Brooks Cherries: Flavor, Nutrition, and More

Sweet-tart Brooks cherries are ideal for both snacking and baking. Here’s a quick look at their origin story, nutrition profile, and how to best enjoy them.

What Is a Brooks Cherry?

Brooks cherries have lit up our springs and summers since 1984, when they arrived on the fruit scene thanks to cherry experts at the University of California, Davis. UC Davis’s fruit breeding program describes the Brooks as “a large, sweet, firm variety that matures earlier and produces fewer double fruits than Bing, the industry standard.” 

Brooks cherries are round and slightly heart-shaped, with glossy red skin and short green stems. Their firm, crisp flesh is bright red, offering a sweet-tart flavor with hints of blackberry. 

Don’t forget to pit your Brooks cherries—like many cherry varieties, they feature an inedible, semi-freestone pit. Brooks cherries are in season in California from mid- to late spring, and in the Pacific Northwest from late spring through early summer.

Nutritional Profile of Brooks Cherries

Brooks cherries are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They’re also high in natural sugars and complex carbs, making them the perfect snack for a quick and healthy energy boost. 

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, 1 cup of pitted cherries also offers 1.63 grams of protein and 3.32 grams of fiber. Those amounts might seem small, but they can still contribute to muscle repair, muscle growth, and digestive health. Cherries are also cholesterol-free and a good source of bone-strengthening calcium and blood health-supporting iron.

Health Benefits of Brooks Cherries

Like other fresh fruits, Brooks cherries are a smart choice for good health. Here’s a closer look at the nutritional benefits that cherries like the Brooks have to offer.

Energy Boost

With less than 100 calories per one-cup serving, cherries are a low-calorie food. Still, the 24.6 grams of carbs in each cup can give you a much-needed energy boost.

Muscle Maintenance and Growth

Each cup of cherries contains 1.63 grams of protein. That’s not much, but since protein is essential for muscle repair and growth, every bit helps! 

Digestive Health

Cherries also pack in 3.32 grams of fiber per cup. Fiber aids in digestion and can help maintain your bowel health.

Bone Strength

Cherries contain calcium, too, at about 20 milligrams per cup. Calcium is crucial for strong bones, healthy blood pressure, and more.

Blood Health

There’s a bit of iron in cherries—about .55 milligrams per cup. This is a nice bonus since iron is essential for keeping your blood healthy, rich in oxygen, and low in carbon dioxide. 

Heart and Vascular Health

Last but not least, we should mention two things that aren’t in fresh cherries: sodium and cholesterol. Eating low-sodium, low-cholesterol foods can help keep your blood pressure in check and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. 

Overall, Brooks cherries are a nutritious snack offering a variety of health benefits. Just try not to eat an entire bag full at once, as they do have quite a bit of natural sugar!

Culinary Uses of Brooks Cherries

Sweet, colorful Brooks cherries are delicious fresh, baked, or roasted. Like other cherries, they’re a very versatile ingredient. Eat them by the handful, pit them, and add them to yogurt or oatmeal, or stir them into your next quick bread or cake. For a taste of French cuisine, fold Brooks cherries into a clafoutis—a pudding-like dessert that showcases their flavor beautifully. 

Roasting Brooks cherries is another way to intensify their taste. A brief toss in oil and a few minutes in the oven will leave them soft and fragrant, ready to add a rich, sweet note to both desserts and savory dishes.

Select the Best: Tips for Picking Ripe Brooks Cherries

To spot ripe Brooks cherries, keep these common signs of ripeness in mind. Look for cherries that are firm, plump, and glossy, with bright green stems (ideally still attached) and smooth skin free from serious bruises or blemishes. Whether you plan to eat them raw or cooked, picking cherries with these characteristics will get you the most flavor bang for your buck. 

Don’t want to spend time sorting through bags of cherries at the grocery store? Don’t worry—our team of experts at  The FruitGuys can do the selection work for you, bringing farm-fresh cherries straight to your office. Request a quote or check out our Harvest and Season’s Best fruit delivery boxes, which often feature cherries in season. 


  1. Can Brooks cherries be part of a healthy diet?
    Absolutely! Their low-calorie and high-nutrient profile makes them an excellent choice for a healthy diet. Cherries are also a good fit for folks with dietary restrictions because they’re naturally vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free.
  2. Can I freeze Brooks cherries for later use?
    Yes, you can freeze Brooks cherries. We recommend pitting them, spreading them on a baking sheet to freeze (this keeps them from sticking together), and transferring them to a jar, bag, or other freezer-safe container once they’re fully frozen.
  3. How do I choose the best Brooks cherries at the farmers market or grocery store?
    Look for cherries with a vibrant, deep red color; glossy skin; and bright green stems. Store them in a cool, dry place and wash them before eating.

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