Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries, a simple chocolate dipped cherries recipe made with fresh cherries, homemade vegan chocolate sauce, and flaked sea salt. Decadent and delicious!

dark chocolate covered cherries with sea salt on white marble background
Dark chocolate-covered cherries with a sprinkle of sea salt

Do you love chocolate covered cherries? For most of us it’s impossible to skip a plate of chocolate cherries at parties, but too often chocolate cherry desserts are made with ultra-sweet maraschino cherries that are full of sugary syrups, fake colors, and questionable additives.

That’s why we set out to make our own cherry chocolates using fresh, seasonal cherries and a homemade dark chocolate sauce made with completely plant-based ingredients. Add a bit of flaky sea salt and it is a salty and sweet treat that will curb that chocolate craving — without the guilt.

Want to learn how to make this easy 6-ingredient, 20-minute homemade chocolate dipped cherry recipe? Let’s do it!

black cherries, dark chocolate chips, a bowl of sea salt, and a bowl of melted chocolate on a white marble table
Making homemade chocolate cherries is simple: only 6 ingredients + 20 minutes!

How to make Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries

This plant-based chocolate covered cherries recipe is super simple and only requires 6 ingredients and takes only 20 minutes to prepare.

First things first, prep your cherries by washing and drying completed so that the chocolate easily coats the outside of the fruit. We chose Bing cherries as we first tried this recipe in the height of cherry season when black (or Bing) cherries were in their prime, but any fresh cherries will do.

Next it’s time to make the homemade vegan chocolate sauce. Start by heating a small sauce pan (do you have environmentally-friendly cookware?) over very low heat, then adding 2 tablespoons of coconut oil to the pan and heating until oil is melted.

a small white saucepan with coconut oil, dark chocolate chips, vanilla, and maple syrup
Making homemade plant-based chocolate sauce is simple and avoids unnecessary additives often found in premade chocolate sauces

Then add unsweetened chocolate chips, a splash of vanilla, and a drizzle of maple syrup and stir well until the chocolate sauce is melted and smooth. Pour the sauce into a shallow bowl or plate that will be easy for dipping the cherries.

Finally it’s time to coat the cherries in chocolate. Dip each cherry into the chocolate sauce and, using the stem, twirl each cherry around until it is completed coated. Then transfer the cherry to a baking sheet or large serving plate that is coated in parchment paper.

a white bowl of melted chocolate with three black cherries coated in chocolate on a table with a green plant
Coat cherries in chocolate on all sides, using the stem to twirl in chocolate sauce

After all cherries have been coated in chocolate and placed on the wax paper-lined baking sheet, sprinkle with flaked sea salt (we like Maldon smoked sea salt for a kick of flavor) and place cherries in the freezer for 15 minutes to harden the chocolate. Then remove and serve immediately for a delicious and decadent dessert!

chocolate covered cherries on a sheet of waxed parchment paper on a baking sheet
Place cherries on parchment paper (recycled!) and freeze until chocolate in hard

Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries: Tips, tricks, and tools

This homemade chocolate covered cherry recipe is super simple to make and requires only five ingredients, but there are a few tips and tricks for streamlining preparation:

  • Make sure cherries are clean and completely dried. The chocolate sauce will not stick as well to dirty or wet cherries, so make sure to let the cherries dry completed after washing.
  • Use unsweetened dark chocolate chips, or skip the maple syrup if using sweetened. This recipe was written so that you can control the added sugar content by using unsweetened chocolate and then adding in maple syrup to your desired sweetness. However, you can use sweetened dark chocolate and skip the maple syrup if needed.
  • Use flaked sea salt. Flaked sea salt complements dark chocolate well and provides a bit of crunch to the cherries. Salt that is ground too small (like table salt) will not provide the same flavor and texture.
  • Warning: This is not a great recipe to serve at hot outdoor parties! Because the chocolate hardens in the freezer, this is not a recipe you would want to serve in the heat outdoors (think melted chocolate sauce everywhere!). However, the cherries will hold up well at room temperature.
cherries dipped in dark chocolate sauce and sprinkled with sea salt a white table
Dark chocolate covered cherries are a simple and sweet treat!

Love this simple plant-based dessert recipe? Check out our other sweets recipes with simple ingredients, like these Saffron Poached Pears or Blood Orange Kiwi Mint Salad — both made with fruit and other plant-based ingredients. Feeling something chocolate-y, but still on the healthy side? Try our favorite Vegan Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies to curb your next sweet craving.

Want more recipes with cherries? We’ve got you covered. Try this reader-favorite Black Cherry Basil Toast or Black Cherry Hoecakes to get your cherry season fix. Or search the Green Eating Recipe Index for all fruit-forward desserts.

Did you make this Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries recipe? Leave a comment below and rate the recipe to let us know how it turned out. Save this cherry dessert recipe for later by pinning to your favorite sweets Pinterest board and make sure to tag me on Fork in the Road’s Instagram to show me your chocolate covered cherry creations!

Yield: 2 cups

Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries

dark chocolate covered cherries with sea salt on white marble background

Salted Dark Chocolate Covered Cherries, a simple chocolate dipped cherries recipe made with fresh cherries, homemade vegan chocolate sauce, and flaked sea salt. Decadent and delicious!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh cherries, washed and dried
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil
  • ½ cup unsweetened dark chocolate, chips or chunks
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup
  • pinch of flaky sea salt

Instructions

Vegan Chocolate Sauce

  1. To a small saucepan over very low heat add coconut oil and cook until melted, about 1 minute. Add chocolate, vanilla, and maple syrup and stir often until melted and smooth.
  2. Remove from heat and place on a plate or shallow bowl

Salted Chocolate Covered Cherries

  1. First, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or waxed paper and make sure cherries are clean and completed dried.
  2. Dip cherries in chocolate sauce to cover all sides, then transfer to parchment paper. Sprinkle cherries with flaked sea salt.
  3. Put baking sheet in freezer for 15 minutes to freeze chocolate, then remove and serve immediately for best presentation. Store leftover cherries in airtight glass storage container in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Notes

Notes: Cherries are best when first removed from freezer as chocolate will have hardened, but they do hold up well at room temperature if placed on a serving plate. However, this is not a great recipe to serve at hot outdoor parties because the chocolate will melt. If using sweetened chocolate, skip the maple syrup or only add in slowly to desired sweetness once chocolate is melted.

Tools Needed: environmentally-friendly cookware, cookie sheet, parchment paper

Prep Ahead: This chocolate covered cherries recipe is best served immediately, but if you are prepping ahead for a party we suggest freezing cherries on the serving plate you plan to use so that transferring them from the baking sheet will not disturb the hardened chocolate.

Leftovers and Storage: Store leftover cherries in an airtight glass storage container in the refrigerator for up to five days. We do not recommend freezing as the chocolate will melt when thawed.

Nutrition Information:

Serving Size:

1/2 cup (4-6 cherries)

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 148Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 175mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 2gSugar: 14gProtein: 1g