This old fashioned strawberry jello cake is simple to make and bursting with real strawberry flavor. The recipe is kept simple by starting with a white boxed cake mix but has a flavor that cannot be rivaled by boxed strawberry cake mix.
My mom has been making this cake recipe for as long as I can remember. She got the recipe from my great aunt who got it from a friend in barber school in the 70’s. It’s an oldie but a goodie for sure!
Ingredients Needed For Strawberry Jello Cake
One of my favorite things about this cake is the simple ingredients. You will need the following:
- white cake mix
- avocado oil (or vegetable/canola oil)
- strawberry jello mix
- frozen strawberries with sugar (You can find these in the freezer section. They are in a plastic tub and already have sugar added. They have softened and produced some juice.
How to Make Strawberry Jello Cake
The original old recipe calls for 10 ounces tub of the frozen strawberries, divided in half. I am guessing they used to sell 10 ounce tubs of frozen strawberries but in my grocery store all I’m able to find is 15.5 ounces. I tested this recipe multiple ways. The best way I could find to make it turn out the exact same way every time is to strain out the juice and add the strawberries and juice separately. This ensures that you are not adding a lot of juice to the icing and making it too runny.
Start by preheating your oven to 350. Take your thawed strawberries out. Using a slotted spoon, take out 1/2 cup of strawberries only and 1/4 cup of just the juice. To mix up the cake you just mix everything together in a medium/ large mixing bowl on medium speed with a hand mixer. You can also use your stand mixer for this. Pour batter into a greased 13×9 cake pan and bake for 35-40 minutes. Use a toothpick to check for doneness. You want it to come out mostly clean. You can also gently jiggle the pan, the middle should be set and not move much.
To Make the Icing
While the cake cools, make the icing. You will need another 1/2 cup of only strawberries for the icing. Cream together the butter and cream cheese until fully incorporated. Add powdered sugar and mix on low. Lastly, add the strawberries and mix until they are fully incorporated. You can leave them in bigger pieces or mix longer until the strawberries are very small. If your icing is too thick, add a tablespoon or two of strawberry juice until the consistency is to your liking. Frost evenly on cooled cake and enjoy! This cake is even better the next day.
Strawberry Jello Cake
- 1 box white cake mix
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup avocado oil (can also use vegetable or canola)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 3 oz box strawberry jello
- 1 15.5 oz frozen strawberries with sugar (divided)
- 1 stick butter softened to room temperature
- 4 ounces cream cheese softened to room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter or spray a 13×9 cake pan.
- In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer combine the eggs, oil, and water. Mix until well combined.
- Take your tub of thawed strawberries. Using a slotted spoon, take out enough of only the strawberries to equal 1/2 cup. Add to the batter. You then want to add 1/4 cup of just the juice.
- Lastly, pour in the cake mix. Mix on medium speed 1-2 minutes.
- Pour into buttered pan and bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out mostly clean with a few crumbs. If the top looks like it is getting too brown, turn oven down to 325 degrees for the remainder of the cook time.
- While the cake cools, make the icing. Combine the butter and cream cheese and beat on medium speed until combined.
- Using the same strawberries used in the cake batter, take out enough of just the strawberries to equal 1/2 cup. Be sure not to add too much of the juice or the icing will be too runny.
- Add the 1/2 cup strawberries and powdered sugar to the bowl and mix 1-2 minutes.
- If your icing is too thick, add 1-2 tablespoons of the remaining strawberry juice.
- Spread icing on cooled cake. Enjoy!