Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

It isn’t fair to the other Sugar Rush goodies to say I’ve saved the best for last. So I won’t say it.

But I will say that these cherry cheesecake cookies are absolutely phenomenal.

Basically, the easy description is cherry cheesecake in cookie form. The sweet cream cheese dough is encased in a layer of crushed graham crackers and the center is filled with tart cherries. The combination is spectacular.

Talk about a crowd-pleaser, these cookies have been raved and raved and raved about everytime I have made them.

If you don’t have the time and energy to fuss with a cheesecake, these cookies are the answer!

Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

Yield: Makes about 2 dozen cookies

Cherry Cheesecake Cookies


  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 2 1/2 sticks butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 2 cans (20-ounce) cherry pie filling


  1. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In another bowl with an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, butter and sugar until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and mix until incorporated. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Refrigerate dough until firm, at least 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper or silpat liners. Place graham cracker crumbs in a shallow dish.
  3. Roll the dough into 1 1/2-inch balls, then roll the balls in graham cracker crumbs. Place balls 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheets. Using a tablespoon measure, make an indentation in the center of each ball. Place 3 cherries in the dimple. Bake until golden brown around the edges, 12 to 14 minutes. Cool for five minutes on the sheet and then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe Source: adapted from Cook’s Country

94 Responses to Cherry Cheesecake Cookies

  1. Paul Q says:

    Made these for Christmas, but was disappointed. The cookies had good texture and looked great, but the taste was just bland. Nothing about them stood out. Maybe a little bit more sugar or vanilla in the dough would help.

  2. Vika Tsymbal says:

    Hey Mel! So I was wondering would Ibe able to make the cookie dough in the evening, store it in the fridge overnight till the next evening (about 24 hours)? would they be any different regarding taste or texture? I’dfinish them and bake them that next night?

  3. Vika Tsymbal says:

    Hi Mel :), does the 2 cans mean two 10 oz cans of cherry pie filling (20 oz combined), or 2 cans 20 oz each of filling?

  4. Lien says:

    I made blueberry, rolled the cookie dough balls in crushed graham cracker crumbs, and drizzled with a cream cheese glaze. It was delicious!

  5. Christine says:

    These look so pretty…they’re in the ven right now and I am taking to friends’ tonight. I also cannot bear the thought of pie filling,,, so I’m just using frozen mixed berries. Didn’t see this last comment about sweetening the fruit until too late. The frozen berries make their own slurry but of course I’m short on time so the berries are still darn cold. Anyways,, I will let you know how they turn out… May not be sweet enough????

  6. Lien says:

    Cornstarch mixed with water, or flour and water, but for this recipe, use cornstarch or tapioca starch.

  7. Lien says:

    Just get cherries, mix with sweetener of choice, cook with a little liquid, or none at all if using frozen cherries, and thicken with a slurry. Done.

    • Cat says:

      Thank you! Lien and Mel….but….what is a slurry?

      • Mel says:

        Hi Cat – a good rule of thumb for a cornstarch slurry is 1 part cornstarch to 2 parts cold water/liquid. Cornstarch is activated to thicken when it is dissolved in a cool liquid and then heated to a simmer.

  8. Cat says:

    Is there a way to make these cookies without using the disgusting cans of fruit?

    • Mel says:

      Cat – it’s been several years since I’ve made these cookies (they were posted a long time ago), but I agree with Lien’s comment – good, simple instructions on making your own cherry filling.

  9. Cat Campanelli says:

    Is there a way to make these with REAL cherries? The crap that comes in those cans is really disgusting, loaded with sugar and very tasteless as far as fruit goes. I’d like to serve GOOD cookies….any suggestions? Thank you.

  10. Nancy says:

    Love your recipes but when I click print they will not print out. Bummer

    • Mel says:

      Hi Nancy – Unfortunately if you are using Internet Explorer, the print function isn’t working right now. I am working to get it fixed but in the meantime, I am encouraging those who are having issues to switch to a different browser like Chrome, Safari or Firefox. Internet Explorer has issues with many website functions and one of those other browsers will be much better (not just for the print function). If you don’t want to switch browsers, know that I am working on it. I’m sorry for any inconvenience!

