Tart Cherry Sponge Cake

It is very satisfying to have frozen fruit on hand over the winter.  We were blessed with a bountiful crop from our Montmorency cherry tree in the back yard and have quite a few storage bags full of this tart fruit in our freezer. You can find frozen sour cherries in some Midwest grocery stores. Frozen blueberries are a possible substitution, but you may need to add some water to the juice since you may not have quite a cup after thawing the berries.  This recipe is easy to make and the sauce made me feel like I made an extra effort.  This is a dessert I typically make for a special occasion, like Valentine's day.

Sour Cherry Sponge Cake

Adapted from Epicurious

Ingredients for cake:

  • 4T unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 c Half and Half
  • 1 1/2 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 pt frozen sour cherries, thawed, juice reserved


  • I c sugar
  • 1 c reserved juice from fruit
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 T butter
  • 1 T Grand Marnier (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Cream together butter and sugar with a mixer on medium high until smooth.  Mix in eggs and milk adding flour baking powder mixture 1/2 c at a time.  Stir in cherries.  Place in a 8 or 9 inch round baking pan that has been greased. 

For sauce, combine juice, sugar and vanilla in a sauce pan and simmer for 8-10 minutes.  Remove from heat and whisk in 1 T of butter, if using Grand Marnier add it at this time.

Bake for 35-40 minutes until toothpick comes out clean.  Cool for 10 minutes and then pour 1/3rd of the prepared sauce over the warm cake.  Let set for an additional 15 minutes before serving.  Drizzle remaining sauce over cut pieces of cake. Top with whipped cream if desired.