My mom’s dad died when I was fairly young. We often talked about him as I was growing up…telling stories, and such. One thing that always stuck with me was his cake of choice for birthdays – a cherry nut cake. Very popular in the 50’s and 60’s. I’ve made the pink cake studded with cherries before, and always thought it would translate well to cupcake form. But you guys know me…I never got around to it.

When cleaning out the refrigerator this weekend, I happened upon about four jars or maraschino cherries lurking in the back of the shelves.  What to do with them? I had a local event that I was on the hook to donate some baked goods for…so the stars aligned in my kitchen, and I whipped up these delightful cupcakes!

I took my favorite vanilla cupcake recipe, adding almond extract and finely chopped maraschinos (used the food processor and pulsed a few times). I thought about adding some of the cherry syrup, but wanted to really showcase the cherry flecks. Plus, the vanilla cake really makes the pink frosting “pop” all the more…

And, the frosting. Oh my Heavens. Again, I used my basic buttercream recipe – and added the juice from the cherry jar, as well as a little almond extract for that almondy kick.

Topped with a cherry and a few sliced almonds for garnish, they’re positively perfect for spring or Easter celebrations! I think old “Grendad” would approve.


  1. Posted March 27, 2017 at 1:08 PM | Permalink

    Cherries and almond are a fantastic combo. These look fabulous!

  2. Posted March 27, 2017 at 3:10 PM | Permalink

    I love that you fold in chopped cherries in the batter and use the juice in the frosting mix. For some reason I always associate maraschino cherries with bourbon… I wonder if the frosting will mind terribly if I substituted 1 tbsp cherry juice with bourbon?:) Should be enough to impart flavor? And a good match for the almond extract?

  3. Posted March 28, 2017 at 8:23 PM | Permalink

    These look absolutely delectable. I can’t get enough of the combination of cherry and almonds in desserts, it’s just the best.

  4. Posted March 29, 2017 at 9:35 AM | Permalink

    These are so pretty! Quite the show stoppers if you ask me!

  5. Posted March 30, 2017 at 2:32 PM | Permalink

    I don’t think I’ve ever had a cherry nut cake before, but I love that you turned your grandfathers favorite cake into cupcakes!! These are so cute! And I’m willing to bet they taste even better than they look! I’ll take 12. 😉 Cheers!

  6. Posted March 31, 2017 at 12:36 PM | Permalink

    I lost my Dad way too early also! I always made cupcakes for him, so your post was really lovely and brought back some great memories! Thanks for sharing!

    • Posted April 3, 2017 at 11:19 AM | Permalink

      I find that food is my favorite way to remember! Thanks for the sweet comment, Cheyanne 🙂

  7. Posted March 31, 2017 at 10:32 PM | Permalink

    I bet your Grendad would have LOVED these.. they certainly sound delicious! I lost my mom before she was able to meet some of her grandchildren – I hope I can keep her memory alive for them like that!

    • Posted April 3, 2017 at 11:20 AM | Permalink

      Food is one of the strongest tangible connections we have, I think. Enjoy your time with those babes! 🙂

  8. Posted April 3, 2017 at 11:36 AM | Permalink

    These are beautiful Laura!! Love the colors and the flavors. They’d be perfect for the Easter dessert table!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.