  11. Nancy says:

    I made these smaller like a thumbprint cookie with only one cherry. It was one of the many cookies I made for a wedding. They were gone within minutes! This is a keeper!!

  12. Janice says:

    I have small heart shaped cut outs for making fondant decorations, I’m thinking about putting the rolled dough in the center and when I make the indentation it will also take the shape of the heart… just add the cherries (or whatever fruit you choose) to the center of the heart <3

  13. Ivis says:

    That looks great

  14. Tracy says:

    I have extra dough after making some cookies, do you think I could keep it in the fridge for a week or should I freeze the dough?

    • Mel says:

      Tracy – I’m not completely sure, but if it is a full week, I’d probably freeze it. That seems like the longer end (2 or so days and I think the fridge would be fine).

  15. DEE says:

    These were awesome! I couldn’t fit 3 cherries on all my cookies, and I was worried about some of the cherry filling dripping along the sides, but they firmed up so well during baking.

    They were SUCH a hit! A perfect treat for those that like a little sweet with a little tart!

  16. Mel says:

    Hi Carolyn – yes, that is how the cherries look (at least when I make them) after they are baked. Good luck!

  17. Carolyn W. says:

    I just have a quick question – do the cherries actually get baked or put on afterwards? The cherries in the picture look fresh out of the can, so I just want to be sure before I make these lovelies. On another note – I LOVE your website & have used several recipes that have turned out great!! Keep up the great work!

  18. […] Cherry Cheesecake Cookiesfrom Mel’s Kitchen Cafe   […]

  19. […] Cherry Cheesecake Cookies from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe […]

  20. Shiella says:

    packaging suggestions anyone?…i’m so excited to mkae these to give away for christmas…how did you guys package them up?

  21. […] de la cheescake war): galetes de pastís de formatge. Oi que sona bé? Vaig agafar la recepta d’aquí i l’he modificada una mica. A més a més només en vaig fer la meitat perquè només tenia una […]

  22. Sue W. says:

    Made these last night and I am hooked. Great flavor and so pretty. I will be adding these to my Christmas cookie list. To whomever said theirs were too soft, do not over mix these. You almost just want to stir last of flour in. They came out perfect.

  23. Allison says:

    I made these last night and they tasted so bland. 🙁 Could barely taste the cream cheese and without the cherry topping I wouldn’t want to eat them at all!

  24. Teresa says:

    These are fabulous. I made them for a cookie exchange, and they were a huge hit. This cookie exchange was in its 6th year this past December, and there are some serious cookie bakers. Displays and recipes are insanely amazing. I was going to be a judge this year because I’d won a prize the previous four years, so I wanted to make something fun. It turned out to be a favorite. Everyone loved them, and even friends who don’t eat cherry pie filling liked the cherries. I found that they freeze well, too. Thanks so much for this yummy cookie.

  25. Blondie says:

    Yum! This looks divine and perfect for a dinner party. I think I will try this with blackberry pie filling, my favorite! The lemon zest suggestion would probably go well with it.

  26. Mel says:

    Loni – the 3 1/2 cups flour is correct. I’ve made these cookies a dozen times and I know that amount is correct. Perhaps I just make my cookies overly large since it sounds like many of you are getting more co0kies out of the batch. Not a bad thing! Just all depends on the size of the cookie.

    Micki – if you are having trouble getting three cherries on top, your cookies might be on the smaller side but that’s ok! These cookie are delicious no matter how big they are.

    Sandra – sorry you hate the taste. To each his own, I guess, because I love the flavor of the cheesecake dough and tart cherries.

  27. sandra says:

    These cookies are BEAUTIFUL! Everyone rants about how they are going to try them not how they taste. PERFECT appearance ….TERRIBLE taste. Yup.. terrible flavor.

