No-bake desserts don’t get any easier than this Cherry Delight with a dreamy cream cheese filling sandwiched between a graham cracker crust and cherry pie filling.
I’ve been making this recipe at least 6 times a year since receiving it from my sweet mother-in-law 28 years ago. It’s Andy’s favorite dessert. It’s super delicious and loved by everyone that eats it. It takes about 5 minutes to put together and I never bring home leftovers.
If pineapple isn’t your thing, you can use our blueberry delight recipe and top it with cherry pie filling instead.
The ingredients for this recipe are pretty simple.
- 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup melted butter
- 8 ounces of softened cream cheese
- 1 cup of confectioners (powdered sugar)
- 20 ounces of well-drained crushed pineapple
- 2 cups of whipped topping
- 2 21-ounces cans of pie filling
Vanilla wafer or shortbread cookie crumbs can be used for the crust instead of graham cracker crumbs.
2 cups of Dream Whip or homemade whipped cream can be used to substitute the whipped topping.
Blueberry, strawberry, and mixed berry pie fillings are all great on this dessert. Since there are two cans used in this recipe, you could even do half of one kind and half of another.
Before beginning, make sure your cream cheese is softened and frozen whipped topping has been thawed.
- Drain the pineapple well. I find it best to use a mesh strainer and let it is sit in the strainer over a bowl or in the sink until it’s time to add it to the recipe. (Photo 1)
- Combine the graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, and melted butter together in a small bowl. (Photo 2)
- Press the crust into the bottom of the baking pan. I use the bottom of a measuring cup or glass with a flat bottom. (Photos marked 3)
- Beat softened cream cheese until smooth and there are no lumps left. Any lumps in any of the mixture at this point will remain a lump of product in the finished product.
- Add the powdered sugar and beat until smooth. (Photo 4)
- Then add the drained pineapple, mix again. (Photo 5)
- Fold in the whipped topping. You can use a mixer for this, just don’t overmix it. (Photo 6)
- Add the mixture to the cooled crust and spread out evenly. (Photo 7)
- Gently spread the pie filling over the cream cheese filling. (Photo 8)
- Refrigerate until firm.
- The fastest way to softened cream cheese is to remove it from the box and the silver wrapper then cutting it into cubes, separate the cream cheese cubes to allow more air to be able to circulate around.
- 30 minutes is generally all it takes using this method. Please don’t use the microwave or any hot water method for softening the cream cheese for this recipe. This is not a recipe that you are cooking or baking and melted cream cheese will not whip up as fluffy as simply softened cream. Yep, been there, done that.
- If you are using frozen whipped topping, now is the time to make sure that is also softened. You may need to leave it out on the counter without a lid while you are waiting on the cream cheese.
- If you need to make your own graham cracker crumbs, you will need about 2 sleeves of graham cracker sheets. Crush them in a food processor or in a baggie using a rolling pin. You might be a few tablespoons short or over, but it will be fine. Unlike a standard pie crust, a graham cracker crust is a bit more forgiving.
- Baking the crust is optional. You will get a sturdier crust with a toasted flavor by baking in a 375⁰F oven for 7 to 10 minutes. I prefer a baked crust, but I don’t do it if I am in a hurry. If you do bake the crust, allow it too cool completely before adding the cream cheese filling to the top.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
This is made in a 9 X 13 pan making it the perfect size for BBQs, picnics, holidays and potlucks.
I love using the Pyrex glass cake pan so people can see the layers, but it works in all cake pans, even the disposable ones, that’s what I use for potlucks. No tracking down my cake pan later!
You can also make this into two smaller 8 X 8 pans and give one to the neighbors.
You can make it using 2 pie pans and make cherry cream cheese pies.
Using 2 pre-made graham cracker crusts is also perfectly acceptable.
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Cherry Delight Recipe
- 2 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs about 16 full graham crackers finely crushed
- 1 stick Butter melted
- 1 tablespoon Sugar
- 8 ounces Cream Cheese softened
- 1 cup Powdered Sugar
- 1 20- ounce can Crushed Pineapple in juice drained
- 2 cups non-dairy topping thawed
- 2 21- ounce cans Cherry Pie Filling
- Mix graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter.
- Pat into the bottom of 9 X 13 cake pan.
- Drain the pineapple well. Using a mesh strainer and pressing lightly is helpful.
- Mix cream cheese until smooth.
- Add the powdered sugar and mix well.
- Add the drained pineapple and mix until everything is incorporated.
- Fold in the whipped topping.
- Spread the filling over the crust.
- Gently pour and spread cherry pie filling over the top.
- Refrigerate at least 4 hours.
- Use softened cream cheese, I unwrap the cream cheese and cut it into cubes and leave on the counter for about 30 minutes. Don't use any method that will melt the cream cheese
- The graham cracker crust can be baked for a toastier flavor. Bake at 375ºF for 7 to 10 minutes.
- Vanilla wafers or shortbread cookie crumbs can be used instead of graham cracker crumbs.
- Can be made in 2 8-inch X 8-inch pans, or two premade graham cracker or shortbread pie crusts.
- 2 cups of Dream Whip or homemade whipped cream can be used in place of whipped topping.
- Other pie fillings may be used as a substitute for cherry.
- Total time provided includes 4 hour refrigeration time.
- How to make your own graham cracker crumbs; crush 2 sleeves of graham cracker sheets, using a food processor or placed in a baggie and using a rolling pin.
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