Cherry Bars

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Cherry Bars | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

I love it when summer arrives; besides the warmer weather it’s also cheery season!  My family have been going cherry picking with our friends and their children (five families!) for the past several years.  With the fresh cherries we picked, I’ve made Cherry Clafoutis and Cherry Ice Cream in the past, and this year I made these really delicious Cherry Bars.

Cherry Bars | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

Ever since I made the Nutella Stuffed Brown Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies with Sea Salt, my family is hooked on brown butter.  It’s a magical ingredient for us.  The smell of cooking brown butter makes my house smell like a cookie factory and kids hang around the kitchen waiting to see what delicious dessert I am making.

In case you are not sure what brown butter is (don’t worry I didn’t know about it until very recently), it’s not something you “buy”.  It’s basically the melted butter with a rich nutty aroma. I added the video clip at the end of the recipe to show you how easily it can be made by cooking unsalted butter in a pan.

My friend Laura of Tutti Dolci recently shared her delicious looking cherry bar recipe, and I knew right away that’s the first cherry dessert I was going to make this year (I opted for her previous cherry bar recipe as ingredients are simpler.).  My family is already asking to make these bars again and they were also well liked by my neighbor and my husband’s coworkers whom we shared with.

Cherry Bars | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

On the side note, I really enjoyed taking pictures of these bars (can you tell?).  I make savory dishes most of the time for the blog and they require for me to take pictures right away.  But these bars as well as majority of dessert recipes can tolerate a looooooooong photo shoot session.

And the best part of blogging dessert recipes?  I can make them at night time when the kids are sleeping and photo shoot the following day (if I can control my desire to eat right out of the oven).

I hope you enjoy seeing some dessert recipes from time to time, and try making these cherry bars!  They are sooooo good!  :)

Cherry Bars | Easy Japanese Recipes at JustOneCookbook.com

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Cherry Bars
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: One 13x9-inch bars
Ingredients
  • 4 cups fresh cherries, pitted
  • 2 tsp. all-purpose flour
Crust
  • ¾ cup (12 Tbsp./171g) unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup (134g) sugar
  • 2 cups (256g) all-purpose flour
  • ⅛ tsp. salt
Filling
  • 1 cup (16 Tbsp./227g) unsalted butter
  • 3 eggs
  • ⅔ cup (134g) sugar
  • ⅛ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup (64g) all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. almond extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375F and line a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. Pit cherries and toss them with 2 tsp. flour.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine melted butter, vanilla and sugar. Mix on medium speed until well blended and smooth.
  4. Blend in flour and salt and stir until incorporated.
  5. Press dough evenly into bottom of prepared baking dish. Bake until crust is golden and slightly puffed, about 18 minutes.
  6. When the crust is done, transfer to a wire rack and cool crust in pan.
  7. Meanwhile, let’s make the filling. Cut the butter into a few pieces and place in a saucepan over medium heat. Melt the butter completely stirring frequently with the spatula.
  8. As the butter heats, it will begin to foam and then bubble. After several minutes, the milk solids will start to become brown on the bottom of the pan. Make sure that milk solids do not stick to the pan. Continue stirring until the butter is evenly browned, being careful not to burn. Remove from the heat and pour browned butter into a glass bowl to cool slightly.
  9. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine eggs, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl and whisk all together.
  10. Add extracts and blend in flour by ⅓ at a time. Whisk all together until smooth.
  11. Gradually blend in browned butter and whisk mixture until completely blended.
  12. Arrange cherries over cooled crust.
  13. Carefully pour filling evenly over fruit.
  14. Bake for about 30 minutes, until filling is puffed and golden. A skewer inserted in the center should come out clean. Cool bars completely in pan on a wire rack.
  15. Carefully lift parchment paper to remove cooled bars from pan and place them on a cutting board. Cut them into squares using a knife. Store bars in an airtight container up to one day at room temperature, then store any remaining in the refrigerator.
Notes
Recipe barely adapted from Tutti Dolci, originally from Smitten Kitchen.

