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Fresh Strawberry Cake

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Jam-packed with fresh strawberries, this strawberry cake is one of the simplest, most delicious cakes you’ll ever make.

Strawberry Cake

This strawberry cake recipe was sent to me by Karen Tannenbaum, a longtime reader, avid baker, and all-around lovely lady. In her email to me, Karen described a dinner she made that ended with this dessert as “just like a night in heaven.” I was sold. Within a few days, I had the cake in the oven and, sure enough, it was the one of the simplest, prettiest, most delicious cakes I’d ever made. The beauty of the cake is that it’s made with very few ingredients, and you can whip up the batter in under 15 minutes. What’s more, it’s a great way to use up extra strawberries or salvage berries that are less than perfect, and it keeps well for days. The recipe was originally published in Martha Stewart Living in June 2005, though it has been modified just a bit.

If you have an abundance of strawberries on hand, or find them on sale during the season, try my strawberry shortcake and strawberry muffins as well. You’ll be glad you did.

What You’ll Need To Make Strawberry Cake

ingredients for strawberry cake

Step-by-Step Instructions

Begin by combining the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl.

dry ingredients in mixing bowl

Whisk to combine and set aside.

whisked dry ingredients in mixing bowl

Beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

creaming butter and sugarAdd the egg and vanilla.

adding egg and vanilla

Beat to combine.

mixing egg and vanilla into batter

Add some of the flour.

gradually adding the flour to the batter

Mix to combine, then add some of the milk.

alternating the flour with the milkAlternately add the remaining flour and milk, beating until smooth. The batter will be quite thick.

finished strawberry cake batter in mixing bowl

Transfer the batter to a buttered 9-inch deep dish pie pan (or 9-inch round cake pan) and smooth with a spatula.

spreading batter in pie dish

Arrange the strawberry halves on top of the batter.

topping the batter with strawberries The sprinkle with the remaining sugar. (Don’t be tempted to omit the sugar here; it balances the tartness of the berries and forms a deliciously crisp crust on top the cake.)

strawberries sprinkled with sugar

Bake at 350°F for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 325° and bake for about an hour more.

baked strawberry cake Cool the strawberry cake on a rack. Serve warm or room temperature, either plain or topped with sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Strawberry Cake

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Fresh Strawberry Cake

Jam-packed with fresh strawberries, this strawberry cake is one of the simplest, most delicious cakes you’ll ever make.

Servings: One 9-inch cake, 8-10 servings
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 1 Hour 10 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 25 Minutes


  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour, spooned into measuring cup and leveled-off
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing the pan
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk (low fat is fine)
  • About ¾ pound strawberries, hulled and halved


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and butter a 9-inch deep dish pie pan (or 9-inch round cake pan).
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and 1 cup of the sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat on low speed until well combined. Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the milk, and beat on low speed until smooth. (Note: the batter will be thick.)
  4. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth with a spatula. Arrange the strawberries on top, cut side down, so that they completely cover the batter (the recipe calls for approximately ¾ pound of strawberries; use more or less if necessary). Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar over the strawberries.
  5. Bake for ten minutes, then reduce the heat to 325°F and bake until the cake is lightly golden and a tester comes out clean, about an hour. Let the cake cool in the pan on a rack. Serve with sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, if desired.
  6. Cake can be stored at room temperature for several days, loosely covered.
  7. Freezer-Friendly Instructions: The cake can be frozen for up to 3 months. After it is completely cooled, cover it tightly with aluminum foil or freezer wrap. Thaw overnight on the countertop before serving.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (10 servings)
  • Calories: 241
  • Fat: 8 g
  • Saturated fat: 5 g
  • Carbohydrates: 40 g
  • Sugar: 25 g
  • Fiber: 1 g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Sodium: 185 mg
  • Cholesterol: 38 mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

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  • The strawberry cake is easy to make and very tasty but most of my strawberries sank to the bottom ?? The sponge was very light but the cake had a bit of a soggy bottom!!! Any advice as I would like to make the cake again. I am from the UK so had to turn the cups and tablespoon measurement (for the butter) into grams but I think I did it correctly from a chart. Thank you.

    • — Liz on June 6, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Liz, Sorry to hear the strawberries all sunk to the bottom! Did you use really large strawberries? If so, try cutting them smaller next time. Also, you mentioned needing to convert the recipe to grams. The great majority of my recipes (including this one) include conversions to metric/weight measurements. To view them, scroll down to the recipe, and immediately under the recipe title on the right side, you’ll see a little toggle. If you move it from “cup measures” to metric, you’ll see measurements that will work for you. Hope that helps!

      • — Jenn on June 6, 2023
      • Reply
  • My strawberries ended up on the bottom of the pan. The cake is delicious but no as pretty.
    Any ideas why the fresh strawberries sank?

    • — Marsha on June 5, 2023
    • Reply
    • Hi Marsha, Sorry to hear the strawberries sunk. They were likely a little too big. Next time, cut them into slightly smaller pieces.

      • — Jenn on June 5, 2023
      • Reply
  • This is definitely a divine cake
    We will make it for many special occasions. We did top it with more strawberries which we love. Didn’t Last long.
    Thank you

    Bet n Kat

    • — Betty Pearcy on June 3, 2023
    • Reply
  • Oh, wow, simple, sweet and scrumptious. Definitely adding this recipe to our repertoire. Thank you Jenn!

    • — CP on June 2, 2023
    • Reply
  • What an amazing cake! I made it with my 3year old and he loved making it. Won’t eat I cause it has pink bits in 🤷🏻‍♀️ just means there’s more for us 😂 tastes amazing!

    • — Steph hudson on May 31, 2023
    • Reply
  • I usually love Jen‘s recipes, but this one was just pretty average. It was simple to make, and it did look pretty. It just seems to be a bit too thick on the cake/biscuit part and could’ve used another layer of strawberries or something. I likely won’t make it again.

    • — Sharon on May 29, 2023
    • Reply
  • Jenn, I LOVE this recipe. Found it a few years ago and it’s now my go to for cake. I froze several gallons of fresh strawberries last year. Do I need to thaw them to use in the cake? Could I put them in frozen? Thanks in advance for responding!

    • — miz on May 29, 2023
    • Reply
    • So glad you like it! You can add the berries without thawing them.

      • — Jenn on May 30, 2023
      • Reply
  • Hello. Can 1/2 & 1/2 be substituted for the milk? Thank you.

    • — Francis on May 29, 2023
    • Reply
    • Sure, Francis, that will work. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on May 30, 2023
      • Reply
  • Deliciously perfect!

    • — Crystal S on May 28, 2023
    • Reply

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