This Strawberry Snacking Cake is a breeze to make! Sweet and tangy strawberries are mixed into a light and airy batter, then baked until tender. Layer on homemade strawberry cream cheese frosting for a perfectly pink dessert to serve on special occasions like Valentine’s Day!Jump to Recipe
Why you’ll love this recipe
- The best texture: The cake texture is moist and tender, and the icing is rich, creamy, and slightly tangy. Each bite is even better than the last!
- Fruity: Freeze-dried strawberries are infused all throughout this recipe, lending a sweet-yet-tangy flavor you won’t be able to get enough of.
- Perfect for sharing: This strawberry snacking cake is made in a 9×9 pan, so it’s unbelievably easy to divide up and bring to a party, gathering, or potluck.
Easy strawberry snacking cake
If you’re thinking to yourself “what exactly is a strawberry snacking cake?” let me break it down for you. A snacking cake sits somewhere between a traditional cake and quick bread. It’s great for sharing because of how simple it is to slice into squares.
The cake itself is moist and tender, and it’s absolutely bursting with vibrant red berry flavors. I find the slight tang of strawberries balances out the sweetness of the batter, making it light enough to enjoy as a snack or as an indulgent dessert.
If the thought of baking scares you, the good news is that snacking cakes are quite simple to make and only require a few staple ingredients. They come in handy when you need a sweet treat on the go, or when you feel like grazing as you pass through the kitchen!
Watch How To Make Strawberry Snacking Cake
Ingredients & substitutions
- Eggs: Gives the cake lift, especially when whipped up with granulated sugar. Remember to bring your eggs to room temperature before starting the recipe.
- Sugar: Regular granulated sugar lightly sweetens the cake. If you don’t have granulated sugar, replace it with cane sugar. For a more pronounced flavor, try light brown sugar.
- Lemon juice & zest: I add lemon juice to both the cake batter and frosting, and I mix lemon zest into the batter for good measure! Don’t skip the lemon juice as it’s needed to react with the baking soda. For another delicious combination, try lime juice and zest.
- Vanilla: Also added to both the cake batter and frosting to enhance the other ingredients and add a sweet flavor. I always recommend 100% pure vanilla extract for the best taste.
- Unsalted butter & oil: Adds richness and moisture to the cake. For a lighter option, use all avocado oil. For a more indulgent option, use all melted butter.
- All-purpose flour: The kitchen workhorse! All-purpose flour gives the cake structure while also keeping it tender. For an even more tender crumb, you can try cake flour.
- Leavening agents: I use both baking powder and baking soda as the leavening agents.
- Kosher salt: Perfectly brings out the sweet flavors of the cake. Never skip adding salt to your baked goods!
- Freeze-dried strawberries: I prefer freeze-dried strawberries as it gives you better control over the moisture level and adds an intense flavor. Don’t forget to save some for decorating!
- Cream cheese: For the strawberry cream cheese frosting. Use full-fat cream cheese for the most rich and decadent texture. For a lighter option, use low-fat cream cheese, or leave the icing off altogether.
- Powdered sugar: To sweeten the icing. If you don’t have powdered sugar on hand, make your own by blending 1 cup of granulated sugar with 1 tablespoon of cornstarch.
How to make a strawberry snacking cake
- Blitz the berries: Process the freeze-dried strawberries in a food processor until they look like a bright pink powder. Transfer the powder to a bowl and set aside. You will need some for the cake batter and some for the icing.
- Beat the eggs and sugar: Using a stand mixer or a hand electric mixer with a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar on high until the mixture appears pale and thick.
- Add the other wet ingredients: Pour in the lemon juice, vanilla extract, melted butter, and avocado oil. Mix everything on medium speed until well combined.
- Sift the dry ingredients: In another mixing bowl, sift in the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the lemon zest and ½ cup of strawberry powder, then mix once more to combine.
- Combine the batter: Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet until there are no more flour streaks and the batter is smooth and lump free.
- Bake the cake: Pour the cake batter into a greased and lined 9×9-inch cake pan. Allow the batter to sit in the pan for a couple of minutes to set. Bake it on the middle rack at 350F for 32-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool the cake: Let the cake cool in the pan for about 5 minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to finish cooling.
- Make the frosting: Beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla on medium speed. Once the texture is light and fluffy, add the rest of the strawberry powder and a pinch of salt. The color should be light pink and thick.
