Fresh Strawberry Cake

Tested & Perfected Recipes

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 this cake is that it’s made with very few ingredients, and you can have it in the oven 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.

Ingredients For Strawberry Cake

ingredients for strawberry cake

How To Make Strawberry Cake

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 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

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and butter a 9-inch deep dish pie pan or 9-inch square 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 (if you use a square cake pan, the batter will only come about ¾-inch up the sides of the pan -- that's ok). 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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Comments

  • I saw that this recipe had 970 reviews for an overall full five star rating and I honestly wondered if bots were involved. They are not. This is the absolute best cake I’ve ever baked, and I bake a LOT. I used a 9.5″ pie dish and I dropped the oven temperature by 25 degrees, but that’s simply something you do when baking in Pyrex. I used Kerrygold butter and 2% milk and followed the recipe to the letter. This cake is light, fluffy, and incredibly moist, and its sweetness perfectly compliments the slight tang of the strawberries. The two tablespoons of sugar on top seems like a lot, but it makes a wonderful light “crust” on the top so I recommend using the full amount.

    I have nothing to add. I usually have tweaks or corrections, but this recipe results in a cake that’s pure perfection exactly as written. My daughter thinks it is “the best cake ever” – even without chocolate. The reviews are deserved.

    • — Kat on May 22, 2022
    • Reply
    • The only advice I can offer is to cut larger strawberries into quarters instead of halves so they don’t sink to the bottom. Local or hothouse smaller strawberries should be fine for cutting in half.

      • — Kat on May 23, 2022
      • Reply
  • This strawberry cake is delicious on it’s own. But, it’s super as a replacement base for strawberry shortcake when shortcake isn’t available. Great recipe!

    • — Cindy on May 18, 2022
    • Reply
  • Needed to use up some strawberries, made this for our weekly family brunch. It didn’t even make it to dessert – looked just like the photo and people wanted a slice to eat with their brunch food. Definitely will make it again. Possibly the highest compliment is from my 11 year old grandson who enjoys cooking but usually not a baker – he asked for the recipe to be printed to add to his personal cookbook of recipes he likes!

    • — B Hendrix on May 15, 2022
    • Reply
  • Thanks for sharing this recipe. I made the cake with fresh picked strawberries and my family is enjoying it.

    • — Valerie S on May 11, 2022
    • Reply

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