Pesada de Nance Recipe (yellow cherries)

Nance is a fruit  you can usually find fresh for months thanks to its long season, or you can easily find bottles filled with Nance around any market, any time of the year.  My grandparents have a huge tree on their patio (backyard), and most of the time when I visit them, I’d find my grandpa picking up nance;  filling up bottles with it, for my grandma to make juice or to make pesada.

grandpa nance picking up Panama

Nance tastes very tart and has a mushy texture.  I’ve found it around the US, frozen and in bottles, called ‘Yellow Cherries’ (spoiler alert: they do not taste anything like cherries, I don’t even like them that much by themselves).  I prefer making a nance juice, pesada, or to use it on dessert recipes.

Pesada is a cooked smooth cream, prepared with the fruit ‘nance’, with water, sugar, and cornstarch.  Those are the main components as far as I know, but when the nance is not tart enough, my mom likes to add pineapples or passion fruit juice.  It is served warm or cold with crumbled salty queso fresco on top.


2 bottles of Nance (approximately 6-8 cups)
3 l of Water
1 cup of Cornstarch
3/4 cup of Sugar
Optional: pineapple chunks/juice, lime or passion fruit juice

nance pesada


(Follow the Photo-Steps ^_^)

1. Add Nance with enough water to cover a little bit above the surface.
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe


2. Blend for a few secs, 5-10, quick to avoid blendingç/breaking the seeds.
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe

3. Use a colander to make sure you don’t get those seeds in your pot!
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe


4.  Press the nance through the colander with your hands. That way it will be gentle and you will avoid getting seeds in your pesada.
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe

5. Add a little extra water or juice and squeeze as much fruit as you can out of that Nance!Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe

6. Taste the nance mixture, and if it’s too bland, blend a some mixture with a little bit of a sour fruit such as: pineapple, passion fruit or lime juice.  Blend the fruit and make sure you pass through a sieve to make sure your pesada stays smooth.Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe


7.  Set the pot in medium high heat, add the sugar and cornstarch and keep stirring for 7-12 minutes, until the pesada thickens up.  If you’d like a thicker pesada, mix more cornstarch with a citrus juice, add to mixture and cook for a few more minutes.
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe


8. Serve the Pesada de Nance with a lot of ‘Queso Blanco – Molido’ you could try with several types of cheeses, even cottage or feta, but traditionally queso blanco does it for us Panamanians!
Pesada de Nance - Cocinerita Recipe

¡a comer!


  1. Thanks very much! I’ve moved to Mexico and we have a nance tree in the yard. I didn’t know what to do with the fruit but my girls will love this recipe. Which is good because they are going to help me pick them!

  2. Pesada is so good for winter (though Panama is always hot so I don’t mind having it while sweating, haha!)
    Also, I love taking photos of my nieces of grandpa picking up nance, it’s a wonderful memory. Show me that nance tree when you get a chance! =)

  3. Thank you so much for publishing this! I live in Veraguas and my neighbor gave me some pasada de nance! I love it so much! Not too sweet, just right! I have several nance trees here at my house. I am excited to try this recipe myself! Thank you!

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  5. For those who want to harvest this type of cherry, a used old bed sheet is the best solution to pick nance .

  6. Hi. I am in Panama and have been given a jar of the Nance fruit covered with water. It seems to be fermenting and I need to know if this is good or bad? Should I simply drain the liquid from the fruit and proceed with the apresada recipe or is the fruit no longer any good?

  7. Me encanta la pesada de nance deiciosa nunca la he hecho pero si la he comido cada vez que puedo, el nance delicioso en chichas o refrescos o en duros dcimos en Panamá

  8. Has anyone made this with frozen nance pulp? I have a 14oz package but not sure how much that is compared to bottled nance or how much sugar/cornstarch/whater to use. Thanks!

  9. I miss my abuelo making pesá just for me when I would come to visit Panamá. I see it in jars and frozen all the time but could never remember everything he added. I will definitely try this now! Im also in the DMV area!

  10. I recently received a gift of Nance candy from a friend from El Salvador. I would like to try making it myself, but need a recipe. Anyone have a recipe for Nance fruit candy? It is wonderful! Thanks.

  11. Oh goodness, my apologies for responding until now. Trying to get back into my my blog after feeling settled with my daytime job! Please let me know if you got to try your pesada with nance pulp! I don’t see why it wouldn’t work.

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