Do not let summer pass you by without making Mini Cherry Pie For Two! They’re individual cherry pies baked in ramekins with a homemade pie crust and cherry pie filling.
Every summer I say I’m going to go cherry picking.
Every summer I miss it because the window is so small, if you’re busy the week they are ripe, you miss it.
One summer I was moving back to Pittsburgh so I missed it. The year before that I was traveling and missed it.
The year before that, I picked cherries but my dad couldn’t be there.
One year cherry picking season was earlier than usual, and if it wasn’t for my dad checking out the farm’s Facebook page, I probably would’ve missed it again.
Of course it was raining all day when we went but knowing it was probably our only chance, we put on our jackets and picked in the rain.
The farm was new to us and was a totally different experience than picking strawberries or apples. They placed ladders next to each cherry tree so you can reach the top.
Then they provided buckets for you to use then return (as most places either give you cardboard boxes to keep or ask to bring your own container).
We ended up with about 4 pounds of tart cherries, ready to be turned into homemade cherry pie.
Tart cherries, known as sour cherries, taste exactly what their name says – they are sour and not ideal for snacking.
However, they are absolutely perfect for a fresh cherry pie. When you think of cherry pie filling, they’re usually made with tart cherries.
Once combined with a little bit of sugar and enclosed in a buttery, flakey double pie crust, they turn into the best cherry pie recipe you’ve ever eaten.
But as much as I want to eat a whole pie, it’s best I didn’t.
That’s why I scaled down my sour cherry pie recipe into Mini Cherry Pie For Two so you can still have the best cherry pie recipe with portion control.
They’re individual cherry pies baked in ramekins with a double pie crust and cherry pie filling.
Eat one now, share the other with someone you love. Or eat one now, eat one later.
Where To Find Sour Cherries
As mentioned, we have local cherry farms in PA.
Usually you can pick your own cherries or buy already-picked from the farm. You may need to call around if you’re not sure where.
Can you make mini cherry pie with sweet cherries?
Since tart cherries can be hard to find with such a short harvesting window, yes you can substitute sweet cherries for sour cherries.
As the name implies, sour cherries are very tart, so I didn’t add any lemon juice to the filling.
However, if you substitute sweet cherries, you want to add about a tablespoon of lemon juice. This helps balance the sweetness in the filling.
Best Way To Pit Cherries
If you’re new to baking with cherries, tart cherries have pits you need to remove first.
I’m not too keen on buying kitchen tools that only serve one purpose, but I do recommend buying a cherry pitter (which doubles as an olive pitter) if you’re going to pit more than 1 cup of cherries.
I bought my OXO cherry pitter when I worked at Target (one of the perks – or downfalls? – of working there).
How To Pit Cherries Without A Cherry Pitter
If you don’t have a cherry pitter, you can pit cherries with tools you already have:
- Use a pastry tip by placing it tip-side up then push the cherry firmly onto it until the pit comes out.
- Use a chopstick or straw. Insert into the stem side and pop out the pit. If the pit isn’t completely centered, you may have to dig for a bit.
Make sure you’re wearing an apron because it will get messy.
How To Make Pie Dough In A Food Processor
If you think making a homemade pie crust is challenging, you need to make pie dough in a food processor.
I’m all about being hands on with homemade dough, but nothing is more glorious than throwing everything in a food processor and having pie crust ready in minutes.
The blades cut the fat into the flour, which is what you’d be doing by hand anyway.
The key to a great pie dough is using really cold butter and shortening. Ideally you should freeze them prior to adding but if you forget, just add them directly from the fridge.
Once your dough is made, gather it up then divide the dough into four even pieces. Flatten each piece into an evenly round disk to make rolling easier.
Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or until cold.
How To Make Pie Dough By Hand
If you don’t own a food processor, you can still make pie dough by hand using a pastry blender or with two knifes to cut in the butter and shortening.
