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Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

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This Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle features layers of sweetened berries doused with Amaretto, angel food cake cubes and luscious cheesecake filling, lightened with whipped cream. 

I was hosting brunch at my house, and that called for a lovely fruit-filled dessert recipe. Adding a homemade cheesecake twist to a strawberry trifle recipe was brilliant
 Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle in a glass trifle bowl topped with 3 whole strawberries

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

A fruit and cream dessert is perfect for a mid-day treat, especially when company is invited. I love sweets featuring berries, like this stunning Strawberry Shortcake Roulade, but sometimes it’s nice not to turn on the oven! Sliced berries were sweetened and then dosed with a bit of Amaretto. The cheesecake layer was composed of cream cheese and sour cream, then a billowy cloud of whipped cream was folded in. Not a classic English trifle by any means, but utterly delicious!

A store-bought angel food cake made quick work of the preparation. Since this is a no-bake trifle recipe, it’s perfect for hot summer days when you don’t want to turn on the oven as well as holidays when the oven is often filled with turkey and casseroles!

Not exactly health food, but this strawberry cheesecake trifle is definitely lighter fare than so many other dessert options! You know it’s a hit when the men at the table start inquiring about the ingredients. They do combine beautifully for a delicious party in your mouth with every bite.

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle in a glass trifle bowl on a red and white napkin garnished with whole berries

No-Bake Trifle: Perfect for Berry Season

The berries the last few months have been lackluster, but I was thrilled to find some marvelous ripe gems at the market. This no-bake trifle would not be nearly as tasty with frozen or pale tasteless berries. Save this recipe for strawberry season or around the holidays when you can often find some lovely berries.

Tips for Making a Trifle:

Since a trifle is made in a special, straight-sided glass bowl, care is needed to make a beautiful presentation. Smears up and down the sides of the container defeat the purpose of using a transparent serving piece.

Layering ingredients:

  • Carefully layer the bottom layer, placing the berries in the center and then move them towards the perimeter to avoid spattering the sides.
  • Since the cake pieces don’t leave marks, just layer them carefully, trying to aim for an even top.
  • The cheesecake, custard or pudding layer, depending on your recipe, must be layered with care. With fat as an ingredient, it’s hard to clean marks off without using Windex, which you don’t want to do use around anything edible! Again, I carefully add the custard to the center and use an offset spatula or spoon to carefully spread it towards the edges to make an even layer.

What are Trifles?

  • Trifles are very forgiving and adaptable.  Known as English trifles, the original version was made of spongecake fingers, fruit, and custard. I used angel food cake in this recipe but I also love trifles made with pound cake or ladyfingers.
  • The first mention of a trifle in a cookbook was in the late 1500s. Gelatin made from bones of calves feet was utilized to make the jelly or jam back in that era.

How to Tweek a Trifle Recipe:

  • The cake pieces are often soaked with liquor like sweet sherry, port, Madeira or whiskey, but I love sprinkling in a liqueur like Chambord, Amaretto or Grand Marnier for a less boozy taste. In this recipe, the Amaretto was added to the berries to keep the cake nice and white.
  • Jam is often an ingredient in a classic English trifle, but I did not use any in this Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle. It is spread on the cake pieces for another delicious element.
  • I’ve made a Fudgy Brownie Trifle that has absolutely no fruit, so a “trifle” can now refer to any layered dessert served in a trifle bowl. You can easily invent your own! And this Traditional English Trifle is a winner, too!

The servings vary on the size of your trifle bowl, but this does feed a crowd. If you don’t have a trifle bowl, any clear container will do. The glorious layers in this Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle will wow your guests!

More Strawberry Desserts You’ll Love:

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle Pinterest photo and text collage

Kitchen Tools Used in This Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle Recipe:

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

A twist on an English trifle featuring angel food cake, fresh strawberries, and a cheesecake filling. Recipe adapted from Country Woman.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Yield 18 servings

Ingredients

Cheesecake layer:

  • 16 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (to add to cream)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (to add to cream)

Cake layer:

  • 1 angel food cake, cut into cubes (I only used half a large bakery angel food cake)

Strawberry layer:

  • 2 pounds of fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Amaretto, optional

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, cream together cream cheese and powdered sugar; add sour cream, vanilla and almond extracts. Set aside. In a small deep metal chilled bowl, whip the cream, vanilla and sugar. Fold whipped cream into cream cheese mixture. Set aside.
  2. Combine strawberries, sugar and Amaretto. Layer in large glass trifle pedestal bowl, starting with strawberries, then a layer of cake, followed by a layer of the cheesecake filling. Repeat, ending with the filling.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and chill well before serving.

Notes

Servings will vary depending on the size of your trifle bowl.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

18

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 244Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 99mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 20gProtein: 3g

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