Chocolate Cherry Brownies with Whipped White Chocolate Cherry Ganache

These are no ordinary brownies! They are perfectly fudgy brownies studded with luxurious Italian Maraschino cherries and iced with whipped White Chocolate Cherry Ganache. They are as pretty as they are delicious.

a stack of Chocolate Cherry Brownies with cherry frosting

How many chocolate/cherry desserts are too many? Trick question! There’s no such thing as too many chocolate/cherry desserts. I adore the flavor combination and never get tired of finding new ways to enjoy it.

The impetus for this Chocolate Cherry Brownie recipe was two fold. First, a failed attempt at making a chocolate cherry shortbread cookie steered me in the direction of making a brownie instead.

Second, I’d bought a jar of Luxardo Maraschino Cherries after reading about them on the internet. People are absolutely gaga for them. I guess they’re used mostly for cocktails, but I didn’t see any reason not to bake with them.

I will say, they are pretty expensive. A jar of regular maraschino cherries in my local market is about $3, the same size jar of the Luxardo cherries is about $18. I know, crazy.

a closeup shot of marinated cherries
Italian Maraschino Cherries are expensive but worth it for a very special flavor.

But, you know what? They do taste really, really good. Comparing regular maraschino cherries to these Italian gems is like comparing apples to caviar.

The Luxardo cherries have a totally unique flavor and texture that really brought these brownies to another level. For me the splurge was worth it. But don’t worry, I’ve listed alternatives to the Luxardo if you’d rather not spend the money.

a pan of chocolate cherry brownies and a bowl of cherry ganache
Allow the brownies and ganache to cool completely. Then whip the ganache and ice the brownies.

I found Luxardo cherries with the cocktail mixers in my local market, but you can also find them on-line.

What if you don’t want to spend the money for Luxardo Cherries?

  • Use regular maraschino cherries. Drain the cherries and use the syrup in the recipe as listed.
  • Use dried sour cherries. Reconstitute the cherries in the liquor of your choice. I like Kirschwasser, cherry brandy or plain brandy for soaking. Let them soak for at least 3-4 hours or overnight. Drain the cherries and use the soaking liquid in place of the syrup in the recipe.
  • If you don’t want to soak the dried cherries in alcohol you can soak them in cherry juice. Soak 3-4 hours or overnight. Drain and use the cherry juice in place of the syrup in the recipe.
  • You could even use frozen cherries. Defrost and drain. Use the liquid you strain off in place of the syrup.
a cake stand with chocolate cherry brownies stacked on top
a hand holding a bite of Chocolate Cherry Brownie

You might like these other fabulous brownie recipes: Classic Fudgy Brownies, Sourdough Brownies, Habanero Brownies, Chocolate Cherry Brownies, Malted Milk Brownies, Roasted Beet Brownies, and White Chocolate Raspberry Brownies.

You might also like these recipes for the brownies’ cousin, Butterscotch Ripple Blondies and Malted Milk Blondies

If you love this recipe as much as I do, I’d really appreciate a 5-star review.

a stack of Chocolate Cherry Brownies
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4.54 from 13 reviews

Chocolate Cherry Brownies

These are no ordinary brownies! They are perfectly Fudgey brownies studded with luxurious Italian Maraschino cherries and iced with whipped White Chocolate Cherry Ganache. They are as pretty as they are delicious.
Prep Time30 minutes
Bake Time20 minutes
Cooling Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 50 minutes
32 Brownies
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  • 1 jar Italian Maraschino Cherries (see note)
  • 9 ounces semi sweet chocolate (chopped)
  • 8 oz unsalted butter
  • 8 oz granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • 4 oz brown sugar (½ cup)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cherry syrup
  • 4 large eggs
  • 5 oz all purpose flour (1 cup, see note)

Whipped White Chocolate-Cherry Ganache


  • Drain 1 jar Italian Maraschino Cherries, reserving the syrup. Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Butter a 13”x9” inch baking pan and line the pan in one direction with parchment paper or foil.
  • Combine 9 ounces semi sweet chocolate and 8 oz unsalted butter in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 1 minute, stir to combine. Microwave for 30 second increments, stirring between increments, until all the chocolate is melted. Add 8 oz granulated sugar, 4 oz brown sugar, ½ teaspoon salt,1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon cherry syrup to the chocolate, stir to combine.
  • Add 4 large eggs, stir until combined and then continue to stir vigorously for another 30 seconds. Add 5 oz all purpose flour, stir until combined. Fold in the cherries.
  • Spread the batter into the prepared pan. If needed, shift the cherries around so they are evenly spaced throughout the batter.
  • Bake until the brownies puff up a bit and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs (20-25 minutes). Cool completely in the pan before icing.
  • While the brownies are baking, make the ganache frosting. Microwave 8 oz white chocolate and 1 oz unsalted butter in 30 second increments until the chocolate is completely melted. Microwave 2 oz heavy cream until scalding hot and stir into the melted chocolate. Stir in 2 oz cherry syrup and a drop of (optional) red food coloring.
  • Set the ganache aside at room temperature until the brownies are cooled and ready to frost.
  • Use the parchment paper or foil lining to lift the brownies out of the pan onto a cutting board.
  • Whip the cooled ganache until it is light and airy but still soft enough to spread. Immediately spread the ganache onto the brownies and allow to set completely before cutting. At this point the brownies can be chilled to speed up setting the frosting.
  • Cut into 24 large or 32 small squares. Lift each brownie off the parchment paper and transfer to a serving platter.

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If measuring the flour by volume use the “dip & sweep” method. That is, dip the measuring cup into the flour bin, overfill it, then sweep away the excess.
Italian Maraschino cherries can be found with the cocktail mixers in your local market. Since they are expensive, you can substitute regular maraschino cherries or dried cherries which have been soaked overnight in the liquor or fruit juice of your choice.


Serving: 1serving | Calories: 219kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 42mg | Sodium: 54mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 261IU | Vitamin C: 0.05mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg
Have you tried this recipe?Mention @eileen.bakingsense or tag #bakingsense!

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  1. The recipe states 1 1/2 sticks butter/225g/8oz…..but 225g is two sticks. Great recipe though. I’ve made it several times with 1 1/2 sticks butter. My mistake: One time added more cherry syrup, thinking ‘more is better’. Wrong.

    1. Oops, thanks for pointing out that typo. It’s been fixed. Do you use the real Luxardo cherries? They are expensive but sooo good.

    2. @Eileen Gray, yes, only Luxardo cherries, and that’s what led me to your recipe. The extra juice/syrup is excellent in a spritzer, and the jar is just plain pretty. Thanks for your work.