posted in Appetizers

Boozy Bourbon Cherries

A great gift for cocktail lovers! >> Boozy Bourbon Cherries

Boozy Bourbon Cherries recipe - from

I have had this recipe bookmarked from The Family Calendar Cookbook for several months now.  I knew it was something I’d want to make in the summer… when cherries are affordable and plentiful and delicious!  My husband enjoys making the occasional Manhattan or Old Fashioned, and he was very excited to learn of my plans to make some homemade boozy bourbon cherries!

Boozy Bourbon Cherries recipe - from

The recipe is so simple- just three ingredients (bourbon, sugar and cherries).  I opted to use an average priced bourbon since these are mostly going to be used as cocktail garnishes.  It’s a fun recipe to make.  And I’m excited to gift one of my two jars to our next door neighbor.  What a fun surprise for a summery gift, right?

Boozy Bourbon Cherries recipe - from

There’s no canning experience needed with this recipe.  You simple pour the sugary bourbon syrup into the jar with fresh cherries and keep them refrigerated as you use them.  And you can keep them refrigerated and use them a little at a time for up to one year!

Boozy Bourbon Cherries recipe - from

They make an awfully pretty garnish for cocktails!  You can snack on a couple here and there too and I won’t tell anyone 🙂

Boozy Bourbon Cherries recipe - from

Boozy bourbon cherries ::  Make some and impress your friends with this super simple recipe!

Check out the short video below showing you how to make this recipe, then scroll to the bottom of this post and print out the recipe!

Yield: Two 25-ounce jars

Boozy Bourbon Cherries


  • 3 1/2 cups bourbon
  • 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
  • 4 cups fresh sweet cherries, washed, pitted, and stems removed


  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the bourbon and sugar to a simmer over low heat.  Simmer and stir until the sugar dissolves, then turn off the heat and let sit for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Pack your cherries into two 25-ounce jars (or three smaller ones).  Snuggle them into the jars nice and tight without smashing the cherries.  Pour the syrup over the cherries in each jar until it covers the fruit completely.  If you have any leftover syrup, you can use it to make a cocktail!
  3. Place the lids on tight and store the cherries in the refrigerator.  They should be used within one year.
*As the cherries macerate in the bourbon syrup, they will shrink in size.  This is normal ad they will still taste delicious!
SOURCE:  Adapted slightly from The Family Calendar Cookbook by Kelsey Banfield

Here are a few more boozy fruit recipes you might enjoy:

35 Responses to “Boozy Bourbon Cherries”

  1. postedJul 1, 2015 4:46 AM

    Oh, these will never make it to a glass as a garnish – I will be eating ALL of them before they make it that far!  

  2. postedJul 1, 2015 4:54 AM
    Noreen Thompson

    I will be going to the store for some bourbon today! Can’t wait to try these.

  3. postedJul 1, 2015 4:55 AM

    3 ingredients, and one is bourbon? That is DEFINITELY what I want to be munching during the mid-week slump. I just bought a bunch of cherries, so I know what I am doing today! Pinned!

  4. postedJul 1, 2015 4:57 AM

    Can’t see a recipe.  Can you share please?

    • postedJul 1, 2015 5:18 AM

      Sorry about that- you will be able to see it now!

  5. postedJul 1, 2015 5:10 AM

    Would it work if I pitted the cherries?

    • postedJul 1, 2015 5:17 AM

      yep, you definitely need to pit the cherries!

  6. postedJul 1, 2015 10:11 PM

    These are so perfect as a garnish for cocktails! I also love that these will stay good for a whole year! It would make a great gift for my family in the UK because they don’t get as many cherries as we do here in California. Thank you so much for linking to my vodka melon balls!

  7. postedJul 2, 2015 5:46 AM

    These look soooo good, Lori! Love!

  8. postedJul 2, 2015 5:30 PM
    Kevin Craig

    Now all we need are some cocktail recipes using the boozy cherries and maybe one for the tipsy pineapple too! 
    Can’t wait to try!

  9. postedJul 3, 2015 8:29 AM

    LOVE these boozy cherries!

  10. postedJul 7, 2015 10:16 AM

    Hi, Lori. Just made these last night, but cut down the recipe by a third to accommodate a smaller container. They turned out great.

