Cherry Cream Cheese Tarts

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These simple-to-make rustic cherry cream cheese tarts are downright irresistible and while they’re perfect for pretty much any occasion – they’re extra perfect for Valentine’s Day.

The tarts have a creamy cheesecake filling with a tart cherry topping. And with their short list of ingredients and simple preparation, they’re sure to become one of your all-time favorite desserts.

A muffin tin full of cherry tarts with plates and forks in the background.

Ingredients for Cherry Cream Cheese Tarts

  • 12 vanilla wafers
  • 16 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 can cherry pie filling
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How to Make Cherry Cream Cheese Tarts

  1. First, preheat your oven to 375°F and line 12 muffin cups with aluminum foil liners. Place a vanilla wafer in the bottom of each cup and set the pan aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract. Mix with an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes until smooth and creamy.
Cream cheese, eggs, vanilla, and sugar in a glass bowl with a mixer in the background.
Cream cheese filling mixed up in a glass bowl with a mixer sitting in it.


Don’t skimp on muffin liners with these tarts. Aluminum foil liners are essential. The cheesecake filling is dense and heavy and regular paper liners will collapse inwards on the tart during baking, making them harder to fill and less attractive.

Sadly, you can’t skip liners with this recipe either – greasing the muffin tin just wont do. The tarts will be next to impossible to remove from the pan without liners.

  1. Next, spoon or scoop the cream cheese mixture mixture evenly into each muffin cup, filling them 2/3 full.
  2. Then, pop those little beauties into the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until they’re set on the top and just starting to turn golden brown around the edges. They’ll still have some jiggle.
A muffin tin partway full of cream cheese tarts with a bowl and a scoop laying next to it.
Cream cheese tarts in a muffin tin before being baked with an empty batter bowl sitting next to them.
  1. Once the tarts are done baking, remove them from the oven and let them cool completely.
  2. After they’re cool, add the finishing touch – a generous spoonful of cherry pie filling on top of each tart. Again, spread the pie filling out equally among all the tarts (I try to use it all, but you don’t have to).
Cream cheese tarts after they've been baked sitting with a bowl of cherry pie filling.
Tarts topped with cherry pie filling with an empty bowl and spoon sitting next to them.
  1. Finally, pop your tarts into the fridge to chill for a bit (about an hour to be exact). This final chilling is crucial, it allows the tarts to firm up a bit and the flavors really blend together.


During baking, the tarts will puff up quite a bit. Don’t be alarmed. As they cool, they’ll sink in and create the most perfect divot for the cherry filling.

Why These Tarts Are So Good

Now that your tarts are ready to rock and roll, let’s talk about why they’re so dang good. First off, the combination of creamy cheesecake filling and tangy cherry topping is pretty much a match made in dessert heaven.

And let’s not forget about their small, individualized size. They’re just perfect for sharing and transporting. There’s nothing better than a grab-and-go cherry cheesecake, am I right?

Two plates of cream cheese tarts with forks and the rest of the tin of tarts in the background.

More Fun Ways to Top the Tarts

While cherry pie filling is a classic topping for these cream cheese tarts, you can certainly get creative and try out different toppings to add some variety. Here are a few delicious ideas:

  • Mixed Berry Compote: Cook together a combination of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries with a bit of sugar and lemon juice until they break down into a thick, syrupy compote. Spoon this fruity mixture over your cream cheese tarts for a burst of berry flavor.
  • Lemon Curd: Tangy and refreshing, lemon curd adds a zesty contrast to the creamy filling of the tarts. Simply spoon a dollop of lemon curd over each tart and garnish with a twist of lemon zest.
A tart sitting on a white plate with the wrapper pulled down and a fork next to it.
  • Chocolate Ganache: Indulge your sweet tooth by drizzling rich and decadent chocolate ganache over the top of your cream cheese tarts. You can even sprinkle some chopped nuts or shredded coconut on top for added texture and crunch.
  • Fresh Fruit Slices: For a lighter option, top your tarts with slices of fresh fruit such as strawberries, kiwi, or peaches. Not only does this add a colorful touch to your dessert, but it also provides a refreshing contrast to the rich, creamy filling.
  • Caramel Sauce: Elevate your cream cheese tarts with a generous drizzle of homemade or store-bought caramel sauce. The sweet and buttery flavor of the caramel complements the richness of the cream cheese beautifully.
A closeup of cherry tarts in an antique muffin tin.

