This is such a great time of year, food-wise. The stores are finally starting to get local produce, and everything is so fresh. It all tastes better, too.
Strawberries were on sale when I went grocery shopping last week, and I couldn’t resist buying a package. As soon I got home, I had to try one, then another, and I just couldn’t stop. They were so sweet and juicy, and I couldn’t remember the last time I had a strawberry so good!
Of course, I had to go back for more (that first box didn’t last long). I stopped myself from gobbling up that second package and decided to make an easy dessert to showcase the berries instead. What I came up with is this gorgeous Red, White, and Blue Icebox Cake that’s perfect for the Fourth of July or any summer occasion.
Basically, an icebox cake is composed of layers of cookies or graham crackers and a creamy filling. After being assembled, the cake gets refrigerated for a few hours, and the cookies or crackers become soft. It’s the perfect dessert for summer, because there is no heat involved.
I did a little research, and the filling for most icebox cakes is either whipped cream or pudding. For my cake, I combined cream cheese and whipped cream, and I added a little lemon, too. The result is a rich, lemony filling that’s reminiscent of cheesecake (my favorite).
Of course, it wouldn’t be a Red, White, and Blue Icebox Cake without some berries. I used strawberries and blueberries, but raspberries or blackberries would be delicious, too.
This cake is so easy to make, but you’d never know from it’s festive appearance. I recommend serving it on the Fourth of July, but it would make any day a fun occasion!
- 1 pint heavy cream
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 lemon
- 8 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
- 1 14.4 oz. package graham crackers
- 1 pint blueberries
- 1 lb. strawberries
- Place heavy cream and powdered sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix with whisk attachment until stiff peaks form.
- Scrape whipped cream into another bowl and place in refrigerator until ready to use.
- Remove peel from the lemon with a zester and finely mince.
- Juice half the lemon. (Reserve other half for another use.)
- Add cream cheese, zest, and lemon juice to the stand mixer bowl. Beat until smooth with paddle attachment.
- Gently fold half of the whipped cream into cream cheese mixture with a spatula.
- Fold remaining whipped cream into cream cheese. Set aside.
- Hull and slice half the strawberries. Set aside.
- Spread a thin layer of the whipped cream mixture on a platter or in the bottom of a large pan.
- Top with 6 graham crackers (lay 4 next to each other - vertical sides touching - and two along the top; see picture).
- Cover crackers with layer of the whipped cream mixture.
- Top with half of the blueberries.
- Cover blueberries with just need enough of the whipped cream mixture to hold the next row of graham crackers in place and then add another layer of crackers.
- Top crackers with a layer of the whipped cream mixture.
- Cover whipped cream with the sliced strawberries.
- Spread strawberries with just enough of the whipped cream mixture to hold the next row of graham crackers in place and then add another layer of crackers.
- Cover top and sides of cake with remaining whipped cream mixture.
- Cover cake and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
- Before serving, hull and slice the remaining strawberries. Decorate the top of the cake with strawberries and blueberries.
- Slice and serve. Enjoy!
- If you do not have a stand mixer, feel free to use a hand mixer or mix by hand. - Don't worry if the graham crackers break. You won't be able to tell once the cake is assembled. - Be judicious with the whipped cream mixture when assembling the cake so you don't run out. A little goes a long way.
Have you ever made an icebox cake?
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