Sour-Cherry Cobbler

sour-cherry cobbler
Photo: Christopher Testani
Prep Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 5 mins

Cobbled together by American settlers in the mid-1800s, this rustic treat was eaten as a hearty breakfast or even a main course on the trail. Our recipe blends bright, tangy sour cherries with a warm, buttery cake and is simple enough for a camp stove. Butter is melted in a cast-iron skillet, cake batter and the cherries get dolloped in, and then the mixture bakes for just under an hour. The fruit drops down and the cake rises up, creating a lovely intermingling of sweet and tart that tastes even better with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


  • 1 pound fresh or frozen pitted sour cherries (about 3 ½ cups), mostly defrosted if frozen (do not drain liquid)

  • 1 cup sugar, divided

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour, divided

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (we use Diamond Crystal), divided

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • cup whole or 2 percent milk, room temperature

  • Heavy cream or vanilla ice cream, for serving (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. In a bowl, toss together cherries, 1/3 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

  2. Melt butter in a 10-inch oven-proof skillet, such as cast iron or enameled cast iron, in oven. Meanwhile, whisk together remaining 1 cup flour, 2/3 cup sugar, and 3/4 teaspoon salt, and baking powder. Whisk in milk, then melted butter until just combined.

  3. Scrape batter into skillet, then dollop fruit mixture over top. Bake until cobbler is golden brown and set, 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool slightly before serving with cream or ice cream.

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