  28. There’s no way this recipe makes just 24 cookies! I’ve made 3 dozen so far and I’m only about halfway through the dough. Maybe I’m making them too small. I can’t seem to get 3 cherries on them. That’s ok. My hubby keeps sneaking them, so smaller cookies mean he can sneak and I still have enough! found the recipe on pinterest 🙂

  29. loni says:

    I made these tonight for a family party and I believe there is too much flour??? I made 24 cookies and had a bunch of dough left. They were pretty flavorless, doughwise, but I dumped on more cherries and some whipped cream. I just wonder about 3.5 cups of flour….seems like too much???

  30. Mel says:

    Tawny – I store mine in a long, flat tupperware-type container with a lid but any type of airtight container or bag would work fine. I keep them in the refrigerator if they are going to last longer than 24 hours. Hope that helps!

  31. tawny says:

    Do you store them in a ziplock? refrigerator? air tight container? These cookies are amazing! My family loves them!

  32. Jnl2211 says:

    Another winner Mel. I made my own blueberry jam to fill these and I added a tiny bit of lemon zest to the dough, then I drizzled white chocolate over them to make them pretty 🙂 they were delicious. Using this dough as a base, you can create so many delicious cookies, I’m doing lemon filling next :). Also, for some reason, my batch made almost 4 dozen! I don’t think mine were very much smaller? Oh well, the more the merrier!

  33. Bridget says:

    Looking forward to making these this year – can you tell me if these can be frozen?

  34. Michelle says:

    I made these for a Christmas party and they were fantastic. They were A LOT of work, but worth it. However, I followed the directions exactly, and my dough ended up making 45 cookies! And some of them were HUGE!

  35. Julie Millen says:

    I’m going to add this blog post to our newsletter. I own a cherry products store in Traverse City, Michigan, the cherry capital of the world. We have a to-die-for Cherry Pie Filling. I can’t wait to try these!

  36. […] Cherry Cheesecake Cookies from My Kitchen Cafe are just spectacular!  I found myself smiling the instant I saw them. […]

  37. Gemma says:

    I made these for Thanksgiving & they were a huge hit! Creative idea, not too sweet. It’s already on the request list for Christmas…

  38. Kelly says:

    YUM! I’m making these for Thanksgiving, I know they’ll be a big hit!
    These are a great cookie to make with the dimple in it BLANK! Provide small bowls with multiple toppings and guests can choose their own toppings! Chocolate chips, cherries, strawberries, lots of YUM!

  39. Laura Harper says:

    A-MAZ-ING. Love these cookies!!!

  40. Julie Thompson says:

    I love your blog! Everything I have made from here so far has been AMAZING! Thank you! Have you tried this cookie recipe with raspberry filling yet? I prefer raspberries over cherries and wondered if it would work?

    • Mel says:

      Thanks, Julie! I haven’t made these with raspberries but I believe someone else commented that they had used raspberries and it worked great. I think they would be delicious with any fruit type filling – I’m trying them this week with blueberries. I’d say go ahead and use the raspberries – I bet the tart sweetness will be delicious.

  41. Joey says:

    Made these for the (zillionth) time for the new sis-in-law’s bridal shower last weekend and of course they were a HUGE hit. I wanted to do the cherry, but also another flavor, and I found plum pie filling at the store. Oh my! They were divine!

  42. Melanie says:

    Anonymous – glad you liked these cookies!

  43. Anonymous says:

    so so good. Thanks for sharing!

  44. Melanie says:

    Jessica – well, you had to try them out to see if they tasted ok, right? I think the three you consumed was your payment for making them! Glad they were a hit!

  45. Jessica says:

    I just made these for a Valentine’s Day get together with some girlfriends tomorrow. Wow, they are fantastic. I’ve eaten 3 already…oops!

  46. Melanie says:

    Heidi – I hadn’t had that thought, but I bet these would be lovely cookies for a baby shower! Thanks for the referrals – I’m so glad the cookies were a hit!

