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Very Cherry Meringue Dessert Recipe

Cherry Meringue Dessert combines layers of a crispy tender meringue with a smooth cream cheese mixture that’s slathered with a sweet-tart cherry topping. It’s an easy cherry dessert that’s just as pretty to look at as it is delicious.

NOTE: The meringue layer should be made 12 hours or the day before it’s needed.

This post has been updated from 2016 to improve readers’ experience.

Table view of a white plate holding a piece of meringue dessert topped with a cherry raspberry sauce.

Very Cherry Meringue Dessert combines layers of flavors and textures. This beautiful cherry dessert will be a hit on any table.

One look at this Meringue dessert will have friends and family doing a double-take.

This is truly a unique layered Cherry Meringue dessert that was handed down from my Grandmother.

Meringue can be intimidating but it doesn’t have to be. I’m sharing tips with you to guarantee your cherry dessert is a success.

A piece of baked Meringue topped and spilling down the side with red cherries. Another plate and a coffee cup sit in the background.

Cherry Meringue Dessert Recipe Ingredients.

  • Egg whitesDo not substitute with packaged egg whites.
    • The pasteurization process of packaged egg whites can prevent egg whites from forming a stable meringue.
  • Cream of tartar – acts as a stabilizer in the meringue.
  • Salt – brings out the sweetness of the sugar.
  • Sugar – white granulated sugar
  • Cream cheese – we used a full-fat version.
    • You can also use a light version. We haven’t experimented with the fat-free version.
  • Vanilla extract – we used pure vanilla and not an imitation.
  • Whipped topping – We purchased the whipped topping.
    • You can substitute by making your own using 1-1/2 cups of heavy whipping cream.
  • Miniature marshmallows
  • Cherry Pie Filling – we like the “more fruit” version but use what you have available.
  • Frozen, unsweetened raspberries – The unsweetened version adds a tartness that balances out the sweetness of the cherry pie filling.

How to make Cherry Meringue Dessert in 3 steps

This Meringue Dessert is best if made about 12 hours before you want to serve it. That gives the creamy level a chance to blend with the meringue layer. You can make the cherry topping ahead of time and add it right before serving it. The flavors and textures of this cherry dessert are amazing.

Meringue

Two photo grid showing the texture of meringue next to a photo of a 9x13 pan layered with the meringue layer.
The proper texture of meringue
  1. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, beat egg whites on medium-low until foamy.
  2. Add cream of tartar and beat on medium until peaks start to form.
  3. Add sugar and salt and beat on medium-high to high until stiff and glossy.
  4. Pour into a well-greased 9×13 pan.
  5. Bake for 60 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the pan in the oven to cool for 12 hours or overnight with the door closed. To be honest, my meringue was in the oven for probably closer to 15 hours.

If the eggs are beaten too quickly in the beginning the structure of the foam will not be as strong and later the egg whites will not whip up as high.

Creamy layer

  1. Beat cream cheese, vanilla, and sugar together until smooth and creamy.
  2. Fold in the whipped topping and marshmallows. We did this by hand with a spatula.
  3. Spread the mixture over the Meringue layer.
  4. Refrigerate for 3 hours or longer.

Cherry topping

  1. Stir the cherry pie filling and the frozen raspberries together.
  2. Refrigerate until serving.

Assembly

  1. Cut dessert into squares.
  2. Top with cherry mixture.
Table view of a piece of baked Meringue topped and spilling down the side with red cherries. A forkful of the dessert hovers in front of the dessert and a second piece appear in the background.

Tips for the perfect Meringue dessert with cherries

Meringue

  • Use fresh eggs. Old eggs can collapse when other ingredients are folded in.
  • Bring egg whites to room temperature. Cold egg whites can reduce the volume you get when whipping.
    • You can put the eggs into a bowl of room temperature water for 5 minutes to bring them to room temperature instead of leaving them out for an extended period of time. That’s my prefered method.
  • Don’t let the egg yolk get into the egg whites. If they do, spoon them out before whipping.
  • Don’t overbeat the egg whites. Overbeaten egg whites can look lumpy or dry. It can also cause the meringue to collapse.
  • Meringue is baked at a low temperature because they tend to burn.
  • Meringue is left in the oven to cool slowly which will prevent or reduce cracking. (Source)

Creamy layer

  • Make sure cream cheese is at room temperature before beating. This will make blending easier and creamier when other ingredients are added.

Cherry topping

  • Use frozen, unsweetened raspberries that aren’t packed in juice. The juice will thin the topping causing it to bleed on the plate.
  • Using unsweetened raspberries adds a tartness to the sweet cherry pie filling.
Angled photo of a piece of baked Meringue topped and spilling down the side with red cherries. A second piece and two cups of coffee sit in the background.

