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5 from 4 votes

Cherries Jubilee

Cherries jubilee is a longstanding, well-loved and exceptionally delicious dessert. Using frozen cherries that have been defrosted, this recipe can be ready in 15 minutes. Flambéing is entirely optional.
Polite notice: The decision to flambé is yours alone and taken at your own risk. I have provided some safety guidelines but this list is not exhaustive and I am not a fire safety expert.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British, English
Servings: 4
Calories: 129kcal


  • 500 g Frozen cherries defrosted, juice collected
  • 1 tablespoon Cornflour cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon Orange juice freshly squeezed
  • 2 tablespoon White sugar caster or granulated
  • 2 tablespoon Kirsch or brandy


  • Begin by putting the frozen cherries into a sieve suspended over a bowl. Allow the cherries to defrost fully and for the liquid to collect in the bowl (1-2 hours). There should be around 150ml of cherry juice (discard any excess cherry juice)
  • Once defrosted, take 2 tablespoon of the cherry juice and mix with the orange juice, sugar and cornflour until smooth
  • Pour the remaining cherry juice in a shallow pan and stir in the cornflour mixture, then cook over a medium heat, stirring constantly (to avoid lumps forming) until the sauce thickens and looses its opaque appearance
  • Add the defrosted cherries to the pan, turn the heat down and cook until very hot, stirring frequently
  • (Optional) Add the Kirsch:
    If you intend to flambé the cherries, move the pan away from the heat into an open space with no flammable objects around it and use a long match to light the Kirsch (see guidance notes below). It should flame for around 30 seconds. Allow the flame to extinguish itself before stirring.
    If you decide not to flambé then continue to cook the sauce at a gentle boil for a further minute or two to allow the alcohol to evaporate


Expert Tips

  • Don’t forget to collect the liquid from the cherries as they defrost. It should be around the 150ml mark. If your cherries produced less liquid just add a splash of water or a little more orange juice if the final sauce is too thick
  • Once the liquid goes onto the heat it is imperative to stir in constantly. If not stirred then the cornflour will turn the sauce lumpy
  • As the liquid cooks it will gradually thicken, turning dark in the process and as the raw cornflour cooks the sauce will loose its opaque appearance. Stop cooking when the sauce is deliciously thick
  • Once the cherries are added do bring the sauce up to boiling point before adding the alcohol. Igniting the alcohol is easier if the sauce is piping hot
  • Adhere to the safety guidelines (below) to flambéing safely and only complete this stage if you actually want to do so. It is by no means compulsory – trust me, those cherries are delicious with or without alcohol and with or without the flaming
  • Above all else, if you intend to flambé this dessert ensure that you do so in a calm environment and do not undertake this step if you are under the influence of alcohol

Storing and Reheating Leftovers

Leftovers should be cooled, covered and stored in the fridge for up to 3 days. They can either be eaten cold or can be warmed through in a pan, stirring frequently.

Safety Guidelines for Flambéing Cherries Jubliee

(Polite notice: These are my guidelines but this list of safety precautions is not exhaustive and I am not a fire safety expert. The decision to flambé is yours alone and taken at your own risk).
  • Use a shallow pan with a long handle and low sides. Do not attempt to flambé in a high sided saucepan or a dutch oven – you run the risk of burning yourself as you attempt to light the alcohol deep inside the pan
  • Always take your pan off the heat before pouring in the alcohol. This is especially important if using a gas hob. Once off the heat the alcohol can be safely poured into the pan without the risk that it unexpectedly ignites
  • Before igniting, ensure that the pan is placed in an open space away from flammable objects such as cupboards, curtains etc. If the flames grow high then they will not be able to set light to anything if they are in an open space
  • Keep a pan lid to hand – if the flames get too much, slide the lid onto the pan and wait for them to die down
  • Always measure the alcohol out into a small jug or bowl and pour into the pan using this. Never pour directly from the bottle into the pan as it is easy to misjudge or slip and too much alcohol will cause too much flame when lit
  • Similarly, measure the alcohol out before igniting your lighter
  • A long-handled lighter is the safest way to ignite the alcohol. Do not use a short match or a cigarette lighter- you run the risk of burning your hand
  • Do not pour in additional alcohol. This cherries jubilee recipe contains 2 tablespoons of Kirsch. This is enough to cause a mild flame rather than high flames, so it’s an ideal introductory flambé dish to try out


Calories: 129kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 1mg | Potassium: 286mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 22g | Vitamin A: 89IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg