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4.85 from 13 votes

Homemade Glacé Cherries

These Homemade Glacé Cherries are the real deal and are a world away from the lurid preservative driven numbers you can find in the supermarket. Made from fresh cherries they capture the gorgeous sweet and fruity flavour of your favourite summer stone fruit.
Prep Time10 d
Total Time45 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Servings: 40
Calories: 106kcal


  • 600 g fresh cherries
  • 700 ml boiling water
  • 1 kg granulated sugar


Day 1

  • Pit the cherries using a cherry pitter so that the cherry remains intact and the hole where the pit came out is as neat as possible.
  • Place the cherries in a large pan with the boiling water (you want the water to just cover the cherries), turn the heat down to a gentle simmer and cook for about 15 minutes until the cherries are just tender.
  • Drain the cherries but reserve the liquid. Place the cherries into a heatproof bowl (if it has a lid all the better!) and set aside for a moment.
  • Weigh the cooking liquid. You want it to weigh 500g. If there is not enough liquid then make up the difference with more boiling water.
  • Pour the reserved liquid back into the saucepan with 500g of the sugar and bring to a gentle boil. As soon as the syrup begins to bubble then turn off the heat and pour the syrup over the cherries.
  • Cover the bowl and leave to soak for 24 hours.

Day 2

  • Strain the syrup into a large saucepan and return the cherries to the bowl.
  • Add 100g of sugar to the saucepan. Heat gently until the sugar dissolves. As soon as the syrup reaches boiling point again then remove from the heat.
  • Pour the syrup back over the cherries, cover and leave for another 24 hours.

Day 3-5

  • Repeat Day 2

Day 6

  • Repeat the process again with the remaining 100g sugar but this time leave the cherries for at least 4 days (you can leave for up to a week if you like).

Day 10

  • The syrup should have now turned very thick and heavy. Drain the cherries. Place the cherries on an ovenproof wire rack, set onto a large baking sheet lined with baking parchment. Don’t let the cherries touch each other and allow the syrup to drip off for a couple of hours.
  • Pre-heat oven to 90ºC / 70ºC fan / Gas mark ¼ and place the cherries in the middle of the oven. Dry your cherries in the oven for 1 -2 hours until dry but still slightly tacky.
  • Store your cherries in a sterilised jar and keep either in a cool dark place or the fridge for up to 2 months.


  • Recipe adapted from The Cook’s Scrapbook by Reader’s Digest
  • This recipe was updated in October 2021 with new images, a much clearer method and lots of tips. Although the general process of the recipe has remained the same, the quantities were amended for a slightly higher amount of cherries so you get more cherries for the amount of effort put in. Plus the method was made slightly easier and quicker and ready in 10 days instead of 2 weeks.
  • The initial boiling of the cherries takes about 10-15 minutes until they are tender.
    Don’t stir the sugar into the liquid (or the syrup after Day 1), let it dissolve naturally – otherwise it could crystallise.
  • Bring to a gentle boil. As soon as the syrup begins to bubble check the sugar has completely dissolved then immediately remove from heat. It is important the sugar does not reach caramelisation temperature.
  • Don’t put the lid on the cherries right away – allow to cool to room temperature before covering.
  • You can keep your soaking cherries either at room temperature or in the fridge, it depends on how humid your kitchen is.
  • It is possible to dry your cherries in a dehydrator if you have one.
  • The cherries usually take 1-2 hours to dry in the oven depending on the cherry and how much syrup they have retained in their middle. Touch and squeeze the cherry just to check. They should be slightly tacky with no syrup coming out when you squeeze.

How to store

  • It’s imperative to store the cherries in sterilised jars in order to prolong the life of your glace cherries.
    It is possible to store in a pantry or larder for up to 2 months. However, to be extra cautious I usually store in the fridge where they will keep happily for up to 2 months.

How to use leftover syrup

For exclusive tips and recipes including an amazing Leftover Syrup Cake then click here >>> Leftover Syrup: Recipes & Tips.


Calories: 106kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 34mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 27g | Vitamin A: 10IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 1mg