This fresh Strawberry Cake is absolutely bursting with fresh berries. And the sheet cake is my go-to dessert for a potluck or picnic since you can make it up to one day ahead and serve it straight out of the fridge. Easy, fresh and delish for the win!

strawberry sheet cake with fresh berries.

Strawberry Sheet Cake

This delicious dessert was the product of my need to bake for a potluck, yet having little time to bake on the day of the event…which is often the case when it comes to baking with kids in the house—our schedules are not always our own!

In turn, this Strawberry Sheet Cake can be made ahead and hang out in the fridge, better yet, it’s even best served chilled. The ingredients are straightforward, there are fresh berries right in the batter of the cake, and the combination of the strawberry flavor with the Strawberry Cream Cheese is just the most delicious.

We love this for potlucks, first birthday parties, Mother’s Day Brunch, Easter, and more.

(You may also like my Fresh Strawberry Cupcakes, Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting, and my Lemon Yogurt Cake.)

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Ingredients You Need

To make this cake you’ll need the following ingredients on hand and ready to go.

Ingredients for strawberry sheet cake on countertop.
  • All-purpose flour: This forms the base of the cake to ensure that it’s tender, moist, and fluffy.
  • Baking powder, soda, and salt: To help ensure that the cake tastes great and rises properly.
  • Unsalted butter: I like to bake with unsalted butter so I can adjust the salt myself.
  • Strawberries: We use fresh berries in the cake and on top of the cake. You can use frozen berries for the batter if that’s what you have access to.
  • Sugar: I use granulated sugar to sweeten this cake. If you prefer, you can use honey or maple syrup.
  • Eggs: Large eggs help to ensure that the batter holds together nicely and the cake bakes up with a tender crumb.
  • Vanilla extract: This adds extra flavor to the batter in addition to the fresh strawberries.
  • Fresh lemon zest: The zest of one lemon adds extra flavor to the batter and it pairs so nicely with the flavor from the strawberries.

Step-by-Step Instructions

This is a basic cake without any fancy ingredients or steps, and here’s a look at what’s involved in making the recipe. Scroll down to the bottom of the post for the full recipe.

how to make fresh strawberry sheet cake in grid of images.
  1. Add the berries to a blender to make a quick berry puree.
  2. Fold the berries into the rest of the wet ingredients.
  3. Add the rest of the dry ingredients to the strawberry mixture and whisk gently to combine.
  4. Pour into a prepared pan. Bake until just firm to the touch and baked through when tested with a cake tester or a toothpick.

TIP: Try not to over bake to ensure that the final cake is nice and moist.

how to make fresh strawberry sheet cake in grid of images.

Strawberry Frosting

The strawberry cake is complemented by the Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting, which is made with a combination of cream cheese, butter, freeze-dried strawberries, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar or honey to sweeten to taste. It has a deep berry flavor and pairs so well with the berry flavor of the cake. It’s also easy to mix together with an electric mixer.

How to Store

This cake can be made the day before you plan to serve it. Let the cake cool completely in the pan place on a wire rack, then cover tightly with plastic wrap and place in the fridge. You can frost it ahead or just before serving, depending on your personal preference. If you plan to top it with berries, I recommend adding them as close to when you plan to serve it if possible.

Store frosted cake fully covered in the fridge for up to 24 hours before serving. Let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Fork holding bite of strawberry sheet cake.

Best Tips for Success

  • Use fresh or frozen strawberries in the fresh strawberry cake. Let frozen strawberries thaw before blending them if using.
  • Check the cake for doneness with a cake tester. Insert it into the center of the cake and look for it to come out cleanly. Do not overbake.
  • Let the cake cool before frosting. You can add the frosting to the cake in the pan or invert the cake onto a platter or cutting board and frosting the bottom of the cake.
  • Dairy-free: Use vegan butter or melted coconut oil.
  • Gluten-free: Use a 1:1 style of gluten-free flour blend in place of the all-purpose flour.
  • Divide the recipe in half to make one 8×8-inch cake.
  • Bake in two 9-inch round cake pans and reduce the baking time to 16-18 minutes.

