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Easy Strawberry Poke Cake

Easy Strawberry Poke Cake is a retro-style dessert made with a box of cake mix, strawberry gelatin, and a whipped cream topping. And of course lots of fresh strawberries.


Easy Strawberry Flavored Poke Cake


It is just a matter of weeks before the pick-your-own strawberry field near my house opens. They are the plumpest, juiciest, reddest strawberries ever.

Spring should be full of plenty of strawberry treats.


This Easy Strawberry Poke Cake is similar to the Strawberry TresΒ Leches cake I made last year. To make a poke cake, you first bake an easy white cake using a box of cake mix. I’ve added a box of pudding mix, 4 eggs, vegetable oil, and milk to make sure the cake doesn’t come out dry.

poke holes in cake

Once cooked, you poke the cake all over with a serving fork or straw, just like you would a tresΒ leches cake. Dissolve the strawberry flavored gelatin in water and pour on top of the cake. It seeps down into the holes creating a beautiful colored pattern and distributing that super sweet strawberry-flavored goodness throughout the cake.Β  Finish it off with some fresh whipped cream and fresh strawberries for a beautiful and delicious spring dessert.

You can make this recipe even easier by using cool whip to frost the cake instead of fresh whipped cream. But fresh whipped cream is one of my favorite things to make (and eat!) and it only takes a few minutes. The cream will whip up faster and better if you remember to chill the mixing bowl and whisk attachment for your mixer in the refrigerator before whipping the cream.


Try These Other Delicious Strawberry Desserts:

Watch the short video below to see how easy this recipe is!

Easy Strawberry Flavored Poke Cake

Easy Strawberry Poke Cake

This retro-style strawberry dessert is super moist with plenty of strawberry flavor and a whipped cream topping.
PREP: 3 hours 40 minutes
COOK: 40 minutes
TOTAL: 4 hours 20 minutes



  • 1 (15.25-ounce) box white cake mix
  • 1 (3.4-ounce) box vanilla instant pudding
  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1 (3-ounce) box strawberry flavored Jell-O
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 cup cold water

Whipped Topping

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and sliced


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9X13-inch pan with cooking spray.
  • Using an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together cake mix, pudding mix, eggs, vegetable oil, and milk until well mixed, about 2 minutes. Pour into pan and bake for 40 minutes.
  • Let cool for 20-30 minutes.
  • Using a serving fork or straw, poke holes all over cake.
  • In a medium bowl, mix Jell-O and boiling water until Jell-O is dissolved. Mix in cold water and pour mixture slowly over cake so that it sinks down in holes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 3 hours.
  • To make whipped topping, place heavy cream in a mixing bowl of an electric mixer and using a whisk attachment, beat on high until soft peaks form. Gradually add in sugar and continue to beat until cream gets thick.
  • Spread whipped topping on top of cake and top with sliced strawberries.


Place bowl and whisk attachment for beating cream in the refrigerator to chill before using.


Calories: 419kcal
Author: Christin Mahrlig
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Southern
Keyword: poke cake

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Originally published March 14, 2014

Easy Strawberry Poke Cake

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37 thoughts on “Easy Strawberry Poke Cake”

  1. Ruby @ The Ruby Red Apron

    This cake looks gorgeous. I love the colors and the fresh strawberries. It’s very SPRING! I love spring. πŸ™‚

  2. Shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com

    Poke cakes sound like so much fun! And like donuts, I have yet to try my hand at making one!
    This cake is inspiration indeed!

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      They are a lot of fun Shashi! And so easy. I haven’t ever made donuts either although I have been meaning to forever. πŸ™‚

  3. Chris @ Shared Appetite

    I cannot wait until strawberry season finally hits here in NY! Love them! I used to make poke cakes with my mom all the time when I was a kid… brings back fun memories!

  4. Milana - The Jottings

    I love everything with strawberries πŸ™‚ looks great and as if it was made from scratch πŸ™‚

  5. Ashley @ Wishes & Dishes

    I love poke cakes!! They are so fun…. i’ve tried all different variations but this one looks exceptional πŸ™‚

  6. Chelsea @chelseasmessyapron

    This is SO pretty! It looks so fresh and spring-y (is that a word?!) Absolutely love it! Pinned πŸ™‚

  7. Pamela @ Brooklyn Farm Girl

    I love how easy you made this cake looks, because at first when I saw the great pictures I thought it was going to be tough. It turned out so wonderful, looks so delicious!

  8. This cake looks fantastic Christin! I have always wanted to try making a poke cake and strawberry sounds like the perfect flavor to make. Love the whipped topping and pretty swirls in here πŸ™‚

  9. Ashley | Spoonful of Flavor

    Yes! I love how easy this cake looks to make. I can’t get enough of strawberries in any form and these cake looks like the perfect sweet treat!

  10. Consuelo @ Honey & Figs

    What a lovely twist on poke cake! This looks incredibly pretty with those strawberry swirls awwh. And you’re right: homemade whipped cream IS the way to go – that stuff is brilliant!
    Hope you’re enjoying your weekend so far! <3

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      I think I could live off of homemade whipped cream! It is heaven. Have a great week Consuelo πŸ™‚

  11. I love strawberry poke cake Christin! Your cake looks delicious! Every time I see a strawberry poke cake I think of my childhood, my grandmother would make this cake all the time. I made this cake for my children too! I can also remembering going to Morrison’s Cafeteria after church on Sunday with my parents, the line was always out the door. I couldn’t wait to get the strawberry shortcake!

    Michael πŸ™‚

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      It’s always nice to be able to pass down your favorite childhood foods to your children πŸ™‚

  12. Layla @ Brunch Time Baker

    Poke cakes are my fave because they are so moist and gooey. This strawberry version looks delicious!

  13. Lindsey @ American Heritage Cooking

    The name “poke cake” has always cracked me up. Trying my hardest not to giggle out loud least my husband look at me funny! Yay for Strawberry Season starting!!! I saw the first flats in the Farmers Market from Plant City, FL this week!!!

  14. Trevor aka The Burger Nerd

    Gorgeous looking cake and I was honestly a bit taken back by the ingredients…I wouldn’t have figured you created all that from boxed mixes. Btw, It’s so great you pick your own. Reminds me a lot of my childhood, but we picked blueberries….which is later in the season from strawberries (mid summer to early fall here). It would take what seemed like forever to fill a basket but worth every minute when my grandmother would later turn them into pies and other desserts. Ahhh, you just got me craving summer big time! Thanks for the lovely post and delicious looking recipe.

    1. Christin
      Christin Mahrlig

      Thanks Trevor πŸ™‚ We actually went Blueberry picking last year at a farm not too far away. Traditionally blueberries are not grown in south carolina but a few farms have started growing them. We got a huge bucket not realizing how long it would take to fill up! And it was so hot! There may have been a few curse words said toward the end. But it was all so worth it. Blueberries are my favorite and I had enough to cook with for weeks πŸ™‚

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