  47. Heidi says:

    I made these cookies for a baby shower this last weekend. They turned out beautiful and tasted great. A bunch of the ladies want the recipe, so be prepared for more visitors to your blog. What a pretty cookie for Valentine’s Day, thanks again!

  48. Amanda says:

    I made these last night. I think I didn’t make mine big enough because I couldn’t get three cherries in. They are so good even with just the two cherries.

    Also, since my husband isn’t a huge fan of cherries, I used strawberry freezer jam in some.

  49. Deanne says:

    About how many cookies does this recipe make?

  50. Melanie says:

    HK – I’m glad these were delicious with the strawberry filling! Thanks for letting me know.

  51. Melanie says:

    anissa – I’m loving how so many are adapting the filling – raspberry sounds equally delicious. Run some calories off for me, too, while you are at it!

  52. Melanie says:

    Amanda – another success story with strawberry in the middle! I’m glad you liked these…thanks for letting me know.

  53. Melanie says:

    Deanne – it depends on how big you make the ball but when I made them I got around 24 cookies.

  54. Colleen says:

    I haven’t been checking blogs for awhile so when I looked at yours today I got to see all the Sugar Rush posts together. And WOW! EVERYthing looks so delicious – but these are my favorite!

  55. Jennifer says:

    Hi Melanie! I just got done making these cookies. Oh my, they are delicious! The cookie is soft and tender. The flavors are so good. I will make this again soon! Thank you!

  56. Brandy says:


    I am making these right now and I am not sure what I did wrong but the batter is very very soft, even after I refrigerated it for over an hour. When I baked them they spread out and don’t look very nice at all. Even after letting them cool, they are so soft I can hardly pick them up without breaking.

    I know I added the amount of flour called for, but do you think I could have mixed it too much? I am really baffled right now. I have made many recipes from your site and they all come out great!

    I guess I am hoping you have made these enough times that you might have an idea what could have gone wrong. The one saving grace is that they still taste great. 🙂

    Thanks for your help!

  57. Melanie says:

    Jennifer – thanks for commenting about this recipe. I’m really glad that you liked the cookies!

  58. Melanie says:

    Brandy – I’m sorry these cookies didn’t work out like you hoped! That’s a huge bummer. I’m not sure what could have happened – maybe for whatever reason the dough needed to be chilled for longer than an hour to reach a firmer consistency. That would be my main guess. Was the butter that you used overly soft or at room temperature? Sometimes overly soft/melted butter can make a cookie dough too soft. I hope if you try them again they work out!

  59. Brandy says:


    I think the butter issue is what went wrong! Thanks for mentioning that. My husband did love the taste so I will for sure try them again.

    One other question, do you refrigerate leftovers? If you do, how do you keep the graham cracker from getting soggy?

    Thanks for all your help, I know these have huge potential and I am hoping to submit them for our cookie contest next Christmas!

    Merry Christmas!!

  60. Melanie says:

    Brandy – I didn’t have leftovers so I didn’t have to worry about refrigeration but yes, I probably would refrigerate them well covered and hopefully that would help the graham crackers stay crisp…although they probably will soften up a bit.

    Merry Christmas!

  61. Amy and David Ziehl says:

    Forget cheese balls for the neighbors this year! They are gonna get some of these!! That is… if I feel like sharing!

  62. anissa ferguson says:

    Another recipe that did not disappoint… I used cherry and raspberry filling … I am hitting the gym for sure after the quantities I consumed. Thanks!!

  63. HK says:

    Thanks for posting these! I made them today with strawberry filling instead of cherry. They were soo good! I had to post about them on the food blog that my friends and I have. Thanks again!

  64. Anonymous says:

    I just made this recipe last night it is very tasty. If you like cherries I just found a free cherry recipe book from Traverse Bay farms. It even has cherry juice recipes too.

