Easy Strawberry Jello Poke Cake

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How to make easy strawberry Jello poke cake, topped off with Cool Whip, strawberries, and blueberries. The best holiday or summer dessert recipe!

slice of Jello poke cake with strawberries and blueberries on white plate with fork

Don’t you just love summer? Berry season rolls around, we have 4th of July desserts and BBQ to look forward to, and it’s the perfect time to make strawberry poke cake and lemon sheet cake.

My mom used to make a strawberry Jello cake every summer. She'd stick it in the fridge, and I remember it being such a cold, refreshing dessert on a hot day.

Jello cake is made with a semi-homemade recipe, meaning it’s not exactly from scratch but sorta.

Instead of making a homemade cake, you can use a white cake mix. You can use any vanilla flavor cake mix, but I really like the flavor that French vanilla adds.

It also fits the description of semi-homemade because you use a strawberry Jello mix. It is a Jello cake recipe, after all.

WHERE CAN I FIND THE ACTUAL RECIPE CARD?

If you’d rather skip all of my tips, important info for this recipe, and similar recipe ideas – and get straight to the recipe – just scroll down to the bottom, where you’ll find a printable recipe card.

WHAT IS JELLO CAKE? BETTER YET, WHAT IS A POKE CAKE?

If you've never had Jello cake before, you're probably wondering exactly what it is.

Jello cake is cake soaked with liquid Jello, whatever flavor you want, and chilled. That means you can make this exact recipe with whatever flavor Jello you want; it doesn't have to be strawberry.

Jello cake and poke cake go hand in hand because in order to get the liquid Jello into the cake, you poke holes in the top of the cake first, then pour the Jello over the already baked cake and let it all soak in.

Sometimes when you're making a poke cake, you may fill the holes with things like puréed fruit, pudding, or even sweetened condensed milk. Just depends on the recipe.

I usually use a fork to poke holes for liquid gelatin, but you may need to use the handle of a wooden spoon for thicker liquids.

DOES JELLO POKE CAKE HAVE TO BE REFRIGERATED?

Yes, it does. You'll definitely want to chill it for at least an hour or two after pouring the Jello over the cake and adding the whipped topping.

bite of strawberry Jello cake on fork

Strawberry Jello poke cake should keep for at least 2 to 3 days in the refrigerator.

CAN YOU FREEZE A POKE CAKE?

You can freeze poke cake, but you really want to freeze it before adding the whipped cream topping.

Once you've poured the liquid Jello over the cake, that's when you need to make sure it's covered well or sealed in an airtight container before placing it in the freezer.

TIPS FOR HOW TO MAKE JELLO CAKE

Before we go into how to make the cake, let's talk about the Jello mix. While your baked cake is cooling, you'll need to mix the strawberry gelatin mix with boiling water, then the cold water, continuing to mix well. This is all you need to do to prep the Jello.

There are a few steps to making a delicious strawberry Jello poke cake, but it's really super easy to do.

  1. Mix your cake batter and bake it, according to the package directions, in a 9″x13″ cake pan. I use a French vanilla cake mix.
  2. When the cake is fully baked, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool for about 15 to 20 minutes. Then poke the top of your cake all over with a fork. You want holes all over the cake, so the juice can really soak into the cake.
  3. Slowly pour the Jello mixture over the entire cake.
  4. Then just allow the cake to finish cooling.
steps for how to make a Jello cake recipe, cake batter in pan, poke holes in top of baked vanilla cake, and pouring liquid Jello onto cake

Once it's fully cooled, it’s ready for you to spread the Cool Whip and add the berries on top.

Mmmm, it's just so good!

sliced strawberry poke cake with fresh berries on white plate with fork

TAKE IT ONE STEP FURTHER AND MAKE A FLAG CAKE

If you want to make an American flag design on top of your Jello poke cake, just follow these simple steps after adding the whipped cream on top:

  1. Be sure to wash (and dry) the berries before placing on your cake.
  2. Add 5 or more rows of blueberries to the top left corner of the cake.
  3. Stem and slice your strawberries length wise. Then add rows of strawberries to create the red stripes for your cake. I added 4 rows of strawberries to my cake.

Once the whipped cream and berries are on, chill your American flag cake for 2 to 3 hours before serving.

strawberry and blueberry American flag cake on wood countertop with berries

WANT MORE STRAWBERRY DESSERTS?

SHOP KITCHEN TOOLS FOR THIS RECIPE:

Mixer

9″x13″ Cake Pan

Cake Tester – Dan bought me a cake tester awhile back, and let me tell you, it’s come in so handy! Although a toothpick works really well too.

Large Glass Measuring Cup – This comes in really handy for mixing up the Jello and water.

Spatula – Where would I be without my spatulas? I have a whole slew of them because we’re ALWAYS using them.

Paring Knife – for slicing the strawberries.

GET THE PRINTABLE JELLO CAKE RECIPE

If you love this strawberry poke cake recipe as much as we do, please write a 5 star review, and help me share the recipe on Facebook and Pinterest!

east strawberry Jello poke cake recipe

Find my original recipe for an American Flag Cake over at Adventures of Mel!

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Yield: 16 servings

Easy Strawberry Jello Poke Cake

Easy Strawberry Jello Poke Cake

How to make easy strawberry Jello poke cake, topped off with Cool Whip, strawberries, and blueberries. The best holiday or summer dessert recipe!

Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Chill Time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 10 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Mix together the cake mix, water, eggs, and canola oil. Bake it according to package directions.*
  2. When the cake is fully baked, remove it from the oven, and allow it to cool for about 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, mix the Jello mix with the boiling water in a large measuring cup
  4. Then add in the cold water, continuing to mix well.
  5. Poke holes all over the top of the cake with a fork, creating small holes all over the top of the cake.
  6. Slowly pour the Jello mixture over the entire cake.
  7. Allow the cake to finish cooling.
  8. Spread whipped cream (or your preferred white frosting) evenly over the entire cake.
  9. Chill the cake for at least 2 hours before serving with fresh berries on top.

Notes

*Be sure to add the appropriate amounts for your particular brand of cake mix; I used a French vanilla cake mix, but ingredient amounts and bake time will depend on the brand.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

16

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 265 Total Fat: 10g Saturated Fat: 4g Trans Fat: 0g Unsaturated Fat: 5g Cholesterol: 35mg Sodium: 282mg Carbohydrates: 41g Fiber: 2g Sugar: 26g Protein: 3g
Nutritional info may change, depending what brand of cake mix you use, as well as what type of whipped topping you use.

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