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Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe – The Perfect Summer Dessert

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This Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake recipe is the perfect dessert recipe for summertime!

We celebrated Independence Day this year with most of our children at home. Probably not too dissimilar from how most of you celebrated July 4th. My husband smoked brisket – it was amazing! We also had baked beans, corn on the cob, potato salad, pasta salad, hot dogs, watermelon and so much more. For dessert our daughter Morgan made an amazing layered cake. She’s quite the baker!

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe
Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

It’s been pretty hot here in Ohio and so I decided to make something a little lighter – Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake! This cake is perfect for summertime. I suppose you could also call this cake an icebox cake since it’s actually chilled and uses whipped topping.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

Well, this Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake was a big hit. Strawberries are ripe, juicy and in season right now, so they were the perfect fruit to top this cake with.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

This is a really easy cake recipe. You start with one box of white cake mix and bake according to package directions in a 13”x9” pan. Let the cake cool in the pan for at least 15 minutes. Then pierce all over the top of the cake with a fork. You want to pierce the cake about every 1/2”. It should have lots of holes! You may even want to make a few larger holes by using a straw or the handle of a wood spoon.

Once you have all the holes poked in the cake, you’ll boil at least one cup of water. I usually boil a little more, because once the water boils, you’ll end up with less than you started with. While the water is heating to a boil, pour the gelatin mix into a small bowl.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

Measure out and and 1 cup boiling water to the gelatin and stir until well dissolved. Add 1/2 cup cold water to the gelatin mix and stir well.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

Immediately, pour the gelatin solution over the entire top of the cake.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe
Add 1/2 cup cold water to the gelatin mix and stir well.

It will look like this when you’ve poured all the gelatin on top of the cake. You can see where I made the larger holes with my wooden spoon. Totally not necessary, but I thought I’d try something a little different. 

I should note I also tried making this gelatin poke cake with sugar-free gelatin and it turned out exactly the same as the cake I made with regular flavored gelatin.

Place the cake in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours. Then simply frost with whipped topping and sliced strawberries. Your cake is now ready to serve!

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake by The Birch Cottage
Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake

Yield: 12 servinvs
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 3 hours
Total Time: 3 hours 35 minutes

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake is the perfect summertime dessert recipe. Bake the cake the night before (when it's cooler), and add the topping right before serving.


  • 1 pkg white cake mix
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 pkg 3 oz strawberry flavored gelatin
  • ½ cup cold water
  • 1 tub 8 oz Whipped Topping


  1. Prepare cake batter and bake as directed on the package for a 13″x9″ pan. Cool cake in pan at least 15 minutes. Pierce all over top of cake with fork or handle of wooden spoon.
  2. Add boiling water to gelatin mix in small bowl; stir 2 minutes or until completely dissolved. Stir in cold water; pour over cake. Refrigerate 3 hours.
  3. Frost cake with whipped topping.
  4. Slice strawberries and place on top of frosted cake.
  5. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 86Total Fat: 6gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 27mgCarbohydrates: 8gFiber: 0gSugar: 7gProtein: 1g

I’ve made this Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake twice since the 4th of July. The first one was gone in a day.

Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe

I just hate turning the oven on in the summertime. Our poor air-conditioner already has to work so hard! I like to bake this cake in the evening, let it cool, poke holes in the top of the cake and refrigerate it overnight. Then the next day, I simply “frost” the cake. A simple dessert that I guarantee you will be devoured! Plus you can switch up the flavors. Maybe orange gelatin with pineapple chunks on top?

I’m even thinking about trying I even made a chocolate cake with raspberry gelatin and topped with raspberries – one of my husband’s favorite flavor combinations. Although I didn’t actually taste the cake (I’m avoiding sugar), my husband said it was very good!

If you make this Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake, I’d love to hear about it! Or if you make it with a different flavor combination, I’d love to hear about that, too! Did you notice I used my Patriotic Cupcake Toppers? They added a nice festive touch to our 4th of July cookout!

Til next time…

Pam Baker from The Birch Cottage
Strawberry Gelatin Poke Cake Recipe
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Tuesday 31st of July 2018

I like the idea of the banana split cake...but not the two raw eggs. Should I be concerned.

The poke cake sounds like fun, too. I remember years ago making a marbled cake and adding the color gelatin of the month!

Thanks for all of your great ideas.

Pamela Baker

Wednesday 1st of August 2018

Susan, that is a really good question about the use of raw eggs. I have never had a problem with them. I think the key is to keep the eggs refrigerated and keep the dessert refrigerated. You can, however follow these steps to convert the raw eggs to cooked eggs: In a heavy saucepan, stir together the eggs and either sugar, water or other liquid from the recipe (at least 1/4 cup sugar, liquid or a combination per egg). Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until the egg mixture coats a metal spoon with a thin film or reaches 160° F. Immediately place the saucepan in ice water and stir until the egg mixture is cool. Proceed with the recipe. The eggs won’t be solid, but more of a gel consistency.

You can also simply use this for the second layer of the dessert:

12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature ¼ cup granulated sugar 8 ounces Cool Whip

I hope this helps!!

You’re right! The poke cakes have been around for a long time. It’s actually been a few years since I made one, so the ones I made this summer were a really nice treat! Thanks, too, for your kind comments.

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