Strawberry Cake

Sweet strawberry cake is so beautiful and really delicious! If you like strawberries, you will love the strong strawberry flavor in this moist and fluffy cake.

Similar to our Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes, this cake is packed with fresh strawberries. The strawberry frosting in this recipe is delicious, but it also pairs well with Vanilla Buttercream.

A slice of strawberry cake on a white plate

Homemade Strawberry Cake

How gorgeous is this pink and red strawberry cake?!

I love the color of this cake. The combination of the moist cake with the creamy frosting is super tasty. The strawberry flavor is very rich. It’s the perfect summer time cake for all of your potlucks, BBQs, and birthday parties.

After frosting this cake, I like to put it into the fridge before serving. It tastes delicious after being chilled, and it makes it easier to cut into slices. Even better is to serve it with ice cream and strawberries on the side!

Step by step pictures for making homemade strawberry cake

How to Make Strawberry Cake

PREP. To make the cake, start by preheating the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line with parchment paper two 8 inch round cake pans.

BATTER. In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the cake mix, gelatin, sugar, and flour. In a small bowl, whisk together the water, oil, and eggs. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed for two minutes, until well combined. Gently fold in the chopped strawberries.

BAKE. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake the cake layers for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool 5-10 minutes, then remove the cakes from the pans to a wire rack to cool completely.

Recipe Tips

  • You will NOT be using the instructions or ingredients that are listed on the box. Only use the white cake mix and follow the Lil Luna recipe ingredients and instructions.  
  • You can easily use plain frozen strawberries instead of fresh. Be sure to thaw the berries a bit before pureeing, but frozen chopped berries can go directly into the cake batter.  
  • For flavor variation: substitute the “strawberry” instructions with another berry like blueberries or raspberries. 
Strawberry frosting in a mixing bowl to put on fresh strawberry cake

The Frosting

To make the frosting, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the strawberry puree and mix to combine. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar, and mix until combined. Then, add additional powdered sugar, ½ cup at a time, to make a frosting that is spreadable and fluffy, but not runny.

ASSEMBLE. To assemble the cake, spread ¾ cup of frosting in between the cake layers. Use the remaining frosting to cover the sides and top of the cake.

The consistency of this frosting is made for a simple smooth finish. If you want it to be sturdier and pipe-able, then add 1 tbsp of powdered sugar at a time until you reach your desired consistency. If you find the frosting to be too thick, simply add a bit of milk. 

When you are frosting the cake it might be helpful to start with a crumb coat. A crumb coat is a thin layer of frosting that helps “seal” in crumbs. That way when you add your second layer of frosting you won’t get those pesky stray crumbs trying to make an appearance.  

Layering fresh strawberry cake with frosting in between

Can You Use Different Cake Pans?

Yes! I really love how pretty the two layers look for this cake, but you can easily use other cake pans for this recipe. Remember to check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. If it comes out clean or with a couple crumbs, the cake is done. 

  • CUPCAKES: simply divide the batter into about 24 cupcake tins. Bake at 350°F for 15 to 20 minutes. Watch carefully as bake times vary from oven to oven. Cool and frost. 
  • 9X13 PAN: Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease the pan. Bake for 32-37 minutes.  
Strawberry cake from scratch with frosting and fresh strawberries on top

Storing Tips

STORE leftover cake in an airtight container. It should keep for 1-2 days at room temperature or for 3-4 days in the fridge.

You can also FREEZE leftover cake. Flash freeze first by placing the leftovers on a baking pan and sticking them in the freezer until solid. Wrap with plastic wrap then again with foil. Freeze for 2-3 months. When you’re ready to eat simply unwrap and allow to thaw. 

If you want to make this cake ahead of time, I suggest storing the cake and frosting separately until you’re ready to frost and serve. Use the storage tips from above for the cake. The frosting can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge up to a week or in the freezer for up to a month. 

A slice of homemade strawberry cake on a white plate

For more favorite cakes, check out:

Strawberry Cake Recipe

5 from 11 votes
Sweet strawberry cake is so beautiful and really delicious! If you like strawberries, you will love the strong strawberry flavor in this moist and fluffy cake.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 742 kcal
Author Lil’ Luna

Ingredients

for the cake:

  • 1 package white cake mix
  • 1 package strawberry gelatin 3 ounces
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup finely chopped strawberries

for the frosting:

  • ½ cup butter softened
  • ½ cup strawberries pureed
  • 4 ½ – 5 cups powdered sugar

Instructions
 

  • To make the cake, preheat the oven to 350. Grease and line with parchment paper two 8 inch round cake pans.
  • In a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together the cake mix, gelatin, sugar, and flour. In a small bowl, whisk together the water, oil, and eggs. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and beat on medium speed for two minutes, until well combined. Gently fold in the chopped strawberries.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool 5-10 minutes, then remove the cakes from the pans to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • To make the frosting, beat the butter until light and fluffy. Add the strawberry puree and mix to combine. Add 3 cups of powdered sugar, and mix until combined. Add additional powdered sugar, ½ cup at a time, to make a frosting that is spreadable and fluffy, but not runny.
  • To assemble the cake, spread ¾ cup of frosting in between the cake layers. Use the remaining frosting to cover the sides and top of the cake.

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About the Author

Kristyn Merkley

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Comments:

  1. 5 stars
    This was such a light and fluffy cake! Was the exact fix for my sweet tooth; looking forward to enjoying this for dessert again tonight!

  2. 5 stars
    I made this for my birthday. I would probably not use quite as much frosting as I did the first time. the cake was really good and i would DEFINITELY make it again.

  3. 5 stars
    I’m making this rIght now for Our Labor Day bbq. Wish me luck! Im doing The two layers in a 9×13 pan since there will be lOts of people. It smells delicious as its baking!! Thanks for the great recipe! It was super easy to make!

    1. I’d use about 8 large strawberries, give or take. 1 cup of whole strawberries should break down to be about 1/2 cup of puree, which is just what the recipe calls for.

  4. Hi what could I do to reduce the amount of sugar in this recipe? As box mix and gelatin has so much sugar and then you are adding yet more sugar on top of that??

    1. You can certainly use plain frozen strawberries instead of fresh. Yes, if there is excess water after thawing them a bit (before pureeing), then you can drain that. If using frozen chopped berries for the cake, they can go directly into the cake batter, no need to thaw.

    1. I can’t wait to make this for my niece birthday I will be adding some roses to here make it very pretty for her

  5. Hi!
    I love this cake it tastes amazing but I’ve made it twice now and the cake just crumbles. The minute I touch it to frost it it comes apart. So how do I get it to look as good as it tastes?

    1. I’m so glad you love the cake. Sorry to hear about the crumbling…. There are a lot of reasons why a cake might crumble… too dry, too moist, overmixing, where you live can affect how the cake bakes… there’s lots of things. But first thing I’d suggest is to make sure your cake is completely cooled. You could even make the cake earlier, wrap tight and keep in the fridge before frosting. But just making sure it has completely cooled. And then kind of trial and error after that figuring out what might be the cause of the crumbling. 🙂

  6. 5 stars
    made this for a special occasion using vanilla buttercream and it was great!! Everyone loved it. Easy to make and was very moist. I will be making this again!

  7. 5 stars
    I have baked the strawberry cake then I made a peach cake this recipe is GREAT!!! One question I messed up and got sugar free jello mix can you use it instead of the regular jello mix

    1. You know, I have actually never tried this with sugar free jello mix. I imagine it would still work just fine. Might change the flavor a bit? You’ll have to let us know how it turns out!