Easy Strawberry Shortcake Trifle Recipe

Who remembers the Good Humor strawberry shortcake ice cream bars from your childhood? You know, these ones…

Very seldom did we get to buy ice cream off the ice cream truck, but when we did, this was always my “go-to” ice cream.  Something about those strawberry/vanilla crunch balls was just sooooo yummy in my tummy. A few summers ago I introduced this ice cream bar to my kiddos….as expected, they loved it just as much as I did at their age.

The other day I had this giant flat of strawberries from Costco. As I was slicing them up, this ice cream popped in my head and I remembered a recipe from years ago that used a strawberry/vanilla crumble top. I decided it was time to play around with what I had to see what I could come up with. Let’s just say my finished product was a HUGE hit and one I’m sure you will love as well!

Here’s what you’ll need:


  • 1 box vanilla cake mix* (*ingredients listed are for the Betty Crocker cake mix.  If buying a different cake mix, use the ingredients listed on box)
  • three eggs
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups water

Strawberry/Vanilla Crumble:

  • (1) 3 oz package strawberry gelatin mix
  • (1) 3 oz package vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup all purpose flour, divided

Cool Whip/ Cream Cheese Layer:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tub (8 oz) Cool Whip, completely thawed


  • 2 cups sliced strawberries (or more or less, depending on your preference)

Preheat your oven and bake your cake mix according to the directions on the back of the box and let cool.

While cake is baking prepare your strawberry/vanilla crumble. In one bowl mix strawberry gelatin, 1/4 cup butter and 1/2 cup of flour with a fork until crumbly. In another bowl, mix vanilla instant pudding, 1/4 cup butter and 1/2 cup flour with fork until crumbly. Spread mixture onto a parchment lined cookie sheet.

Bake at 350° for 8 to 10 min. After 5 minutes, stir crumble to prevent burning. Let cool. Doesn’t that look so amazing??? Trust me, you will try a bite before it even cools!

After cake has been cooling for about 20 minutes, cut into cubes. This will help speed up the cooling process.

To make cream cheese/cool whip layer, mix all ingredients in a stand mixer until light and fluffy. You have to make sure the cool whip is nice and thawed, otherwise the consistency will be a little “firmer.”  If that happens, just let it sit out for a bit and then mix with a spatula.  My 4 year old was eager to grab my beater and taste test this layer!

Right now every flat of strawberries I have bought lately have been so sweet and juicy. I love this time of year. Make sure you wash and slice them nice and thin.

Now for the fun part…layering your trifle! Begin with a layer of cake, followed by cream cheese/cool whip topping, fresh strawberries, and then crumble topping. Repeat as often as your trifle will hold (mine held 3 layers).

My trifle dish was a little smaller than I would have liked so I had some left-over cake, crumble, and cream cheese/cool whip layer. I couldn’t let it go to waste so I actually just mixed it all together and put it in mason jars and the kids at that up as well! (PS – If you need a trifle dish, this Anchor Hocking trifle bowl {Amazon link} gets fantastic reviews!)

I had forgotten how much I loved this topping!  I have many more recipes swimming around in my head that this can be used on (cupcakes, coffee cake, ice cream..) can’t wait to try them!


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