With just three easy-to-find ingredients, you can enjoy a Strawberry Jello Poke Cake featuring moist white cake, fresh strawberries, and jiggly strawberry jello! Perfect for enjoying a refreshing treat during the warmer Spring and Summer months!
Originating in the United States in the 1970s, poke cakes have become an iconic classic for their moist and flavorful texture. The concept is simple: a baked cake is "poked" with holes, allowing a flavorful liquid, such as Jello, to seep into every crevice. This method creates a cake that's not only visually stunning but also incredibly moist and packed with flavor!
What makes this recipe truly unique is the way the jello is incorporated. Instead of following the traditional method of refrigerating the Jello separately, the liquid Jello mix is poured directly onto the cake, allowing it to infuse into the entire cake. With just a white cake mix, strawberry Jello, fresh strawberries, granulated sugar, and a small box of vanilla pudding mix, you have everything you need to create this interesting treat.
Its vibrant colors and refreshing flavors make it a perfect dessert for spring and summer events. Whether you're hosting a backyard barbecue, a birthday party, or a picnic in the park, this cake is exactly what you need. Its light and fruity taste from the combination of strawberries and Jello make it light and fruity, while the creamy pudding adds a layer of decadence, making it the star of your next celebration!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Strawberry jello poke cake offers a combination of sweetness from the cake, tanginess from the strawberry Jello, and freshness from the chopped strawberries.
- With its vibrant pink hues and contrasting white layers, this cake is not only a treat is also a feast for the eyes, making it look like a bakery-style dessert with little effort!
- The Jello mixture seeps into the cake, infusing it with moisture and creating a tender, melt-in-your-mouth texture.
- This cake is versatile enough to be enjoyed at casual cookouts, formal parties, or as a special treat for any time of the year!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Strawberry Jello - Provides a burst of fruity flavor and vibrant pink color to the cake. When poured over the poked holes in the cake, it infuses every bite with its sweet and tangy flavor.
- White Cake Mix - Simplifies the baking process while ensuring a light and fluffy texture. It serves as the base for the Jello and other layers as the foundation of the cake.
- Cool Whip - The luscious whipped cream topping adds a delightful touch of sweetness to the cake.
How To Make Strawberry Jello Poke Cake
Bake the cake mix: Using the instructions on the box, bake the cake mix in prepared pans. Before continuing with the recipe, let the cake cool completely.
Poke holes in the cake: Use a round object, such as the end of a wooden spoon with a round handle, to poke holes in the cake.
Add jello: Prepare the strawberry jello according to package instructions but do not refrigerate. Instead, pour the wet mixture over top of the cake to soak into the holes created. Then, place the cake in the refrigerator for 4-5 hours or until the jello is completely set.
Garnish and serve: Add a layer of cool whip on top. Enjoy!
- Ensure the cake is completely cooled before proceeding with the next steps. Pouring the Jello over a hot cake can cause it to become soggy and lose its structure.
- When poking holes in the cake, use the end of a wooden spoon with a round handle. This size and shape allow the Jello to penetrate the cake without creating large, disruptive holes. Make gentle and evenly spaced pokes.
- Let the chopped strawberries sit in the sugar in the refrigerator for at least an hour. This will allow the sugar to draw out the natural juices from the strawberries, intensifying their sweetness and creating a syrup-like consistency.
- Be mindful of the refrigeration times mentioned in the recipe. Allowing the cake to chill for 4-5 hours after pouring the Jello ensures that it sets properly. Refrigerating the pudding layer for 1 hour before adding the strawberries ensures a smooth and set pudding consistency.
- Lemon Twist: For a refreshing twist, swap the strawberry Jello with lemon Jello and garnish the cake with lemon zest.
- Mixed Berry Medley: Experiment with a medley of different berries by using a mixed berry Jello instead of strawberry. You can also incorporate a combination of fresh berries, such as raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries, in the strawberry layer and garnish.
- Chocolate Indulgence: Replace the white cake mix with a chocolate cake mix and use chocolate pudding instead of vanilla. Top the cake with chocolate shavings or drizzle it with a rich chocolate ganache.
- Tropical Cake: Use pineapple Jello and garnish the cake with diced pineapple and toasted coconut flakes.
Storing & Freezing
Storing: To store, cover the cake tightly with plastic wrap or transfer it to an airtight container. It can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. The cake may soften slightly over time due to the moisture from the Jello and strawberries.
Freezing is not recommended as the Jello and fresh strawberries will have an icy texture that adds too much moisture to the cake when thawed.
You can make a poke cake up to 2 days in advance. The cake base can be baked and poked with holes, and the Jello can be poured over it. However, it is recommended to add the pudding, strawberry topping, and Cool Whip layer closer to the serving time for the best texture and freshness.
A poke cake can become soggy if the cake is still warm when the Jello is poured over it. It is important to ensure that the cake has cooled completely before adding the Jello to prevent excessive moisture absorption, which can result in a soggy texture.
More Strawberry Desserts
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Strawberry Jello Poke Cake
- 1 6 oz box of Strawberry Jello
- 1 white cake mix
- 8 oz Cool Whip
- Bake the cake according to the instructions on the box. Let the cake cool completely before moving on to the next step.
- Poke holes in the cake; I used the end of a wooden spoon with a round handle. Prepare the strawberry Jello according to the package up to the point where you refrigerate. Instead of refrigerating the Jello, pour the mix over the top of the cake. Refrigerate the cake for 4-5 hours or until the Jello has set.
- Carefully spread the Cool Whip over the top. Serve and Enjoy!
Make sure the cake has thoroughly cooled before moving on to the next stages. Pouring Jello over a warm cake may result in it becoming mushy and losing its integrity. To store, just wrap the cake well with plastic wrap or put it in an airtight container. It's good in the fridge for 3-4 days, but be aware it might get a bit softer as it soaks up the Jello and strawberry moisture.
*All nutrition information provided is automatically calculated and is an estimate and will vary based on ingredients, brands, and changes in cooking methods listed in the recipe. If you need exact numbers on your ingredients, I would recommend calculating them with your prefered nutrition calculator.