Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

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Hints for the perfect Homemade Strawberry Cake! This 100% from-scratch recipe uses fresh strawberries in the cake and in the homemade buttercream. You may also love our strawberry crumb bars

Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

**We updated this recipe January 13, 2019 based on reviewers feedback. We’ve re-tested this recipe many times and find that the cake rises better and is fluffier based off these instructions. We so appreciate your feedback!

Fresh Strawberry Cake Recipe

It took two whole months of flour-flying, cake-baking intensity, but we’ve come through for you with a strawberry cake that I think you’ll love. 100% homemade strawberry cake. Made with fresh strawberries.

We had last month made a strawberry cake that was to-die-for that used a cake mix and gelatin, but you wanted a strawberry cake from scratch without gelatin. You asked for it, and we didn’t quit ’til we had it down. Ok….so I did quit, but then decided I couldn’t let the challenge go and picked it up again.

Do you realize how hard it is to add fresh strawberries to homemade cake? It’s not as easy as dumping those juicy red berries into the batter. It takes some tweaking to get intense strawberry flavor without adding too much moisture to the cake. We finally made it happen and couldn’t be happier with the results!

Let’s get right into talking about this homemade strawberry cake recipe!

Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

How do you make strawberry flavored cake?

So how do you make a strawberry cake with real strawberries? You start by making a strawberry puree. How do you make a strawberry puree for cake? I’m glad you asked!

To make a simple strawberry puree, you’ll take 1 quart of strawberries, clean them, cut off the stems, and put them in a food processor until they are all nice and pureed. You should end up with about 3 cups of puree. Now some stop there, but I decided to get a more intense strawberry flavor for this homemade strawberry cake and buttercream, I wanted to make a strawberry puree reduction. That means I took the fresh strawberry puree and placed it in a saucepan. I turned the stovetop on to medium-low heat and allowed the strawberry puree to simmer for about 30-45 minutes until the puree has reduced down by half, or about 1 ½ cups. Why do this? It cooks out some of the moisture of the strawberries, but keeps all that berry-bursting flavor. This is the reduced strawberry puree that you will use in the cake and in the buttercream.  Be sure to plan ahead on this part. You’ll need the reduced puree to cool completely before you make the cake. I often make prepare the puree the day before I will be baking the cake.

How do you make a homemade strawberry cake?

It’s fairly easy to put together the cake. We based the recipe off this cherry cake, which uses cake flour, butter and egg whites which results in a fluffy cake with amazing flavor. To get the strawberry flavor, use a little bit of strawberry extract, which you can find in grocery stores in the baking aisle. If you can’t find that extract, simply use the vanilla extract. You’ll also use ½ cup of the reduced strawberry puree.

Can you use all purpose flour instead of cake flour?

Not really. In order to have the best results, if a recipe calls for cake flour, you should definitely use cake flour. Do you want to make a substitute for cake flour? Take a cup of all-purpose flour and remove two tablespoons of flour. Add two tablespoons of cornstarch back into the flour. Whisk the flour and cornstarch together. This will work as a cake flour substitute in a pinch!

*It’s important to note that the cake does not have a bright pink color. It’s more white in appearance. If you’d like a deeper pink color, use a drop or two of red food coloring.*

How do you make strawberry frosting?

The frosting itself is just like our basic buttercream frosting. The only difference is that instead of heavy whipping cream to make it smooth, you’ll use some of the remaining strawberry puree to give it a pink color and strawberry flavor.

*Add the strawberry puree into the buttercream no more than ¼ cup at a time to be sure that the buttercream doesn’t end up too runny. You want it to be spreading consistency, but not to slide off the cake. You may not use all of the reduced strawberry puree.*

Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

It’s a fairly easy homemade cake recipe. Use only the ingredients listed (meaning go buy that cake flour!) and take your time.

You can make this as a 2-layer cake or in a 9×13 pan.