I’d love to hear your feedback on this recipe if you try it, so please comment below to share!

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fresh strawberry sheet cake with berries on top.

Fresh Strawberry Sheet Cake

The sheet cake is my go-to dessert for a potluck or picnic since you can make it up to one day ahead and serve it straight out of the fridge. The Strawberry Frosting seals the delicious deal.
5 from 21 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 176kcal
Servings 16

Ingredients

  • 2 cups diced strawberries (1 cup puree)
  • ½ cup unsalted butter (melted and cooled slightly)
  • 4 eggs (lightly beaten)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • zest of one lemon
  • Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting (double the recipe)
  • Fresh strawberries (optional to top)
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Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan.
  • Add the berries to a blender and blend into a puree. Measure out 1 cup.
  • Add the strawberry puree to a large bowl with the eggs, melted butter, and vanilla.
  • Add the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest. Gently fold the batter together.
  • Add the batter to the prepared cake pan, spreading evenly over the top.
  • Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, the edges are lightly golden brown and the center is set. Let pan cool fully on a wire rack.
  • Spread Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting over cooled cake. Top with fresh berries if desired to serve.

Equipment

Video

Notes

  • Store frosted cake fully covered in the fridge for up to 24 hours before serving. Let sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  • Make the Strawberry Puree up to 3 days ahead if desired.
  • Gluten-free: Use a 1:1 style of gluten-free flour blend.
  • Dairy-free: Use melted coconut oil and desired dairy-free icing.
  • Egg-free: Use your favorite liquid egg replacer to make up for the volume of 4 eggs (which is typically about 1 cup).
  • Find the full Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting recipe.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 176kcal, Carbohydrates: 24g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 7g, Saturated Fat: 4g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Trans Fat: 0.2g, Cholesterol: 56mg, Sodium: 177mg, Potassium: 68mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 239IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 44mg, Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Rate in the comments and tag @yummytoddlerfood on IG!

This post was first published June 2019.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Hi! I want to make this for Valentine’s Day in a heart shaped pan (8/9 inch round equivalent) but I only have 1 heart pan. Do you think the batter would keep if I mixed up the full recipe and baked one and then another? Or do you think I should mix half at a time? Thanks! Love you recipes!

  2. Could this be made with the house vanilla cake? I don’t have any eggs or butter right now but a neighbor gifted me strawberries.

    1. Sure, just add diced strawberries and use the frosting. That recipe makes enough for an 8×8 inch pan so if you want this larger size you’ll want to double it.

  3. Hi Amy, would the recipe have to change drastically if I wanted to use a 9-inch springform round cake pan? Thank you!

    1. Hi- Depending on how thick you wanted it, you might want to cut the recipe in half? If you used the whole recipe, it would likely take a lot longer to bake through since it will be thicker.

  4. Hi! I see you can make the icing dairy free by switching butter for dairy free butter or coconut oil, but what do you replace the cream cheese with? Or do you just remove it? Thanks! Can’t wait to try!!

    1. For that I’d use a vegan butter and a vegan cream cheese. Both are pretty widely available these days!

  5. Hello! Is it possible to sweeten this recipe a little with honey or sugar, similar to the cupcakes you do? If so, what would you recommend? Thank you!

    1. Yes, you can use honey in place of the sugar if you want (I think I understood your question but let me know if not!)

  6. Hi Amy! Can you use frozen strawberries in the cake? Strawberry season is coming to an end here, but I would love to make this cake later this summer for a birthday!

    1. Hi, yes totally! I would thaw them, then blend to measure out 1 cup, and make the recipe as is. Should work well!

  7. Thanks Amy! Thinking about using this for a first bday cake! Have you ever puréed the strawberries to add to the cake?

  8. Hello there! Is there a substitute for oat flour? Also, the nellies site has a different recipe for the frosting that doesn’t use cream cheese? Can you link yours?

    1. The frosting should be: 1/4 cup unsalted butter and 8 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/2 cup seedless strawberry jam
      1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1/2 cup powdered sugar, Fresh strawberries for garnish (optional). I think you could do all flour though I haven’t tested it that way. If you do that, test it for doneness a few minutes earlier to make sure it’s not overbaked.