Metric conversion is from this site.

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  1. We have USA cherries in our stores right now and I have really been enjoying them. But I haven’t cooked with them. This looks like a fantastic sweet treat and I’d love to try it xx

    7
  2. Looks wonderful, Nami, and great pictures! : ) I was just writing about how much I love browned butter in financiers, those little French tea cakes. I don’t know if it creates that kind of magic in every baked good but I know I absolutely love it in those. It’s great seeing all these fruit recipes lately…I was never a fruit dessert person but I’ve come around and it’s like a new world. : )

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  3. Nami-san, how did you get your family to not touch the cherry bars until you had a photo session? I read in a facebook entry that you had to wait to the next day until you had daylight for the photo shoot… LOL my family would have demolished the plate by the morning. Enjoy this time when your kids are little and they can’t reach the high shelves as when they are teenagers not a thing in the pantry or refrigerator is safe!!! I do love your recipe and this is perfect as it is cherry season. I bet now that the photos are in that your delicious little cherry bars have evaporated into thin air… Ja Mata, BAM

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  4. This is an amazing recipe for cherries and I can’t wait to get my hands on them soon. I’ll surely try this recipe. It’ll be different from just making a cherry pie. Thanks for sharing this idea, Nami. Enjoy the summer vacation with your kids :-)

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  5. I love cherry!!! But in SG cherries are super Ex and sometime we don’t even get those sweet and decent one like those over at your side. But I really love your cherry bar, it’s look so yummy and good for tea :)

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  6. They look incredible. I just got some cherries today, so will try to save some of them to try this dessert.
    I will love to do all my pictures with day light.
    Have a great week,
    Vero

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    • Yes, I am going to try with other fruits as well! :) I was thiking blueberries first…but might want to make small one as you will need lots of blueberries to fill… 😀

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  7. Oh I can totally relate to the bliss of midnight baking ( I am sure a lot of moms with young tots do too!) but only I have half of your willpower so by the next day half of the baked good will be disappeared, thanks to the ‘mouse’! love the vibrant colours of the cherries, if only we have cherry picking season here :-(

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  8. What gorgeous bars! I really need to make these as well. I bookmarked them when Laura published them but I completely forgot about them until now!

    And recipes that allow us for longer photo shoots are the best! I definitely try to lean more towards those kinds of recipes.

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  9. Nami, delicious summertime treat – cherries are my very favorite fruits of all times and they have just arrived (from Italy) in stores . no local ones yet as the weather has been quite dreadful around here for quite some time – I am happy to read (and see) that you enjoyed your “sweet” picture taking – the photos look gorgeous!
    Have a wonderful Monday!

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  10. Kat

    The cherry bars look so good. I can’t wait to try the recipe.
    On a side note, the second picture has a mistake in it.

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  11. I’d like one, please. Or more – many more! These look terrific. And we have a bunch of cherries int he refrigerator at the moment. May have to convince Mrs K R to do some baking today! Good stuff – thanks.

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  12. These are such beautiful bars, Nami! I hardly ever bake with cherries in the summer because I end up eating them all first (haha), but I should definitely get some more and give these bars a try. Great recipe and beautiful photos! Thanks for sharing.

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  13. Tina Driz

    Hi Nami as always your recipes are very delicious, easy and awe aspiring to make. If you have a recipe for caramel bars since I cannot find one that is easy to make should be the same technique as these cherry bars. Have a nice day Nami..

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    • Hi Tina! Thank you for your kind comment. I don’t have a caramel bar recipe but if I find it looks good I’ll sure give it a try! Have a nice weekend Tina!

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  14. Wow! Spectacular photos – I want to grab one from my screen! Cherries scream summer and we usually end up eating most of them out of hand, but I think I’ll have to put my cherry pitter to good use and make your ice cream (I remember that from last summer) or these delicious bars :)

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  15. I know what you mean about the fun of photographing sweet instead of savory dishes. It’s nice to be able to take your time instead of worrying that the food will get cold or if there are veggies, wilt. I LOVE that top picture, can’t stop looking at it.

