Strawberry sheet cake is made with fresh strawberries for a flavorful seasonal cake. It's topped with a fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting for a delicious finish. Ditch the boxed mix and artificial flavors, and make this strawberry cake that's perfect for any celebration or gathering.
Strawberry sheet cake is such a flavorful summer cake. Unlike box mixes or cakes that use artificial strawberry flavors, this sheet cake is made with fresh strawberries for a pure and quality taste. When summer comes around, strawberries are at their peak and are the perfect seasonal ingredient in this cake recipe.
This strawberry sheet cake is topped with fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting. Make this cake for your next celebration or gathering, and it's sure to be a hit.
Before you begin
Take out the following baking equipment.
Digital kitchen scale
9x13-inch baking pan
2 medium bowls
Stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment
2 small bowls
Wire cooling rack
Allow all your ingredients to come to room temperature.
Read the recipe through from start to finish.
Using a combination of cake flour and all-purpose flour in this recipe will produce a light and tender cake. Cake flour has less protein than all-purpose flour and will develop less gluten resulting in a cakey texture. All-purpose is a stronger flour and offers a slightly more dense texture. Using a combination of the two adds the perfect balance to this strawberry sheet cake.
Milk is the most common binding ingredient in cakes. Unless otherwise specified, always use whole milk for baking cakes. The fat helps tenderize your crumb. Additionally, whole milk creates a moister and finer cake crumb compared to using low fat or skim milk.
Fresh strawberries add a lovely strawberry flavor to this cake. Before making this recipe, make sure you have prepared the reduced strawberry puree. Do not use pureed strawberries that haven't been reduced or else the mixture will become too runny, and the cake will lack a strawberry flavor.
It's essential to use the right type of cream cheese for your frosting. This is the time that you don't want to skimp on fat, so use full-fat block cream cheese. It will not only produce the most flavorful frosting but using the spread version (which comes in a tub) has a higher concentration of water and creates a runny cream cheese frosting.
How to select the best fresh strawberries
- Buy local and in-season. The closer to home that berries are picked, the more likely they are picked when ripe. When berries have to travel a long way before reaching the consumer, they are picked before ripen and have less flavor. Once picked, strawberries do not continue to ripen.
- Choose bright red strawberries. White skin around the berry stem, or on any portion of the berry, is an indication that it wasn't picked at peak ripeness.
- Smell the berries. Strawberries that have a sweet, rich scent are much more likely to offer a sweet flavor compared to those that do not have any scent.
- Size does not matter. The size of a berry does not correlate to its sweetness. Color is a much more accurate representation of a ripe, sweet strawberry.
How to make reduced strawberry puree
To make 240 g (1 cup) puree, use 907 g (2 pounds) of fresh strawberries. Wash your fruit and cut the stems off. Place the berries into a food processor and puree them. Occasionally, stop the food processor and scrape down the sides of the container with a silicone spatula to ensure everything is evenly pureed.
Pour the strawberry mixture into a medium saucepan and place over medium-low heat for about 30 minutes. Occasionally stir the mixture so that the bottom doesn't burn, and everything cooks evenly. After 30 minutes, you should have about 240 g (1 cup) puree. Depending on the moisture of your strawberries, it could take a little longer. Allow the puree to cool completely before adding to your cake batter and cream cheese frosting.
Fresh strawberry cream cheese frosting
With a mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Turn the mixer off and add all of the powdered sugar to the butter mixture. Turn on the mixer to low speed until the powdered sugar is incorporated. Slowly add the strawberry puree and mix. Increase to high speed and beat for 3 minutes until smooth, creamy, and airy.
To make a stiffer cream cheese frosting, you can either reduce the amount of strawberry puree you add or add powdered sugar until you reach your desired consistency. Reducing the amount of strawberry puree will decrease the strawberry flavor.
Tips and takeaways
- If fresh strawberries are not available, you can use frozen berries to make the puree. Make sure to thaw completely before pureeing. Even when thawed, using frozen strawberries will take longer to reduce than fresh berries.
Love strawberries? Try these other recipes...
- Strawberry shortcake biscuits
- Roasted strawberry ice cream
- Strawberry cupcakes
- Strawberry cheesecake mousse
Make sure to tag me @thesweetoccasion on Instagram and leave me a review below if you make this Strawberry Sheet Cake recipe. I'd love to see your creations and read your feedback. And if you would like to make this recipe later, be sure to pin this recipe using the button on any of these images. Let's make every occasion a sweet occasion!Print