When I set out to create a new recipe for y’all, I want it to be the absolute best. Sometimes I’m lucky and my first stab at it turns out amazing. Other times, not so much.
Take this Strawberry Jam Pound Cake, for example. I’ve made somewhere around six different versions of this pound cake over the last few weeks. And I’ve made this final version three times. Why all the cake? Well…
I wanted this cake to have a strong flavor of strawberry but still have the classic pound cake features like the dense cake and crunchy exterior. And the thing is, fresh strawberries, while delicious, don’t really add bunches of strawberry flavor when added to things.
Many strawberry cake recipes, like this one, call for adding a box of strawberry gelatin to get that extra flavor. That works great for sheet cakes and layer cakes, but the resulting texture just isn’t very “pound cake-y” in my opinion.
I went on to add some strawberry extract. That helped, but just didn’t give it that pop of strawberry flavor I wanted.
Another option was making the fresh strawberry puree and then reducing it down to intensify the flavor… but who has time for that?
So I was talking to my buddy Christy Jordan when she mentioned drizzling some strawberry jam over the warm cake to add some extra flavor – almost in “poke cake” fashion. Taking that a step farther, I thought, “What if we add melted strawberry jam to the cake batter?” I imagined it would add some great strawberry flavor and a little color.
Fortunately, that’s exactly what it did. And it added some great moisture to the cake as well.
Y’all this is the best strawberry pound cake I’ve ever had.
I’ve got strawberry flavor coming at you in a number of different ways. Pureed fresh strawberries, strawberry extract and melted strawberry jam give this cake some seriously amazing flavor. And then there’s the glaze, too.
Don’t have fresh strawberries? Frozen berries work, too. Just use unsweetened strawberries that have been thawed and drained.
A few things to keep in mind:
- This cake starts in a cold oven. Don’t preheat the oven. It just works. Trust me.
- You’re going to need to cream the butter and sugar together for 5 minutes. That’s not a typo. Five. Whole. Minutes. A stand mixer is super helpful here, but a hand mixer works too.
- I much prefer pound cake after it has sat for a day or so. So if you have the luxury of time, make the cake a day in advance and allow it to “age” a bit for maximum flavor and best texture.
Strawberry Jam Pound Cake
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour and 10 minutes
Serves: 8 to 10
- 1 pound fresh strawberries
- 1/2 cup strawberry jam (I use seedless)
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 5 large eggs, room temperature
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons strawberry extract
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1 teaspoon salt
- red food coloring (optional)
For the glaze:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon strawberry extract
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons strawberry puree (from above ingredients)
- Wash and hull the strawberries. Use a food processor or blender to puree them until smooth. Measure out 1 cup of the puree for the cake, then set the rest aside for use in the glaze.
- Use a microwave to melt the strawberry jam until it is liquid. Start with about 30 seconds and add time to get it melted. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Do not preheat the oven. Grease and flour a 12-cup Bundt pan. (You can also use nonstick baking spray with flour if you have a pan you trust.) Set aside.
- Use a mixer to cream the butter, shortening and sugar together for 5 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again.
- Measure the flour by spooning it into a dry-measure measuring cup and leveling off.
- Add 1 cup of the flour and mix well. Add half of the strawberry puree and mix well. Add another cup of the flour and mix well. Add the other half of the strawberry puree and mix well. Finally add the last cup of flour and mix well.
- Add the vanilla, strawberry and lemon extracts to the melted strawberry jam and stir to combine. Add the mixture to the cake batter and mix well. Add the salt and mix well. If desired, add some red food coloring to turn the batter pink.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Place into a cold oven and turn the oven to 325 degrees. Bake for 1 hour and 5 minutes to 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean and the cake just starts to pull away from the edges of the pan. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes before placing a plate or serving platter over the cake and inverting it onto the platter. Allow the cake to cool completely before adding the glaze.
- Make the glaze by combining the powdered sugar, strawberry extract, vanilla extract and strawberry puree in a small bowl. It might seem like it won’t combine, but keep stirring. Once combined, drizzle over the cooled cake.