Strawberry Lemonade Poke Cake – The Cookie Rookie®

This strawberry lemonade poke cake is the perfect summer dessert. It’s fun, it’s flavorful, and it’s easy to make ahead of time. Everyone will love this beautiful cake!

slice of strawberry lemonade poke cake

Strawberry Lemonade Poke Cake Recipe

Everyone loves a nice glass of strawberry lemonade in the summertime. Now you can get that same amazing flavor in the form of a cake!

This strawberry lemonade poke cake is a lot of fun to make. Start with a white cake mix, then add a strawberry jello filling and lemonade cream cheese layer. All together it’s irresistable!

Serve this dessert for a summer treat, for a festive Easter dessert, or any time you need a beautiful cake that everyone will love.

Why you’ll love this Strawberry Poke Cake recipe:

  • TASTES LIKE SUMMER: This cake is deliciously sweet and tart, just like a glass of strawberry lemonade. It’s perfect for summer!
  • UPGRADE YOUR BOXED CAKE: You can start with a boxed cake mix and take it up a few notches with this fun recipe.
  • MAKE AHEAD DESSERT: Since you’ll need to refrigerate this cake, you can easily make it up to 2 days in advance.
overhead strawberry lemonade poke cake garnished with fresh strawberries
overhead strawberry lemonade poke cake garnished with fresh strawberries

Ingredients List

Here are a few notes and tips to keep in mind. Check the recipe card for the full ingredients list.

  • Frozen Strawberries – I prefer frozen strawberries for the filling because they create a better consistency (and they’re more convenient).
  • Frozen Lemonade Concentrate – You’ll need this for the filling, the cake, and the cream cheese layer (1 cup total). So 1 can of this should be enough (they’re usually about 12 oz.).
  • Strawberry Gelatin – Use the dry gelatin powder/mix to add into the filling.
  • Cake Mix – A box of white cake mix is the base for this strawberry lemonade cake.
  • Cream Cheese – Allow the cream cheese to soften at room temperature.
  • Cool Whip – You’ll need a tub of this for the topping, or you can use heavy whipping cream.
  • Yellow Sanding Sugar – This is used to decorate and finish off the cake. It’s not necessary if you don’t have it, but it looks beautiful!

How to make Strawberry Lemonade Poke Cake

Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!

  1. Make the strawberry filling: Cook the frozen strawberries along with the other filling ingredients on the stove until softened. Then mix in the gelatin and let it cool to room temperature.
  2. Make the cream cheese layer: Mix the cream cheese, lemonade concentrate, powder sugar, and lemon juice in a electric mixer. Set it aside until ready to use.
  3. Bake the cake: Combine the cake mix with lemonade concentrate, water, sour cream, eggs, and lemon zest, and beat in a stand mixer. Then pour the cake batter into the cake pan, and bake according to box instructions.
  4. Cool and poke cake: Let the cake cool completely, then use a wooden spoon handle to poke holes all over the top of the cake.
  5. Assemble the cake: Pour strawberry jello filling over the cake so that it falls into the holes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Then spread the cream cheese layer evenly on top.
  6. Refrigerate: Cover the cake again and refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.
  7. Serve: To serve, top it with cool whip, fresh strawberries, and sugar.
slices of strawberry lemonade poke cake on white plates
slices of strawberry lemonade poke cake on white plates

How do you poke holes in a poke cake?

I recommend using a wooden spoon with a thin, rounded handle for this. After you bake the cake, let it cool completely. Then use the spoon handle to poke holes all over the top of the cake (about 35-40 holes).

I try to leave about an inch between holes, but it doesn’t have to be exact. Poke about 3/4 of the way through the cake; you don’t want a hole all the way through it.

Does jello poke cake need to be refrigerated?

This strawberry lemonade poke cake is made with a gelatin filling, as well as a cream cheese layer. So it should be refrigerated before and after serving.

Can I make this ahead of time?

Yes! This cake should be refrigerated before serving, so it’s the perfect dessert to make ahead of time. Bake and assemble the cake according to the instructions in the recipe card.

Then cover the cake in plastic wrap and store in the fridge up to 2 days before serving.

slice of strawberry lemonade poke cake
up close slice of strawberry lemonade poke cake


  • The strawberry filling will need about 30-45 minutes to cool down to room temperature.
  • Let cream cheese soften before making the cream cheese mixture.
  • Use a 9×13 inch pan for this poke cake recipe.
  • Refrigerate the cake after adding the strawberry filling, and then again after adding the cream cheese layer. So you’ll need to give it plenty of time to chill before serving.
  • Store leftovers in the refrigerator up to 4 days.
bite out of strawberry lemonade poke cake

This strawberry lemonade poke cake is so easy, fun, and delicious. Serve it up with as much cool whip as you like!

If you make this recipe be sure to upload a photo in the comment section below or leave a rating. Enjoy!

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