Traditional Strawberry Shortcake Recipe

There are many iconic American desserts, like lemon meringue pie, Toll House cookies, cherry pie, peach cobbler ... The list goes on and on, but how many desserts can you name that have their own namesake cartoon complete with TV show, dolls, and tons of other merch? There's only one we can think of, and that would be strawberry shortcake. While Strawberry Shortcake the character might be cloyingly sweet, her eponymous dessert is biscuit-based, so it's not nearly as sugary as many other fruit desserts.

While many shortcut recipes for strawberry shortcake make do with canned biscuits, Angela Latimer of Bake It With Love likes to keep things traditional by making her own buttermilk biscuits. Once you've baked the biscuits, though, the rest of the recipe couldn't be easier: Simply split the biscuits, top them with sliced strawberries, and pile on the whipped cream. This makes for a simple yet practically perfect summertime dessert.

Gather up the ingredients for this strawberry shortcakes recipe

To make strawberry shortcake, you're going to need strawberries, of course, and fresh ones really are the only kind that will work. You're also going to need some lemon juice and sugar to add a little extra flavor to the berries. The biscuits themselves are made with unsalted butter, which needs to be straight out of the fridge rather than at room temperature. You'll also need all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda (yes, both of those not-quite-identical products), more sugar, a pinch of salt, and some buttermilk. (You can make an easy DIY substitute for the buttermilk by adding one and a half teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to a half-cup measure, then filling it with milk.)

For the whipped cream topping, Latimer went with Cool Whip, but she says you can also use aerosol whipped cream. If you can spare a few minutes and have an electric mixer on hand (or really, really strong arms and a whisk), you can also whip your own cream, or try whipping canned coconut milk to make a tasty plant-based "cream."

Prepare the strawberries for their starring role in this shortcake

Start by washing the strawberries, then remove the hulls and cut them into thick slices. Put the strawberries in a bowl big enough to hold them with some room to spare, then mix in the lemon juice and one tablespoon of sugar until the berries are well-coated. Place the bowl in the fridge to chill until the shortcakes are ready.

Before you move on to the baking, Latimer has one more tip: "I suggest cubing the butter when starting your strawberries, then returning it to the refrigerator until ready to use."

Make the biscuit dough

Before you begin the dough-making, go ahead and preheat the oven to 425 degrees and grease a baking sheet or line it with parchment paper or a Silpat. Since there's no need to rest or chill the biscuit dough, it will be ready to go as soon as you finish mixing.

Now whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, the remaining two tablespoons of sugar, and salt together in a medium bowl. Why a whisk? Latimer says this tool is needed to distribute the ingredients evenly throughout the flour. Remove the cubed butter from the fridge and cut it into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter, a fork, or a food processor. Latimer shares that you can also "go old-school and use a pair of your butter knives in a criss-cross motion to cut the butter in like I did back in my high school days."

However you cut the butter in, once it's done, it should be crumbly and form pea-sized lumps. Now stir in the buttermilk to make a thick, sticky dough. Add more buttermilk if needed, a tablespoon at a time, to achieve the right consistency for biscuit dough. If your dough is very dry, Latimer says you can add up to a quarter cup more buttermilk.

Bake the biscuits, then let them cool

Drop spoonfuls of the biscuit dough onto the prepared baking sheet. Latimer says you should make six or seven biscuits, explaining that "Any more or less will change the baking time needed." Bake the shortcakes for 15 to 18 minutes until the bottoms are light golden in color. The tops should be starting to turn golden as well. Remove the biscuits from the oven, and let them cool completely before you begin adding the toppings.

Assemble the strawberry shortcakes right before you serve them

If you plan to use Cool Whip to make the strawberry shortcakes, take it out of the freezer and let it thaw while the biscuits are cooling. If you're going to whip your own cream or coconut milk, now would be a good time to do that as well. If you're using aerosol whipped cream, you get to skip this stage of the prep work.

After the biscuits are cooled and the cream's all set to go, you may begin to assemble the strawberry shortcakes, but only do so right before you're planning to eat them. Slice each biscuit in half, then top the bottom half with the sweetened sliced strawberries and the whipped cream. Drop the top half of the biscuit in place, then your strawberry shortcake is ready to eat. If you really want to go all out, though, Latimer says you can make additional layers to create a double-decker dessert.

Traditional Strawberry Shortcake Recipe
4.9 from 26 ratings
Simply split the biscuits, top them with sliced strawberries, and pile on the whipped cream. This makes for a simple yet practically perfect summertime dessert.
Prep Time
10
minutes
Cook Time
15
minutes
Servings
6
servings
Strawberry shortcake on plate
Total time: 25 minutes
Ingredients
  • 3 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 ½ tablespoon lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons sugar, divided
  • ½ cup cold unsalted butter
  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 8-ounce container of Cool Whip, can of aerosol whipped cream, 8 ounces of heavy cream, or can of coconut milk
Directions
  1. Wash, hull, and slice the strawberries.
  2. Mix the strawberries, lemon juice, and 1 tablespoon sugar in a small bowl and refrigerate while you bake the shortcakes.
  3. Cut the butter into cubes and return it to the refrigerator to stay chilled.
  4. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit and grease a baking sheet or line it with parchment paper.
  5. Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, 2 tablespoons sugar, and salt together in a medium bowl.
  6. Remove the cubed butter from the fridge and cut it into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter, a fork, or a food processor until the mixture is crumbly and the butter forms pea-sized lumps.
  7. Stir the buttermilk into the dry ingredients to make a thick, sticky dough,
  8. Add more buttermilk if needed, a tablespoon at a time, to achieve the right consistency for biscuit dough.
  9. Drop spoonfuls of shortcake dough onto the baking sheet, making 6 or 7 shortcakes.
  10. Bake the shortcakes for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the bottoms are light golden in color on the base and parts of the topping.
  11. Remove the shortcakes from the oven and allow them to cool.
  12. If using Cool Whip in place of whipped cream, let it thaw at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes.
  13. Slice each shortcake in half and layer the bottom half with sugared strawberry slices and whipped cream.
  14. Place the top half of the shortcake on top of the cream.
  15. Serve and enjoy.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 438
Total Fat 30.1 g
Saturated Fat 18.6 g
Trans Fat 0.6 g
Cholesterol 93.3 mg
Total Carbohydrates 38.7 g
Dietary Fiber 2.4 g
Total Sugars 12.2 g
Sodium 409.8 mg
Protein 5.4 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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