*Please note that we like a lot of frosting on our cakes. If you’d like less, or if you are making the 9×13 pan size, see the instructions in the recipe.*

Tools to Make This Cake

Other Strawberry Recipes

strawberry cake with a slice missing
strawberry cake with a slice missing

Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

4.57 from 104 votes
Hints for the perfect Homemade Strawberry Cake! This 100% from-scratch recipe uses fresh strawberries in the cake and in the homemade buttercream.
Servings 15 servings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes


For the Strawberry Puree:

  • 3 cups strawberries pureed*

For the Cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour 300 grams
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar 320 grams
  • 1/2 cup milk 2%
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup reduced strawberry puree
  • 5 large egg whites

For the Buttercream:

  • 1 1/2 cups butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup reduced strawberry puree


  • *For the strawberry puree, clean and remove the stems on about 1 quart of strawberries. Cut them in half and place them in a food processor to blend them into a puree. You should end up with about 3 cups of strawberry puree.
  • Place the strawberry puree in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring often to prevent burning, until the strawberries have reduced to 1 ½ cups of puree.  I've found this to take about 30-45 minutes.
  • Allow the reduced strawberry puree to cool completely. (I often make this a day in advance so it has plenty of time to cool.)

For the Cake:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, soda and salt into a medium size bowl. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of stand mixer, cream together the softened butter and sugar. 
  • Add the milk, oil and extracts. Beat on medium speed for 2minutes. 
  • Add the reduced strawberry puree and egg whites.  Beat for an additional 2 minutes.
  • Add the flour mixture and stir until well combined, but be careful not to overmix. Scrape the sides of the bowl as needed. 
  • Grease and flour two 9" round cake pans. Divide the batter between the cake pans.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes, or until the cake springs back when you touch the center of it. Allow the cakes to sit for 5 minutes, then remove them from the pans to a wire rack to cool completely.

For the Buttercream:

  • In a stand mixer bowl, with the mixer on medium speed, whip the butter for 2-3 minutes until it is almost white in color. Add in the salt, powdered sugar, vanilla extract. Mix on low speed until blended. Add in the reduced strawberry puree, ¼ a cup until the frosting is the consistency you'd like. Add a drop or two of red food coloring if you'd like the cake to be a little pinker. Beat on low speed again for 1-2 minutes.

Assemble the Cake:

  • Frost the top of one of the round cakes, then place the second cake on top of that.
  • Frost the entire outside of the cake with the strawberry frosting, making it as smooth as possible. 
  • Decorate the top with cut or whole strawberries, if desired.
  • Cover and refrigerate until serving.



**We updated this recipe January 13, 2019 based on reviewers feedback. We've re-tested this recipe about 5 times and find that it rises better and is fluffier based off these instructions. We so appreciate your feedback!
You can make this recipe into a 9x13 cake. Simply bake at the same time and temperature, watching it closely until the center of the cake springs back when you touch it. 
If you'd like less frosting, try:
2 sticks of butter
¼ teaspoon salt
4 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup strawberry puree (added slowly until the frosting is at the correct consistency.)
Make as directed above.


Calories: 554kcal | Carbohydrates: 80g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 65mg | Sodium: 391mg | Potassium: 162mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 63g | Vitamin A: 775IU | Vitamin C: 16.9mg | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 0.4mg
Author Julie Clark
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 554
Keyword cake recipes, cake with strawberries, how to make strawberry cake, strawberry dessert

Homemade Strawberry Cake Recipe

About Julie Clark

I'm Julie Clark, CEO and recipe developer of Tastes of Lizzy T. With my B.A. in Education and over 30 years of cooking and baking, I want to teach YOU the best of our family recipes.

