Strawberry Shortcake

March 16, 2019

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Strawberry Shortcake — made with perfectly fluffy and tender buttermilk biscuits, sweetened fresh strawberry slices and a rich, light as air whipped cream. What more could we ask for in a dessert? They’ll instantly become the highlight of the meal.

Strawberry shortcake on a white dessert plate. Made up of sweet buttermilk biscuit, macerated strawberries, and whipped cream. It is decorated on top with a fresh strawberry and mint leaves.

Homemade Strawberry Shortcake Recipe

It’s that time of year when strawberry season has finally come, and what’s one of the first things you should make with those gorgeously red, plump juicy strawberries? Strawberry shortcake, of course!

And not just any strawberry shortcake — this easy strawberry shortcake recipe from scratch! With its buttery, perfectly sweetened biscuit base and its almost cake-like texture. That which is paired with an abundance of fresh strawberries and rich dollops of heavenly whipped cream. A trio of decadence.

This is the homemade strawberry shortcake to make! Trust me, you’ll be savoring every last bite of it and maybe even sneaking a few bites of the kids’ when they aren’t looking.

Whole strawberries on a cutting board after rinsing.

Strawberry Shortcake Ingredients

This recipe has three components: the strawberry shortcake biscuits, the macerated strawberry filling, and the homemade whipped cream that goes on top.

Here’s what you’ll need to make this traditional strawberry shortcake recipe:

  • Strawberries – fresh strawberries work best here, and in-season berries will taste sweeter.
  • Granulated sugar – for the strawberry shortcake biscuits, whipped topping and the strawberries. We’re making dessert here.
  • All-purpose flour – preferably use unbleached all-purpose flour for better taste.
  • Baking powder and baking soda – the combination of the two yields perfectly fluffy biscuits here.
  • Salt 
  • Unsalted butter – stick with unsalted butter, it melts slower and you can control the amount of salt that goes in.
  • Buttermilk – use real buttermilk here instead of the buttermilk substitute for best results (Use leftover to make Buttermilk Pancakes!)
  • Egg and egg white – the extra white is for a nice color on the biscuits, it also helps the sugar stick.
  • Heavy cream – only use heavy cream to achieve nice sturdy peaks that will hold up to the strawberries.

Why Use Aluminum-Free Baking Powder?

Aluminum baking powder (which is standard in the U.S.) can leave behind a metallic or bitter flavor if used in this large of a quantity — this recipe calls for a whole 1 Tbsp baking powder. So I highly recommend opting for aluminum-free.

Aluminum-free baking powder is available at most grocery stores and only costs a bit more than the non-aluminum free.

Strawberry Shortcake

How to Make Strawberry Shortcake

  • Slice strawberries, then add about 1/3 of them to a bowl and mash with a potato masher.
  • Add remaining sliced strawberries and 6 Tbsp sugar and toss. Chill (up to 4 hours).

Showing how to mash strawberries in a glass mixing bowl with potato masher to use in strawberry shortcake. Then second image attached showing adding sliced strawberries and sugar.

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a 18 by 13-inch baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add butter and cut into mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.

Cutting butter into flour mixture in glass mixing bowl using a pastry cutter. Showing how to make biscuits for strawberry shortcake.

  • Make a well in center of mixture. In a mixing bowl (or large liquid measuring cup) whisk together buttermilk, 1 whole egg and vanilla extract.
  • Pour buttermilk mixture into well in center of flour mixture. Fold with a rubber spatula until it comes together in large pieces.

Adding buttermilk mixture to well in center of flour in glass mixing bowl. Tossing until clumps form.

  • Drop mixture onto a lightly floured surface and turn and press gently about 4 or 5 times until it comes together. Pat into a square about 8 by 8 inches.
  • Cut into rounds using a 2 1/2-inch round cutter then transfer to lined baking sheet.

Forming flour mixture into a ball on a floured surface, then patting dough to a square and cutting into rounds to make biscuits for strawberry shortcake.

  • Brush tops with egg white then sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 Tbsp sugar.
  • Bake about 10 – 12 minutes.
  • Pour heavy cream and 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar into a mixing bowl. Using an electric hand mixer whip until stiff peaks form.
  • To assemble homemade strawberry shortcakes, split each (just warm) biscuit in half using a knife, dollop a spoonful of whipped cream over bottom halves, spoon plenty of strawberries over cream layer then top with second half of biscuit.

Strawberry shortcake biscuits shown on parchment lined baking sheet before and after baking.

Can I Use Frozen Strawberries?

Frozen strawberries would work too if you don’t have access to fresh, but keep in mind the flavor won’t be quite as good and the texture won’t be the same.

Can I Make Gluten-Free Strawberry Shortcake?

I can’t say for certain since I’ve only made this strawberry shortcake recipe as written. However, I’ve had readers report success substituting the all-purpose flour with King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure. Let me know if you give this a try!

Two servings of homemade Strawberry Shortcake on two scalloped dessert plates set over a white marble surface.

Tips for the Best Strawberry Shortcake

  • Use well chilled butter. This cold little clumps will melt into the biscuits as they bake leaving them perfectly tender and buttery.
  • Use cold buttermilk so the butter stays cold.
  • Be gentle with the dough.
  • Flour biscuit cutter first to reduce sticking and don’t twist the biscuit cutter when cutting or it seals the edges and they won’t rise as high.
  • Don’t skip the resting time for the strawberry mixture, this time allows for the strawberries to soften up a bit.
  • Use cold whipping cream so it will whip up nicely. And did you know you can actually add the sugar at the beginning of mixing? That way there’s no grittiness.

