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Berries and Cream Poke Cake Recipe

Introduction to Berries and Cream Poke Cake

The Berries and Cream Poke Cake is a delightful dessert that combines the lightness of fluffy cake with the rich, creamy texture of a fruit-filled topping. This dessert has surged in popularity due to its irresistible combination of flavors and its visually appealing presentation. Perfect for spring and summer gatherings, its seasonal relevance lies in the use of fresh berries, making it an ideal choice for picnics, barbecues, and family dinners. The poke cake’s unique method of incorporating filling directly into the cake base allows for a moist and flavorful experience with every bite, setting it apart from traditional cakes.

The Cake Base

The foundation of a successful Berries and Cream Poke Cake starts with selecting the right cake mix. While homemade cake recipes can be used, a high-quality vanilla cake mix offers a convenient and reliable base that saves time without compromising on taste. Here’s how to ensure your cake base is perfect:

  1. Choosing the Cake Mix: Opt for a vanilla, yellow, or white cake mix. These flavors provide a neutral base that complements the berry and cream filling without overpowering it.
  2. Preparing the Cake: Follow the instructions on the cake mix box, typically requiring the addition of eggs, oil, and water. Mix the ingredients until just combined to avoid overmixing, which can lead to a dense cake.
  3. Baking the Cake: Pour the batter into a greased 13×9 inch baking pan. Ensure your oven is preheated to the temperature specified on the box. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, indicating the cake is fully cooked.
  4. Cooling: Allow the cake to cool completely before proceeding to the next step. A cool cake is easier to handle and less likely to crumble when you’re adding the filling.

Tips for Achieving a Light and Fluffy Texture:

  • Room Temperature Ingredients: Ensure your eggs and any other refrigerated ingredients are at room temperature before mixing. This helps to incorporate air into the batter, resulting in a lighter cake.
  • Gentle Mixing: Mix the batter gently until the ingredients are just combined. Overmixing can activate the gluten in the flour, making the cake tough.
  • Proper Baking Time: Keep an eye on the baking time. Overbaking can dry out the cake, so remove it from the oven as soon as a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Poking Holes: Once cooled, use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke holes evenly across the cake. This allows the creamy filling to seep into the cake, adding moisture and flavor.

By following these steps and tips, you’ll create a light and fluffy cake base that’s ready to be transformed into a stunning Berries and Cream Poke Cake, sure to be the highlight of any dessert table.

The Filling: Mixed Berry Cheesecake

The heart of the Berries and Cream Poke Cake lies in its luscious mixed berry cheesecake filling. This component not only infuses the cake with moisture but also introduces a burst of fresh, tangy flavors that perfectly complement the sweetness of the cake.

Ingredients Needed for the Filling:

  • 2 cups of fresh strawberries, hulled and mashed
  • 1 cup of fresh raspberries, mashed
  • 1 cup of fresh blackberries, mashed
  • 8 oz of cream cheese, softened
  • 14 oz of sweetened condensed milk

Detailed Process for Creating the Mixed Berry Cheesecake Filling:

  1. Preparation: Start by mashing the strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries in a bowl. The goal is to break down the berries to release their juices, which will flavor the filling.
  2. Mixing: In a separate bowl, beat the softened cream cheese until it’s smooth and creamy. Add the sweetened condensed milk and continue to beat until the mixture is well combined.
  3. Incorporating Berries: Fold the mashed berries into the cream cheese mixture. Stir gently to distribute the berries evenly throughout the mixture, ensuring that small chunks of fruit remain for texture.

How to Properly Incorporate the Filling into the Cake:

  • After the cake has cooled and you’ve poked holes throughout, carefully pour the berry cheesecake filling over the cake, making sure to fill the holes. Use a spatula or the back of a spoon to spread the filling evenly across the cake, allowing it to seep into the poked holes. Refrigerate the cake to set the filling before adding the topping.

The Topping: Whipped Cream vs. Whipped Topping

The choice between fresh whipped cream and whipped topping is crucial in determining the final texture and taste of your Berries and Cream Poke Cake.

Comparison of Fresh Whipped Cream and Whipped Topping:

  • Fresh Whipped Cream offers a richer, more decadent flavor and a smoother texture. It’s made from heavy cream and can be sweetened and flavored to your liking.
  • Whipped Topping, on the other hand, is a convenient, stable alternative that holds up well at room temperature and has a uniform sweetness.

Instructions for Making Fresh Whipped Cream:

  1. Chill a mixing bowl and beaters in the freezer for about 15 minutes.
  2. Pour 1½ cups of heavy whipping cream into the chilled bowl, adding ½ cup of confectioners’ sugar and ½ tsp of vanilla extract for flavor.
  3. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks form, being careful not to overbeat.

