Close Up Of Iced Organic Cherry Lemonade With Fresh Berries On The Blue Table, natural cherry flavor

Natural Cherry Flavor | Trends & Innovation

Cherries are undeniably popular during the summer months, with their juicy tartness providing a refreshing burst of natural fruit flavor.  Cherry flavor is used in many different food and beverage products, from candies to ice creams and cocktails to sodas.  It’s no surprise that cherry has become such a beloved flavor for the warmer months!  But what makes natural cherry flavor so great? And which other flavors pair well with cherry?

two little girls playing with fresh cherries
Few flavors capture the playful joy of childhood quite like cherry does!

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A versatile fruit flavor

The popularity of cherry flavor can be partly attributed to its versatility as both a sweet and savory flavoring agent.  Its natural sweetness means cherries work especially well in desserts like cakes or pies.  However, its slightly tangy notes also make it an excellent addition to savory dishes such as salads or sauces.  Chefs use cherry flavor to enhance their dishes all year round – but particularly in summer when people want something light, fruity, and flavorful. 

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Popular cherry varieties

When it comes to cherry flavor, there are three main varieties: red (usually Bing), black, and blush (Rainier). Though they may look similar, these three types of cherries have very distinct tastes. Red cherries have a sweet taste with notes of berry and almond, while black cherries offer a tarter flavor that is slightly smoky. Both styles can be used in a variety of dishes, from pies and tarts to beverages and even barbeque. The Rainier cherry developed in Washington state in 1952 and named after the state’s largest mountain, Mt. Rainier. It has a sweet, almost candied flavor.

Want to pick your own cherries this summer? Click find a u-pick cherry farm near me.

scoop of black cherry ice cream in a cone, natural black cherry flavor
Natural black cherry flavor is a popular choice for ice cream, gelato, and sorbet.

Savory uses for natural cherry flavor

Savory dishes can be enhanced with the flavor of cherries.  For example, adding natural cherry flavor to a pork or chicken marinade can impart an unexpected but delicious tart taste.  Another great way to incorporate cherry flavor is by using dried cherries in stews and sauces; their chewy texture adds dimension and flavor to the dish.  This same technique can be used in rice and salads, too! Simply sprinkle dried cherries on top for a fun twist.  Finally, adding cherry preserves or jam to a cheese plate can help cut through the buttery creaminess of Brie or the piquant bite of Roquefort, while adding a contrasting fruity top note.

cherry salad in a farm house style plate, teal barn wood table
Not just for dessert: Natural cherry flavor adds a delightful touch to many savory applications, too.

Cherry beverage flavors

As a natural beverage flavor, cherry is king.  Mixologists use red, black, and maraschino cherry flavor to create exciting flavor combinations.  Cherry is often combined with citrus juice or amaretto and is a crucial player in many fruit punches and tropical cocktails. 

manhattan cocktail with maraschino cherry garnish, cherry beverage flavor
What is a Manhattan without its sweet hint of cherry flavor?

What pairs with natural cherry flavor?

Natural cherry flavor easily pairs with other flavors to create unique food and beverage products that everyone can enjoy.  Here are a few flavor pairings that consumers love:

  • Cherry Lime: This tart and fruity pairing is a popular flavor for energy drinks, soft drinks, and flavored waters.  For an on-trend twist, try a dash of black cherry flavor in traditional lime cocktails such as Margaritas or Mojitos.
  • Cherry Almond: Pairing cherry with almond is very complementary, as the fruit already showcases hints of almond in its flavor profile.  The nutty notes add depth, grounding the bright floral and fruity notes into something more sophisticated or serious.  Try cherry almond flavor in something clean and rich like cheesecake, or a heavy and smoky application such as bourbon or barbeque sauce.
  • Cherry Chocolate: Few fruits truly work well with chocolate, and cherry is one of them!  The juicy-sweet fruit is the perfect foil for bittersweet cocoa or dark chocolate.  Black forest cake flavor is just one of the many unique ways we play with this classic flavor pairing.
  • Cherry Coconut: Coconut’s creamy decadence and tropical essence pair well with the bright fruity sweetness of cherry flavor.  Imagine how refreshing a cherry pina colada would taste on a hot summer day by the pool!  Cherry coconut flavor is delightful in candies and ice creams, and is a natural choice for plant-based yogurts and frozen desserts, too.

Try natural cherry flavor

When it comes to cherry flavor, the possibilities are endless.  Whether you’re working on a sweet or savory profile, we’re sure to have a natural or organic cherry flavor that fits.  With so many refreshing uses, it’s no wonder why cherry flavor is synonymous with summertime.  Few fruit flavors are as versatile – and delicious!

Looking for natural and organic cherry flavor?  Request a sample today and start using cherry flavor in your products! 

Request A Sample of natural Cherry flavor
Request a sample of our natural and organic cherry flavors today!

Food and beverage development services

We hope these ideas help launch your next iconic flavor!  Blue Pacific Flavors has been a leader in flavor trends and food and beverage innovation since 1993.  Learn more about our product development services in this video.

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