If you’re looking for your go-to summer dessert, look no further than this Easy Strawberry Cake Recipe with a dreamy cream cheese frosting!
I had no idea how strongly I felt about temperature control until I got married…and then bought a house…that didn’t have air conditioning.
The Mr. and I bought this lovely old home almost six years ago. It was the middle of winter, and we were all rosy cheeks and hot chocolate with our dandy new furnace keeping us nice and toasty. Well, it turns out Winter eventually ends (this would have been a good thing to remember when buying a house), and somewhere at the end of May there comes this wretched, awful, despicable thing called “I feel like I’m breathing in sweat and my thighs are sticking together!” I think the weather man calls it “humidity”. Whatever. Same thing.
It just so happens right around the same time this “humidity” thing comes around, I transform from my usual upbeat, cheery self into a sweaty, grouchy hag. I always thought I was good at roughing it. I loved camping when I was a kid. Surely, I’d be fine without air conditioning.
I was wrong. And I really shouldn’t have been surprised. I think I probably developed an allergy to the heat when I was a kid. My dad was a professional HVAC installer and I’m pretty sure he turbo charged our A/C. Our house was kept at sweatshirt wearing temperature year round. I joked about it then. I dream about it now.
Anyway, it wasn’t long before we were calling up my brother and begging him to save us from the heat. It had to be done…if not for the sake of my miserable self, at least for the sake of my marriage.
Thanks to that wonderful brother of mine, we’ve been enjoying the cool, crisp, precisely 71 degree air of our home for the last five years. This air comes with several benefits including increased positivity, extreme optimism, and the ability to turn on the oven and bake a cake in the middle of the summer. And when you’ve got a cake as good as this Easy Strawberry Cake, you’re definitely going to want to fire up the oven.
When my previous coworkers celebrated birthdays, they always requested this cake. When I need something impressive for a summer potluck, I make this cake. It’s a favorite of many of my friends and for good reason. The cake is light and fluffy and dotted with bits of fresh strawberries. It’s full of sweet, tart flavor and has the cheeriest bright pink color. And, thanks to cake mix and some strawberry jello, you can whip this up in a jiffy. All you need is some fresh sliced strawberries on top to impress the pants off everyone who tries it.
I love this strawberry cake paired with my favorite not-too-sweet cream cheese frosting, but you can also pair this with a nice buttercream, depending on your tastes. I like to keep things simple and just barely frost the edges of the cake so the pink color can shine through. Plus, I’m lazy, and this whole naked cake trend is really working in my favor. Whether you’re lucky enough to have A/C or not, this cake is definitely worth turning on the oven!
Easy Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
For the cake
- 1 box white cake mix (no pudding added)
- 1 3 oz. package strawberry Jello
- 1 scant Tablespoon flour
- Pinch baking powder
- 4 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 4 eggs
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup fresh strawberries, finely diced
For the frosting
- 2 8 ounce packages cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
- 2-2 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar
- Pinch salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour 2 8 inch round cake pans. (You can also cut parchment paper into circles the size of the pan, grease, place the parchment circle, and grease again to guarantee the cake will pop out easily!)
- In a large bowl whisk together cake mix, jello, flour, baking soda, and sugar. Add oil. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in water and fresh strawberries and beat.
- Pour into greased and floured baking pan or pans and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Let the cakes cool in pans for 10 minutes, then carefully remove from pans and allow to cool on a wire rack. Frost with Cream Cheese Frosting.
For the frosting:
- In a large mixing bowl, beat together the cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy. Add the powdered sugar, about a ½ cup at a time, beating after each addition. Continue to add the sugar until the frosting is thick but spreadable and as sweet as you like it. Stir in the salt and vanilla. Frost immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve.
Recipe adapted from Sweets