Sour Cherry Compote

by Kim Sunée • August 25, 2015

Yield: MAKES ABOUT 1 1/2 CUPS • Total Time: 10 MIN

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photo by Kim Sunée

I always make this compote every August after picking cherries. If possible, make extra to share with friends and some to freeze for bites of summer when winter comes. Try this compote over yogurt, ice cream, layered into trifles, poured over pancakes, as a topping for cheesecakes, and more.


  • 1/2 cup water
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • Zest and Juice of 1 whole orange, preferably organic, scrubbed clean
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (or beans scraped from 1/2 vanilla pod)
  • 2 cups cherries, pitted (or not)


  1. Combine water, sugar, orange zest and juice together in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into pan and add bean (or vanilla extract); bring to a boil, stirring to help sugar dissolve. Let cook on high heat about 7 minutes until thick and syrupy. Add cherries and cook another 2 minutes, until fruit is coated and juicy but not broken down. Let cool; store, in glass jars or containers in refrigerator until ready to use. 

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