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The Best Strawberry Shortcake

Classic strawberry shortcake is a sweet, comforting, and popular dessert.

It is easy to make with homemade whipped topping, sweet, crumbly biscuit cake, and fresh strawberries.

Classic Strawberry Shortcake Recipe

Classic Strawberry shortcake

As a family, we recently drove about an hour outside of the city to pick some strawberries with the kids and make the best strawberry shortcake recipe.

It’s strawberry season down here in Florida, and they are aplenty.

My youngest wanted to go to a local farm and pick some strawberries, so we headed out of town to the closest local one and picked away.

We came home with a bushel of freshly picked strawberries, a few jalapeños, and some eggplant.

The kids had a great time, and we fed some cows and came home to make something fresh, tasty, and springy.

We all need some spring after the cold, harsh winters throughout most of the country.

And this is such an easy dessert recipe that everyone will love.

The best strawberry shortcake on a plate.

What Ingredients Do I Need For The Easy Strawberry Dessert?

  • Strawberries
  • Sugar
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Salt
  • Heavy cream
  • Vanilla extract

Full printable recipe with measurements and full instructions listed at the bottom of the post in the recipe card.

How To Make Strawberry Shortcake

  1. Cut the strawberries into quarters and sprinkle the sugar over the top.
  2. Refrigerate the strawberries for at least 30 minutes, stirring a couple of times.
  3. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Next, add the sugar and heavy cream to the flour mixture and mix well.
  4. Press into a square baking pan.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Allow it to cool.
  6. For the whipped cream, grab a separate bowl, add the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract, and mix with the hand mixer until fluffy.
  7. Slice a piece of the cake and place the bottom half of it on a plate.
  8. Layer starting with the bottom of the cake, strawberries, whipped cream, the top of the cake, whipped cream, and strawberries.
Fresh picked strawberries in a box.

Don’t you love those bright red berries?

Fresh Strawberries vs. Frozen Strawberries

In this case, we used fresh strawberries. If you don’t have access to fresh strawberries, you can purchase frozen and let them thaw for at least one hour before adding the sugar.

When we picked the strawberries (we came home with quite a lot), we washed the extras, cut them up, added them to small Ziplocks, and froze them.

My husband likes to add strawberries to his cereal in the morning, and he can take a bag out of the freezer the day before and place it into the refrigerator.

If you plan to wait a day to use the fresh strawberries, either leave them on the counter to ripen a little or put them in the fridge before washing them off.

If you leave them on the counter, they will get more red and sweet.

But don’t leave them out for more than a day or so because they will spoil fast.

Water can spoil a strawberry fast, so wait to wash and cut until you’re ready to use them in the recipe.

Scroll down to find out how to store fresh strawberries.

Strawberry shortcake on a blue and white plate.

Step-By-Step Instructions

Fresh cut strawberries in a glass bowl.

Start by removing the stems and cutting up the strawberries. Add them to a medium bowl.

Strawberries with sugar sprinkled on top in a glass bowl.

Sprinkle the sugar on top and place it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. Stir the strawberries a couple of times while they are in the refrigerator.

Strawberry Shortcake Cake Recipe

Flour, baking soda, and baking powder in a glass bowl.

Sift the dry ingredients into a large bowl. For this cake recipe, I sifted all-purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and baking powder.

Pouring sugar into a bowl with strawberry shortcake ingredients.

Add the sugar.

Pouring heavy cream into a bowl with flour.

Pour the heavy cream into the flour mixture and mix well.

Strawberry shortcake cake in a square baking dish.

Press the dough into an 8″ x 8″ square baking pan.

The dough will be very sticky.

You don’t need to spray with non-stick spray, as it doesn’t stick to the pan.

Cake for strawberry shortcake in a baking dish.

Bake for 20-25 minutes and allow the cake to cool for about 15-20 minutes.

The cake is a bit crumbly, so wait to cut the piece until you’re ready to eat it. And it tastes fantastic while it’s still a little warm.

Homemade Whipped Cream

Homemade whipped cream is nothing short of amazing.

I am all about easy recipes, so if you’d like to use some store-bought whipped cream, you can. It tastes great, too.

But if you add five extra minutes, you can add some pretty amazing whipped cream to the shortcake.

Pouring heavy cream into a glass bowl.

Pour the heavy cream into a large glass bowl.

Pouring sugar into a bowl with heavy cream.

Next, add the sugar.

Pouring vanilla extract into whipped cream topping.

Finally, add the vanilla extract to the bowl. Vanilla is going to help bring out the flavors in the whipped cream.

Mix with a hand mixer for a few minutes until you have stiff peaks.

Sometimes it seems like the whipped cream is not going fluff up, and then suddenly, there it is.

Homemade whipped topping in a bowl.

The Basic Layout

Adding the bottom of the cake to a plate.

Slice the cake in half and add the bottom piece to a plate.

Strawberries on top of cake.

Spoon the strawberry mixture on top of the cake.

Strawberry shortcake with whipped topping.

Add a large dollop of whipped cream.

Layering strawberry shortcake.

Put the top of the cake on.

Easy strawberry shortcake on a plate.

Add more strawberries and whipped cream, and finish with a couple of strawberries on top.

Homemade strawberry shortcake on a plate.

