Strawberry Trifle Recipe (Dessert for Kara)

Strawberry Trifle

This blog post is for my niece Kara. It is her very favorite dessert, except for possibly cassata cake. Come to think of it, the desserts have essentially the same ingredients. She always requests this dessert and even asked for us to make it together when she spent the day here. She can eat more trifle than should be able to fit into a 50 lb. body! Must run in the family. This recipe is an original concocted by me.


1 boxed white cake mix, prepared

1 lb. fresh strawberries, save a large one for garnish

1 1/2 tubs Cool Whip, regular or light, thawed

2 boxes instant vanilla pudding, 1.85 oz. each (4 serving size)

3 cups milk

chocolate for garnish (optional)


  • Make boxed cake mix as per package directions. Bake it in a 9″ x 13″ pan. Allow to cool. Cut the cake into 1/2 to 1 inch cubes.
  • Prepare the pudding. Empty both boxes of the pudding into mixer bowl. Add 3 cups of milk and mix. The pudding will be a little thicker than usual. Chill for a few minutes.
  • Wash and hull the strawberries. Cut them into bite size pieces.
  • The trifle should be assembled in a clear glass trifle bowl for visual effect. I use the plastic bowl from my salad spinner since my trifle bowl cracked. The bowl is clear so works fine. It is used in the pictures here.
  • Spread a thin layer of Cool Whip to cover the bottom of the bowl.
  • Place a layer of cake cubes over the Cool Whip spread in the bowl.
  • Add a layer of the strawberries.
  • Spoon a layer of pudding over the strawberries.
  • Add a layer of Cool Whip.
  • Repeat until all ingredients are used up, making sure your top layer is Cool Whip. I always do the layers in this order. This allows any strawberry juice to soak into the cake and the pudding to run in the strawberry crannies.
  • I take the large, reserved strawberry and make slices, leaving it attached to the hull. Push the attached sliced so they spiral and place in the middle of the top dessert layer for garnish. (See photo above.)
  • Optional: Take a fine grater and grate chocolate directly on to the top of the dessert. You can use a Hershey bar or other chocolate. I used a Malley’s chocolate Santa left over from Christmas on this one. Use good quality chocolate.
  • Refrigerate until serving. I would say this serves about 10-12 people. Unless one of them is a trifle-loving niece, then it serves about 4!

Feel free to make substitutions! You can use any flavor cake. I like strawberry as pictured below. I have also used chocolate or brownies. Use different fruits as well. It will work with raspberries, blueberries, or peaches. I would avoid bananas because they might turn brown. You can also use different flavors of pudding. Mix and match ingredients as per your taste.


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