Looking for a cool and refreshing dessert to serve this summer? Pockets of lemon frosting and a fluffy strawberry mousse adds a fun and delicious flavor to this Lemon Strawberry Poke Cake. The sweet and moist texture makes this poke cake recipe a crowd favorite.
About This Recipe
Do you have a favorite kind of dessert that you make during the summer? For me, it's poke cakes. There is just something about those chilly cakes that I adore.
Every once in a while I challenge myself to create something from the ingredients we have on hand. Since we had a lemon cake mix and a can of strawberry pie filling in our pantry, I decided to make a lemon strawberry cake.
We all loved this lemon poke cake recipe because it is simple to make, can be made ahead of time, and is cool and refreshing to eat on a hot summer day. Plus, poke cakes are so versatile because you can use different flavors of cake, frosting, or fruit.
What is a Poke Cake?
A poke cake is a baked cake that has been poked with a fork or wooden spoon handle while it is warm. The holes are then filled with sweetened condensed milk, instant pudding, or Jello. These liquids cool in the cake and create a dense and moist texture that is irresistible.
This lemon poke cake with strawberries comes together quickly with just 6 ingredients. See the full ingredient list below.
- Lemon Cake Mix - using a box mix makes this cake easy to make in minutes
- Sweetened Condensed Milk - absorbs into the cake to make it dense and delicious like a tres leches cake.
- Lemon Frosting - adds a pocket of lemon flavor to the cake
- Cool Whip - thawed ahead of time in the refrigerator. 3 cups of this Homemade Whipped Cream can be used instead.
- Strawberry Pie Filling - use a fork to break apart the bigger chunks of strawberries. You can also use 1 ½ cups of our homemade Strawberry Pie Filling in place of the canned filling.
- Fresh Strawberries - diced into bite sized pieces for the fruit topping
How to Make
This easy lemon cake with strawberry topping starts with a box cake mix. The layers of toppings make it rich and delicious.
Step One: Bake the Lemon Cake
- Mix together the box cake mix and ingredients from the back of the box and pour into a 9x13 pan.
- Bake for 28 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool 5 minutes.
- Poke holes in the top of the warm lemon cake with the handle of a wooden spoon.
Step Two: Fill the Cake
- Pour an entire can of sweetened condensed milk on top of the warm cake. The milk will soak into the cake creating a creamy and decadent chilly cake.
- Heat a can of lemon frosting in the microwave for 30-60 seconds.
- Pour the melted lemon frosting over the top of the cake. The frosting will settle into the holes and create creamy little pockets of frosting that just goes so well with all the strawberries.
- Refrigerate for 2-3 hours or until completely chilled.
Step Three: Frost Cake
- Mix together a container of Cool Whip and a can of strawberry pie filling.
- Spread the fluffy strawberry mousse frosting over the top of the chilled lemon poke cake.
- Sprinkle fresh diced strawberries all over the top.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
More Poke Cakes
- Strawberry Fudge Cake
- Chocolate Coconut Poke Cake
- Berry Pudding Cake
- Orange Creamsicle Cake
- Strawberry Cheesecake Poke Cake
- S'mores Cake
Other Lemon Recipes
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- 1 lemon cake mix
- 1 - 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 - 16 ounce container canned lemon frosting
- 1 - 21 ounce can strawberry pie filling
- 1 - 8 ounce container Cool Whip, thawed
- 1 ½ cup diced strawberries
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with nonstick spray.
- Make and bake the lemon cake mix according to the package directions.
- Let the cake cool for 5 minutes, then use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke holes all over the warm cake.
- Pour the sweetened condensed milk over the top of the cake, letting it soak into the holes.
- Remove the foil liner from the can of frosting. Microwave the frosting for 30 seconds. Stir and pour over the top of the cake. Spread it out with a spatula.
- Let the cake cool for an hour, then refrigerate until completely cooled.
- Pour the pie filling in a bowl and use a fork to smash the berries. Fold the container of Cool Whip into the pie filling.
- Spread on top of the cooled cake. Sprinkle the diced strawberries on top. Keep the cake refrigerated until ready to serve.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 24 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 236Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 218mgCarbohydrates: 40gFiber: 1gSugar: 29gProtein: 3g
Nutrition facts are an estimate and are not guaranteed to be accurate. If you need special diet advice, please see a registered dietician.
*The post for Lemon Strawberry Poke Cake was first published April 26, 2017. The post was updated and republished July 5, 2021.