Strawberry Layer Cake

This strawberry layer cake is made up of two vanilla sponge layers filled with fresh whipped cream and thinly sliced strawberries. 

Strawberry Layer Cake

It is a given that birthdays require cake.  Even if my best friend is 2,000 miles away, I’m making her a birthday cake.

Some relationships are complicated, but our friendship is simple.  Just like this cake– simple, sweet, and pretty.

overhead view of strawberry layer cake

Best friends don’t need to be close in proximity to have an important or active role in your life.  You can be separated by distance, time zones or ages, but best friends remain constants.

Although my best friend and I don’t get to see each other all the time, whenever we talk on the phone, we can pick up a conversation from a week or month ago as if no time has passed.

Best friends not only remember your birthday, but they also know your favorite foods and drinks and somehow, watch all the same TV shows as you.

You meet hundreds (maybe thousands) of people throughout your lifetime.  But there are only a few that you can be your complete self around; only a handful or so of people who totally get you and accept you for who you are.

I am happy to have found one of those people in my best friend.  We can totally like act like we’re still 15 years old together but also be refined and sophisticated 28 years olds when we want to be.

Happy Birthday, Z!  Each year I wish you a better birthday than the last!

(To read more about my best friend Z, see Chocolate Hazelnut Cake.)

a slice of strawberry layer cake

Not only is this a quick and easy cake to make, but so beautiful and pleasant to look at.  Also, if you happen to find freshly picked ripe strawberries- the aroma of the sweet fruit mixed with the vanilla cake brings euphoria to your senses.

A slice of this strawberry layer cake is best served with my best friend’s favorite midday beverage: sea salt coffee.

TheLittleEpicurean_strawberry cake

Strawberry Layer Cake

Yield: 8-inch cake

Author Maryanne Cabrera


Vanilla Cake:

  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs, seperated
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

Whipped Cream:

  • 1 1/2 cup heavy cream, cold
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla paste, or pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted

Strawberry Filling:

  • 3 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced thin


Vanilla Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two 8-inch cake rounds with parchment paper. Set aside.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together cake flour, baking powder and 1/2 cup of granulated sugar. In a larger bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, water, vanilla, egg yolks, and salt. Add dry mixture in three additions to wet mixture. Fold to combine.

  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine egg whites and cream of tartar. Using a whisk attachment, mix on low speed until mixture is foamy. Increase speed to medium and slowly add remaining sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time. Once all sugar has been added, increase speed and continue to mix until mixture is stiff peaks.

  4. Add egg white mixture to cake batter in three additions. Fold to combine

  5.  Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake for 18-20 minutes until tops of cake are lightly golden brown and a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 5-10 minutes Run mini offset spatula around the edges of the cake pan to loosen cake before unmolding. Let cake cool on wire racks.

Whipped Cream:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, add cold heavy cream and vanilla. Whip on medium speed until it begins to thicken. Add confectioners' sugar and continue to whip to almost stiff peaks.


  1. If necessary, level out the two cake layers. Spread about half of whipped cream over bottom layer of cake. Arrange sliced half of sliced strawberries on top and dollop a small amount of whipped cream (to allow second cake to adhere better). Place second cake layer on top. Add remaining whipped cream and sliced strawberries. Let chill in the fridge until ready to serve. Let sit at room temperature for 10-15 minutes before serving to allow cake to soften.

Recipe Notes


All images and text ©The Little Epicurean

TheLittleEpicurean_strawberry cake

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It looks delish! I love it!


do you think you can make this with several layers (4-5), or do you think it would crash?

    Maryanne Cabrera

    Hi Christel, I wouldn’t suggest it. Since the frosting is made out of whipped cream, it is not very stable, nor could it hold a lot of weight. If you’d like to make a taller 4-5 layer cake, I recommend using a stronger frosting like buttercream.


Hi! I live in The Netherlands and I wondered what is meant by 1 cup? How many kilograms is 1 cup? I’ve googled it but every answer is different. Thank you.


Hey do you think i can add 2 tablespoon of matcha powder to the recipe to make it a matcha cake ? Thanks :)


I made this cake and it was a shame it came out terrible :( I followed the recipe exactly and my cake came out overly dense and no flavor really. Pretty much reminded me of cornbread.

    Maryanne Cabrera

    Hi Jenny, I’m sorry to hear that. I’ve made this cake many times and it always turns out great. The whipped egg whites are supposed to make the cake light and fluffy like a chiffon cake.


Hi:) Do you think the cake portion could be made in advance (perhaps a day?) to save time?

    Maryanne Cabrera

    Yes, you can make the cake portion two days in advance. Once cooled, wrap tightly and keep at room temperature until ready to use.


Hi! I just tried this recipe and while I LOVE the texture of the cake I noticed that by putting an entire tablespoon of vanilla gave my cake a horrible weird taste… I think maybe just a teaspoon or two was more accurate measurement and I’ll probably adjust for next time.
Hope it wasn’t a typo!

    Maryanne Cabrera

    Hi Erica! The vanilla cake was adapted from a recipe I used in culinary school. One tablespoon of vanilla is correct. I’ve had bad experiences with certain vanillas, perhaps that’s the reason? I’m sorry to hear it didn’t work out for you!


i just made this cake and i love it! it’s fluffy and so so light. i used a bit less sugar i thought it would be too sweet for me . thank you for this recipe .


Hi, can this cake be made into a sheet cake?


Came out perfectly. Thank you for a great recipe. Everyone at the dinner I served it at asked for a copy of the recipe too.

    Maryanne Cabrera

    That’s so wonderful to hear! I’m glad you and your guests enjoyed it! Thank you for trying out the recipe :)


This cake was dry and boring.. My friends said it was okay but I could see their disappointment. I should’ve made tres leches.

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