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The cross section of a piece of this strawberry lemonade cake with fresh mint buttercream features cake, ruby red strawberry preserves and mint-flecked buttercream. #strawberry #lemon #mint #cake

Strawberry Lemonade Cake with Fresh Mint Buttercream

This strawberry lemonade cake with fresh mint buttercream is summery and fresh.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 12 people
Calories 330 kcal

Ingredients

Lemon Cake

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup whole milk room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
  • cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Fresh Mint Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  • 2 large egg whites
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ sticks unsalted butter room temperature, cut into tablespoons
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup finely chopped mint leaves

Assembly

  • ½ pint fresh strawberries hulled and diced
  • ½ teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup strawberry preserves
  • mint, fresh strawberries, lemon zest for decorating

Instructions

Lemon Cake

  1. In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients. In a cup, mix the milk and vanilla.
  2. Beat the butter until light and creamy. Add the sugar and beat until fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Beat in the dry ingredients in 3 batches, alternating with the milk mixture. Fold in the lemon zest.
  3. Scrape the batter into two greased and lined 6” round cake pans. Bake at 350F for 20-25 minutes, until springy. Cool for 15 minutes, then run a knife around the edges and invert onto a rack. Peel off the paper, turn the cakes upright and cool completely.

Fresh Mint Buttercream

  1. In a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, combine the egg whites and sugar. Cook, whisking constantly, until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm to the touch.
  2. Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat until it holds stiff (but not dry) peaks, and is fluffy and cooled.
  3. Switch to the paddle attachment. Add butter 1 tablespoon at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Fold in the mint until combined.

Assembly

  1. Mix the strawberries, lemon zest, sugar and a pinch of salt. Let macerate for at least 30 minutes, or until the berries become juicy.
  2. Level the tops of the cakes with a serrated knife. Place a dab of buttercream in the center of a cake stand/serving plate, then place one cake layer over the buttercream and press it down to help the cake stick to the buttercream and the plate.
  3. Spread a thin layer of preserves on the cake; this helps keep the cake moist while adding a bit of flavor. Spread on ⅔ of the buttercream.
  4. Add the other layer, bottom up so that you have a flat top. Press down slightly to get rid of some of the gaps in between the layers (if you still have gaps, you can spackle on some buttercream in the cracks). Add the rest of the buttercream to the top of the cake, then pile on the macerated strawberries. Decorate with more berries and mint.

Recipe Notes

Lemon cake from Grace Parisi via Food and Wine, June 2007

Fresh mint Swiss meringue buttercream adapted from Martha Stewart’s Baking Handbook

If you want a normal sized cake, double everything (cake, frosting, filling, etc). Bake the cakes in two 9” round cake pans for about 35 minutes.