When you want a dessert that really screams, “Summer!” this layer cake version of a Strawberry Shortcake from Melissa’s Southern Style Kitchen delivers!

Voila! You can see my kitchen is in a state here, but the real showstopper is the cake! So worth the time and mess to make it all from scratch. Recipe  here .

Voila! You can see my kitchen is in a state here, but the real showstopper is the cake! So worth the time and mess to make it all from scratch. Recipe here.

Recently, I hosted my husband’s family for a dinner party. We don’t get together very often, and we wanted to make it a special occasion and mark my niece’s graduation from graduate school and the start of summer with a celebratory meal.

I scoured the internet for an appropriate dessert, and thankfully came across this recipe from Melissa’s Southern Style Kitchen.

Although it’s not the norm for me to follow a recipe to the very letter, in this case I did, so I’m sending you over to her page to view it in full. I will definitely say that it is well worth the hassle of making the buttermilk layer cake from scratch. Using buttermilk gives the cake a density and a richness reminiscent of pound cake, yet a nice, airy, sponge-like texture.

The homemade whipped cream cheese is also worth the mess (rather than just subbing in whipped topping). It is perfectly rich and slightly sour from the cream cheese, which I love. Like cream cheese frosting that has been whisked away by some puffy, summer clouds.

Got a little fancy with my extra strawberries! This isn’t as pretty as  Melissa’s version , but hopefully it was just as tasty!

Got a little fancy with my extra strawberries! This isn’t as pretty as Melissa’s version, but hopefully it was just as tasty!

Of course, finding the freshest, juiciest strawberries you can will elevate the recipe. It’s the perfect time of year for this dish! I opted to serve it in a trifle dish because a) the dish is a family piece from my husband’s side, so I always try to pull it out when we entertain them, and b) it kept the presentation neat without me having to engineer a perfectly constructed layer cake. Which was nice, because this is one of three courses I was preparing from scratch so I didn’t have a ton of time to fuss with putting the cake together. This would be an especially good option if you’re traveling with the cake, because it would prevent slippage or mess.

Do yourself a favor and carve out an afternoon to prepare this fabulous dessert Melissa has given the world. You and your guests will be glad you did!

Made this one yourself? Have a favorite Strawberry Shortcake recipe or tip you’d like to share? Drop a comment below and let me know!

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