You’ll be hard-pressed to find anyone who won’t swoon over this update of an old-fashioned icebox cake. Highlighting strawberry season with a cream-cheese strawberry whipped cream layered with shortbread cookies, this “cake” is a must-make during the local strawberry season. Be sure to read all the tips and flavor variations in the 45th edition of Baking Together before making the dessert. You will need an 8-inch square pan – but you will not need to turn your oven on. Hurrah!

Makes 8 to 10 servings.


For the cream

  • 1-quart (16 ounces) strawberries, rinsed, dried, and hulled
  • 4 ounces plain, full fat cream cheese, softened
  • 1/3 cup (2 3/8 ounces) granulated sugar
  • Pinch of table salt
  • 1 1/3 cups (10 5/8 ounces) heavy cream


For assembly

  • 1/2-pint (6 ounces) raspberries, rinsed and dried
  • 36 shortbread cookies (I use about 1 1/2 bags of Pepperidge Farm “Chessmen”; see notes)


For serving

  • 8 ounces strawberries, rinsed, dried, hulled and sliced
  • 1/2-pint (6 ounces) raspberries, rinsed and dried


Make the whipped cream and assemble

1. Have ready an 8 x 8-inch baking pan (I use Pyrex) or serving dish.

2. Cut the strawberries into six or eight pieces, depending on their size, and put them in a medium bowl. Using a potato masher or a large fork, crush the berries until a chunky puree forms. Measure out 1 3/4 cups of fruit pieces and juices and reserve any extra for serving.

3. Put the cream cheese, sugar and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment (or in a large bowl using an electric handheld mixer fitted with wire beaters), and beat on medium speed until very smooth, scraping down the sides occasionally. Add the heavy cream and beat on low speed until blended with the cream cheese. Slowly increase the speed to medium-high and beat until the mixture forms very stiff peaks. Scrape the crushed strawberries and any juices into the whipped cream and beat on medium-low speed until blended.

4. Add a good dollop of the whipped cream to the pan and spread to form a thin layer. Arrange the cookies in an even layer (see notes) on top of the cream. If necessary, you can break cookies to fill in a space in a row. Spread about 1 1/4 cup of the cream evenly over the cookies. Scatter about half of the raspberries on top and gently press on them to flatten slightly. Repeat with another layer of cookies, cream and raspberries. Top with a final layer of cookies and the remaining cream. There will be 3 layers of cookies, 4 layers of cream (including the bottom layer), and 2 layers of raspberries.

5. Smooth the top and firmly tap the pan on the counter several times to settle the cream (see note). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the cookies are very soft, at least 24 hours or up to two days. Leftovers are delicious for days.

To serve

6. Cut the cake into squares and use a wide offset spatula to lift the cake onto dessert plates. Or, for an easier, more casual approach, use a large serving spoon to scoop servings into dessert bowls or plates. Garnish with sliced strawberries and raspberries.