- Assemble the cake: To finish off your strawberry snacking cake, add icing to a piping bag and pipe it evenly on the top of the cake. Alternatively, you can use an offset spatula to spread it evenly across the cake. Crush up the remaining freeze-dried berries and sprinkle atop the cake. Cut into 12-16 equal squares and enjoy!
Frequently asked questions
Yes, you can use frozen strawberries to make a snacking cake. It’s best to thaw the strawberries first and drain the excess liquid to prevent it from turning soggy. I haven’t tested this recipe with fresh fruit, so you will need to experiment with reducing some of the wet ingredients.
Yes, strawberry snacking cake is easy to make gluten-free. Substitute the all-purpose flour for a 1:1 blend of gluten-free flour designed for baking. Some options include King Arthur Baking and Bob’s Red Mill.
You can use any type of fruit you like in this recipe, but I recommend using a freeze-dried form like freeze-dried raspberries.
Keep your strawberry snacking cake fresh for treats all week long! Just follow these simple storage tips:
- Room temperature: If you’re going to finish the cake within a day or two, keep it at room temperature in an airtight container. This is the optimal way to keep it fresh.
- Fridge: For longer storage, transfer it to the fridge for 4-5 days. Try adding a layer of wax paper on the top of the cake so it maintains some of its moisture.
- Freezer: You can freeze strawberry snacking cake for 2-3 months. Just wrap the cake in aluminum foil or plastic wrap and freeze. It’s best to use a freezer-safe bag or container.
- Thaw: Thaw your cake at room temperature for about 30-45 minutes before you’re ready to dig in again.
- Don’t over beat the batter: Since you are working with all-purpose flour, it’s important to not overwork the batter. Mix it until the flour streaks have just disappeared.
- Thicker frosting: If you prefer a thicker frosting, beat in about ¼ cup more of powdered sugar at a time until it reaches your desired texture.
- Don’t over bake: To avoid a dry and tough cake, check its doneness towards the end of baking. Insert a toothpick into the center of the cake and if it comes out clean, the cake is done.
Looking for more fruity dessert recipes?
If you enjoyed this strawberry snacking cake recipe, be sure to check out some more of my favorite dessert recipes with fruit as the star ingredient:
- Raspberry Lemon Burnt Basque Cheesecake
- Cream Cheese Berry Danish
- Grilled Peaches and Ice Cream
- Strawberry Rhubarb Fruit Galette
If you try this Strawberry Snacking Cake, let me know what you think! Rate and review this recipe in the comments below. Don’t forget to take a picture and tag me on Instagram @lenaskitchenblog!
Strawberry Snacking Cake
For the cake
- 3 large eggs at room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- ½ cup avocado oil
- 1 ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest
- 3 ½ cups freeze dried strawberries divided, save ¼ cup for decorating
- Preheat oven 350 F degrees. Grease and line your 9-inch square cake pan with parchment paper.
- In a blender or food processor, add 3 ¼ cups of freeze-dried strawberries. Blitz until the strawberries have become a bright pink powder. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. You will get about ¾ cups of powder. Note: You will use ½ cup for the cake, and ¼ cup will be used for the icing!
Make the Cake
- In a large bowl, using a stand or hand electric mixer add the eggs and sugar. Mix for about 3 minutes on high until pale and thick. Then add lemon juice and vanilla extract, melted butter, and avocado oil and mix on medium speed until combined.
- In another mixing bowl, sift in the four, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add the lemon zest and ½ cup of strawberry powder, and mix to combine.
- Gently fold the dry ingredients into the wet until the dry ingredients are incorporated and the batter is smooth and lump free. Note: Make sure to not over mix the batter.
- Pour the cake batter into your prepared cake pan. Spread the batter evenly. Allow the batter to set for 1-2 minutes.
- Place the pan on the middle rack and bake for about 32-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool for about 5 minutes before inverting the cake and placing it on a wire rack to cool.
Make the Frosting
- Meanwhile, make your icing. In a large mixing bowl, or in a stand mixer add the cream cheese, powdered sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add in the ¼ cup strawberry powder and a pinch of salt. Beat on high for 2-3 minutes until combined. It should be pink and thick. Transfer the icing to the fridge until your cake is completely cooled.
- To finish, add icing to a piping bag and pipe on the cake, or add frosting with an offset spatula evenly across the cake. Once you’ve iced the cake, crush up the remaining freeze-dried berries and sprinkle atop the cake. Cut into 12-16 equal squares and enjoy!