Old Fashioned Chocolate Covered Cherries

Old Fashioned Chocolate Covered Cherries are the coveted Christmas candy in our family.  If you have never had them made from scratch you are in for a treat!  They are SO much better than the boxed ones from the store.


Before you read any further– it is very important that you realize these cherries take TWO WEEKS TO SET UP. That’s right… Old-fashioned chocolate covered cherries take time to set up. True chocolate covered cherries should turn into a creamy smooth center on the inside once they are set. So if you are wanting to make these for Christmas I suggest you start soon! It is SO worth the wait! Just give them a shot– you will see! I also suggest hiding them in a place that your family members can’t find them until they are ready… like a nook in the garage, in your crawl space, or in the attic… just don’t forget they are there! If you DO forget and don’t get them out before Christmas it’s ok… they will last until Valentine’s Day.


Other Cherry Recipes:

If you love cherries we have some other cherry recipes you will definitely be interested in!

Chocolate Cherry Cake – this is a tasty pudding based cake.

Microwave Cherry Crunch – easy to make and cooks in the microwave for a fast dessert.

Cherry Vanilla Cookies – like chocolate chip, but better!

Mini Cherry Cheesecakes – easy little bite sized cheesecakes.

CHOCOLATE CAKE with Cherry Topping – chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting and cherry topping.

Alligator Jaws – one of my favorite cherry recipes!  A triangle shaped doughnut with cherry cream filling.

Cherry Limeade Cupcakes – a tart yummy cupcake great for any occasion.


Other Christmas Treats:

These chocolate covered cherries are part of our 12 days of Christmas treats.  You can find the full list HERE.  It includes all our favorites, like homemade caramels, peanut clusters, cinnamon almonds, german chocolate fudge, and peppermint bark brownies!


  • 60 Maraschino cherries with stems
  • 3 Tbsp. butter, softened
  • 3 Tbs. corn syrup
  • 2 c. powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 1/2 bags chocolate chips, semi-sweet or milk chocolate
  • 2 tsp. oil


  • Drain cherries and set on paper towel to dry
  • In a medium bowl, combine butter and corn syrup until smooth. Stir in powdered sugar and knead to form a dough. Chill to stiffen if necessary. Wrap each cherry in about 1 tsp of dough. Chill until firm.
  • In a microwave-safe bowl melt chocolate chips with oil for about 20 seconds at a time (stirring each time) until chocolate is just melted and completely smooth.
  • Dip each cherry in by its stem and place on wax paper-lined sheets. Place in an air-tight container (like a large tupperware) and store in a cool place for TWO WEEKS (yes, it is a long time-- but patience... I promise they taste best if you wait until the fondant softens)!


  1. Amy Drown says:

    Can you use white chips in place of the chocolate ones?

    • Emily says:

      Yes, you can use white, milk, or dark chocolate. Whatever you prefer.

      • Lahoma says:

        If you add a tsp of Crisco to your chocolate it will set up better and faster.

  2. Barbie Smith says:

    I am so excited to finally have a recipe for these. Thank you!

  3. anne says:

    I make these every year. I always add a few tsps of the cherry juice from the jar the cherries come in. It helps them get gooey a little bit faster. Merry Christmas!

    • Erica says:

      I was hoping someone would have advice to make them set faster! 🙂

      • Rachel R. says:

        How fast does the cherry juice take to make white part gooey??

        • Erica says:

          The chocolates take 2 weeks to set.. that is the time needed to make the white part gooey. Hope that helps!

    • Marguerite E. Dawson says:

      I add a few tsps of cherry liqueur. Delicious!

  4. Annette says:

    Oh. My. Gosh. I now know what to make my brother for Christmas! I had a great-aunt who used to make a plate of home made candies for all of her neices and nephews each year for Christmas. We used to DROOL over them because my Dad has a real sweet tooth and wasn’t real keen on sharing this prized gift. My brother is a BIG chocolate covered cherry nut, but only likes “the GOOD kind”, as he puts it. Won’t he be surprised… 🙂 I can’t wait to make up a couple of batches. I hope they’ll travel well.

    • Emily says:

      That is awesome, you will have to let us know how your brother likes them!

  5. Amy says:

    Is it ok to put them in the fridge for two weeks?

    • Emily says:

      Yes, two weeks would be fine.

