Photography by Marcus Nilsson
While we’ll never tire of sweets such as cherry clafoutis and peach pie, this summer we’re also using stone fruits in a variety of savory recipes, from a cherry and herb salad to apricot salsa. Summertime brings a bounty of stone fruits. Stone fruits, or fruits that have outer flesh encasing an inner pit, include cherries, peaches, plums, nectarines, and apricots. We love using all of them in a huge variety of sweet and savory preparation and have rounded up our favorite stone fruit recipes for you to try.
The flavor of cherries ranges from super sweet to puckeringly tart, which makes them extremely versatile. Try them in a savory salad with walnuts and cilantro or a sweet, rustic clafoutis.
Peaches are a dessert staple—we have recipes for pie, ice cream, and more. But they also work well in savory applications like a salad with green beans and caramelized onions. If you get thirsty whip up a batch of bellinis. The cocktail is traditionally made with peach puree and sparkling wine—our versions have apple brandy and aquavit.
Peaches pair well with plums in a salad dressed with red wine vinegar and topped with cilantro. Also try plums in a crumbly strudel or an olive oil pound cake (other stone fruits work wonderfully). Plums and basil are great flavorings for a variation on the classic gin fizz.
Nectarines don’t get as much attention as some other fruits, and that’s a shame. Put them to use in murabba, a sweet-savory Pakistani jam pickle flavored with cardamom and rosewater. Or put them into a salad with blueberries, shiso leaf, and a touch of sesame oil.
Don’t forget apricots. Their acidity makes them good for cooked salsas like ours with orange juice, vinegar, mint, and red onion. For something sweeter, try our apricot-almond tart.
Check out these recipes and more in our collection of great stone fruit recipes.
Preserve summery tomatoes and nectarines with this chunky, vinegary chutney from cookbook author Cathy Barrow. It’s the perfect preserve to serve with a sturdy cheese and crisp crackers.
A decadent custard batter is studded with juicy, ripe cherries in this elegant and satisfying treat.
Cherry & Herb Salad
This sweet-tart cherry, cilantro, and walnut salad is delicious on its own or as a relish for grilled meats or fish.
Peach Ice Cream
Sweet, pale orange ice cream flavored with ripe, juicy peaches simply screams summer.
Grape jelly intensifies the flavor of ripe plums in a sweet-tart summer pie.
This summery pie can be made any time of year by substituting frozen, thawed raspberries and peaches for fresh fruit.
You can substitute the apricots in this juicy tart for plums, peaches, or even berries.
Apricot Salsa with Mint
Apricots’ ripe acidity lend themselves well to this cooked fruit salsa, simultaneously tangy and sweet.
These peaches are a pleasure to eat in autumn—but make them only in summer peach season, with fruit that’s fully ripe but not too soft.
Hungarian Plum Cake (Szilvás Pite)
Yogurt adds a slight tartness to this cake from home cook Mária Keresztes Kovács. Our recipe calls for plums, but apricots, peaches, or any stone fruit works too.
Stone Fruit Rosé Sangria
This version of a Spanish sangria is ripe with summer fruit; its light, crisp flavors complement seafood and poultry.
The recipe for this quick and easy tart comes from the fifth edition of Joy of Cooking (Bobbs-Merrill, 1963), and features crushed amaretti cookies, walnuts, and brandy-soaked raisins.
Moscato and Peach Gelée
This refreshing gelée gets its light, fruity flavor from ripe peaches and semisweet fizzy moscato wine.
The traditional Bellini is made with white peach purée and sparkling wine, but the addition of peach brandy intensifies and sweetens the cocktail. Get the recipe for Bellini »
This satisfying pastry layers plum preserves and walnuts for a gooey, crumbly cake.