Jessica Bakes | Lemon Cake with Strawberry Cream Cheese Frosting

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Happy Birthday to my darling daughter Beatrix! To celebrate, Felix and I baked her this beautiful cake and guys, it was a) easy AF and b) the most delicious cake I've ever had - tart, tangy and sweet all in one bite - no exaggeration! And the best part - it was from a box! Just a little doctoring up and the results were incredible (of course I had to taste test when we baked it yesterday... Bea will have the chance to smash it tonight! Cupcakes for everyone else!)

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Here's what I used:

Lemon Cake

  • One box of Lemon cake mix (I used Betty Crocker Super Moist or something like that)
  • Sub butter for oil
  • Add an extra egg

The butter adds extra richness while the bonus egg makes the cake super fluffy! Bake per instructions on box.


  • 1 package cream cheese
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 2 1/2 - 3 cups of powdered sugar
  • 2 T freeze dried strawberries

I use my go to cream cheese icing recipe because it's tangy and not too sweet. After mixing everything together (add the sugar in stages, adjust sweetness to your liking!) I divided the contents in half and set the plain icing aside. Now for the strawberries! I make a powder using my coffee grinder (cleaned thoroughly first!) because it gives such rich true strawberry flavor without any extra moisture. And the pretty pink color is more subtle and natural. 

To get the swirled effect, you'll need three pastry bags. Use the decorating tip of your choice in the first bag and set aside. In the second, fill with plain icing and the third with the strawberry. Now you need to fill your tip bag halfway with each flavor. It sounds a little complicated, but it's not - I promise! 

For the display of our little mini smash cake, I used a small cake stand I received as a gift (this is a cute option and large base). To ice the cake I first did the layer between cake sections and let it be rather messy. Next I made stars and rosettes on top. Using a flat spatula, I smoothed out the middle section and pressed on cute star shaped sprinkles. No need to be perfect! I like the homemade appeal of this beauty (fun fact - I always made and decorated all of the family birthday cakes as a kid!) Lastly, dust the top of your cake with more sprinkles, take a million photos and enjoy as it's smashed to pieces by your one year old baby! 

Happy Birthday little Bea!

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