Strawberry shortcake is one of those desserts that you can add ice cream instead of whipped cream (or both if you’d like).

Strawberry shortcake on a plate with whipped topping.

We always used to buy the little cakes from the grocery store, but I sure like the warm homemade cake instead.

Classic Strawberry shortcake on a plate.

Other delicious desserts

  • No-bake eclair cake is one of those desserts that’s super simple to make. It only requires a few ingredients, and it’s super tasty.
  • Easy no-bake pineapple lush is another great dessert that features layers of cream cheese, powdered sugar, coconut, and fresh pineapple.
  • Berry icebox cake is another no-bake dessert that features blueberries, strawberries, vanilla pudding, cream cheese, graham crackers, and whipped cream.
  • If you love homemade whipped cream, give this chocolate layer dessert a try. It’s a popular recipe on the blog and Facebook.
  • We love easy recipes around here and brownie mix cookies are super simple and so decadent.
  • Pineapple dump cake is a great addition to any dessert table, and it only requires three ingredients.
  • If you have some extra strawberries, Debby over at Southern Home Express has a great recipe for no-churn strawberry ice cream.
Strawberry shortcake on a blue and white plate.

Tips and Variety

  1. Using the Right Tools: Employ tools like a biscuit cutter for shaping individual biscuits and a rubber spatula for folding ingredients gently. If you’re making a layer of shortcake, round or square cake pans are essential.
  2. Mixer Techniques: When using an electric mixer or stand mixer, whip the heavy whipping cream at a low speed initially, then increase it to form soft peaks. This technique is crucial for creating fresh whipped cream with the perfect texture.
  3. Incorporating Lemon: Adding lemon juice and lemon zest can enhance the flavor of your strawberries. The acidity from lemon juice also helps macerate strawberries, drawing out their natural, juicy flavors and creating juicy strawberries.
  4. Baking Process: Preheat your oven and line your baking pans with parchment paper. For biscuits, roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface into a thick rectangle and cut out biscuits. Bake them on a wire rack until they turn golden brown.
  5. Alternative Cake Options: If you’re not keen on biscuit-based shortcake, options like angel food cake, sponge cake, or even store-bought pound cake can serve as the base. Remember, the real deal in a homemade strawberry shortcake lies in the use of fresh ingredients and homemade elements.
  6. Strawberry Preparation: Use fresh berries for the best taste in this classic dessert. Macerated strawberries, made by sprinkling a bit of sugar on sliced strawberries and allowing them to sit, create a deliciously juicy strawberry filling.
  7. Assembly Tips: When assembling, alternate layers of cake or biscuits with macerated strawberries and fresh whipped cream. For a biscuit shortcake, you might just split the biscuit top and fill it.
  8. Final Touches: A sprinkle of coarse sugar on top of the biscuits before baking adds a delightful crunch. For the cream, a few small steps, like adding a hint of vanilla or a dollop of strawberry jam, can elevate the flavor profile.

Rather have biscuits? Give these 3-ingredient drop biscuits a try.

Storing Fresh Strawberries

If you plan to get fresh strawberries, they will not last long. You can either leave them on the counter for a couple of days while they continue to ripen or refrigerate them.

If you leave them on the counter, place them in a container that will allow the air to flow through so they will not rot. Do not rinse them–wait to rinse when you are ready to eat the strawberries.

Water tends to spoil the strawberries faster.

If you plan to put them in the refrigerator, place them in an open container where the air can flow through.

But, if you cut them, you will need to place them in an airtight container, or they will rot faster.

Strawberries don’t last long, so be sure to eat them within a couple of days.

The Best Strawberry Shortcake

Traditional strawberry shortcake is a simple recipe with sweet and decadent flavors. The recipe is perfect for strawberry season.

Classic Strawberry shortcake

The Best Strawberry Shortcake

Yield: 6 pieces
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes

Classic strawberry shortcake is a sweet, comforting, and popular dessert that is easy to make with homemade whipped topping, sweet crumbly biscuit cake, and fresh strawberries.



  • 1 1/2 pounds strawberries
  • 5 Tbsp. sugar


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream

Whipped Cream

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, cold
  • 3 Tbsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract



  1. Rinse the strawberries, cut the stems off, and cut them into quarters.
  2. Add to a medium bowl and cover with 5 tablespoons of sugar. Stir and place in the refrigerator. Stir at least twice while in the fridge.


  1. Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt and add to a bowl.
  2. Next, add the sugar and heavy cream and mix well.
  3. Place dough in an 8" x 8" square baking dish. Do NOT grease the dish.
  4. Bake at 400-degrees for 20-25 minutes or until the top is golden brown. Let cool for at least 20 minutes.

Whipped Cream

  1. Add the heavy cream, sugar, and vanilla extract to the bowl and mix with a hand mixer until stiff peaks form (it will take a few minutes).


  1. Cut the cake and place a piece on a plate. Slice the piece in half and spoon some of the strawberry mixture on top.
  2. Next, add some whipped cream, the top of the cake, strawberries, whipped cream, and a couple more strawberries.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 662Total Fat: 44gSaturated Fat: 27gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 13gCholesterol: 134mgSodium: 540mgCarbohydrates: 61gFiber: 3gSugar: 26gProtein: 8g

Nutrition is approximate.

Did you make this recipe?

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