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Brian Welch
6 years ago

I was supposed to make this cake for mothers day but we wound up cancelling as everyone got sick. I froze the strawberry puree which I had already made and then decided today that I’d make it and we would deliver pieces to our moms (my wife and I). Well let me tell you this cake is delicious and it got RAVES from everyone who ate it. The cake is light and fluffy and delicious (even without the strawberry extract which I could not find and left out) I also did something different with my leftover strawberry puree, I whipped… Read more »

6 years ago

I don’t normally take the time to leave reviews, but this was so good I’ll make an exception. The strawberry puree reduction really made a difference in the frosting (I added a little too much and thinned my frosting more than I wanted, but oh well. Still delicious, and now I know for next time!). The cake itself was also delicious. Just a note for people who haven’t made puree reductions before (like me). Finding the right heat setting on your stove top is really important. The instructions say medium low, but my stove was really more of a medium.… Read more »

Dawn White
6 years ago

5 stars
This is such a good recipe! I made it for my husband’s birthday when he requested a strawberry cake with white icing. Both turned out pink thanks to the delicious strawberry puree, but his reaction when he saw it was perfect! It was easy, delicious, and best of all homemade! Thank you!

6 years ago

I made this for my twin’s 2-year-old birthday party yesterday, and it was DELICIOUS! First cake I’ve ever made from scratch, and it was a success. I made the puree in advance as you suggested, and that makes so much sense why you do that. When I was finished reducing the puree, it didn’t quite taste right. But the next morning, after cooling down, it tasted like concentrated strawberry goodness. As you suggested, you definitely have to watch how much puree you put in the frosting as I made mine soupy on the first try. I also made sure I… Read more »

Heidi Grover
6 years ago

5 stars
I made this cake today. It is really good! I had leftover strawberry puree, so I boiled it for a few minutes with about 1/2 cup of sugar. Then I cut both cakes into two halves and put a layer of strawberry puree on top of one layer.

6 years ago

I’m curious because another recipe I saw said to puree the strawberries and put the puree through a mesh to remove the seeds. Do you just leave the seeds in this recipe??

I’ve never made a strawberry cake before and my daughter wants one for her birthday in a couple days. Thanks for providing one with no jello powder or dyes!!

6 years ago

Have you tried this recipe as cupcakes?

5 months ago

No Strawberry Extract and I need to make the cake today. Wondering if I should double up on the vanilla extract. Im sure it will be still be lovely.

6 months ago

4 stars
I made as a raspberry cake instead. Of course raspberries are expensive, so I used reduced sugar raspberry preserves and a small amount of water for the puree instead. That plus putting it through a sieve, it was like there was no difference.

Only change I would make is to 1.5x the recipe because if you even slightly overwhip it, the layers aren’t very big.

1 year ago

5 stars
Best strawberry cake recipe ever. Everyone enjoyed it

Rhonda C.
2 years ago

5 stars
Just made this beautiful and delicious cake today. A friend requested a strawberry cake for his birthday and I had never made one. So I read several recipes online and chose yours because of the strawberry reduction. I went with your less frosting option (sent home with recipient in a 9×13) and used only 3/4 c of the reduced puree in that, I added about a 1/2 c powdered sugar (4 1/2 total) and I sieved in 1/2 tsp of cornstarch too. Very well loved cake and lots of happy strawberry lovers!

2 years ago

5 stars
Several of my family members choose this cake for their birthday. We all love it. I tried something new that turned out really well that I thought I would share. I bought a bag of freeze dried strawberries and pulverized them in a food processor in to a powder. After cooking down the strawberries I added this powder to the puree. It added even more color and flavor and turned out delicious. Give it a try!!

2 years ago

In step five, when you add in the egg whites, are they beaten? Because I know in your other cake recipes you say to beat the egg whites first. Also, will the color of the cake be white-ish? I’m worried that it will turn out gray like other strawberry cakes when you don’t use food coloring. This is my first time making a strawberry cake and I’m super excited to make it!

2 years ago

Do you think using frozen strawberries for the reduction will work? It’s not strawberry season so the strawberries at the store are not very sweet, but I want to make this for my daughter’s 2nd birthday this weekend 🙂

Gauri Y
3 years ago

Can we use frozen puree and how?