    Gorgeous cherry bars, Nami. I finally had a chance to bake with cherries yesterday. I’ll have to try these bars next. :)

    BTW, I meant to tell you that I did make your green tea ice cream. Hubs and friend are asking me to make it again. Will have to make double batch like you said so I have enough to share on the blog! :)

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    • I rarely bake and take pictures of sweets, so it was actually fun that I had some time to work with the food styling and setting up the camera. :) Thanks for your kind compliment!

      So glad you guys enjoyed the ice cream. Yes, double batch is a must. :) I love that matcha ice cream… Have a nice day!

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  16. These look so so good, Nami! The photos are beautiful. I just want to go buy some cherries so I can make this now. It doesn’t matter that it’s 9:10pm on a Monday night. I want to make this now! Pinned. :)

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  17. That looks so good Nami, I am so envious of the fresh large cherries that you have in abundance now! They are pretty hard to come by here and even if they are available, they are too expensive!

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  18. Stunning bars! The flavors, the photography, and everything you said about dessert blogging, photo shoots, things can wait, not time sensitive. This is why I could never be a savory blogger and desserts are my thing :)

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  19. Nami, I love the photos of these bars! I can well see you have had a pleasure to take them (even though all your photos look perfect). I also hate being in a hurry and appreciate dishes that can be reheated (stews) or desserts.
    I use brown butter (called in France “hazelnut butter” because of the aroma you mention) in Financiers (soft almond cakes I posted some time ago) and frankly it does change the taste, so I’m sure it works miracles here.
    We have been having such a cold spring, all the fruits and vegetables are late (I almost feel as if I lived in Northern Canada!), so cherries have only started to appear and are not at their best, but as soon as they are sweet and juicy, I will remember your bars.

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  20. Janice

    Hi Nami! Since we’re both residents of the bay area, I was wondering if you have a recommendation where to go cherry picking. I haven’t gone since I was a small child and would love do it again. Thanks!

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  21. Nami, I love all your photos and these cherry bars look fantastic. I do miss Michigan cherries. When I was a kid we would come home from camping up north or from a week at church camp and we’d always stop at a roadside stand and pick up some black sweet cherries. we would all eat them all the way home spitting the pits out the windows :) and to think I was excited to find dried cherries here in Florida at Costco.

    Thanks you for your beautiful comment on my blog. I will be sure to keep you posted on what is happening. XOXO, Lyndsey

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  22. Positively delicious – it looks a bit like a giant clafoutis too… did you ever make one of those? I never tried making brown butter, but I always buy salted butter and that never seems to go “nutty and brown”… it seems to go straight from golden to “burnt” :p.

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  23. donna mikasa

    These look scrumptious! I saw your pic on Instagram when you were waiting for it to cool off. The close up shots are gorgeous! Hope to try this one day.

    79
    • Hi Donna! If you saw the instagram (right after baked), you can tell what iphone with indoor light, and good DSLR with natural light (and edit) can do to the same bars… LOL! I hope you will try this. SUPER delicious!

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  24. OOo, I LOVE brown butter too. So, so good! And the smell is lovely…

    The cherry bars look delicious. I haven’t had cherries (yet) this year – this looks like a great recipe to start off the (my?) season! Gorgeous photos too.

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  25. You certainly did have fun taking pictures and they turned out great! Certainly make me want to jump up and make these cherry bars. I agree with you on the brown butter – its flavor is unique and works as a great complement for SO many dishes. I bet it’s a great complement to these cherries. Great dessert! And YES – I love seeing desserts here from time to time!

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  26. There are a zillion reasons why I love summer and cherries are definitely one of those. The bar came out so neat and I am sure it tasted amazing. I have to soon go for cherry picking.

