Alright you guys, I have a confession. I’d never had a traditional strawberry shortcake until I started developing this recipe. At least, not that I can remember. I know there are versions that are based around more of a sponge cake, and that’s the version I’d had. But something about these sweet little biscuit shortcakes really intrigued me, so I decided to give them a try!
I am SO glad I decided to develop a recipe for these. Shortcakes? Good. Strawberries? Good. Homemade vanilla whipped cream? GOOOOD. Although there seem to be a lot of steps, I promise these are easy peasy. Any dessert that requires assembly can seem overwhelming on paper, so just bare with me here!
Strawberries – It’s not just strawberries in here. We’re not just slicing these up and calling it a day. We’re going to macerate these in some sugar and lemon juice. This is going to get them nice and syrupy, and draw out those natural juices in the berries. YUM.
Whipped cream – Trust me, making your own is worth it. Even if you don’t have a stand mixer, at least try to make this with a hand mixer or just a little elbow grease. Make sure the whipped cream is cold!
All-purpose flour – Our tried and true base. Don’t substitute this for another type of flour, please and thank you.
Granulated sugar – This recipe has a tad more sugar than some other shortcakes out there, but I wanted this to taste like a dessert and not just a regular biscuit. If it’s too sweet for you, you can reduce it, but don’t go lower than 3 tablespoons.
Baking powder – This is going to really give us that lift!
Butter – Make sure it’s unsalted, and make sure it is COLD. No warm or room temp fats here. We need the cold butter to help us get those layers.
Salt – Because you just need it.
Buttermilk – Okay, you can use regular milk if you need to. Since we are using baking powder, we don’t necessarily need the acid to get the leavening action going. But if you’re like me and like a little tang in your shortcake (or anything, really), stick with buttermilk. Just make sure the milk is COLD.
Heavy cream/buttermilk – This little bit is going to be used to brush the shortcakes and get that nice golden color. Either will work just fine.
Sparkling sugar- If you don’t have this, don’t sweat it. I just like a little extra crunch and sweetness. This can be omitted.
Why cold fats? When cold butter is baked, it sort of shocks the the system. And instead of melting down to liquid right away like softened butter, it creates steam that helps gives us nice layers and lift.
TIP: I like to cube the butter and then stick it back in the fridge while I gather other ingredients to make sure I’m using the coldest version possible. Also, if it’s a really hot day in your house, stick your flour in the fridge for 10 minutes before you start!
Making Strawberry Shortcakes
- Macerate the strawberries. These need time to sit and do its thing, so do this first.
- Make the shortcakes. Again, make sure everything is cold cold cold. I like to use my hands to cut the butter in, but make sure you work quickly if you do it this way. Warmth from your hands can melt the butter.
- Bake the shortcakes. Try setting them on the pan so they’re all touching. They help lift each other up! I used circle cutters like these.
- Make the whipped cream. As the shortcakes are cooling, whip some cream. I normally like a very stiff peak for whipped cream, but for this we went slightly softer.
- Assemble! Sandwich the strawberries and whipped cream in the middle of the shortcake, and then layer some on top.
I seriously cannot believe I went almost 28 summers without this sweet treat. This is the perfect time to make these since strawberries are in season, and I promise they will get gobbled up QUICK. They’re just too good!
I would love to see how your strawberry shortcakes turn out! Leave a comment, or tag me on instagream @fg_bakes!
6-7 cups strawberries, quartered
¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- Whipped Cream
1 cup heavy cream, cold
2 tbsp. granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3-3½ cups (360-420 g) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
1½ tbsp. baking powder
¾ cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
1 tsp. salt
¾-1 cup buttermilk, cold*
2 tbsp. heavy cream or buttermilk
- Stir strawberries, ¼ cup sugar and lemon juice together in a bowl. Cover and set in the refrigerator until ready to assemble.
- Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Mix dry ingredients (including sugar) in a large bowl. Add cubed butter, toss to coat. Cut in butter using your hands, pastry blender or 2 knives until it forms large, pea-sized pieces.
- Pour in buttermilk. Stir until shaggy dough forms. If dough seems too dry, add more buttermilk 1 tablespoon at a time until it starts to come together.
- Turn dough onto floured work surface. flatten into a 9×4 rectangle, and fold into thirds like a letter starting at the short side. Flatted into another rectangle and repeat.
- Flatten into a rectangle one time, about ½ inch thick. Cut into 3 inch circles. Re-roll any scraps and cut until you have 12 biscuits.
- Arrange on baking sheet close together so they’re touching. Brush tops with remaining 2 tablespoons of heavy cream or buttermilk, and sprinkle generously with sugar. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until tops are golden. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before assembling.
- Whipped Cream
- Using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, mix heavy cream, sugar and vanilla on medium-high speed until medium-stiff peaks form.
- Slice biscuits in half. Layer with strawberries and whipped cream. Serve immediately.
- Milk: If you don’t have buttermilk, you can use regular milk.
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