More Strawberry Recipes You’ll Love:

Strawberry shortcake on a white dessert plate. Made up of sweet buttermilk biscuit, macerated strawberries, and whipped cream. It is decorated on top with a fresh strawberry and mint leaves.
5 from 4 votes

Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberry shortcake made with perfectly fluffy and tender buttermilk biscuits, sweetened fresh strawberry slices, and a rich, light as air whipped cream.
Servings: 9
Prep25 minutes
Cook10 minutes
Ready in: 45 minutes

Ingredients

Strawberries

  • 2 1/2 lbs fresh strawberries, hulled
  • 6 Tbsp (80g) granulated sugar

Sweet Biscuits

  • 3 cups (424g) unbleached all-purpose flour (scoop and level to measure)
  • 1/3 cup (68g) granulated sugar, plus 1 Tbsp for topping
  • 1 Tbsp aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold, diced into small cubes
  • 1 cup buttermilk*, cold
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 egg white, lighlty beaten

Whipped Cream

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar

Instructions

Strawberries:

  • Slice strawberries then add about 1/3 of them to a bowl and mash with a potato masher. Add remaining sliced strawberries and 6 Tbsp sugar and toss. Chill at least 30 minutes.

Sweet Biscuits:

  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Line a 18 by 13-inch baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, 1/3 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add butter and cut into mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Make a well in center of mixture. In a mixing bowl (or large liquid measuring cup), whisk together buttermilk, 1 whole egg and vanilla extract.
  • Pour buttermilk mixture into well in center of flour mixture. Fold with a rubber spatula until it comes together in large pieces.
  • Drop mixture onto a lightly floured surface and turn and press gently about 4 or 5 times until it comes together. Pat into a square about 8 by 8-inches.
  • Cut into rounds using a 2 1/2-inch round, floured cutter then transfer to lined baking sheet.
  • Brush tops with egg white then sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 Tbsp sugar.
  • Bake in preheated oven until cooked through and lightly golden brown, about 10 - 12 minutes. Let cool on wire rack 10 minutes.

Whipped Cream & Assembly:

  • Pour heavy cream and 1 1/2 Tbsp sugar into a chilled mixing bowl. Using an electric hand mixer whip until stiff peaks form. 
  • To assemble shortcakes, split each biscuit in half using a knife, dollop a spoonful of whipped cream over bottom halves, spoon plenty of strawberries over cream layer then top with second half of biscuit. Serve right after assembling.

Notes

  • *If you live in a dry climate, I recommend adding 1 extra tablespoon of buttermilk.
  • Discard scraps after cutting or gently press together and cut more biscuits - these just won't be as tender.
  • Recipe adapted with some changes from King Arthur Flour
Nutrition Facts
Strawberry Shortcake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 437 Calories from Fat 180
% Daily Value*
Fat 20g31%
Saturated Fat 12g75%
Cholesterol 79mg26%
Sodium 383mg17%
Potassium 434mg12%
Carbohydrates 58g19%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 26g29%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 730IU15%
Vitamin C 74.3mg90%
Calcium 136mg14%
Iron 2.4mg13%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Nutrition values are estimates only. See full disclaimer here.

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19 Comments

  • sassiebrat

    I haven’t made these, yet, but I am going to. I found a discrepancy between your recipe and the one from KAF. You list under Ingredients…

    3 cups (424g) flour

    KAF lists…

    3 1/2 cups (418g) flour

    So, they have more flour, but it weighs less.

    What are the true numbers?

    Thanks so much!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      They use the spoon and sweep method while I’m using the scoop and sweep method. For most accuracy though the kitchen scale is recommended and going with grams.

      • sassiebrat

        Thanks so much for your quick reply! Does this mean use the 424g? However, I don’t have a kitchen scale. Would the 3 cups of flour be right, then?

        • Jaclyn

          Jaclyn Bell

          Yes if you don’t have a kitchen scale then measure out 3 cups of flour using the scoop and sweep method (don’t spoon into measuring cup).

          • sassiebrat

            Will do; I’ll let you know how it turns out!

  • Jeanie B

    This is the Absolute Best shortcake recipe ever. Followed it faithfully with just one small change – I cut the biscuits in squares instead of rounds, no waste that way.

  • Elaine Bailey

    Loved the biscuits. It is very much like the biscuits my mother-in-law made. I added about 1/2 cup of extra buttermilk. They were wonderful. 4Stars!

  • Janet Brown

    Delicious shortcake. Reminds me of my mother’s recipe, so good

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I love when recipes remind me of my moms :)! I’m so glad you liked this shortcake!

  • Matt

    Definitely amazing. I have celiac so I switched out the regular flour for King Arthur Gluten Free Measure for Measure. (I also double the vanilla in every recipe I make.) Beautiful and tender as you described — even the ones made from the “scrap” dough. People were eating the biscuits plain they’re so good. Thanks!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      So glad you liked them and were successfully able to make them gluten free!

  • Brenda Williams

    Am I overlooking the recipe for the whip cream? I clicked on the picture but it did not pop up.

  • Laura | Tutti Dolci

    The most perfect strawberry shortcake! These are gorgeous!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      The texture won’t be quite the same but you should be fine to just add a few extra tablespoons of buttermilk.