Sour Cherry Crumb Bars

September 17th, 2009  | Category: Cakes, Fruit

Sour Cherry Crumb Bars

I made up something called a Monday Morning Syndrome Cake a while ago. It is basically a cake that you bake on a Sunday night, which helps you to survive the cubicle cabin fever on the first working day of the week.  And somewhere along the line I completely forgot about this genius idea. No wonder why I’ve been grumpy on Monday mornings lately.

So when I received my weekly delivery of organic produce and saw these rubies sparkling, I couldn’t help but bake these Sour Cherry Crumb Bars. The sourness of the cherries resting on an air-light cake is perfectly complemented by the sweet buttery crumbs on top.

And what if it’s not Monday tomorrow? Bake it right now and call it a “Thank God It’s Friday Morning Cake”. I am sure your co-workers won’t get hung up on the name so much.

Sour Cherry Crumb Bars

If you can’t find sour cherries, these crumb bars can also be made with any stone fruit or berries that are in season. Hope you enjoy.

Sour Cherry Crumb Bars

If you like these cakes, I am sure you’ll like these, too:



For the crumb topping:

  • 1+1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 tbsp butter, cold and cut into cubes

For the cake:

  • 1 pound (2+1/2 cups) sour cherries, pitted
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 large egss
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two sides. Butter and flour parchment and pan, tapping out excess flour.
  2. To make the crumb topping, mix flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Add cold butter (cut into 1/4-inch cubes) to the flour mixture and pulse until the butter cubes are pea-sized and coated with flour. Do not let the dough come together in a ball. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  3. To make the cake, whisk  flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside. Working in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter and confectioners’ sugar until light and fluffy; beat in eggs, one at a time. With mixer on low, beat in vanilla, then flour mixture.
  4. Spread batter in prepared pan. Sprinkle with pitted sour cherries and top with the crumb topping.
  5. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the crumbs are golden and a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool completely in pan. Using paper overhang, lift cake from pan and cut into 16 bars.
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  1. 1 - Meeta on September 17th, 2009

    cherries are one of my fave fruits! so i am licking my lips here!

  2. 2 - Patricia Scarpin on September 17th, 2009

    These look so good, Cenk – I’ll be saving the recipe for December, when cherries are on their peak here.

    Beautiful photos!

  3. 3 - The Hungry Mouse on September 17th, 2009

    Oh gosh, I love sour cherries. And you’re dead on with the cabin fever thing. Nothing cures that like homemade treats.


  4. 4 - Nava on September 17th, 2009

    What is “confectioners’ sugar” ?

  5. 5 - robin on September 17th, 2009

    I, really fortunately, am able to spend all day Monday cooking now, so I’ve been baking cakes for Tuesdays lately… I love the concept of having a cake for the work-week. 🙂

    Had a sour cherry pie last week and I’m still in a crazy mood for cherries; this is perfect.

  6. 6 - Gera @ SweetsFoods on September 17th, 2009

    What strong is the first working day of the week, always in a hurry and without time for nothing. For me is called Monday.

    But to begin the week with these cheery crumb bars already done is a great pleasure for the body and for the sweet mind too 🙂



  7. 7 - Jen @ MaplenCornbread on September 17th, 2009

    Those look SO good! I love it both ways- to beat the Monday blues and to THANK the heavens tomorrow is friday!!

  8. 8 - joey on September 18th, 2009

    This looks absolutely delish! We don’t get sour cherries here (even regular cherries are imported and really expensive) but we have other fruits I can substitute…saving this!

  9. 9 - Cenk on September 18th, 2009

    Thank you all!

    Nava – It is also called powdered sugar.

  10. 10 - Mrs Ergül on September 18th, 2009


    I love the photos! As usual!

  11. 11 - annie on September 18th, 2009

    I am in Michigan, which is “cherry country,” and have just been given a bag of sour cherries by a friend who spent time in Traverse City. It wasn’t really enough for preserves, and my family doesn’t like meat with fruit in the sauce (peasants every one), but now I have a lovely destiny for my cherries. Thanks!!

  12. 12 - Gizem on September 18th, 2009

    I will try with cornelian cherries. Looks deliciouuusss

  13. 13 - Cenk on September 18th, 2009

    annie – Sounds great. Hope you like the recipe. Please let me know how it turns out.

