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Strawberry Lemonade Cake - strawberry Jell-O cake layers with Lemond curd and strawberry buttercream - the perfect summer cake! #summercake #strawberrylemonadecake #strawberrycake #summercakerecipe #easysummercakerecipe #cakesforsummer #cakebycourtney
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4.75 from 4 votes

Strawberry Lemonade Cake

Strawberry lemon cake layers, filled with lemon curd and topped with strawberry cream cheese buttercream.
 
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Cake
Keyword: Intermediate, strawberry cake, Strawberry lemonade cake

Ingredients

FOR THE CAKE

  • 3 cups (339g) cake flour
  • 4 1/2 teaspoons (18g) baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon (3g) salt
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 1/3  cups (266g) granulated sugar
  • 1 3 oz. package of strawberry flavored Jell-O
  • 3 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 5 large or extra large egg whites at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon (13g) pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (240g) buttermilk at room temperature

FOR THE CURD

  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • 1/2 cup (115g) lemon juice about 3 large lemons
  • 1 tbsp grated lemon zest
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 4 tbsp (56.5g) cold unsalted butter cut into small pieces

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM

  • 2 cups (452g) unsalted butter slightly cold
  • 6 oz. (170g) cream cheese slightly cold
  • 6 cups (750g) powdered sugar measured and then sifted
  • 1 teaspoon strawberry emulsion
  • 3 tablespoons (42g) heavy whipping cream
  • Pinch of salt
  • *If you want to pipe swirls around the cake like I did, add an extra half batch of buttercream.

Instructions

FOR THE CAKE

  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees F. Spray three 8-inch cake pans with nonstick spray, line the bottoms with parchment paper and spray again. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk the cake flour, baking powder and salt.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the butter, sugar, Jell-O and zest. Beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the egg whites, in a few additions, beating well and scraping down the sides of the bowl between each addition. Add the vanilla and stir to combine.
  • With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the flour mixture and the buttermilk, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix on low, just until flour is combined.
  • 5. Divide the batter evenly between the pans and bake for 25-30 minutes.
  • 6. Let cool in the pans for about 10 minutes and then invert onto wire cooling wraps to cool completely. Cakes can be individually wrapped in plastic wrapped and frozen for a week. If you'd like to freeze them longer than one week, wrap each cake layer in tin foil as well.

FOR THE CURD

  • 1. Whisk the sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and salt in a medium saucepan. Whisk in the whole eggs and yolks in a small bowl and then whisk them into the lemon mixture.
  • 2. Cook the mixture over medium heat, whisking constantly, until it's thick like pudding, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter a few pieces at a time until incorporated.
  • 3. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl, pushing it through with a rubber spatula. Press plastic wrap directly onto the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate until completely set, at least 4 hours and up to 5 days.

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM

  • 1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese on medium speed for about 2 minutes.
  • 2. Turn the mixer to low speed and gradually add the powdered sugar, followed by the strawberry emulsion, cream and salt.
  • 3. Turn the mixer to medium-high speed and beat the frosting for about 5 minutes.
  • 4. Before frosting your cake, mix the frosting by hand with a wooden spoon to push out any air pockets. If the frosting feels too soft to frost or pipe, cover it and refrigerate it for about 30 minutes.

ASSEMBLY

  • 1. Spread a dollop of frosting on a cake board or cake plate to hold the first cake layer in place.
  • 2. Place the first cake layer, top side up, on the cake board and pipe a rim of strawberry frosting around the edges to act as a barrier to the lemon curd. Spread half of the lemon curd (about 3/4 cup) on the cake layer.
  • 3. Top with the next cake layer and repeat step 2.
  • 4. Place the third cake layer, top side down, on the second layer of filling. Apply a thin layer of frosting around the entire cake to lock in the crumbs. Freeze the cake for about 10-15 minutes to set the crumb coat.
  • 5. If your frosting feels soft at this point, refrigerate it while the crumb coat sets.
  • 6. Continue frosting your cake, making sure to stir the frosting with a wooden spoon to push out any air pockets.
  • 7. If you're not serving within the day, you can freeze the cake in a cake box or container for up to a week - just make sure to remove the cake from the freezer about 6 hours before you plan to serve it.