    • Celena says:

      You can put them in the fridge, but the inside won’t get gooey and liquid. The juices from the cherries need to seep out and liquefy the fondant. I usually stick mine on top of the fridge.

  6. Angela Johnston says:

    Excited about trying these. I see they take two weeks to set but I was wondering how long they would last for in the fridge? Thanks!

    • Erica says:

      I have never tried them in the fridge. After they set up for two weeks you could sure throw them in the fridge and see what happens? Ours usually don’t last that long lol

    • Celena says:

      They really don’t need to be refrigerated. The inside stays more liquid when left at room temperature. I always use baking chocolate (semi-sweet) instead of chocolate chips. The chips never seem to set up well for me.

  7. Shirley says:

    Has anyone added brandy? Soak the cherries briefly ? Or add add a small amount in fondant? Just wondering if anyone tried this and what would be the proper method.

    • Echo says:

      I think this would work as long as the cherries are totally dry before wrapping in fondant. Thanks for asking!

      • Anita says:

        Shirley, I have made the Brandy ones before! Mine were the liquid centers tho, dont know if this recipe is the same. I remember the one I used before, had salt in the powdered sugar, and this is what made the liquid center. Right now, I have a 3 Jars of Cherries, that have been soaking since October 2010!!

      • Denise says:

        If you don’t make your own dough what can you use in its place??

  8. Terry says:

    I made a Christmas Party sized batch today and can not wait for them to be ready! It was taking me a while so I put the dough between two pieces of saran wrap, rolled it really thin, then used a doughnut hole cutter to punch out perfect size pieces for wrapping them and got four jars of cherries finished in no time! Thanks for sharing this recipe!!

    • Echo says:

      That is a great idea! Thank you for sharing!

  9. EmilyHess says:

    I am having troubles finding cherries with stems on. Where did you purchase yours?

    • Echo says:

      I had a harder time finding cherries with the stems this year too, so I did the cherries without the stems. I did notice that I used more fondant without the stems. You might want to try the aisle that carries drink mixers or near the canned fruit. Good luck! Thank you for asking!

      • Julie says:

        You could probably just insert tooth picks just so it’s easier to dip them in the chocolate… 🙂

        • Susanne Boyd says:

          I like the toothpick idea. Thank u 🙂

      • Valerie says:

        The only place I have found the cherries with stems is in the ice cream toppings section!

      • Bonnie says:

        I just found the cherries with stems on them at Walmart in the area of the alcohols. By the mixers!

    • cristine finnerty says:

      Sams club always has gallon jars of the cherries with the stems that’s where I get mine.

  10. Lisa says:

    Can you soak the cherries in rum first?

    • Echo says:

      I’ve never tried it, but as long as you dry them out afterwards, it should work. Let me know how it works!

  11. Jodi says:

    Thank you! I love chocolate cherries I’m excited to try the homemade version. I’ve covered about 30 cherries so far with the fondant and I’m almost out of fondant. Maybe I measured wrong somewhere. I’m using about a tsp per cherry.

    • Echo says:

      You are doing it right. I am correcting the recipe. One batch of fondant will cover 1 16 oz jar of cherries, or about 36 cherries. Thank you for bringing that to may attention!

  12. Renee Kern says:

    Cool place. Would the garage work? On warm days during winter it might get to 55 degrees.

    • Celena says:

      That should be fine. I always leave mine on top of the fridge in the house. I think the cherries ‘age’ better at room temp since the liquid has to seep out of the cherry to make the fondant liquid. I also always use bakers chocolate since it sets up better and firmer than chips, usually the semi-sweet. Hope that helps! I make cherries 1-2x every year for my dad. He won’t even buy store cherries anymore because mine are so much better!

  13. Jenn says:

    I take it the bag of chocolate chips is 12 ounces so this recipe calls for 18 ounces?

    • Echo says:

      Yes, the recipe is for 18 ounces. You can also use melting chocolates. Thanks for asking!

  14. Gretchen says:

    My grandmother made these every Xmas she added coconut. Yummy. Thanks I lost the recipe

  15. liz says:

    Do they need to dry on wax paper before storing in Tupperware

    • Echo says:

      Yes, you want the chocolate to harden before putting them in a storage container. Thanks for asking!

