Classic Cherry Delight is a timeless dessert that combines the crunchiness of a graham cracker crust with the creamy sweetness of a cream cheese filling, all toppedwith a luscious cherry pie filling. This no-bake dessert is perfect for any occasion, from family gatherings to holiday celebrations, offering a refreshing and visually appealing treat that’s sure to satisfy your sweet tooth. The simplicity of the ingredients and the ease of preparation make it a favorite among both novice and experienced bakers.
For the Crust:
- Unsalted Butter: 7 tablespoons, melted
- Graham Cracker Crumbs: 1 1/2 cups (from about 9 whole crackers)
- Granulated Sugar: 3 tablespoons
For the Filling:
- Cream Cheese: 8 ounces, softened
- Powdered Sugar: 1 cup
- Pure Vanilla Extract: 1 teaspoon
- Cool Whip: 8 ounces (1 container)
- Cherry Pie Filling: 21 ounces (1 can)
Step 1: Prepare the Crust
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the melted unsalted butter, graham cracker crumbs, and granulated sugar. Stir until the mixture is well combined and resembles wet sand.
- Press the crumb mixture firmly into the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking dish, creating an even layer. Set aside to chill in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling. This will help the crust to set and hold together better.
Step 2: Make the Filling
- In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the softened cream cheese until it’s smooth and creamy, with no lumps.
- Gradually add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract to the cream cheese, continuing to beat until well incorporated and smooth.
- Gently fold in the Cool Whip until the mixture is uniform. Be careful not to overmix, as you want to maintain the light and fluffy texture of the Cool Whip.
- Carefully spread the cream cheese mixture over the chilled crust, smoothing the top with a spatula.
Step 3: Add the Cherry Topping
- Evenly spoon the cherry pie filling over the cream cheese layer, carefully spreading it to cover the entire surface.
- Chill the dessert in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, or until set, before serving. This allows the layers to firm up, making it easier to cut into squares.
Classic Cherry Delight is best served chilled. Cut into squares or rectangles and serve as a refreshing and visually appealing dessert. It pairs wonderfully with a cup of coffee or tea.
- For a homemade touch, consider making your own cherry pie filling with fresh or frozen cherries when they’re in season.
- Ensure the cream cheese is at room temperature before mixing to avoid lumps in the filling.
- For a lighter version, you can use a reduced-fat cream cheese and a light Cool Whip alternative.
- 20 minutes (plus chilling time)
- 2 hours and 20 minutes
- Calories: Approximately 300-350 per serving (varies by the brand of ingredients used)
- Protein: About 2-4g per serving
- Sodium: Approximately 200-300mg per serving
(Note: The nutritional values are estimates and can vary based on specific ingredient brands and sizes.)
Classic Cherry Delight is a dessert that promises simplicity, elegance, and a burst of flavor with every bite. Its layers of crumbly crust, creamy filling, and tart cherry topping make it an irresistible treat for any occasion. Whether you’re looking for a dessert to impress guests or a simple, satisfying treat to enjoy at home, this no-bake delight is sure to become a cherished recipe in your collection.