Cherry Ice Cream with Amaretto

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This easy cherry ice cream stays perfectly scoopable thanks to the addition of amaretto liqueur. It’s egg-free, so there’s no fuss!

If there’s one thing my kids as for from the grocery store, week after week, it’s ice cream. No matter the season, it’s definitely their favorite dessert.

Lucky for them I love making ice cream, from classic vanilla ice cream to nutty rocky road. Of course, sometimes I want an ice cream just for me, and that’s where this cherry ice cream comes in.

Two waffle bowls of pink and white scooped ice cream, each topped with a cherry piece. An ice cream scoop is placed between the two bowls on a marbled surface.

With just a little bit of amaretto, this creamy cherry ice cream is wonderful to make even when it’s not cherry season, thanks to the shortcut of jarred maraschino cherries. And on top of a slice of cherry pie? Incredible!

Get out your ice cream maker, you’ll want to make this one ASAP!

Ingredients for cherry ice cream

Full list of ingredients including quantities is located in the recipe card.

You’ll need:

Maraschino cherries – Rather than using fresh cherries, this recipe calls for jarred maraschino cherries and their syrup. Jar sizes vary, so you might need to buy 2 to get the amount needed for this recipe.

Heavy cream – Also labeled as heavy whipping cream, this makes our ice cream wonderfully creamy!

Milk – I recommend using whole milk for making ice cream. 2% will also work, but your ice cream won’t be quite as rich. I do not recommend using skim milk to make ice cream.

Granulated sugar – The cherry syrup alone doesn’t provide enough sweetness, so some sugar is required.

Amaretto liqueur – Amaretto provides a wonderful almond flavor. If you prefer to make this recipe without alcohol, you can swap in 1 teaspoon almond extract instead.

Why use alcohol in ice cream?

The amaretto we’re using here isn’t just for flavor, although it’s definitely a great pairing for cherries!

Ever go to grab your ice cream from the freezer and notice it’s rock hard? Adding alcohol to ice cream helps keep it soft enough for scooping. 

It’s important to not add too much alcohol, or alcohol that is too strong, otherwise you will have issues freezing. However, 1-2 tablespoons is just enough for flavor and scoopability!

A waffle bowl contains three scoops of pink ice cream with a small red piece of fruit on top, set on a white hexagonal tiled surface.

How to make this recipe

First, make sure the bowl of your ice cream maker is completely frozen. I keep mine in the freezer so I can make ice cream any time I want, but freezing overnight is enough to prepare the bowl.

To make the ice cream mixture, strain the cherries over a bowl, reserving the syrup.

Slice half of the cherries into quarters and set aside.

Place the remaining cherries into a blender and add the reserved syrup, Purée until smooth, then pour into a bowl or a large liquid measuring cup.

Add the heavy cream, milk, and sugar, and whisk well to blend. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.

When you’re ready to make the ice cream, set up your ice cream machine with the bowl inserted.

Remove the ice cream mixture from the fridge and whisk in the amaretto. Pour into the ice cream maker and churn according to manufacturer instructions.

Just before the machine is finished churning, add in the reserved cherry pieces.

Once the ice cream is churned, transfer it to a freezer-safe container. I recommend silicone ice cream containers. Do not use metal loaf pans for long-term storage, as they do not have an airtight seal and can cause your ice cream to develop freezer burn.

Chill the ice cream in the freezer for 4 hours, or until solid, before serving.

Two waffle bowls with scoops of cherry ice cream and cherry pieces, along with an ice cream scooper on a hexagon-tiled white surface.


This is not a no-churn ice cream. You will need an ice cream maker. It’s worth it, trust me!

I absolutely love making this recipe using Amarena cherries. You can sometimes find them for a great price at Costco. Luxardo cherries are also good, but expensive.

I have not made this recipe with fresh cherries, but because you’ll be without the cherry syrup, you’ll likely need to adjust the sugar levels, depending on the flavor of your cherries. Make sure to only use pitted cherries!

Serve this homemade ice cream in cones, over pie, or in a sundae. Or enjoy right from the container — I won’t tell!

Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-star review below!
It means so much when you enjoy my recipes, so let me know how it goes and leave a comment if you have any questions.

Two waffle bowls of pink and white scooped ice cream, each topped with a cherry piece. An ice cream scoop is placed between the two bowls on a marbled surface.

Cherry Ice Cream with Amaretto

No pitting required! This cherry ice cream recipe uses jarred maraschino cherries for a simple shortcut.
Author : Megan Myers
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 404 kcal


  • 11 ounces maraschino cherries, without stems
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons amaretto liqueur


  • Strain cherries over a bowl, reserving liquid. Slice half the cherries into quarters and set aside.
  • In a blender, purée remaining cherries with the reserved juice, then pour into a medium bowl. Whisk in cream, milk and sugar. Cover and chill 2 hours.
  • When ready to make the ice cream, add amaretto and mix well. Pour liquid into machine and freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions. In the last few minutes of churning, mix in the reserved sliced cherries. Scoop ice cream into freezer containers and chill completely, until ready to serve.


  • Makes about 1 1/2 quarts.


Calories: 404 kcalCarbohydrates: 45 gProtein: 4 gFat: 24 gSaturated Fat: 15 gCholesterol: 75 mgSodium: 42 mgPotassium: 161 mgFiber: 2 gSugar: 43 gIron: 0.3 mg

Nutrition information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate based on online calculators. Any nutritional information found on Stetted should be used as a general guideline only.

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About Megan

I focus on fresh ingredients and easy methods, with spins that keep meals interesting. Dinnertime shouldn’t be stressful or complicated, and I’m here to help you enjoy the time spent in the kitchen. Read more…

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