Tips for Spreading the Topping for a Smooth Finish:

  • Ensure the whipped cream or topping is spread evenly over the set filling, using an offset spatula for a smooth, professional-looking finish.
  • For an extra touch of elegance, pipe the whipped cream around the edges of the cake or create swirls for a decorative pattern.
  • If using fresh whipped cream, keep the cake refrigerated until serving to maintain the topping’s structure and freshness.

By carefully preparing and incorporating the mixed berry cheesecake filling and choosing the right topping, you can create a Berries and Cream Poke Cake that is as visually stunning as it is delicious.

Decoration and Serving Suggestions

Garnishing your Berries and Cream Poke Cake with fresh berries not only adds a burst of color but also enhances the cake’s fresh, fruity flavor. Arrange whole or sliced strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries on top for a visually appealing finish. For serving, cut the cake into squares and serve chilled for the best texture and taste. To keep the cake fresh, cover it with plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it in the refrigerator. It’s best enjoyed within 2-3 days, ensuring the cake remains moist and the berries vibrant.


  • What are poke cakes? Poke cakes are delightful desserts featuring a cake base into which holes are poked after baking. These holes are then filled with a liquid or filling, such as fruit purees, condensed milk, or pudding, allowing the flavors to seep into the cake and making it exceptionally moist and flavorful.
  • Can I use frozen berries for the filling? Yes, frozen berries can be a convenient and year-round alternative to fresh berries. Thaw and drain them well before mashing to prevent excess liquid from altering the filling’s consistency.
  • How can I make this cake ahead of time? Prepare the cake and filling a day in advance and store them separately in the refrigerator. Assemble and add the whipped cream or topping a few hours before serving to ensure the cake maintains its texture and freshness.

Advanced Tips and Tricks

Customizing your cake with different berries allows for a personalized touch. Experiment with blueberries, blackcurrants, or even cherries for a unique twist. To make the cake more festive for special occasions, consider adding edible flowers, chocolate shavings, or a drizzle of fruit syrup for extra flair. These small additions can elevate the cake from a simple dessert to the centerpiece of your celebration.

Healthier Alternatives

For a lighter version of the Berries and Cream Poke Cake, consider using a low-fat cake mix or substituting all or part of the oil with applesauce. Opt for low-fat or fat-free cream cheese for the filling and use a light whipped topping instead of heavy whipped cream. These substitutions can help reduce the calorie and fat content without compromising the delicious flavors of the cake.


The Berries and Cream Poke Cake is a versatile, delicious, and visually stunning dessert perfect for any occasion. From its fluffy cake base and creamy berry filling to the rich whipped topping, every element combines to create a truly memorable dessert experience. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or new to the kitchen, this cake is sure to impress. So, gather your ingredients and let your creativity shine as you embark on making this delightful treat at home.

Berries and Cream Poke Cake Recipe

The Berries and Cream Poke Cake is a delightful dessert that combines the lightness of fluffy cake with the richness of a creamy, fruit-filled topping. Perfect for any season but especially wonderful during spring and summer, this cake is sure to be a hit at any gathering.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Additional Time (for cooling and setting): 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 55 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 servings
Calories 350 kcal


  • 13x9 inch baking pan
  • Electric mixer
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Wooden spoon or skewer for poking holes


  • 1 box vanilla cake mix plus ingredients called for on the box: eggs, oil, water
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries hulled and mashed
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries mashed
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries mashed
  • 8 oz cream cheese softened
  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • cups heavy whipping cream
  • ½ cup confectioners' sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • Fresh berries for garnish optional


  • Prepare the Cake: Bake the cake according to the package instructions in a greased 13x9 inch pan. Allow to cool completely.
  • Poke Holes: Once cooled, use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke holes evenly across the cake.
  • Make the Filling: In a bowl, mix the mashed berries, softened cream cheese, and sweetened condensed milk until well combined. Pour over the cake, ensuring the filling seeps into the holes. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to set.
  • Whip the Cream: Beat the heavy whipping cream, confectioners' sugar, and vanilla extract until stiff peaks form. Spread over the set berry filling.
  • Garnish and Serve: Decorate with fresh berries if desired. Slice and serve chilled.


  • Frozen Berries: If using frozen berries for the filling, ensure they are thawed and well-drained to prevent the cake from becoming soggy.
  • Make Ahead: The cake and filling can be prepared a day in advance. Add the whipped cream topping a few hours before serving to keep it fresh.
  • Storage: Store any leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Keyword Berries and Cream Poke Cake, Berry Cheesecake, Dessert, Poke Cake, Summer Dessert