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  27. How fun you went cherry picking again! I’ve gotta find out if there’s anywhere in my area that I can take the kids to have some fun. I agree with you about taking more time to photograph desserts. I guess you now see why I have more desserts recipes on my blog than savory ones. 😛 When it comes to dinner time, the kids (and mostly hubby) can’t wait. hehe….it’ll be a torture for them to look at the food, hungry, but can’t eat yet. 😛 These cherry bars sure look amazing. I can’t wait to make some for my family.

    86
  28. Emily

    Hi Nami! I stumbled upon your blog this morning and I’m so glad I did. I am literally squealing with delight right now!!! I cannot wait to try so many of your recipes! The illustrations that accompany your instructions are very helpful (as I am a bit of a novice, haha).
    I am so excited to share your blog with my family as well!
    Thank you for all your hard work, you absolutely made my day and I’m sure many more days ahead as well!
    Thanks again! :)

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    • Hi Emily! Welcome to my blog! I’m so happy to hear you like my blog. Hope you find some recipes here that you and your family can enjoy. Thank you for your kind comment! You made my day. :)

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  29. Karen (Back Road Journal)

    Cherries are popping up all over the internet…I think everyone loves them. Your bars look delicious.

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  30. Yelena

    O Nami, your cherry bars look amazing, so moist! Cherry desserts are always delicious and cherries are in season now. I am going to make Russian dish very soon with sour cherries. Memories from my childhood.

    Have a sweet evening!

    Yelena

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  31. I love it when you bake Nami! These bars looks yummy, I love to eat Cherry bars but not make them, because pitting the cherries is a chore.
    Your clicks are just amazing, and mouth watering :)

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  32. They look so GOOD, Nami! I’d have trouble stopping myself from having just two slices. We’ve been checking the cherries at our local grocery since last week. Unfortunately the price is still so high due to the late summer. Probably gotta wait for another week or two before we get to enjoy the sweet fruits. How fun to go cherry pickings with 5 families!

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  33. Saw your awesome pic from IG so can’t help it looking for the recipe :p And after reading….hmmm..wonder I hv the patient to baked!! Haha…Looks like a lot of work :)

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  34. That looks just perfect for my tea.

    But on the subject of summer, we couldn’t be on more opposite sides. Of course I live in the tropics, so there’s that. We spend part of our summers in Europe, in part visiting family, in part running from the heat. I will be missing the heat soon, there’s no pleasing humans. :)

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  35. Cherry bars look awesome! Love the deep hue they have attained after being baked. I have been wanting to make something with cherries ever since they hit the Indian market. Now, i know what to make! Thanks for sharing.

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  36. What happened to the blogger who was nervous about baking? 😉 Look at all the beautiful and scrumptious things you’ve baked over the past year, Nami. These are gorgeous, and I have a weakness for cherry desserts.

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  37. I remember Laura’s bars and your look equally delicious! I need to make these and right now I have a big bag of cherries in my fridge waiting for me to make something with them. Beautiful photos Nami. Have a wonderful week.

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  38. This is my favorite time of the year, I love love snacking on cherries! Your bars look fantastic, your pics make me want to reach in and grab one! Beautiful, Hugs, Terra

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  39. Spencer

    They look absolutely delicious! I would so love to try some. I reckon I could easily polish off about 10 of them in one go.

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    • Yay! So glad to hear you enjoyed it. True, next time I should eat with vanilla ice cream! 😀 Thank you so much for your feedback!

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  40. Sheri-Ann Munoz

    My daughter tried this recipe and everyone loved it! The almond adds such a nice touch to the cherries! We will be making this again! Would encourage any of your fans to try it.

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  41. Juliana

    とてもおいしいです! I baked it for my son’s 1st Birthday for my guests. We live in Singapore and Cherries aren’t easy to come by in fresh produce and so I used canned versions for baking recipes. This was 1 year ago and I loved the recipe so much, I plan to bake for my colleagues this year. 本当にありがとうございます。

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    • Hi Juliana! ありがとう! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed this recipe! Instead of cherries you can use other fruits that are available in Singapore too. :) This is one of my favorite bars as well. Thank you for your kind feedback! :)

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