  16. Katrina says:

    My dad has always been partial to Brach’s Cherry Chocolates, so I am hoping that these will be close. I plan on making them and sending him a whole batch just for him. I may soak the cherries in Amaretto for my own batch

  17. CJ says:

    Could you wrap cherries in marzipan instead of the fondant?

    • Erica says:

      Have never tried it that way.. if you try it, let us know how it turns out!

  18. Denise says:

    what other dough can you use if you don’t make your own?

    • Erica says:

      You could try using the pre-made fondant but we usually make our own because it tastes better 🙂

  19. Celena says:

    I wrap my cherries in the fondant, put them in rows on a cookie sheet with parchment paper, and stick the whole cookie sheet in the freezer. The chocolate hardens faster on cold fondant. Once I’m done dipping all the cherries, it’s super helpful to go back and examine each cherry. Sometimes you’ll be able to see fondant peeking through the chocolate on the bottom… I dip the bottom of the cherry into the chocolate again, otherwise the fondant ends up leaking out and making a mess. Sometimes a little hole will form up top too, by the stem usually. I will use my finger to dab a bit more chocolate there as well to keep the liquid inside. I’ve been making these at least once (usually twice) a year for the past 8 years, and these tips took me a while to figure out and have saved me so much frustration.

  20. [email protected] says:

    My mom used to make these growing up! Love them!

  21. Lisa says:

    Do you have to wait 2 weeks to eat them?

    • Erica says:

      They taste the best that way, yes

  22. becky says:

    Whst is the purp use of wrapping them. Why not just dip them in chocolate

    • Erica says:

      If you just dip them in chocolate the center won’t be creamy

  23. Jean says:

    Do they have to set for 2 weeks. Or that’s the storage time? Watching to make but don’t have that much storage space in refrigerator

    • Erica says:

      It takes 2 weeks to set so the fondant has time to liquify… after 2 weeks they will taste the best

    • Celena says:

      They don’t need to be in the fridge. Just leave them on top of the fridge for two weeks and they’ll be perfect. 🙂

    • Mary says:

      Erica said to let them set up for 2 wks at room temp – not frig. ☺

  24. Leeann says:

    These sound great

  25. Deanna says:

    So does this recipe make the kind of chocolate covered cherries with the white cream liquid? How do you make them with the clear liquid? Thanks!

    • Erica says:

      Yes, that is why it takes 2 weeks to set.. the fondant liquifies and gets extra creamy

  26. Adelle says:

    Can I add a little cherry juice when wrapping it in the fondant? A chocolate store has the cherries that when you bite into them cherry juice runs out.

    • Erica says:

      We haven’t tried it that way.. if you try it let us know how it turns out!

  27. veronica says:

    just finished making these had a hard time with them they were falling about when I dipped them in the chocolate they look very messy oh well as long as they taste good

    • Erica says:

      They should set up nicely. How were they falling apart?

    • Celena says:

      Try putting them in the freezer on a parchment lined cookie sheet before dipping them. Hold together better and the chic sets up faster. Your chocolate may have been too hot, melting the fondant and making it gooey.

  28. mary says:

    Can the cherries be placed in mini baking cups instead of putting on the wax paper?

    • Erica says:

      If that is what you want to do, I am sure it would be fine!

  29. shauna says:

    Help….my fondant is sticky and I couldn’t knead it…I doubled the dose and I’ve put it in the freezer…tried more ps. ..little flour….

    • Erica says:

      Sometimes doubling can make things tricky. Let me know how yours turns out by adding more sugar and flour

  30. Jenna says:

    Just finished making these. Definitely, definitely use cherries with stems. It was a pain in the behind to dip them without. Also, I had to double the recipe to cover 60 cherries.

    • Echo says:

      I found that I had to use extra fondant when I used cherries without stems as well. When you use cherries with stems it doesn’t take as much. They will be worth it!

  31. Gretchen says:

    My grandmother added coconut. Yummy

  32. Christopher knupp says:

    I make my own chocolate from scratch it takes longer but turns out a lot better than any store bought kind. Thanks for another recipe. My family is going to drive me crazy. Cause now I’m going to have to make about 25 dozen.

    • Echo says:

      Wow – 25 dozen!?! That is a lot of cherry chocolates, especially when you are making your own chocolate. That is amazing. You are so nice to do that much work for your family. I hope they appreciate it!

