Soft Cherry Bread with Cherry-Almond Glaze — An EASY quick bread recipe that’s perfect for Valentine’s Day, Easter, or Mother’s Day! Because you can never have too much pink!
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Grandma’s Sweet Cherry Bread
My grandma used to make the best cherry bread. I’d give anything to watch her make it again and write down what she did. But since that will never happen, I had about 17 emails up and back dialoguing with my mom about how she thought Grandma made it.
My mom pieced together some of her own notes and a recipe from a 1948 cookbook that she thinks is what my grandma used.
After reading it all over and brainstorming about this bread on multiple 8-mile runs, I made a few tweaks and finally made it.
This cherry almond bread is a soft, sweet, and an easy quick bread recipe to make. It’s perfect for Valentine’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, baby or bridal showers, and would be so pretty for a brunch.
My daughter inhaled this sweet, soft cherry bread and her slices were flooded with glaze. You can never have too much pink. Or glaze.
My grandma loved pink and it was her favorite color. I have a feeling she would have been thrilled seeing all this pink.
Refreshing an Old Recipe
This is a re-post from when I originally posted this recipe in 2014 and since that time it has been imitated and copied, the photos have been stolen on the internet, but that’s just a testament to how good it is and my readers who’ve made it know that!
Recreating Grandma’s Recipe
I know my grandma didn’t use an electric mixer, and since she would have made it by hand, so did I.
I have a feeling she used shortening, but I know the word shortening causes immediate clicking off the page by most modern bakers, so I went with a little canola oil instead.
I was tempted to add buttermilk or Greek yogurt to the batter because I do swear by them for keeping things lighter, softer, and moister, but I know my grandma wouldn’t have used them, so they were out.
My grandma didn’t glaze her bread, and it didn’t need it. But I couldn’t resist reserving a bit of the cherry juice and making a cherry-almond glaze.
Glazed Cherry Bread Ingredients
Here’s what you’ll need to make this cherry dessert recipe (I know it’s a quick bread, but trust me when I say this is a dessert!):
- Maraschino cherries (+ their juice!)
- All-purpose flour
- Granulated sugar
- Baking powder
- Canola oil
- Almond extract
- Vanilla extract
- Confectioners’ sugar
How to Make Cherry Bread with Almond Glaze
This is a quick and recipe for cherry bread. Check out the recipe card at the end of this post for full instructions!
- Whisk together the dry ingredients in one bowl and the wet in another.
- Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until just combined (the batter will be thick).
- Before adding the cherries to the batter, give them a rough chop on your cutting board and sprinkle them with a little flour. It helps prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the pan while baking.
- Turn the batter into two greased and floured 8×4-inch pans, then bake until the bread is domed, set, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let the cherry bread loaves cool completely before glazing.
There’s almond extract in the bread and also more in the glaze. It wonderfully complements the cherries and shouldn’t be missed. Look for it next to vanilla extract in the baking aisle.
If you love almond extract or are wondering what to do with the rest of the vial, make this cake. It’s unique and a keeper.
Of course, if you have an almond allergy in your family, you’re welcome to omit the almond extract altogether. Just note that your bread won’t taste the same as mine.
I used one 10-ounce jar maraschino cherries to make this bread. Look for them where ice cream toppings are sold.
No, maraschino cherries are a must in this cherry quick bread recipe.
I baked the bread in two 8×4-inch loaf pans. You could probably get away with one 9×5-inch pan but I find things get a little too browned around the edges before the center fully cooks through in large loaf pans.
My mom made the recipe as 4 mini loaves with good luck, and I’m sure muffins would work. Just note that if you start tinkering with the pan sizes, you’ll have to start tinkering with the baking times.
Yes, this maraschino cherry bread will keep up to 6 months in the freeze. Do not glaze bread until ready to serve if you plan on storing long-term.
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- one 10-ounce jar maraschino cherries, divided
- 1 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- pinch salt, optional and to taste
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
- cherry juice, reserve 1/4 cup
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup reserved cherry juice
- 1 teaspoon almond extract
- about 1 1/2 cups+ confectioners’ sugar
- Preheat oven to 350F. Spray two 8×4-inch loaf pans with floured cooking spray or lightly grease and flour the pans; set aside. (Recipe may be baked in one 9×5 pan, as 4 mini loaves, or as muffins, although I have not tested it that way. Adjust baking time accordingly.)
- Remove cherries from jar and place on a cutting board. Roughly chop them.
- Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons flour (prevents them from sinking during baking) and toss to coat evenly; set cutting board aside. Set jar with the cherry juice aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, add 1 3/4 cups flour, sugar, baking powder, optional salt, and whisk to combine; set aside.
- In a small mixing bowl or glass measuring cup, combine eggs, oil, all the cherry juice from the jar except 1/4 cup to be reserved for the glaze, almond extract, vanilla extract, and whisk to combine.
- Pour wet mixture over dry ingredients and stir to combine; don’t overmix. Batter will be very thick.
- Gently fold in the chopped cherries.
- Turn batter out into the prepared pans, smoothing the tops lightly with a spatula. Strategically place a few cherries on top for visual appeal.
- Bake for about 40 minutes, or until bread is domed, set, springy to the touch, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, but no batter.
- Allow bread to cool in pans on top of a wire rack for about 15 minutes before removing and allowing to finish cooling completely on rack. While bread cools, make the glaze.
- In a medium bowl, combine 1/4 cup reserved cherry juice, almond extract, about 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, and whisk to combine until smooth and satiny. Add sugar until desired consistency is reached.
- Glaze the bread prior to serving. After the photos were done, I glazed much more liberally, spreading the glaze like butter on the interior of the slices.
Make the cherry bread:
Make the Cherry-Almond Glaze:
- Bread will keep airtight at room temp for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Do not glaze bread until ready to serve if you plan on storing long-term.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 200Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 19mgSodium: 67mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 1gSugar: 25gProtein: 2g
More Cherry Dessert Recipes:
Cherry Cream Pie — An old-fashioned pie with homemade scratch crust topped with NO-BAKE layers of sweetened cream cheese along with juicy cherry pie filling!! If you like cherry pie, you’re going to LOVE this amped up version!!
Mini Cherry Oreo Cheesecakes – EASY mini cheesecakes loaded with cherries and an Oreo cookie crust!! The hit of your Valentine’s Day party! Mini food is IRRESISTIBLE!!
Glazed Cherry Pie Bars — The cherry bars are like cherry pie but easier. There’s a buttery, soft, tender crust topped with cherry pie filling before being baked and glazed.
Chocolate Chip and Cherry Blondies — These cherry bars use my favorite blondie base and turn out perfectly every single time! You can use fresh or frozen cherries, or a blend of mixed berries. These bars are seriously so good!
Glazed Cherry Bonbon Cookies — These cookies are just so fun. Soft, buttery, pink cookies with the surprise of a juicy, sweet maraschino cherry in the middle that also helps keep the cookies moist.
Cherry Turnovers with Vanilla Cream Cheese Glaze — The turnovers are so good that people will think you bought them from a local bakery, but they’re so easy, ready in 20 minutes, and you’ll never need to settle for store-bought turnovers again!
Maraschino Cherry White Chocolate Cookies — These cherry bars use my favorite blondie base and turn out perfectly every single time! You can use fresh or frozen cherries, or a blend of mixed berries. These bars are seriously so good!
Triple Chocolate Cherry Cake — This cake is loaded with juicy cherries and topped with an easy homemade chocolate frosting. I used a few shortcuts in this recipe to save time, but this cake tastes completely homemade!
Originally published February 11, 2014 and republished with updated text May 8, 2020.