fills about (3) 16 oz jars, or (1) 32 oz jar and an 8 oz jar. Or any combo of these. Just realize with the juice it creates more volume.








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Brandied Cherries in a Jar
Yield: 1

Brandied Cherries

Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Brandied Cherries for cocktails, desserts, or just for snacking.


Brandied Cherries

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/8 tsp orange zest
  • 1 cup brandy
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • pinch of allspice
  • 2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 pound cherries, pitted


Wash and pit the cherries.

In a saucepan, combine all ingredients except the cherries and brandy. Bring to a roiling boil.

When it begins to boil, reduce heat to medium. Add cherries and simmer for 5-7 minutes.

Remove from heat, add brandy and let cool.

Transfer the cherries into clean jars and refrigerate, uncovered, until cherries are cool to the touch.

Cover tightly and refrigerate.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 36Total Fat: 0.1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 5.5gFiber: 0.3gSugar: 4.8gProtein: 0.2g

Did you make this recipe?

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Brandied Cherries in a jar




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2014 Nebraska Producers Choice Chef Award Dinner
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Sunday 13th of September 2020

Can these be canned?

The 'Noms.

Tuesday 15th of September 2020

Hi Lauren, they don't need to be, as they are in alcohol themselves (the brandy). If you canned them I am concerned that the jars would explode, as all the alcohol isn't cooked out. We have had cherries last in the liquid for a year. Maybe even longer, we haven't had them last that long! Thanks, Leah

Earl Heinlein

Friday 21st of August 2020

I made a batch of these cherries per this recipe, adding 1/2 cup of Luxardo Cherry Liqueur, expecting it to further lift the cherry flavor. I am a hard core Manhattan guy that also makes my own bitters.

I was absolutely pleased with the results in terms of flavor of the cherries, but in terms of the syrup, I lean towards a thicker style, akin to the commercially available Luxardo or Toschi product. So in my second batch, I added a 1/2 cup of a cherry brandy and 1/2 cup of the Luxardo Cherry Liqueur to the entire cooking process, simmering it much longer to reduce the liquid to a thicker syrup.

This approach removes the alcohol content, but after allowing the cherries and syrup to cool, I added another 1/2 cup of the Luxardo Liqueur giving me the result I desired.

I have shared these cherries and my bitters with some of my friends that have used them not just in Manhattans, but served over ice cream, added to summer punches/ades, and cosmotinis.... All receiving rave reviews!

Much thanks for the recipe!!!!

The 'Noms.

Saturday 22nd of August 2020

Earl, thanks for your interesting take on our recipe! We prefer them to not be so sweet, and love the cherry liquid as it is, as we use it in cocktails a lot, and don't want it so thick or sweet. That's the beauty of being able to customize a recipe to your preferred likeness. Cheers!


Sunday 21st of June 2020

Because they are in alcohol, do they have to be refrigerated? Or can they be canned?

The 'Noms.

Sunday 21st of June 2020

They don't have to be refrigerated. We prefer them to be, because we enjoy them cold on our cocktails, but no need if you don't want to! They don't need to be canned either! Enjoy!

Erica Cox

Monday 8th of June 2020

Jar sizes would be helpful!

The 'Noms.

Monday 8th of June 2020

Hi there, Erica, This recipe usually fills (3) 16 oz Jars. Hope you try them out, cheers!

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