Finding the perfect cake for a special birthday has just gotten easier! This Homemade Strawberry Cake with silky Cream Cheese Frosting is perfection! (Video below on how to create this ruffle technique!) I love making my own birthday cake! It is one of the few times I year I throw all caution to the wind and just bake to please my soul. And belly. 😉 

Cream Cheese Frosting Ruffles on Strawberry Cake
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How to Make a REAL Strawberry Cake

Strawberry Cake Recipe (Below)

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

8-inch round cake pans

Offset Spatula

Pastry Bag with #113 Leaf Tip

Inside slice of REAL strawberry Cake

Food Coloring: Yay or Nay?

As you can see, this is not a pink cake. Real strawberries will only lend so much of their color to the batter. But readers have mentioned that they do not want to use red food coloring and this cake is a perfect example of not needing to. The flavor is wonderful enough on its own!

If you want your cake to be more pink feel free to add some red food coloring. I would recommend at least a teaspoon.

Tips for Real Strawberry Cake

  • Room temperature ingredients are ESSENTIAL for this recipe. You can see how I quickly bring eggs to room temperature here.
  • There are a number of steps to this recipe, so it’s a good idea to read through first and prepare your ingredients beforehand.
  • If you want to use all of your strawberry puree IN the cake, feel free to brush cakes with a simple syrup after they have baked. This is a dense cake, so it does need the additional moisture added before serving.
  • This cake would also be amazing with Whipped Cream frosting.
  • If you are baking at a higher altitude, check out my High Altitude Baking Tips.

Cream Cheese Frosting

For the Cream Cheese Frosting recipe, feel free to add 1-2 tablespoons liquid (milk, heavy cream, etc.) to create the soft, velvety texture needed for this frosting technique. I also turned my mixer on high and let it go for about 4 minutes to add some air into the frosting.

A crumb coat is important in this cake as you will want something for the ruffles to “adhere” to. (frosting sticks to frosting)

Cream Cheese Ruffles

Here is a video on how I created the Ruffle technique on this cake:

I used an offset spatula to create lines in the crumb coat that helped me to stay straight. (Some of my ruffle lines are crooked… I apologize! This happened because I was trying to pipe and film at the same time. You can easily create vertical perfection at home with the guidelines in your cake!)

Top of Ruffle Cake

For the top, I just used my offset spatula to smooth the edge. Gently pull the frosting from the edge towards the center of the cake. Very easy!

And of course, feel free to do ignore the fancy design and just smooth the frosting out as you see fit. 🙂 

Slice of Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Recipe adapted from Strawberry Ruffle Birthday Cake.

Seriously amazing From-Scratch Strawberry Cake with a silky Cream Cheese frosting that will blow your mind!
5 from 3 votes

From-Scratch Strawberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Finding the perfect cake for a special birthday has just gotten easier! This Homemade Strawberry Cake with silky Cream Cheese Frosting is perfection! 


  • 4 large egg whites, (save yolks for later)
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (226g) butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar, for separate step
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup strawberry puree (1 cup thawed frozen strawberry & 1-2 tbsp water in blender)
  • 2 -3 cups dices fresh strawberries, or thawed strawberries


  • Heat oven to 350°F. Prepare three 8-in round cake pans.
  • Whip four eggs whites in mixer until soft peaks form. Add 1 cup sugar, 1 tbsp at a time, whipping to maintain soft peaks. Pour whites into large bowl (This was about 5 cups in volume after whipped) and set aside.
  • Without fully cleaning the mixer bowl, cream room temperature butter and 1 cup sugar until fluffy. Add in vanilla and almond extract. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating after each addition.
  • Sift together 3 cups flour, baking powder, and salt.
  • Alternatively add flour mixture and ⅓ strawberry puree to batter until fully combined. (Flour, ⅓ cup puree, flour, ⅓ cup puree, flour) Batter will be thick. You should have ⅓ cup puree LEFT OVER. (This will be brushed on cake later)
  • Fold in egg whites.
  • Gently add diced strawberries to batter. (I used 2 cups but think 3 cups would also be delicious.)
  • Pour batter into prepared pans and bake for 32-36 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with no wet batter. (crumbs are ok!) If using two 8-in cake pans, bake for 38-42 minutes.
  • Remove cakes from over and use a pastry brush to spread remaining strawberry puree over warm cakes.
  • Cool until ready to assemble cakes.

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I am so glad I found your website. I want to thank you for sharing your recipes! I made the strawberry cake this evening and LOVED it! I have made a few other cakes and cookies from your site and I am never disappointed!

  2. I am preparing this .cake and am confused by step 5. THe recipe calls for adding 1/3 purée, then 1/2 Cup to batter. This does not leave 1/3 cup left over. Will you please clarify? Sounds delish.


    1. Hi, Linda! I work with iambaker and am happy to help with questions. It should be 1/3 cup puree added to the batter both times, with 1/3 of the strawberry puree leftover. I hope this clarifies it; I updated the recipe to reflect the change. Have a great day!

  3. Hi, I’d like to try making this in a couple of days for my grandsons first birthday. Though I’d like to make cupcakes instead of a whole cake. With the serving size set to 10, will this make at least a dozen or more cup cakes? And at what temperature/time do I bake them for?

  4. Good afternoon I am a daughter of bakers, only parents made pan dulce and cortadillo(Mexican style bread and cake). I would like to learn to make this strawberry cake but I prefer fresh fruit when they are available. Is that okay or does have to be frozen? I learned how to bake cookies so now I want to learn cakes.
    Thank you 🙏

  5. I make this every year for my daughter’s birthday and it is the best cake ever!!! So fresh and so tasty, the perfect cake for the strawberry season!

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