  11. postedAug 10, 2015 10:20 AM

    Hi Lori – What is the wait time before all the boozy syrupy goodness has soaked into the cherries?

    • postedAug 11, 2015 7:50 PM

      You can actually eat them right away!

  12. postedMay 17, 2016 10:20 AM

    Can I seal the jars and store them at room temp?

    • postedMay 31, 2016 8:03 PM

      I am not a canning expert, so I have no idea!

  13. postedMay 19, 2016 12:12 PM

    Can these be canned?

    • postedMay 31, 2016 8:02 PM

      This isn’t a canning recipe… and I’m definitely not a canning expert, so I can’t advise!

  14. postedJun 26, 2016 4:42 PM

    Just made a bunch of jars of these! During cherry season there are always so many around I run out of ways to eat them but this is perfect! Thanks for a great idea! I don’t think they will last long 🙂 

  15. postedJul 31, 2016 7:49 AM
    Debbie Griffin

    Can I use frozen cherries? Is there an easy way to pit the cherries?

    • postedAug 20, 2016 7:41 PM

      I wouldn’t use frozen cherries. Purchasing a cherry pitter to use is probably your best bet!

  16. postedJul 31, 2016 8:55 AM

    Doesn’t this cook out the alcohol in the bourbon? 

    • postedAug 20, 2016 7:41 PM

      Probably not all of it.

  17. postedJan 6, 2017 5:37 PM
    Angela Mendoza

    So if we us fresh cherries they you just leave the seed in them or use seedless?

    • postedJan 7, 2017 6:37 AM

      4 cups fresh sweet cherries, washed, pitted, and stems removed

  18. postedJan 24, 2017 9:46 AM
    isabelle BL

    In what kind of drink would you use the bourbon cherries with?

    • postedFeb 3, 2017 5:16 AM

      My husband uses them for Old Fashioned.

  19. postedFeb 10, 2017 2:12 PM

    i just came across this recipe on pinterest & i’m sooooo obsessed with this! my hubby LOVES old fashioneds (we’re from wisconsin!) & this will be a perfect last-minute valentine’s day treat!

  20. postedMar 18, 2017 8:56 PM

    someone mentioned about the alcohol being cooked off, I wonder if you could just heat like 1/2 cup of bourbon with the sugar, then once dissolved add the rest of the alcohol?

  21. postedMay 22, 2017 3:21 PM

    I’m with you Miss Betty! Heat a small amount to just disolve the sugar…yummminess!!!

  22. postedMay 22, 2017 11:21 PM

    I made these today. 2lbs of fresh cherries, pitted with a cool little tool that was a sinch to use, nothing fancy just a simple one, filled 7 4oz squatty mason jars with cherries. I had 3 mid range bourbons that were on the shelf, so i mixed them together to make a “small batch”. Heated 1/2 cup of the bourbon with the sugar to melt the sugar. Then added the remaining bourbon to the syrup. Topped each jar with bourbon mixture & sealed with the caps & rings. They looked great! Stored them in the refrigerator & have plans for Manhattans & Old Fashions for July 4th (maybe sooner!!!) Yum!
    Thank you!!! Great Gifts for special friends

    • postedMay 24, 2017 6:56 PM


  23. postedJun 12, 2017 12:36 PM

    Just made these but won’t taste them until Christmas! I’ll be wrapping them in homemade vanilla fondant and dipping them in chocolate for a remake of my usual Brandied Cherries. I also added cinnamon sticks to the syrup while it simmered and then tucked one in each jar of cherries before adding the syrup. I’m so excited to try these! OH, and I dropped and shattered a bottle of aged whiskey while at the store. Geesh! But it smelled wonderful!

  24. postedJun 22, 2017 8:49 AM

    Oh no, no no. This is essentially cherry bounce, an age old recipe in Wisconsin that we make with door county SOUR (hence the sugar) cherries. Don’t cook the booze out. Let it sit for 3 months to meld the flavors…voila, ready to tailgate.

  25. postedJul 23, 2017 4:18 PM

    I have been making these for years and there is no need to refrigerate. Alcohol is a preservative and as long as the fruit stays submerged it will be fine stored in a cool dry area.

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