For the Strawberry Swirls:
- 1 Cup sugar
- 1 cup chopped strawberries
For the Cake
- 2 Cups Sugar
- 2 Cups Flour
- 2 Teaspoons baking soda
- 1 packet of strawberry jello
- 1 teaspoon of kosher salt
- 1 cup milk
- ⅔ cup oil
- 3 eggs
For the icing
- The zest and juice of 2 lemons
- Powdered sugar (spoon in a little at a time till it is at your preferred consistency)
A Few Notes:
- You can opt to make these in cupcake tins or mini cupcake tins and it will make around 12 normal sized cupcakes or 24 mini cupcakes. You can also just leave it as a sheet pan cake and it will also be magical. I was just working on a different project that I wanted to use this same cake base for (coming soon) and decided to use less ingredients and only make the cake once.
- Make sure your cakes are completely cooled before adding the icing. Trust me, they are super ugly otherwise.
Let’s Do This!!
Start by chopping up a cup’s worth of strawberries and put them in a bowl with the cup of sugar and let them sit for about 10 minutes. Then add the sugar to a saucepan on low heat, stir it occasionally until it bubbles up and turns into sticky strawberry goodness. Take it off the heat and allow it to cool completely.
While you are waiting on your strawberry simple syrup to cool, start on your cake batter. Combine the flour, baking soda, jello packet, and salt in a bowl. In a larger bowl (or in the glass bowl of your stand mixer) combine the sugar, eggs, milk, and oil. Next slowly add in your dry ingredients and mix until they are one happy homogenous family.
Preheat your oven to 325°F and get out either your bake sheet or your cupcake tins and line them appropriately. Pour in your batter and then swirl in your cooled strawberry simple syrup. You can make the swirls by scooping in a spoon full in different locations and then run the spoon back through it.
Put it in the oven and start checking its donness around the 15 minute mark.
If you are making them any other way than as mini baby tiered cakes you can skip right on to the icing step. Otherwise, take two different sized round cookie cutters and cut them out of the cake.
Now for the icing. Take your powdered sugar (start with a small amount first of about two or three spoonfuls first) and create a well in the center. Add about a spoonful of your lemon juice and a pinch of your zest into the well and mix to combine. Add more lemon juice if it is too thick and add more icing if it is too thin. And you can add more zest if it isn’t zesty enough.
If you are making the baby cakes then take a spoonful of the icing and put it on top of one of your larger cake circles and then put one of the smaller circles on top. This should hold it in place. Next add all the icing you want on top of this and let it drip down the sides. Continue till all of your cakes are frosted and enjoy!