The Best Way to Store the Tarts

Now, let’s address the important question – how do you keep these tarts fresh and delicious? Easy. Just pop them into an airtight container and store them in the fridge for up to 5 days. Take one (or two) out as needed. Though, let’s be honest, they probably won’t be around that long, haha.

Questions About This Recipe

Absolutely! You can certainly get creative and use a different type of cookie if you prefer or if you have dietary restrictions. Graham crackers, shortbread cookies, or even chocolate wafers would work wonderfully as alternatives.

Just keep in mind that the flavor and texture of the crust may vary slightly depending on the cookie you choose.

To determine if the tarts are fully baked and set:

  1. Gently press the center of a tart – it should feel firm and spring back slightly.
  2. Check for lightly golden edges, indicating thorough baking.
  3. Use the clean toothpick test – if it comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs, they’re done.
  4. Ensure there’s minimal jiggle when shaking the muffin tin.

Yes. However, it’s important to note that using low-fat cream cheese may result in a slightly different texture and flavor compared to regular cream cheese. The filling might be less creamy and rich. If you’re using non-dairy cream cheese, such as a soy-based or almond-based option, the taste and texture may also vary slightly.

Sadly no. The foil and paper liners not only prevent the tarts from sticking to the muffin tin but also help maintain the structural integrity of the tarts while baking. The tarts will be difficult or even impossible to remove from the muffin tin without the foil liners.

A cream cheese tart sitting on a white plate with a bite out of it and a fork sitting next to it.

So, whether you’re baking for a special occasion or just treating yourself (or someone you love), these simple, but also fancy cherry cream cheese tarts are 100% sure to steal your heart. Give them a try and let me know what you think. Happy Valentine’s Day, loves!

Cherry cream cheese tarts sitting in an antique muffin tin.

Cherry Cream Cheese Tarts

By: Kristine Underwood
These simple-to-make cherry cream cheese tarts are downright irresistible. They have a creamy cheesecake filling with a tart cherry topping. And with their short list of ingredients, simple preparation, and elegant presentation, they're sure to become one of your all-time favorite desserts.
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Sweets & Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 tarts
Calories 270 kcal


  • 12 vanilla wafers
  • 16 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 can cherry pie filling


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners and place a vanilla wafer in the bottom of each cup. Set aside.
    12 vanilla wafers
  • In a large mixing bowl, mix cream cheese, sugar, eggs, and vanilla extract together with an electric mixer until smooth.
    16 ounces cream cheese, 1/2 cup sugar, 2 eggs, 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Fill each muffin cup with the cream cheese mixture.
  • Bake tarts for 15 minutes until set.
  • Remove from oven and allow tarts to cool completely.
  • Top with cherry pie filling and refrigerate.
    1 can cherry pie filling
  • Store tarts in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


Serving: 1 tartCalories: 270kcalCarbohydrates: 30gProtein: 4gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.02gCholesterol: 66mgSodium: 170mgPotassium: 120mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 12gVitamin A: 648IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 46mgIron: 0.3mg
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Recipe Rating


  1. These tarts are just like some my grandam used to make! I am so happy to have found this recipe. The tarts are yummy and nostalgic for me. I give them an 11!5 stars

    1. Hey Sharon! This made me smile because my mom used to make these for me when I was little too. This is also a very nostalgic and special recipe to me. I’m really glad you loved them, and thanks so much for the comment!

  2. These are just like mini cherry cheesecakes! Delicious and such a fun dessert idea. 🙂5 stars

  3. Made these delicious bite sized tarts for my family and they loved them so much I only got one. Definitely a good problem. I will be making them again this weekend. Thank you!5 stars

    1. That’s the best kind of problem actually! Haha! Thanks so much Ned – glad you enjoyed the tarts!

  4. I love how easy these were to make. I had some leftover homemade lemon curd in the fridge so I used that in place of the cherry pie filling and the were fantastic. Thanks for the quick, easy, and delicious recipe idea.5 stars

    1. Thanks so much Holly! Next time I have some lemon curd, I’m doing to do a few that way too. It sounds like the best combo!

  5. This was everything a gourmet dessert should be, and then some! These are easy, decadent and delicious!5 stars

    1. Well, if this isn’t the most perfect description Sara! Thank you! Thrilled to hear they were a success!

  6. Cherry Tarts are always the right answer. What a great recipe! Nicely done.5 stars