  33. Stephanie says:

    I like making food baskets for Christmas gifts. I start making my holiday treats in advance, then freeze the treats until Christmas. What is the best way to store the chocolate covered cherries if I make them 6 to 8 weeks in advance, and can I store them for an extended time?
    Thank you

    • Erica says:

      I haven’t stored them for more than just a couple weeks after they are finished setting so I don’t know how they will last after 6-8 weeks. I would imagine they would probably be fine if they were kept in a cool place in an air-tight container. You can always freeze them, too, if you are worried about them going bad. Hope this helps!

  34. patricia says:

    What purpose does the oil in the chocolate serve

    • Erica says:

      It keeps it nice and smooth 🙂

  35. Brenda Cathey says:

    How much semi-sweet chocolate do you use if you don’t use the chips? Recipe sounds great. Plan on making these soon. Thanks for this recipe.

    • Erica says:

      You will want to do 18-20 oz.

  36. Kelly says:

    My fondant is sticky, do I add more sugar. I can’t flatten it out to wrap cherries

    • Erica says:

      Yes, if it is too sticky you can add more sugar so it is more like a soft play-dough consistency

  37. Jackie says:

    I wrap mine in marzipan, and then dip in Milk chocolate…delicious

  38. Jeanne says:

    Can you use fresh strawberries in place of the cherries?

    • Erica says:

      No– you definitely need to use the jars of cherries. The strawberries will not last

  39. Catie says:

    Mine looked fantastic, but when I let them cool completely and then took them off the wax paper, the bottoms all looked like they had expanded and pushed the chocolate out, letting the fondant poke through!! 🙁 Not sure what I did wrong! They aren’t sticking, as they come off the wax paper super easily. Might try dipping them and then placing them straight into mini cupcake liners and hoping the bottoms stay sealed!

    • Erica says:

      Hmmm.. not sure what could have happened there :/ what elevation are you at? Do you live in a place with high humidity?

  40. Kathy Anderson says:

    Can you use coconut oil for the 2tsp oil?

    • Erica says:

      Yes, it actually works great 🙂

  41. Kathy Anderson says:

    Can you use coconut oil for the oil?

  42. Maria says:

    I would imagine that the chocolate would set up perfect if you put coconut oil instead of vegetable oil or whatever ” oil ” it calls for. That’s a great way to make the chocolate shell for ice cream!

  43. Kimberly says:

    Just finished making these and I am impressed!! Pretty excited! Can’t wait for the two weeks to be up. Thank you for the recipe and easy directions.

    • Echo says:

      Just wait until you taste them! You are going to love them!

  44. Norma says:

    Can you use the almond bark or chocolate bark from Walmart for the dipping chocolate??

    • Echo says:

      Yes, you can. The almond bark or chocolate bark already have added wax for easy coating, so you will not need to add the oil. Thanks for asking!

  45. Stella says:

    I use those cherries molds. They work really good and no mess. But I don’t have powdered sugar can I use Icing sugar?

    • Echo says:

      Powdered sugar, icing sugar, and confectioner’s sugar are all the time type of sugar. There are varying textures and degrees of fineness, but they will all work great in this recipe. Thank you for asking Stella!

  46. Jessica says:

    I’d love to make these as a gift for my father in law but Christmas is 12 days away.. is that enough time?

    • Erica says:

      You would be cutting it close :/ You might be ok if you did them tonight.

      • Jessica says:

        I’ll try them… worst case scenario he has to wait a few days. Haha thanks for getting back to me!

  47. Doreen says:

    I cannot fined corn syrup. what can i use please.

    • Echo says:

      Hi Doreen, here are some suggestions for making your own corn syrup – and a link to Amazon if you would like to buy it. Thanks for asking!


  48. Terri Sheridan says:

    What can one use in place of the corn syrup? That crap is POISON!!! Allergies and all, too! I already have to find ORGANIC maraschino cherries. Ugh. Corn syrup sucks. I can SMELL it in foods. Wish one could use something that’s not a commercial by-product. Please let me know. I loved these as a kid, before I was educated on the health problems associated with HFCS and CS. Thank you.

    • Echo says:

      Hi Terri,

      I read an article recently on Epicurious.com about corn syrup and healthy substitutions in recipes. I have not tried this myself in this recipe, but I really like their ideas, and I think the Brown Rice Syrup would work the best for the Chocolate Covered Cherries. Here is the link to the article:


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *