Strawberry Birthday Cake

Strawberry Birthday Cake

A classic vanilla buttermilk cake layered with strawberry curd and topped with strawberry cream cheese frosting.

Strawberry Birthday Cake
Yield: 1 (9-inch) 3-layer cake
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  1. 1 cup butter, softened
  2. 2 cups sugar
  3. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  4. 2 3⁄4 cups all-purpose flour
  5. 2 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
  6. 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  7. 1 cup whole buttermilk
  8. 5 egg whites
  9. Strawberry Curd (recipe follows)
  10. Strawberry Frosting (recipe follows)
  11. Garnish: fresh strawberries
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with nonstick baking spray with flour. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add vanilla, beating to combine.
  3. In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture in 3 batches, alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
  4. In another bowl, beat egg whites at high speed with an electric mixer until stiff. Fold in egg whites, one-third at a time. Divide batter evenly among prepared pans.
  5. Bake until a wooden pick inserted in the centers of layers comes out clean, approximately 20 minutes. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and let cool completely on wire racks.
  6. Spread Strawberry Curd evenly between layers. Spread Strawberry Frosting on sides and top of cake. Garnish with fresh strawberries, if desired.
Taste of the South
Strawberry Curd
Yield: approximately 1 1⁄2 cups
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  1. 1 (16-ounce) package frozen sliced strawberries in syrup, thawed and drained
  2. 1⁄2 cup sugar
  3. 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  4. 3 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  5. 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  6. 1⁄4 cup butter, cut into pieces
  7. 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
  1. In the work bowl of a food processor or the container of a blender, process strawberries until smooth. Reserve 1⁄2 cup strawberry purée for Strawberry Frosting.
  2. In a heavy saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch. Add remaining strawberry purée, egg yolks, and lemon juice. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until very thick, 7 to 8 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat; gradually add butter pieces, whisking until melted. Add strawberry extract, stirring to combine. Let mixture cool slightly; cover, and refrigerate for 2 hours before using.
Taste of the South
Strawberry Frosting
Yield: approximately 4 cups
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  1. 1⁄2 cup butter, softened
  2. 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  3. 1⁄2 cup reserved strawberry purée (from Strawberry Curd)
  4. 1 teaspoon strawberry extract
  5. 6 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  1. In a large bowl, beat butter and cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add strawberry purée and strawberry extract, beating until combined. Gradually add confectioners’ sugar, beating until a smooth and spreadable consistency is reached.
Taste of the South


  1. There is something wrong with this recipe. I am an experienced baker, and when I made this cake today the layers were only about 1/2″ thick. I checked and my baking powder is fresh so I can’t imagine why it was so flat. I decided to cut the layers with a large biscuit cutter thinking I would serve it with ice cream and the strawberry curd like a shortcake. When I tasted one of the rounds it had no flavor at all so I threw the whole thing out. I was taking this to a July 4th celebration, so it was a huge disappointment. I had to fight the Saturday crowds to get ingredients for a different dessert. Very disappointing.

    • Hi! We are so sorry about this. All the ingredient amounts look correct, but there are a couple of reasons why this cake might not rise. 1. The butter and sugar were not creamed completely. This can take up to 6 minutes on a stand mixer, and the butter should nearly double in volume and be pale yellow. Be sure to scrape the bowl every couple of minutes to make sure all the butter and sugar is being incorporated. 2. The egg whites were not stirred gently. To achieve a fluffy texture, the egg whites need to be folded or gently stirred into the batter. If you over stir, you will get a tough cake. Also, this is a standard white cake recipe, so it should not have an overwhelming flavor. Most of the flavor should come from the curd and icing. Hope this helps!

  2. My mother made me this for my birthday. Hands down this is the best cake I have ever had ever. It has been 2 years and I still think of it often.

  3. This seems like a basic sponge cake, but you have to be very careful with the folding. I want this for my birthday!

    • Hi Betty, if you don’t want to use the curd, you could easily replace that in between the layers with additional frosting. For the frosting, we would recommend making the strawberry purée portion of the strawberry curd recipe to give that punch of strawberry flavor. Using strawberry jam would alter the consistency of the frosting.


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