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Happiness is a Bowl Full of Cherries {Recipe: Cherry Cream Coffee Cake}

I am happy.

It feels so good to say that. I am happy and that makes me happy.

After a year of ups and downs, worrying, frets and stress it feels so good to be able to say that I really am happy.

Our summer, so far,  has been one of intentional happiness. I purposely didn’t sign my kids up for camps, activities, VBS, etc. this year because I wanted everything we were doing to be exactly what we wanted to do. I didn’t want to be running around, car pooling, feeling regrets because we didn’t have time to do what we wanted to do. We wake up each morning and everything on our agenda is things we want to do, not have to do. I feel kind of selfish, having a carefree summer, but it has been so nice.

I need to start doing my Happiness Reports again, because there are so many things making me happy right now. So many little things I’m taking notice of that bring me joy.

A hot cup of coffee, made for me by my husband…a thoughtful gesture not unnoticed.

A string of white lights, hung in the trees.

Taking pictures, even if it’s of nothing “special”… just getting out my camera and capturing what my life is full of.

Summer breeze, time to read, lazy mornings.

All of these things, and so much more, bring a smile to my face.  Just like a bowl of cherries.

Turning those cherries into a favorite coffee cake for my husband makes me happy too. He’s never been a quick bread or coffee cake kind of guy, until I made this recipe from Cheryl’s blog a few months back. He took it to work to share and came back raving about how delicious it was. For Father’s Day, I wanted to make it again, but this time using some of the fresh cherries of summer. You can certainly used canned pie filling, but when cherries are abundant it’s hard to justify not taking advantage of the summer harvest.

What’s making you happy these days? Whether it is a new haircut, a summer vacation, success at work… I hope you’ll share your recent moments of joy in the comments section.

Life is good… like a bowl full of cherries!

Cherry Cream Coffee Cake

Cherry Cream Coffee Cake

A delicious Cherry Cream Coffee Cake that makes the most of the bounty of seasonal fresh cherries available. Please note, Canned Cherry Pie Filling can be used in place of fresh cherry pie filling.


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2-1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 4 cups pitted red cherries
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 Tablespoon butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 3-5 Tablespoons heavy whipping cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350°
  2. In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar and cinnamon.
  3. Using a fork or pastry blender, cut softened butter into the flour mixture (will be crumbly). Reserve one cup of this mixture to save for topping.
  4. Mix eggs and cream. Slowly add to the flour mixture and blend until well incorporated. Add salt and baking powder and mix until smooth.
  5. Pour batter into greased springform pan.
  6. Meanwhile, place cherries and lemon juice into a saucepan over medium heat. Cover and heat cherries until they release their juice and come to a simmer, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir often.
  7. In a small bowl, whisk granulated sugar with cornstarch; pour the mixture into the hot cherries and juice, and thoroughly combine. Return to low heat, bring to a simmer, and cook until the filling is thick and bubbly, about 2 minutes; remove from heat.
  8. Pour cherry pie filling over batter in the springform pan.
  9. Top pie filling with the 1 cup of reserved flour mixture, spreading evenly to cover.
  10. Bake for 55 minutes or until brown and toothpick in the center comes out clean.
  11. Allow to cool for 5 minutes then remove cake from the springform.
  12. *For the Icing:*Mix together melted butter and vanilla. Slowly stir in powdered sugar and cinnamon.
  13. Add 3 tablespoons of heavy whipping cream. Stir until creamy and smooth.
  14. Add more cream 1 tablespoon at a time until desired consistency.
  15. Drizzle over coffee cake and serve. Enjoy!


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  1. The Husband says:

    I am happy that you’re happy. The cake was awesome. I love you.

  2. What a beautiful post! Sounds like the kind of summer I love, and always strive to have :)

  3. I am happy too (you know this!). Hugs to you my dear. You are a joy…you spread joy. I’m happy that things are coming together for you and your family right now.

  4. This seriously has me drooling. I just bought some cherries at the farmer’s market last weekend (although we’ve eaten most of them now!) Looks like I need to pick up some more!!

  5. Know what makes me happy? Hearing about your happiness. It’s so nice to know that friends (even ones we’ve never met in person) are happy and doing well.

  6. Well, this coffee cake would make me happy; I’m so excited for cherry season and it’s so short I want to make EVERYTHING.

    What makes me happy? It has always been the small things…those sweet gestures, the unexpected moments. My daughter finding a companion gardening book dated the same year as my old Better Homes and Gardens cookbook (1974) and giving it to me for no reason. My dog decided she wants to snuggle. But best of all? Getting out into my garden again for the first time in 3 years after a serious injury. Having my little pond running and the weeds gone and flowers blooming; I can just sit there and do nothing and be completely fulfilled. That space makes me happy.

  7. I can feel from your post that you are happy. Life is awesome, isn’t it? I’m having my good period as well and it’s amazing to feel good when you wake up. The cake looks awesome, and pictures are beautiful. Wish you all the best, Marta

  8. I love your happiness posts, and I love the idea of a selfish, carefree summer. I’m pretty sure you deserve it. :)

  9. Glad to hear you’re having a happy summer! With a bowl full of cherries by your side, how can you not be happy? Thanks of sharing this wonderful recipe.

  10. After a few rough years, you deserve all the happiness in the world, Kristen. You are wise to have an unscheduled summer to do as you and the kids please. I try to do the same on one of my three days off! It usually involves a bike ride or dinner with friends. Or maybe just a movie night at home with my hubby (eating homemade pizza, of course). I’ve never kept a gratitude journal, but my “Life Is Good” posts help me to remember to be thankful for the things that make me smile.

    Take care!

  11. Love this post! We all have so many things to be happy about and often forget. Life is too short, as we all know so well, take time to enjoy those small things.

    For me…tomorrow’s the first day of this summer’s CSA!

  12. So glad that you are having a great summer! This cake looks perfect and is very timely! I have a huge bag of cherries to use up!

  13. What a sweet post. So many things are making me happy lately! My new home, my job, my incredibly sweet husband. Life is good :) And this cake looks lovely.

  14. Summer break is making me happy. And, reading this post of yours made me very happy because you totally deserve great happiness, my friend.

  15. This looks so decadently delicious! I’d love a slice!

  16. That doesn’t sound selfish at all it sounds heavenly and just the kind of summer I’ve been dreaming of.

  17. I like your recipe. There is always reason to be happy everyday and it’s so glad to hear that you life is full of happiness.

  18. Dang, thank you very much for posting this! It is going to help when I buy Gourmet Coffee at the store! Super Fantastic!


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    Happiness is a Bowl Full of Cherries Recipe: Cherry Cream Coffee Cake – Dine and Dish

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