Our strawberry cake with jello is an old family favorite. It’s made with a white cake mix, strawberry jello, and fresh strawberries. Our unique method yields the absolute best strawberry jello cake, which is always moist, fresh, EASY, and delicious!

If you’re looking for that 1970s church cookbook strawberry cake that was always on the table at the potluck, this is it. We’ve made a few minor tweaks that we think makes this the best version.

Rectangular glass dish with pink frosted cake cut into 20 square pieces, garnished with sliced strawberries. A purple cloth and fresh flowers are placed nearby on a marble surface.

This old-fashioned strawberry jello cake has been around forever. While I’m partial to my fresh strawberry layer cake and my fresh strawberry sheet cake, those from scratch cakes take a lot more time and effort. When I need a quick and easy dessert that I know everyone will love, this is the one I pick.

I suggest baking this cake in a shallow dish or pan, similar in depth to a regular layer cake pan. I use a 9×13 glass dish that is not a deep dish.

Not only does this cake take you back to carefree childhood days, but it also gives you an opportunity to create those memories with your kids.

Why you’ll love this recipe

EASY – This recipe is so easy! You start with a boxed cake mix, add strawberry jello powder and just a handful of other ingredients, and in less than an hour, you’ll have a gorgeous and delicious cake.  

PRESENTATION – How can anyone not love a pretty pink cake filled with fresh strawberries? You can use this cake for a bridal shower, baby shower, or any special occasion because it’s just as beautiful as it is tasty.

MAKE-AHEAD – This cake keeps for several days, so you can easily make it ahead. You can even freeze it and add the frosting when ready.

SERVING SUGGESTIONS – Serve this strawberry cake with anything! It goes with just about any meal you can come up with. We especially love it with a simple Southern meal of pork chops, butter beans, and mashed potatoes. Strawberry cake for dessert is perfect!

I hope you’ll make this lovely strawberry jello cake. I think you’ll love it for how easy it is and your family will love how good it is!

A piece of strawberry cake with a strawberry on top.

What you’ll need for strawberry jello cake

Ingredients for a strawberry jello cake are arranged on a marble surface, including eggs, sugar, diced strawberries, oil, water, flour, strawberry powder, and whole strawberries.

Cake:

White cake mix (15.25 ounces) – any brand is fine

All-purpose flour – Cake mixes used to weigh 18.25 ounces, and I guess the cake manufacturers thought we wouldn’t notice when they reduced the product! So now we add a little flour to make up the difference.

Strawberry jello – the small box is all you need. Don’t get the sugar-free kind, just regular.

Vegetable oil – this helps the cake stay moist.

Butter – you didn’t really think we were going to make a cake without butter, did you?

Buttermilk – adding more flavor and tender crumb.

Eggs – for binding and texture.

Vanilla extract – for flavor. I like to add a couple of drops of almond extract also.

Strawberries – about one cup of sliced fresh strawberries macerated in sugar.

Frosting for old-fashioned strawberry jello cake:

Butter – because it’s buttercream frosting!

Powdered sugar – one box is all you need.

Strawberries – these will not macerate.

A baking dish with frosted pink strawberry cake with jello pieces, a single pink carnation, two plates with cake, a fork, a knife, and a pink cloth on a marble surface.
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Strawberry Jello Cake

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 33 minutes
Macerate strawberries: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 18 minutes
Servings: 12 slices
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Ingredients 

  • ½ cup sliced strawberries undrained
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 15.25 ounces white cake mix
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 3-ounce package strawberry gelatin (not sugar-free or fat-free)
  • ¼ cup butter, softened and diced
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Frosting:

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 3 ¾ cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk, room temperature
  • Pinch salt
  • ½ cup sliced strawberries, drained

Instructions 

Cake

  • Add 1/4 cup sugar to sliced strawberries and allow to macerate for about half an hour or longer.
  • Mix cake mix, jello, and flour. Add butter pieces and mix until blended. Pour in oil. Add buttermilk and mix until well combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add vanilla extract and mix. Stir in strawberries and any accumulated juice.
  • Bake in shallow 9×13 dish for about 30 minutes.

Frosting

  • Beat softened butter until light and creamy. Gradually add powdered sugar. Add milk. Gently stir in strawberries until well-mixed.

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 342kcal, Carbohydrates: 45g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 97mg, Sodium: 156mg, Potassium: 66mg, Fiber: 0.3g, Sugar: 42g, Vitamin A: 577IU, Vitamin C: 7mg, Calcium: 32mg, Iron: 0.5mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 342
Keyword: strawberry cake with jello, strawberry jello cake
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How to make strawberry cake with jello

Step 1. Macerate the strawberries. Add 1/4 cup sugar to sliced strawberries and allow to macerate for about half an hour or longer.

Step 2. Make the cake batter. Mix cake mix, jello, and flour. Add butter pieces and mix until blended. Pour in oil. Add buttermilk and mix until well combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Add vanilla extract and mix. Stir in strawberries and any accumulated juice.

Step 3. Bake. Bake in a shallow 9×13 dish for about 30 minutes.

A rectangular pink cake in a glass baking dish, sitting on a wire cooling rack.

How to make strawberry buttercream frosting

Beat softened butter until light and creamy. Gradually add powdered sugar and mix well.

Add milk and mix well. Gently stir in strawberries.

A clear bowl of strawberry buttercream frosting is on a white surface with a folded teal cloth and whole strawberries beside it.

Recipe tips for strawberry cake with jello

For best results, make sure all your ingredients are room temperature, including the milk that goes in the frosting.

How to freeze the old-fashioned strawberry jello cake

You can freeze the unfrosted cake by wrapping it tightly in plastic wrap and then foil and placing in the freezer. I don’t recommend freezing the cake after it’s frosted.

Can you make cupcakes with this strawberry jello cake recipe?

This recipe is perfect for cupcakes. You can expect to get about 24 cupcakes.

Can I make the strawberry cake ahead of time?

Absolutely! You can make this strawberry cake 2-3 days in advance of when you want to serve it. The cake keeps for days. If I’m making this cake for a dinner party, I prefer to make the frosting that day.

Can I use frozen strawberries?

You can use frozen strawberries but they will release more moisture. Be sure you squeeze and drain before adding them to the cake and the frosting. It’s good to add some juice to the cake, but you don’t want any added to the frosting.

How to you keep strawberries from making the cake soggy?

Unless you have an excess amount of juice, the strawberries should not make the cake soggy. I usually dice them up pretty small or even mash them a bit.

A slice of pink cake topped with a halved strawberry on a white plate, accompanied by a gold fork and a pink flower. A purple cloth is partially visible.

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About the author

Hi, I’m Lucy! I’m a home cook, writer, food and wine fanatic, and recipe developer. I’ve created and tested hundreds of recipes so that I can bring you the best tried and true favorites.

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