Strawberry Crunch Poke Cake

Need a refreshing sweet treat? This strawberry crunch poke cake recipe is light, refreshing and delicious. You’ll love the cookie crumble on top.

Do you remember those little Good Humor strawberry shortcake ice cream bars? They were my favorite, and I still enjoy one on a hot summer day here and there. The strawberry flavor, the cookie crumbles, the creamy ice cream center. What’s not to like?

If you love strawberry shortcake and strawberry flavor cakes, you’ll love this strawberry crunch poke cake made with cookies, whipped cream, strawberry Jello and cake mix.

closeup of strawberry crunch poke cake with whipped cream and a strawberry half on top

About this Strawberry Crunch Poke Cake recipe:

  • Flavor: This cake has a strawberries ‘n cream flavor thanks to the strawberry jello, heavy cream, sandwich cookies and whipped topping.
  • Texture: The cake is smooth and creamy. The topping is cool, and the strawberry crunch topping has just a slight crunch to it.
  • Method: This starts with a box cake mix. It bakes in a 9×13″ baking pan. You will need to leave time for the cake to cool before adding the topping.

Key Ingredients

Here are all of the ingredients:

ingredients for strawberry crunch poke cake title image
  • Although you can use any flavor cake mix, white cake mix works best so that you can see the contrast of the strawberry jello.
  • Heavy cream is the milk we recommend, but you can use whole milk or half and half if you’d like.
  • You can make your own whipped topping by beating cold heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar until peaks form.
  • Golden Oreos or a generic brand of sandwich cookies will both work. You can also use vanilla wafers but your crumble will be more of a crumb topping than a crumble topping since there is no frosting in the vanilla wafers.

The Process

Baking Tips

  • Don’t over mix your batter and don’t over bake your cake. In either case you will end up with a dry, crumbly cake that doesn’t taste nearly as good as it will if mixed and baked properly.
  • When poking holes in your cake you want holes a little larger than a chopstick would make. And avoid poking the hole all the way through the cake or your strawberry liquid will go right through and you won’t have stripes of it in your cake but a layer on the bottom.
  • Don’t skip the cooling period if you want those beautiful poke holes all over your cake. If the cake is too warm the gelatin liquid will simply sink to the bottom and you’ll have a bottom layer of strawberry but not the lines that you want in a poke cake.
  • Don’t forget to thaw the whipped topping in the refrigerator for several hours before you attempt to spread it on the cake. There’s no easy way to quickly thaw whipped topping and have it keep the same texture, so plan ahead.
  • If you don’t have a food processor, put the cookies in a large, sealable plastic bag, seal it and crush them with a rolling pin. This will provide a crumble with pieces of various sizes, instead of a consistent size, but that does add texture to the cake.
a sliced poke cake with strawberry crunch topping

Storage Instructions

  • Room temperature: Do not store this cake at room temperature.
  • Refrigerator: This will last chilled in the refrigerator for 3-5 days. Please be aware that the crumble will soften the longer it is stored and may become mushy.
  • Freezer: You can also cut and wrap the cake in individual pieces in order to freeze them. They will keep, if well wrapped, for about 3 months in the freezer. Thaw in the refrigerator and serve chilled. The whipped topping may get watery if frozen and thawed.
a slice of strawberry poke cake on a spatula
a slice of strawberry poke cake on a spatula

Strawberry Crunch Poke Cake

4.41 from 5 votes
Need a refreshing sweet treat? This strawberry crunch poke cake recipe is light, refreshing and delicious. You'll love the cookie crumble on top.
Servings 15
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Chill Time 4 hours

Ingredients
 

For the cake:

  • 1 box white cake mix 15.25 ounces
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 ½ cups heavy cream divided
  • cup vegetable oil
  • 1 box strawberry gelatin powder 3 ounces
  • 1 cup boiling water

For the topping:

  • 8 ounces whipped topping 1 tub
  • 20 vanilla sandwich cookies golden Oreos or store brand cookies
  • 2 ½ tablespoons strawberry syrup I used Smuckers strawberry ice cream syrup

For garnishing:

  • whipped topping
  • fresh strawberries

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350º Fahrenheit and grease a 9×13 inch baking pan with cooking spray.
  • In a large mixing bowl beat together the cake mix, eggs, 1 ½ cups of heavy cream and vegetable oil with a hand or stand mixer until fully smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed
  • Spread the cake batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the top bounces back when gently tapped or a toothpick comes out of the middle of the cake with only a few crumbs. Do not overbake.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes.
  • Once the cake has cooled for 20 minutes, poke several large holes all over it with the bottom of a stirring spoon. Do not poke all the way to the bottom of the cake, only poke about ¾ of the way down.
  • Pour the strawberry gelatin powder into a medium sized mixing bowl and whisk in the boiling water until dissolved.
  • Gradually add in the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream, whisking constantly, until it is all added and combined. You should have a dark pink, creamy liquid.
  • Pour the warm mixture over the cake slowly, being sure to fill the holes as much as possible and avoiding the edges of the cake.
  • Spread any remaining liquid sitting on the top of the cake into the holes.
  • Cover well and place in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours or overnight.
  • When ready to cut and serve the cake, remove from the refrigerator, uncover and spread the whipped topping all over the top.
  • Place the cookies in a food processor and pulse 1-2 times to begin to crush them.
  • Pour in the strawberry syrup and pulse several more times until the cookies are roughly crumbled and the syrup is mixed in. You will have a white and pink crumble mixture.
  • Sprinkle the topping evenly over the whipped topping, spreading gently if necessary to reach all the edges, and then cut and serve with fresh strawberries and whipped topping, optional.
  • Store this cake covered in the refrigerator until serving.

Notes

Refer to the article above for more tips and tricks.
The calories shown are based on the cake being cut into 15 pieces, with 1 serving being 1 slice of cake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate. **We are not dietitians and recommend you seek a nutritionist for exact nutritional information. The information in the nutrition box are calculated through a program and there is room for error. If you need an accurate count, I recommend running the ingredients through your favorite nutrition calculator.**

Nutrition

Calories: 462kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 365mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 32g | Vitamin A: 648IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 124mg | Iron: 1mg
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 462
Keyword box cake mix recipe, easy strawberry cake, poke cake recipe

Other Poke Cake Recipes to Love

Poke cakes are perfect for any season! Here you’ll find everything from pumpkin poke cakes to tiramisu to tropical jello poke cakes.

About Julie Clark

We are Julie, Maddie, and Kinslee – a mother and daughter team sharing with you the best cakes to satisfy any need or sweet craving that you may have. Welcome to our family’s kitchen!

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