Cherry Barbecue Chicken Pizza

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Cherry Barbecue Chicken Pizza 2“When life hands you cherries, make pizza.”  What?  That’s not the right quote?

Well, life handed me cherries at only $1.99 per pound, so I decided I needed 10 pounds.  I thought I better snack on them and throw them into everything I ate so they wouldn’t go to waste.  Then, I realized I could just pit them and freeze them.  Duh.

Seven pounds made it into the freezer before I turned into a cherry, thank the good Lord.

Cherry Barbecue Chicken PizzaBut, before the freezer, I snatched a few for our pizza.  Barbecue chicken pizza, turned into Cherry Barbecue Chicken pizza.  Yes, I made cherry barbecue sauce, from scratch, and it was easy.  The cherries enhanced the sweetness, but the liquid smoke kept it smoky.  Sweet and smoky, just like I like it.  And, yes, I drizzled the sauce on my pizza along with a few more chopped cherries.

One of our favorite pizzas yet.  As soon as you try it, you’ll stop thinking I’m crazy.

Cherry Barbecue Chicken Pizza

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 55 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Serving Size: 2 slices

Cherry Barbecue Chicken Pizza

    For the cherry barbecue sauce:
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen sweet cherries, pitted and chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon beef bouillon granules
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Cayenne red pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons liquid smoke (found in most supermarkets)
  • 3/4 cup ketchup
  • For the pizza:
  • Olive oil
  • 1 pizza crust (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup cherry barbecue sauce (ingredients above, recipe below)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced cooked chicken
  • 1/2 to 1 cup shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • One quarter of a sweet onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup fresh cherries, pitted and chopped
For the cherry barbecue sauce:

In a medium sauce pan, cook the cherries and sugar over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the cherries are softened and releasing much of its juice (about 7 minutes). Add the butter and stir until melted. Mix in the rest of the ingredients and heat to a low boil, while whisking frequently. Reduce the heat to low, and let simmer while whisking, for 10 minutes. Strain, to remove cherry pieces and for a thinner sauce, or puree in a food processor, or let it be chunky. Up to you.

For the pizza:

Preheat oven and pizza stone to 475 degrees F for 30 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the chicken with a few tablespoons of the barbecue sauce; set aside.

Roll out pizza dough to a 12-inch round, on parchment paper sprinkled with cornmeal or on a pizza peel. Brush olive oil on the edge. Spoon about 1/4 cup of the cherry barbecue sauce over the surface of the dough, leaving 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle on half of cheese. Layer with sliced onions, barbecue smothered chicken and cherries. Top with the remaining cheese.

Carefully transfer pizza to the pizza stone. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes, until the crust is golden and cheese is bubbly. Remove from oven, let stand for 5 minutes then slice and serve.


The sweet and smoky sauce is good for just about any dish where you want to add some barbecue flavor. The cherries only add sweetness to the recipe, not necessarily a fruity component. Don't shy away just yet.

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  1. Why did you decide to cut your feed? I love reading your updates, but not having to click through my reader. I hope you reconsider.

    Also, there is a typo in the end of your shortened post:
    [[ Visit the website for the rest of my store and the recipe! 🙂 ]]
    It should say story, I think.

    • Hi Megan,

      Thanks for pointing out the typo. It’s fixed! 🙂

      I decided to summarize the feed for a few different reasons. The top two reasons being:
      1- Protection and control of my content.
      2- Encourage more interaction with my readers. So many people read the email/feed, but only a small portion will ever click over to say “hello!” and comment.


      • I just changed it back because I didn’t realize the photos do not show up in the feed, and how little of the story actually shows! Hang with me as I experiment. 🙂

        • Hi Nikki!
          I am glad you reconsidered, I agree that the shortened feed didn’t include much. I don’t mind clicking through the reader for the recipe, I just want to be able to read the commentary and see some pictures to see if it is something I want to make.

  2. I’m with Megan. Will rarely click through and will probably remove you from my feed. Good luck! I’ve enjoyed reading.

    • I’m sorry to hear that Angie. Right now I’m experimenting, so please don’t give up yet. It’s a lot of work to keep a blog running and to maintain it, so I’d love for you to stick with me as I test things out. (Didn’t realize the photos don’t show up in the feed until now.)

  3. Dan Bartz says:

    Wow! Cherries-what a great idea… We’ll have to try that this weekend.(When it cools down enough to bake!)

  4. I am so intrigued by this BBQ sauce! There are tons of places selling cherries right now, just minutes from my door! Might have to run down to the truck tonight and buy some just for this sauce.

    Also, I LOVE the tray! Is it a cake stand?? It’s beautiful!

  5. This sounds so incredibly good. Adding it to the docket for our next pizza night!

  6. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet says:

    I totally dig this pizza idea! Cherries here I come!

  7. 1. People being upset about the short feeds, boo to them! They are not true fans! Love you Nikki!
    2. I must make this cherry Mmmmm–tastic BBQ pizza stat!!! Love you Nikki!
    3. More cherry recipes please!!

  8. Sue Gladd says:

    Wonderful idea, Nikki! I am a true cherry lover any way I can get them, and this gives me something I never would have thought of!

  9. Such a great flavour profile for a sauce. Have to try this!

  10. Nikki, this looks so delicious and your pictures are beautiful! I’ve used a cherry butter I make as the base for a chinese sauce (across between hoisin and plum sauce) but hadn’t thought to use it for BBQ… thank you for the inspiration! I’m going home to experiment tonight 🙂

    Will certainly be trying the pizza one day soon too!

  11. Jasper Morris says:

    I just made the barbecue sauce and it is amazing, sweet and smoky! However, I only used 1/2 tsp of liquid smoke and find it pretty strong,can’t imagine what it tastes like with 2 tbsp! I blended the sauce at the end just enough to combine the cherries. Fantastic sauce on meat!

  12. Ooh, Nikki, did I ever tell you how much I LOVE cherries and how happy these recipes make my day?

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