This creamy, no-bake strawberry icebox cake is a welcome dessert for scorching days when it's best to leave the oven off!
You can survive those really, terribly hot days by keeping the oven off some cool desserts.
Icebox cakes: that name alone reels me in with its retro vibe. Icebox cakes have been around since the early twentieth century, when households were purchasing their first ever electric iceboxes. (Refrigerators!)
In reading through my vintage cookbooks I found many variations of these cool, no-bake cakes. The most basic description of icebox cakes is that they are made with layers of :
- Something already baked (leftover cake, cookies, crackers)
- Something sweet and creamy (puddings, custard, whipped cream)
- And often fruit.
- Then refrigerated overnight to let the ingredients to meld.
After this chill they are no longer delicate, separate layers: they come together to form a solid, chilled, sweet dessert that is easy to slice and serve!
Why you'll love this recipe
This Strawberries and Cream Icebox Cake recipe holds a favorite combination: fresh strawberries and cream. Greek yogurt with the whipped cream gives a little tartness, and a bit more weight to the clouds of whipped cream. Graham crackers are the sturdy, pre-baked base for the fruit and cream.
This dessert is entirely make-ahead, which is great because when it's dessert time you'll have this cool treat waiting and ready to slice in your fridge.
🔪 How to make this recipe
Step 1: Slice the strawberries
Hull the clean strawberries and cut them vertically into thin slices.
Step 2: Make the cream
Beat the whipping cream with sugar, vanilla, and yogurt until it's stiff.
Step 3: Layer the cake
Create layers in the dish of cream, graham crackers, and slice strawberries, repeating the layers until the dish is full.
Step 4: Let the cake rest overnight in the icebox (refrigerator!)
Wrap the dish and refrigerate the cake ideally overnight or for at least 8 hours.
Step 5: Slice and serve
Cut the cake into slices and serve.
- The overnight chill in the fridge is crucial so the dessert has time to set and the layers can meld. Be sure to plan for this time before starting your cake.
The recipe is below, and for more no-bake desserts take a look at these:
>> Have you tried this icebox cake? Leave a comment below!
Strawberries & Cream Icebox Cake
- 1 pound fresh strawberries, washed & allowed to dry
- 1½ cups whipping cream
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 5.3 ounces plain Greek yogurt
- ½ cup confectioner's sugar
- 9 sheets graham crackers (typical boxes of graham crackers have 2 pre-wrapped packages with 9 crackers in each.)
- Have ready an 8-cup loaf pan (mine is 5.25-inch x 9-inch x 2.75-inch.) Place a mixing bowl and beater into the freezer, to chill them for whipping cream.
Prepare the strawberries:
- Set aside 3 whole strawberries for use later. Hull the berries, and then slice them vertically into thin slices. Set them aside.
Once the bowl and beater have chilled, whip the cream:
- Assemble the bowl and beater. Turn the mixer on low and slowly pour in the whipping cream. Add in the vanilla and increase the speed to medium-low or medium. The cream will whip faster the higher you can have your speed: find the highest speed you can go to without cream flying all over the kitchen!
- As the cream begins to thicken after about 2 minutes add in the confectioner's sugar. Beat the mixture until it has thickened and holds loose peaks - depending on the speed you use, expect this to take an additional 3-5 minutes. (Warm weather may also make the whipping process take a little longer.)
- Once the whipped cream is finished, fold in the plain Greek yogurt.
Assemble the icebox cake:
- Take 1 cup of the whipped cream mixture and spread it over the bottom and most of the way up the sides of the loaf pan.
- Break the graham crackers along the perforated lines and make a single layer of grahams over the bottom of the pan, on top of the cream. Fit the pieces in as closely as you can.
- Lay a layer of slices strawberries over the top of the graham crackers, fitting them close together.
- Take ⅔-cup of the cream mixture and spread it evenly over the strawberries. Add another layer of grahams and a layer of strawberries as you did in steps 7 and 8.
- Repeat the layers one more time with ⅔-cup of cream first, then grahams and then strawberries.
- Spread the remaining whipped cream mixture over the top of the cake.
- Take the whole strawberries set aside at the beginning, slice them in half vertically and arrange them decoratively on top of the cake (cut sides down.)
- Wrap the pan in plastic wrap and place it in the coldest corner of your refrigerator. Chill for 8-10 hours: overnight is ideal.
- Remove the cake from the fridge. Cut the cake into slices as you would a loaf of bread and serve immediately.
- Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 4 days. Makes 8 servings.
- Plan this cake in advance: it requires an overnight stay in the fridge before serving!