Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie (with video)

Grab a ladder, pick your own cherries, then let’s make this luscious Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie with the addition of a unique spice!

Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie
Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie

Cherry Picking

Who knew, when I bought my current home it would come with a cherry tree!

It also came with raspberries, peaches and a greenhouse. Somebody pinch me, am I really alive!

The first June, in this lovely country home, I was elated to grab my ladder and go pick cherries. 

My Very Own Cherry Tree!

After spending time in the kitchen with my new kitchen toy ‘cherry pitter’ I had a juicy heap of cherries ready to make into a simple yet decadent pie. 

Pitted Cherries
Pitted Cherries

Cherry Pie And Presidents

During the 18th century, pie was a common way to turn fruit into dessert.

Comparatively, cakes were a bit more complex, given that there were not yet ovens, and the cost of ingredients was much higher.

As myth or fact would have it, our first president, George Washington, was said to love cherry pie.

It was also said that he got into trouble over a family cherry tree.

Nonetheless, a great Cherry Pie is often made in current times to commemorate Presidents Day.

President's Cherry Pie Myth Or Fact
President’s Cherry Pie Myth Or Fact

Homemade Cherry Pie And Valentine’s Day

How fitting to serve a homemade cherry pie for Valentine’s Day, as we often seek to make desserts that are red in color.

Fitting also, since Presidents Day, George Washington’s birthday and Valentine’s Day are all in the same month.

Cherry Season

So, here’s the dilemma; cherry season isn’t until mid July, February, Valentines Day, has no hint of fresh cherries, so what’s a cook to do?

If canning is your thing, then you’ve solved the problem.

Mason Jars For So Many Things Other Than Canning!
Mason Jars For So Many Things Other Than Canning!

However, many of us (me included), don’t can, won’t can and don’t even know how to begin to can.

Therefore, I’m a big fan of the freezer!

Buying bundles of fresh cherries when they are in season, pitting, and freezing in portion size containers, provides fresh cherries in February, well, sort of fresh!

Cherry Pitting Dilemma

Pitting those gorgeous juicy cherries comes with its own challenges.

Certainly there are several ways to go about it, but I want to make certain that I don’t lose any of the juices while pitting.

And so, for me, the purchase of a cherry pitting tool, that costs under ten bucks, and can also be used for olives, just made sense to me.

But, if you would like to explore other ways, I found an interesting video for it.

Several Ways To Pit Cherries

Making Cherry Pie

Making all the components of a fruit pie is not as difficult as you might think.

If you make the pie crust, which I highly recommend, you need only flour, butter and a little sugar, a rolling pin and some fun cookie cutter shapes.

Once the cherries are pitted, all the filling gets whisked in a bowl, dumped into the pie shell, fancy the top of the pie crust, dust some raw sugar and bake. 

Freshly Picked Cherries
Freshly Picked Cherries

Mediterranean Spice For A Unique Cherry Pie Flavor

Having grown up with a Syrian mom, we had spices and flavors in our kitchen other kids I grew up with didn’t have.

The unique spice I add to the crust of my cherry pie, as well as many of my Syrian bread recipes, is Mahleb, also spelled Mahlep, Mahlab and Mahlepi.

This aromatic spice is made from the seeds of a species of cherries, making it the perfect addition to a cherry pie.

Mahleb, Mahlep Mediterranean Spice
Mahleb, Mahlep Mediterranean Spice

Step By Step To Make Pie Crust And Cherry Pie With Cutouts

Once you gathered the ingredients for the pie crust, which is so easy to do, you’d have it done before to drive to the store to buy one, let alone, drive back!

Very cold butter is the key to bringing this pie crust together fast, along with a bit of sugar, Mahleb, the perfect spice for a cherry pie, and a few other ingredients.

Cherry Pie Crust Using Mahleb Spice In The Crust For A Very Mediterranean Pie Crust
Cherry Pie Crust Using Mahleb Spice In The Crust For A Very Mediterranean Pie Crust

This cherry pie needs a top and bottom crust. Once the dough comes together into a ball, cut off one third of the dough for the top, using two thirds for the bottom.

