Strawberry Layer Cake with Cheesecake Frosting

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This is such a delicious, easy and impressive dessert:  Strawberry Layer Cake with Cheesecake Frosting

Strawberry Layer Cake with Cheesecake Frosting

This is a “naked cake.”  At least that’s the hip terminology they’re using these days to describe a cake that has frosting between layers but not covering the whole cake.  It’s the first time I’ve made a naked cake.  And I must say… I like this kind of cake very much!  It’s quite a bit easier to be successful with a cake like this because you don’t have to worry about getting the frosting looking just right all over the cake.  Just slap the frosting between layers, stack and you’re good to go.

Strawberry Layer Cake 1

I use the term “cheesecake frosting” kind of loosely here.  It’s cream cheese + sugar + whipping cream.  But to me it tastes highly reminiscent of cheesecake!  That gets slathered on the first layer and then topped with strawberries.

Strawberry Layer Cake 2

It’s important for the 2nd cake layer to adhere to the first layer, so you’re going to spread on some regular whipped cream on top of the strawberries.

Strawberry Layer Cake Recipe

The 2nd layer is placed on next, then more cheesecake frosting and more fresh strawberries.  Done!  So easy, right??

Strawberry Layer Cake Recipe -

It’s a pretty dessert for sure.

Strawberry Layer Cake Recipe -

My family really, really enjoyed this naked strawberry cake.  The cake itself doesn’t have a huge strawberry flavor all on its own, but it tastes a lot like strawberry with the addition of the fresh berries.  And those thick layers of cheesecake frosting make it all kinds of awesome.

Strawberry Layer Cake with Cheesecake Frosting

Yield: One 8 or 9-inch layer cake

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes



  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar
  • 3/4 cup strawberry jam (not one with big chunks of strawberries)
  • 4 large Eggland's Best eggs
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla
  • a few drops of red food coloring (optional)
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk

Frosting and Topping:

  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar, divided
  • 3 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 cups chopped fresh strawberries
  1. Bake the cake layers:  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray two 8 or 9-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray, line the bottoms with round pieces of parchment and spray again.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder, salt and baking soda into a medium bowl; set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to combine the butter and sugar until light and fluffy- about 2 minutes.  Add the jam and eggs, blending thoroughly, scraping down the sides of the bowl to make sure all is mixed in well.  Beat in the vanilla and food color (if using).
  4. Add the flour in 2 parts, alternating with the buttermilk and ending with the flour.  Divide the batter equally between the two pans.
  5. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until a toothpick tester inserted into the middle comes out clean.  Cool for at least 20 minutes, then turn out the cake layers onto a wire rack to cool completely (peel off and toss the parchment lining).
  6. Prepare the cheesecake frosting:  Use an electric mixer to combine the cream cheese and 1/4 cup sugar.  Pour in 2 cups of the cream + the vanilla, and beat until the mixture becomes thick and creamy.  Don't over-beat.
  7. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to combine 1 cup cream with 1 tablespoon sugar.  Beat until thick and creamy.
  8. Assemble the cake:  Place one cake layer on your cake plate or stand.  Top with 1/2 of the cheesecake frosting and sprinkle strawberries evenly on top.  Spread the whipped cream on top of the strawberries.  Place the 2nd cake layer on next.  Top the cake with the remaining cheesecake frosting and remaining strawberries.
  9. Keep cake refrigerated until ready to serve.  You can cover it carefully with plastic wrap.

Here are a few more strawberry cake recipes you might enjoy:

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Lori Lange of Recipe Girl

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  • Andrea wrote:

    I made this using a Duncan Hines strawberry cake mix for the cake part. I know, not the real deal, but in my opinion, the real star here is the cheesecake frosting and the lovely arrangement of the cake, frosting, cream and berries in their layers. I also noticed that the cake was at least as good, if not better, the next day. It looks spectacular when cut! Next time I will have more time, and will use home baked cake part.

  • Mary wrote:

    On the buttermilk, heavy whipping cream can it be sub for light or fat free? Can the cream chz be sub for light or “greek yogurt cream chz”? For someone needing a lighter verison?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      It’s tough to get the texture you need for the whipped cream without the fat in it. I supposed you could try to use light Cool Whip or something like that instead. I haven’t experimented with subbing for the cream cheese, so you’re on your own there!

  • Amanda wrote:

    Don’t mind me, just over here in the corner drooling! This cake looks heavenly. Pinned for later, thanks for sharing this beauty!

  • Gayle Griffin wrote:

    Fresh strawberries with anything is almost always better and I think it’s gonna be true for this too. I’m always looking for a good way to have fresh fruit on my desserts in the summertime and this is perfect. Thank you so much for sharing.

  • Lisa wrote:

    I made this for my staff for Employee Appreciation.  I should have waited to frost it until I got it to the office… but the taste was AMAZING!
    Not sure if I under-beat or over-beat the cream cheese frosting but it wasn’t quite as sturdy as it could have been.  
    Taste was fresh, amazing, out of this world!

  • Leslie wrote:

    Oh My Goodness! I made this on Saturday night (June 4th) for a luncheon at my house the next day. It was absolutely delicious! I actually don’t prefer cake, but it was so pretty in your picture, and it was so bloody hot here this weekend, I decided it would be perfect! I was wiped out in seconds! And I ate 2 pieces!

    The only thing I didn’t add was the the food coloring. And I waited to frost it until Sunday morning. Oh, it was a beauty! Thanks so much for the recipe. I have a feeling my soon to be 20yod, will be asking for it for her birthday!

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      happy to hear!!

  • Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet wrote:

    I wish I could have a slice of this cake right now! The cheesecake frosting has me swooning!