A tender crust topped with cherry pie filling and drizzled with a sweet, simple almond flavored glaze. These pretty Cherry Pie Bars are quick and easy to make and include ingredients you can easily keep stocked in your pantry.
Less than a week after posting my recipe for Blueberry Pie, I’m back with these Cherry Pie Bars. I think there’s something going on with me in the pie department. I may need help.
I’m in love with this recipe for so many reasons. First, nearly all the ingredients are pantry staples in my kitchen which means I can whip them up at a moment’s notice. Second, they are easy as can be to make. Third, they are oh, so pretty. And, fourth, and most importantly – they are SO good!
Look at that glorious river of glaze!
Because they call for canned cherry pie filling, you can make these at any old time of year that your little heart desires. They’ll be just as good at your 4th of July BBQ as they will be gracing your Christmas cookie trays. I love me a good dessert bar recipe and this one is a keeper.
So, let us move into the kitchen and bake some together!
In a large mixing bowl, cream together 1/2 cup of softened butter and 1 cup of white sugar. Beat in 1/2 teaspoon salt, two eggs, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, and 1/4 teaspoon almond extract.
Next, add 1-1/2 cups flour and 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder and mix again until well combined.
The dough will be quite sticky, as you can see above. Do not be concerned!
Coat a 13- x 9-inch baking dish generously with non-stick cooking spray. I almost always bake dessert bars in a metal brownie pan – it works perfectly. You’ll need 1-1/2 cups of dough for the bottom layer, so measure that amount out and reserve the rest for later.
Now, the tricky part is to line that pan with that sticky dough but here’s a tip that will make your life easy. Coat your hands really well with non-stick cooking spray and pat away. The dough will go where you want it and it won’t stick to your hands. It works!
Grab a can of cherry pie filling.
Spoon the cherry pie filling evenly over the bottom crust and then drop very small pieces of the remaining sticky dough right over the top.
Sprinkle some sliced almonds over the top of it all and pop it in a preheated 350 degree oven for just about 35 minutes, or until the crust is lightly golden brown.
Remove the pan from the oven and allow the bars to cool completely on a wire rack.
The simple powdered sugar glaze is spiked with a bit more almond extract which is the perfect complement to cherry pie filling. Once completely cooled, drizzle the glaze over the top.
I was pleased with how cleanly the bars slice and how bright and pretty they are. They’d be delicious served on a plate with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or just pick them up and go for it!
They’re best if consumed within a couple of days since they have a tendency to soften quite a bit as they sit. I stored the leftovers in the fridge and they were delicious both at room temperature and chilled.
Cherry Pie Bars
For the Bars
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 21 ounces cherry pie filling
- 3 tablespoons sliced almonds
For the Glaze
- 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons milk, , or as needed
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 13- x 9-inch baking dish or metal brownie pan with non-stick cooking spray.
- Using a hand or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Add salt, eggs, vanilla, and almond extracts and beat until creamy and well combined. Add flour and baking powder and mix on low speed just until dry ingredients have been incorporated. With greased hands, pat 1-1/2 cups of batter into the prepared baking dish. Spoon cherry pie filling evenly over the bottom crust. Drop very small pieces of the remaining batter over the pie filling. Sprinkle sliced almonds over the top.
- Bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely. Once bars have cooled, whisk together confectioners’ sugar, almond extract, and as much milk as needed to reach desired consistency. Drizzle over the cooled bars. Cut into squares and serve.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated using generic ingredients, and is an estimate not a guarantee. For more accurate results, please refer to the labels on your ingredients at home.
Adapted from Taste of Home
Questions and Reviews
Made these for a Thanksgiving potluck. They were delicious, but stuck to the pan. Don’t know what went wrong, I baked them in a 13×9 Teflon pan sprayed with non-stick canola oil spray. I found spreading the dough was much easier with the back of an offset icing spatula sprayed with non-stick spray. Also, I wanted to make them because they were so pretty, but used off-brand pie filling and the color was kind of anemic, not pretty bright red.
Cherry bars need something to spark the taste. Maybe a little lemon rind. Not very flavorful
These were very good! I had some frozen cherries, so I cooked them down and used them! Love the almond flavoring with cherries. They are even great without the icing!
Hi just made these. They are delicious. Thanks for the tip about spraying my hands as the dough is sticky. Will make these kften
Hi! This is an old post but I hope someone can still respond. I’m not a baker but cherry pie filling was on sale so I tried this out. I cooked it in a 9″ pie pan because there didn’t seem to be enough batter for a 9×13 pan. Unfortunately, I left too little dough for the topping and the bottom layer was much too thick.
What’s the base supposed to be like? Mine came out dense and dry (probably overbaked). Is it supposed to be cake-like? I wish I had some idea how to salvage the bake. I’m embarrassed to serve it.
Thanks in advance for your response!
Just made these for our post-Valentine’s Day snow day and my husband has eaten half the pan. Sooooo good! The dough was so sticky it made me nervous, but with your tips I made it work. Thanks for the recipe, I’ll be making these again!
I know what you mean about that dough! It is sticky but oh boy, does it bake up wonderfully. So glad you guys are enjoying them 🙂 Thanks for letting me know, Alicia.
I make these for Christmas and they are delicious! ,I made them for a friend this fall and I used apple pie filling and maple flavoring instead of almond. They were so good!
That’s great to hear! They are wonderful with every flavor of pie filling. Thanks for the feedback 🙂
Please share; what is the size [ dimensions] of the brownie pan you mention?
The smaller rimmed baking sheets, also referred to as brownie pans, measure 13″ x 9″. You can use any standard 13″ x 9″ baking dish for this recipe. Enjoy!
I’ve been making these for thirty years and they are always a crowd favorite. The great thing I discovered is that any kind of pie filling can be used (for some I leave off the almonds as the glaze is enough). My husband’s favorite is blackberry, but I have people request blueberry, strawberry, and apple as well. Peach is good, and I even tried lemon once–it was not as well et and required a fork to eat it with, so I stuck with lemon bars for that one!
Those are great suggestions, Loretta. It’s a versatile recipe and I do think it would be really good with other flavors. I’d be inclined to sub vanilla extract in the glaze if I were to go with the apple. Thanks for stopping by!
These do look delicious Valerie! So pretty too!
Thanks so much, Kim! Have a wonderful holiday weekend 🙂
I want one! Almonds and cherries are a great combo….yum.
Thanks, Marj! Have a great 4th!
These look amazing! I love that it uses canned pie filling so it can be made any time during the year and is also super quick and convenient.
I’m totally with you on that! The convenience factor can’t be beat. Thanks, Meg!