How To Make Cherry Pie Filling
Making homemade cherry pie filling is as easy as boiling water, mostly because that’s exactly what you’re doing.
While the pie dough is chilling, you can get started on your homemade cherry pie filling.
Since you won’t use the whole recipe, you can use the leftovers in one of these 10+ Cherry Pie Filling Desserts.
Can I used canned cherry pie filling instead of fresh?
Although I recommend making your cherry pie filling from scratch, I won’t judge you if you use canned cherry pie filling.
You’ll need about 1.5 – 2 cups canned cherry pie filling. Use your best judgment when filling your ramekins, being careful to not overfill.
How To Make Mini Cherry Pies
Now that your double pie crust and cherry pie filling are ready to go, it’s time to assemble your mini cherry pie.
You’ll need two 6-ounce ramekins (affiliate link).
Roll out one piece of pie dough into a circle a bit bigger than your ramekin. Line the bottom and sides of the ramekin with the crust, patching it together if necessary. Then fill with half of the pie filling.
Take another pie dough piece and roll into a circle just big enough to cover the top. Place it on top and seal the edges. Cut a few slits in the top to let steam escape.
Repeat this process with your second ramekin. You should now have two individual cherry pies.
Place both ramekins onto a cookie sheet. This will help catch any spills as well as make it easier to transfer in and out of the oven.
Bake your mini cherry pie at 350F for 35-40 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Cool at least 15 minutes (so you don’t burn your tongue) then serve with this vanilla bean ice cream recipe or homemade whipped cream.
How To Freeze Cherry Pie
Whether you’re saving your small cherry pie for the future or getting ahead start on your cherry pie baking, you can freeze mini cherry pie using one of two ways:
- Before Baking: Fully assemble both of your cherry pies then wrap each one in plastic wrap, stick in a freezer bag, and freeze for up to 6 months.
- After Baking: Let your cherry pie for two cool completely then wrap in plastic wrap, place in a freezer bag, and freeze for up to 6 months.
How To Bake Frozen Cherry Pie
Once you’re ready to bake your frozen cherry pie, let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Let them sit out at room temperature while you preheat the oven then bake as directly.
You may need an extra 10-15 minutes if they’re cold when you put them in. Just make sure your pies are golden brown and bubbly.
More Easy Cherry Pie Recipes
Enjoyed your mini cherry pie? Here are more recipes using cherry pie filling:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold and cut into 3 pieces (frozen is best)
- 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening, cold and cut into 3 pieces (frozen is best)
- 2 tablespoons cold water
Cherry Pie Filling
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
- 1-2 drops red food coloring (optional)
- 1 1/2 cups pitted tart cherries*
- In the bowl of a food processor, add the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the cold butter and shortening then pulse until butter and shortening are cut into the flour, looking like small pebbles. Add the water and pulse until a dough forms.
Alternatively, add the flour, sugar, and salt to a large bowl. Use a pastry blender to cut the fat into the flour. Stir in the water until a dough forms.
- Divide the dough into four even pieces and flatten each piece into an evenly round disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or until cold.
- Meanwhile, make the filling: In a medium saucepan, whisk together sugar, water, and cornstarch. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often. Cook until thickened, about 1-2 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and stir in cherries and almond extract. If it's not red enough, add food coloring if desired. Cool to room temperature
- Preheat oven to 350F. Have two six-ounce ramekins and a cookie sheet ready.
- Take one dough piece out of the refrigerator. On a lightly floured surface, roll it into a circle slightly bigger than your ramekin. Line the bottom and sides of the ramekin with the crust, patching it together if necessary. Fill the crust with half of the pie filling.
- Take another dough piece and roll into a circle just big enough to cover the top. Place it on top and seal the edges. Cut a few slits in the top to let steam escape.
- Repeat with the remaining pie dough and filling.
- Place each ramekin on the cookie sheet and bake 35-40 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Cool for 15 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla bean ice cream or cool to room temperature.