Celebrate your most special occasions with this delicious homemade strawberry buttercream birthday cake recipe. A double dose of real strawberry flavor in a moist strawberry layered sponge cake filled with a creamy whipped strawberry buttercream frosting.
If you're looking for a homemade strawberry cake recipe from scratch, this is the one to remember, perfect for baking beginners and with a wow effect guaranteed by your guests.
Why we love this recipe
This buttercream strawberry birthday cake is really delightful, with all the flavor of strawberries in a super sweet recipe that's so easy to make at home.
A pink layered cake made from just 2 preparations: a fluffy pink sponge cake flavored with homemade strawberry puree, and a pretty pink strawberry buttercream frosting which is a mixture of my whipped buttercream naturally colored and flavored with fresh or frozen strawberries.
This is the ultimate recipe for all strawberry lovers, and no need to wait for strawberry season. You can make it all year round with frozen strawberries it will be perfect for all your girly occasions, like a birthday, baby shower, and more.
More Strawberry Cakes
Strawberry sponge cake
- Butter: Unsalted butter softened with a minimum fat content of 80%.
- Sugar: Extra-fine white granulated sugar, no brown or flavored sugar so as not to alter the flavor of the strawberries.
- Egg whites: Room-temperature egg whites only.
- Flour: Cake flour only, for a fluffy cake, measure quantities carefully with an electronic scale.
- Leavening agent: Baking powder with baking soda.
- Milk: Preferably buttermilk, which can be replaced by semi-skimmed milk or yogurt.
- Vanilla and salt: Essential for flavoring, pure vanilla extract, and table salt to bring out the flavors.
- Strawberry Purée: Preferably a strawberry reduction, fresh strawberry purée or made with frozen strawberries, which can be sweetened or made without sugar. Do not use strawberry coulis, as it adds too much liquid to the batter.
- Food coloring: Optionally, the color with the strawberry mixture will already be quite pink, but it can be more intense if you add pink food coloring.
- Butter: Unsalted butter softened with 80% fat content.
- Powdered sugar: Sifted no granulated sugar.
- Strawberry purée: Homemade strawberry purée, not strawberry coulis, which is too liquid for this frosting.
- Heavy cream: Only full-fat heavy cream with 30% fat.
- Vanilla: Pure vanilla extract or seeds from half a vanilla bean.
⚠️ You'll find quantities and full instructions in the recipe card at the end of this page.
How to make a Pink Strawberry Birthday Cake
- Beat the softened butter with the sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until creamy.
- Add the vanilla extract and egg whites one by one and mix with the mixer to incorporate them, then beat again for 5 minutes.
- Add the sifted dry ingredients, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda salt and buttermilk, alternately and in batches and mix with a spatula between each addition until the mixture is well combined.
- Finish with the reduced strawberry purée and pour the strawberry cake batter into 2 baking round cake pans lined with parchment paper.
- Bake in a preheated oven at 329°F/165°C for 25-30 minutes.
- Leave to cool completely before unmolding.
- Beat the softened butter on high speed in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment for 5 minutes.
- Add the vanilla extract and sifted powdered sugar and beat on low speed to incorporate before switching back to high speed and mixing for a further 5 minutes.
- Add the heavy cream and strawberry purée and beat again for 3-5 minutes until you have a smooth, pink buttercream.
Assembling the cake
- If necessary, cut the crust off the 2 pink strawberry sponge cakes using a knife.
- Place a first sponge cake on a turntable on a cake board and apply a layer of pink buttercream, smoothing it with an angled spatula.
- Place the second layer of sponge cake and cover the whole cake with the remaining pink frosting.
- Smooth with a icing smoother or run the back of a teaspoon over it for a quick decoration.
- Serve immediately or place in the fridge and remove about 20 minutes before serving to soften the buttercream frosting.
Storage and Freeze instructions
In the fridge: Leftover strawberry cake can be stored for 3-5 days in an airtight container or under plastic wrap in the fridge.
At room temperature: The whipped buttercream is stable at room temperature, but the sponge cake is quite moist, so I don't recommend leaving it out of the fridge for too long - always prefer a cool place.
How to freeze? No problem to freeze the remaining cake, which can be placed sliced in plastic wrap or in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost gently in the fridge overnight.
Serving Suggestions and Recipe Variations
Here are a few ideas to make your strawberry cake even more delicious:
Serve on a plate with strawberry coulis, vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce or simply whipped cream and fresh fruit.
Add some sliced fresh fruits inside between the 2 cake layers, like sliced fresh strawberries, fresh raspberries, blueberry and more.
Add a strawberry Filling: Add a layer of homemade strawberry compote, or even strawberry jam for even more intense flavor.
Make strawberry cake pops with leftover cake or with the offcuts from your sponge cake.
FAQ- Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, it's possible to replace the strawberry purée with freeze-dried strawberry powder to flavor the strawberry frosting without using fresh strawberries.
Technically it's possible, the strawberry jam will flavor your buttercream, but as it's made with half sugar and half fruit, the frosting won't be pink enough and won't have the same flavor as with strawberry concentrate.
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