  65. Melanie says:

    Susan – wow, your adaptations to the cookies sound delicious! I may have to try it that way…I love the idea of ginger snap crumbs and blueberries and lemon zest. Awesome. Thanks for sharing!

  66. Melanie says:

    Heather and Devin – that makes me laugh that your husband almost proved the ruin of your visiting teaching treats. Sounds familiar in my world/kitchen, too. I’m so glad you liked this recipe and the beef stroganoff! Thanks for letting me know. Your comment really made my day, thank you.

  67. Susan says:

    Thank you! We just made some, although had to make some changed because of what we had on hand. Here’s what we did: we rolled them in ginger snap crumbs and put 3 frozen blueberries for the filling. Also, I added the zest of a lemon to the dough to complement the flavors. Not so Christmas-y as the red cherries, but still yummy! Thanks again!

  68. Heather and Devin says:

    I made these today for the ladies I visit teach, and they turned out amazing! I was worried that I wouldn’t have any left for the poor ladies after my husband discovered what I was doing in the kitchen. He raved and raved over them after he sneaked two cookies. Made me give him a plateful to take to work to “show off” today. Wow. There’s not one single cookie left, and it’s been 6 hours. You’re the best. I love coming to your blog! Made your Ultimate Beef Stroganoff last night, too. Husband couldn’t get enough of it and took all the leftovers to work today! You’re my inspiration! 🙂 Thanks again so much, and have a wonderful Christmas!!

  69. Melanie says:

    canuck-grad – actually, any topping that would work on a cheesecake woudl be good here, I think…raspberries or blueberries would be wonderful!

  70. canuck_grad says:

    My husband loves cherry cheescake, so I will definitely have to make these for him… maybe for his bday coming up this week.

    The only problem is, I hate cherries! Any suggestions of a different topping I could put on some of them for me?

  71. grace says:

    so pretty! this reminds me a little bit of the “cherries in the snow” dessert that i know and love. very nice work, melanie!

  72. Elaina says:

    I’ve really enjoyed your blog since I found it recently, especially the last 12 days:) Thank you for putting that together! I’ve already bought what I need to make a few of them. Great work!

  73. Stacie says:

    I have never heard of these before but they sound delicious! I have go to try this. I love cherries with anything!

  74. Jamie Cooks It Up! says:

    Wow. These look wonderful! I’m going to give them a try this week. I have had a lot of people try your banana bread I posted…they loved it as much as I did. Thanks for all of your hard work! You deserve a break! Merry Christmas!

  75. Tessa says:

    These sound amazing and the cherries make them look pretty festive as well! Thanks for the recipes over the last several days! I’ve got way too many Christmas treats to make now 🙂

  76. Anonymous says:

    Wow. Wow. Wow. You have such a wondeful job these past 12 days. Thank you. I can tell you put a lot of work into all of these recipes. Now my only problem is I can’t decide what dessert to make for a church party on Tuesday night. I think it is a toss up between these cookies and the chocolate gingerbread cake. I know which ever one I choose it will be fantastic. Thanks again! -Liz K.

  77. Memória says:

    O-M-G! Those look so good!!! I want them!!!! 😀 I guess I’ll have to make some myself.

  78. Norah says:

    I’ve been drooling over these in the magazine and now I’m drooling over them on your blog. I’m thinking I really need to make these now.

  79. Judy B. says:

    Thank you for your gift of 12 wonderful recipes – appreciate the time and effort you have made. Your web site has become one of my favorite to “go to”. Hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas filled with sweet memories and treats.

  80. Cathryn says:

    Where do you come up with all these delicious recipes?! Guess I am going to have to add these ingredients to my shopping list this week. 🙂

  81. Heidi says:

    I’ve never heard of such a great cookie idea!! I think this sounds like a show stopper. Can’t wait to make these 🙂

  82. rookie cookie says:

    I have to tell you that you pulling out the stops didn’t go unnoticed. Nice work over these last 12 days. So many good ideas and you really went past the typical chocolate chip cookie.

    Now relax and take a breather!

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