Sweet juicy summer cherries with the kick of cinnamon and star anise make this spiced cherry gin liqueur the most delightful tipple for a summer’s day, and it’ll cheer up a cold winter’s night too!
Cherries are summertime to me. Their sweet juiciness with that smack of tartness just makes my mouth water. I love using cherries in all sorts of recipes from my cherry chutney to delicious cherry jam and more.
This time I’m making spiced cherry gin liqueur with my luscious cherries. I have made cherry brandy here on Larder Love and it is one of the most popular recipes on my blog.
What’s to love about this recipe?
- This spiced cherry gin liqueur is super easy to make with just a few ingredients.
- Making your own homemade liqueurs saves you money.
- The taste – oh this spiced cherry gin liqueur tastes like summer in a glass!
There are just a few simple ingredients for my spicy cherry gin liqueur, they are really store cupboard basics, apart from the cherries themselves.
Cherries – use bright fresh cherries that give a little to the touch but are definitely not squishy. You want the cherries for this gin liqueur to be ripe and full of juice. Discard any that are bruised or shriveled.
Sugar – just normal granulated sugar is fine here.
Spices – I’ve gone for star anise as I just love that aniseed flavour and it goes really well with cherries. The other spice I’ve used here is cinnamon. You just can’t beat that warming kick of cinnamon.
Gin – step away from the Bombay Sapphire and Hendricks or any other remotely pricey gin and go for the supermarket variety. After all, you are adding the flavour to this cherry gin liqueur, there is no reason to start with a flavour-packed gin in the first place.
Can you use frozen cherries?
Yes, if you don’t have access to fresh cherries by all means use frozen cherries. Just defrost them first then follow the simple steps of this cherry gin recipe.
Can I use a different spirit?
Yes, you can make this a cherry liqueur by using vodka instead of gin. A white rum is also rather nice with cherries.
Making this cherry gin liqueur couldn’t be easier, there are just a few simple steps to making this delicious cherry flavoured gin.
Stone the cherries, remove the pips or whatever you want to call it. The reason for doing this is to release more gorgeous juice from the cherries and thus put more flavour into your gin.
If you don’t have a cherry stoning gadget simply use a coke bottle and a straw to remove the stones from the cherries.
Put a cherry in the opening of the bottle and firmly press down on the centre with a straw. The stone will pop out and end up in the bottle.
Put the cherries, spices, cherry stones, sugar and gin into a big jar and pop on the lid.
Give it a good shake and put it in a cupboard for a week remembering to give it a shake every day.
Shaking the jar helps to dissolve the sugar into the gin thus making it a liqueur.
What is the difference between a flavoured gin and a liqueur?
One word here – sugar. Infused/flavoured gins and vodkas have no sugar. They are simply alcohol that has soaked up the flavour of the fruits or spices put in there.
A liqueur, like my cherry gin liqueur here, has added sugar for sweetness.
Strain out the solids by pouring the mixture through a sieve lined with 2 layers of kitchen roll or muslin. You want 2 layers to hold back all the tiny fibres from the cherries and to keep your liqueur clear and vibrant looking.
Decant your spiced cherry gin liqueur into a sterilised bottle and you are good to go!
Don’t throw away the gin-soaked cherries. You can use them to make jam (just add to the fresh cherries in the recipe) or as a boozy topping for really good quality vanilla ice cream – voila! the instant grown-up dessert.
Save the cherry stones to make homemade kirsch, another hugely popular recipe on my blog. Wash and dry them first as they will have gin on them and you don’t want too much of that flavour in your homemade kirsch as it is vodka-based.
How long will this keep?
Your spiced cherry gin liqueur will keep for up to a year in a nice cool cupboard. If you find over time that there is sediment at the bottom of the bottle simply do the straining process again to remove it.
You can keep a bottle of cherry gin liqueur in your freezer and serve it in tiny frozen shot glasses.
Serve it at room temperature in an old fashioned liqueur glass for the classic after dinner tipple.
I like this cherry liqueur just in a small glass with a cube or two of ice on a warm summer’s day.
You can also add spiced cherry gin to a cocktail of your choice.
Looking for more cherry inspired recipes to try? Then check these out before you go;
Finally, if you do try this recipe don’t forget to leave a comment/star rating below as I just love to hear from readers. Want more Larder Love? Then follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter and sign up for my newsletter too of course.
Spiced Cherry Gin Liqueur
- 500 g cherries remove the stones (see notes in blog post)
- 500 ml gin
- 150 g sugar
- 2 star anise
- 1/2 cinnamon stick
- remove the stones from the cherries and put all ingredients into a large jar, pop on the lid and give it a shake.
- set aside in a cupboard for a week shaking every day to help dissolve the sugar
- sieve the liqueur through 2 layers of muslin/kitchen roll into a sterilised bottle