How to store Cherry Meringue Dessert

This meringue dessert should be refrigerated.

I also suggest that the topping be added right before serving and not to the top of the uncut meringue-cream layer.

What if my meringue cracks?

When the meringue comes out of the oven you may see a few cracks, but it will still tender in the center.

The creamy layer and beautiful topping will cover them up so it doesn’t matter if there are a couple of cracks. They’ll be covered in yumminess!

Can this Cherry Dessert be made ahead of time?

Yes! Meringue can be baked two or three days in advance and stored at room temperature in an airtight container.

Add the cream layer at least 3 hours before you need it so it has a chance to meld together and then store it in the refrigerator.

Top individual pieces with the cherry topping right before serving.

Our favorite kitchen gadgets

A great mixer makes this recipe easier to put together. The only other thing you will need is a 9×13 pan and our favorite silicone spatulas.

If you’re still looking for creamy desserts, here are some you may enjoy

We LOVE Dessert! You can find all of our dessert recipes here!

Pin this amazing Cherry Dessert!

Two photo collage for Pinterest. The top photo shows a slice of cherry meringue dessert behind a fork filled with the dessert.

Doesn’t this dessert look like it’s ready for Valentine’s Day, the 4th of July, or a Black Tie party?

If you enjoyed this recipe here are a few more you may like

Don’t forget to stop back and let me know how your cherry meringue dessert came out!

3/4 angle of a slice of meringue dessert topped with a cherry raspberry filing.
Print
5 from 15 votes

Very Cherry Meringue Dessert

Cherry Meringue Dessert combines layers of a crispy tender meringue with a smooth cream cheese mixture that's slathered with a sweet-tart cherry topping.
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Cooling time 12 hrs
Total Time 13 hrs 25 mins
Servings 12
Author Hostess At Heart

Ingredients

Meringue

  • 6 egg whites
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cups sugar

Cream Layer

  • 8 oz cream cheese
  • 1-1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 cups whipped topping
  • 2 cups miniature marshmallows
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Topping

  • 20 oz cherry pie filling can
  • 12 oz raspberries package frozen unsweetened

Instructions

Meringue Step

  • Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
  • In the bowl of an electric stand mixer, beat egg whites on medium until foamy. Add cream of tartar and beat on medium-high until peaks start to form. Add sugar and beat until stiff and glossy.
  • Pour into a well-greased 9×13 pan. Bake for 60 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the pan in the oven for 12 hours or overnight with the oven door closed.

Cream Step

  • Beat cream cheese, vanilla, salt, and sugar together. Fold in whipped topping and marshmallows. Spread over the Meringue layer. Refrigerate for 3 hours or longer. Prepare the topping.

Topping

  • Mix the cherry pie filling with frozen raspberries. Refrigerate until serving.
  • Cut dessert into squares and top with the cherry mixture.
  • Refrigerate leftovers.

Notes

We recommend that the meringue mixture not be topped with the cherry mixture until serving.

Nutrition

Calories: 342kcal | Carbohydrates: 64g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 176mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 47g | Vitamin A: 370IU | Vitamin C: 9.2mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 0.4mg
This recipe was calculated using the exact brands and measurements I used to make this recipe. If you are following a strict diet please note changing anything will cause the nutritional info to change. My calculations are intended as a guide only.
Tried this recipe? That’s awesome!Mention @hostessatheart or tag #hostessatheart!
Recipe Rating




Becky

Saturday 12th of February 2022

When is the salt added to merengue?

Julie Menghini

Sunday 13th of February 2022

Thanks for catching that, Becky! I add the salt when I add the sugar. I've fixed the recipe.

Michaela Kenkel

Thursday 28th of January 2021

Julie -- this is hands down the BEST cherry dessert EVER. My oldest son turns his nose up to all things dessert, with the exception of cherry pie - and I thought I would take this recipe for a spin and see if I could raise his eyebrows. It was like those cartoon eyeballs! LOL!! He had TWO pieces and took one home!

Julie Menghini

Thursday 28th of January 2021

I love that, Michaela! It's fun to get those cartoon eyeballs when you share!

Erin

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

I stumbled upon this meringue dessert when brainstorming Valentine's Day desserts and had to do a test to see how it was. And WOW! Just wow! This recipe is excellent, and your tips and tricks to making it right made it so much easier! Thank you--I can't wait to make this for Valentine's!

Julie Menghini

Thursday 28th of January 2021

Thank you, Erin. It's perfect for Valentine's Day!

Angela

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

What a wonderful dessert recipe! My whole family enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing!

Julie Menghini

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

Thank you, Angela! So glad you enjoyed it!

Jessica Formicola

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

I love a good meringue! I will definitely be making this for Valentine's Day for the family!

Julie Menghini

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

Thank you, Jessica! It's the perfect Valentine's dessert!