Once the top crust is rolled out, press cutouts in any shape you desire, chill the top and the cutout for easy assemble.

Fit the bottom crust into the pie dish, prick the bottom with a fork and you are ready to make the filling.

Pie Crust Bottom And Top With Cutouts
Pie Crust Bottom And Top With Cutouts

Keeping most of the cherries whole, press a fourth of the cherries with the back of a fork to release their juice into the filling.

Sprinkle in the corn or potato starch and gently mix to dissolve the starch into the cherry juice.

Cherry Filling Prepared And Placed Into The Crust Awaiting The Top
Cherry Filling Prepared And Placed Into The Crust Awaiting The Top

Add the remaining filling ingredients. The filling comes together fast by simply mixing the ingredients together and pouring it into the prepared pie crust.

Once the filling is inside of the bottom crust, carefully roll the top crust around a rolling pin, unroll it on top of the pie, brush with egg wash and place the cutouts where they look best.

Ingredients Needed

  • Butter
  • Flour
  • Maleb spice
  • Cardamom
  • Nutmeg
  • Cherries
  • Sugar
  • Cornstarch or potato starch
  • Lemon juice
  • Cherry liquor
  • Salt
  • Eggs

Equipment Needed

  • Rolling pin
  • Pie baking dish
  • Cherry pitter – I also use this one for olives too!
  • Cookie cutter – for pie top cut-outs
  • Measuring cup
  • Measuring spoons
  • Mixing bowl
  • Whisk
  • Basking brush
  • Oven
Homemade Cherry Pie Never Tasted So Good!
Homemade Cherry Pie Never Tasted So Good!
Homemade Cherry Rum Pie

Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie

Homemade Mediterranean Cherry Pie with the addition of a unique spice.
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Course: Pies
Cuisine: American Fusion
Keyword: Mediterranean Cherry Pie
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings: 8 servings


  • Pie pan
  • Cherry pitter
  • Rolling Pin


  • Pie Crusts – top and bottom homemade or store bought
  • 8 tbsp Butter cold
  • 1 tbsp Sugar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Mahleb Mediterranean spice
  • 1 3/4 cup All-purpose flour extra for dusting
  • 1 Egg whisked with water to equal 1/4 cup
  • Filling
  • 2 cups Cherries pitted and sliced
  • 1/2 cup Sugar extra for top
  • 1/4 cup Cornstarch or potato starch
  • 1/2 tsp Cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp  Lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp  Cherry liquor
  • 1/2 tsp  Salt
  • 3  Eggs


  • Crust – Place butter, flour, sugar, mahleb and salt into a food processor and pulse to blend until resembling coarse meal. With the machine running, slowly pour in the measured egg liquid until it forms a smooth ball. If too dry, add drops of water, if too wet, add sprinkles of flour. 
  • On a floured surface, roll out 3/4 of the dough to fit the size of the pie dish. Fit the dough into the pie dish pressing up the sides, down on the bottom and with a fork lightly prick the bottom of the pie dough.
  • With remaining dough, roll it out to a size that will fit the top of the pie dish. Transfer to a parchment paper lined sheet pan and place in the fridge, along with the pie dough already in the pie dish. 
  • Preheat the oven to 425.
  • Filling – remove 1/3 of the sliced cherries and crush them. Mix in the sugar, cornstarch, lemon or lime juice, liquor, spice  and salt. Whisk in 2 eggs. Fold in the remaining sliced cherries.
  • Remove the dough from the fridge and pour the filling into the pie crust.
  • Using a cookie cutter, make cutouts in the dough to be placed on top. Carefully roll the dough around the rolling pin and place it on top of the filling, taking care to unroll the dough to fit the top of the pie.
  • With final egg, whisk with 1 teaspoon of water to make an egg wash. Brush lightly on top of the pie crust, sprinkle with a little sugar, place on a baking sheet and into the oven. 
  • Bake in a preheated oven of 425 for 10 minutes, turn down the oven to 350 and bake until the top is golden, about 55-60 minutes. 



Homemade Homegrown Mediterranean Cherry Pie
Homemade Homegrown Mediterranean Cherry Pie
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