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Cherry Pie: Make Mamma Mary's Recipe At Home


Our True Cherry Pie. Simple, and delicious, and we've made it so you can bake it in your kitchen at home.

It’s become one of our signature products. But few people enjoying a slice of our pie on a balmy summer’s day know of the desperate 40-mile journey through the teeth of the worst blizzard of 2002 that led us to discover the secret.

We’d been making our pie for years, and our customers were happy with it. Then we tasted something better: a pie far superior to the standard gooey pie everyone, including us, was making.

How I Found Cherry Republic's Perfect Pie.

The pie was the work of Mary Lyon, the wife of a cherry farmer. She had raised eight children and had baked for all the restaurants on the Old Mission Peninsula. Mary was also the National Cherry Pie Making Champion, a title she’d won so often that people stopped counting.

Her sublime creation rewired our thinking. This, we knew, was what our pie should taste like!

So we started experimenting. We tried to follow Mary’s recipe. But we just couldn’t get it right. Our tapioca didn’t thicken. The sugar didn’t dissolve into the juice. Our betrayed customers brought their pies back and nearly threw them in our faces. One customer even asked us if the secret ingredient in our pie was sand from the beach!

Then Mary offered to teach us the art of crafting the perfect pie made with Michigan cherries. The offer was far too generous to refuse. It was so generous that even the thought of rescheduling when we saw the weather forecast didn’t enter our minds.

It had been snowing for hours, but the blizzard didn’t really strike until we were underway. Blinded by the swirling snow and with windshield-wipers rendered useless by caked-on ice, we slipped and skidded along the roads to Mary’s farmhouse 40 miles away.

The perfection of cherries: a slice of pie oozing with cherry goodness.

For five hours we sat in Mary’s kitchen at a red Formica table with stainless steel legs. Outside the farmhouse, cherry trees buckled in the ferocious wind and snow piled high. Mary talked and talked while we listened like two school kids cramming for a college entrance test. And we ate slice after slice of that yummy, yummy pie.

Finally, we had learned how to create our True Cherry Pie! Over the years since that freezing car trip, we’ve sold thousands of them. Each one is a testament to Mary Lyon and that desperate journey through the blizzard.

We've Made It Possible For You To Make Our Pie In Your Own Kitchen.

Nothing better represents Cherry Republic than Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie. After all, she's been perfecting the recipe for years. We wanted our customer's to be able to bring Northern Michigan and our pie into their homes all across the country, that's why we made "Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie Filling."

Below, you will find Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie recipe. We ask that you keep this between you, your family and friends, and us. Sharing this recipe with frisky competitors will lead to years worth of bad cherry pie-making karma. For a similar recipe, try our Cherry Pie Pockets using our Mamma Mary's Top Secret Cherries.

So without further ado, Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie.


Bottom Crust Layer

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (chilled and diced)
  • ¼ cup water

Top Crust Layer (Optional)

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (chilled and diced)
  • ¼ cup water

Pie Filling

  • 36 oz Jar of Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie Filling
  • 1 tbsp butter


  1. In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in water, a tablespoon at a time, until mixture forms a ball. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.  Tip: Work dough sparingly and keep it at a cold temperature for  a more flaky crust. *If making top crust, combine bottom crust and top crust ingredients. Once in a ball, cut dough into two even halves and refrigerate.
  2. Roll dough out to fit a 9 inch pie plate. Place crust in pie plate. Press the dough evenly into the bottom and sides of the pie plate.
  3. Pour jar of Mamma Mary's Cherry Pie Filling in crust. Dot top with 1T butter.
  4. Add top crust and primp edges with fork or fingers.
  5. Cut 2-3 slits in top of crust to release steam.
  6. For a glossy coating, make an egg wash with 1 egg and 1tsp sugar and paint a thin coating on top.
  7. Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes or until pie is golden brown.