  14. 14 - CookiePie on September 19th, 2009

    I love sour cherries!!! Those bars look soooo delicious!

  15. 15 - thepinkpeppercorn on September 19th, 2009

    This looks sooooo very good!

  16. 16 - Indigo on September 21st, 2009

    My friend Ed and I used to have ‘Cake Monday’ in the Common Room at school where we’d take it in turns to bring stuff in, so I completely approve of this idea =D. Maybe I’ll try to start it up at uni when I go back in a couple of weeks; these would be perfect..!

  17. 17 - Sam@BingeNYC on September 21st, 2009

    These look insane delicious. Wish I could get my hands on some sour cherries.

  18. 18 - pity on September 23rd, 2009

    i’m in luck, i just bought some sour cherries, and was looking for some recipes wit them, and here is your blog! wonderful recipe, will try it right away,

    cheers from london,


  19. 19 - Yasemin on September 23rd, 2009

    Wow! Heavenly. Eline saglik, they look amazing.

  20. 20 - Brit on September 23rd, 2009

    My husband and I always have a glass of wine and desert on our patio each night while watching the sunset. We are going to make this tomorrow!

    Thanks for this!
    (If you need to know how to choose the best wine for each recipe, click my name – it’s a good site I use)…

  21. 21 - suna on September 25th, 2009

    cenk, ingilizce bilmedigimden degil ama bana bu ingiliz/amerikan terminolojisi yabanci geliyor. Lutfen en kisa zaman Turkce tarif!
    sevgiyle ve isikla.

  22. 22 - MariannaF on September 25th, 2009

    mmmmm this looks so tempting!!! i can totally see myself enjoying this with a cup of milk or tea! fab recipe & fab pictures (your turkey ones in previous posts too are mindblowing!)

  23. 23 - suna on September 26th, 2009

    cok pardon, varmis bunun tarifi simdi gordum 🙂

  24. 24 - Foodhunter Mark Brownstein on September 26th, 2009

    Cheers chef, Love the sour cherry bars, this makes me think of my wife as she repeats how great a sour cherry strudel in Budapest was, meantime I am the Hungarian. By the way arent there sour cherries in Istanbul? I will be there Oct 8th-15. And since I see baking and sweets are big with you, as they are with me, what are your fave bakeries, both western and Turkish? See you there. Mark B

  25. 25 - Manggy on September 28th, 2009

    Awesome idea. Even awesomer? This cake. I need a slice, like, yesterday (even though it was Sunday yesterday for me 🙂

  26. 26 - Yvonne, My Halal Kitchen on October 1st, 2009

    Beautiful site- I feel like I travel to Turkey whenever I visit here…

    tesakur (thank you)!

  27. 27 - gizem de brx. on October 13th, 2009

    Cenk, I tried the recipe this weekend and did not take time to finish them all 16 bars.
    Delicious, delicisios, delicious..
    I could not decide if which part is the best part; crumb topping or berry mix (I used beryy mix instead of sour cherries)I will bake agaoin to think about this issue. i am confused! 🙂

  28. 28 - Ms. Starr on December 23rd, 2009

    Hello! I made this recepie the other day and it turned out lovely! It is delicious and inexpensive! However I am posting because I was clicking link after link and I stumbled upon a recepie called “Nans Gingerbread” or something along the lines. I was really looking foreword to baking them, but I can no longer find the recepie! I’m not certain it was on this site- it’s also no longer in my internet history. Sigh 🙁 If anybody happens to know the link- please help!


  29. 29 - Cenk on December 23rd, 2009

    Ms. Starr – Sorry, no such recipe exists here.

  30. 30 - Emi on June 28th, 2010

    hello – i stumbled upon your blog the other day and just made this. It’s really wonderful! thank you for the great recipe. I love your site.

  31. 31 - judy on September 18th, 2011

    Hi! I live in Istanbul and have been lucky enough to find delicious fresh visne cherries this week and last. This is the second time I’m making this recipe and I have to tell you it is amazing!
    My son who doesn’t like cherries ate at least half of this by himself.
    Keep the wonderful recipes flowing our way, PLEASE!
    By the way…I tried to get in touch with your supplier of organic veggies a few months ago, but never go a response. Could you share the contact again?
    Happy baking,

  32. 32 - Cenk on September 20th, 2011

    judy – Glad to hear you liked the recipe! You can reach Pınar Hanım at (

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