Cherries can be sweet or tart, depending on the type of cherry and the ripeness of the cherries when they were picked. Store-bought cherry pie filling is often a little too tart and not sweet enough for your baking needs. You can just dump in some sugar, but other, more creative solutions may suit your palate better. Use one sweetening technique or several different methods together, tasting as you go, to create a pie filling that tastes just how you want it.
Things You'll Need
Jam or jelly
Sweetened condensed milk
Add a few tablespoons of your favorite jam or jelly to the cherry pie filling and mix thoroughly. Thin too-thick jams or jellies first with fruit juice for extra sweetness if desired.
Heat sweet, fresh, frozen or canned cherries over the stove with water and sugar until they cook down into a sweet, syrupy mixture. Mix in your tart or unsweetened cherry pie filling into the sweet cherry mixture and continue to simmer until the mixture reaches the thickness you want.
Add a few tablespoons of pineapple tidbits or pureed, canned pineapple to the cherry pie filling. The flavors of cherry and pineapple complement each other, and the pineapple adds some additional sweetness to your mix. Try other sweet fruits such as cooked apples, canned peaches or mixed berries.
Add thick, syrupy sweeteners, such as honey, corn syrup, agave nectar or maple syrup to add sweetness without drastically altering the overall texture and consistency of the cherry pie filling. Use 1 to 3 tablespoons per 12-ounce can.
Add cherry glaze, found in the baking aisle in the supermarket, which is essentially the canned cherry mixture without the cherries. The glaze is typically sweeter than the cherries and may add just enough sweetness to improve the flavor of your canned pie filling. Add up to 1/4 cup per 12-ounce can.
Mix the pie filling with 1 to 2 cups of whipped topping to create a sweeter, creamier pie filling.
Add a small can of sweetened condensed milk to the pie filling. Cook the mixture over medium heat in a sauce pan until the mixture reduces to the right thickness.
When all else fails, add plain white sugar, one tablespoon at a time, until your mixture is as sweet as you want. Let the mix sit for 10 minutes before you taste it to allow the sugars to dissolve and meld with the cherry flavors.