I had a bunch of photogenic strawberries that were begging to be used in a pretty dessert. I’ve been making a lot of Armenian Perok this summer, and this Strawberry Yogurt Cake is inspired by the same recipe. It’s delicious just as much as it is beautiful. Vegan Yogurt makes the cake super tender and moist, and goes perfectly with the tangy sweetness of the strawberries.
Fruit in Baking
Adding fresh fruit to cakes and other baked goods can be a bit of gamble. They bring a ton of extra moisture to the bake, which can make your cake dense and gummy if you’re not careful. For this cake, instead of chopping up the strawberries and mixing them into the cake batter, I left them in large pieces and set them on the top of the cake.
I found that this resulted in a really delicious cake that was not dense by any means. It was nice and soft thanks to the butter and yogurt in the batter, without being gummy. And by using a homemade strawberry yogurt, I was able to add more of that strawberry flavour without weighing down the cake with heavy fruit bits. I also found that arranging the strawberry slices cut-side-up gave a better result than leaving them face down.
Also, if you don’t have strawberries, why not experiment with other fruits instead? I bet sliced plums, peaches, or blackberries would be great in this. If you made this recipe with a different fruit, make sure to leave a comment to let me know what you did and how it turned out!
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Vegan Strawberry Yogurt Cake
Use Imperial/Metric buttons below to toggle between volume vs weight measurements. I recommend weighing out your ingredients for best results.
- ½ cup vegan butter or margarine
- 1 cup brown or white sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- ¾ cup vegan yogurt see Note 1
- 2 cups all purpose flour or pastry flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp fine salt or 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- ¾ lb fresh strawberries, leaves removed and sliced in half
- 1 tbsp coarse sugar, such as demerara, turbinado, or raw sugar *optional
- Preheat oven to 350 °F.
- Using an electric mixer, cream together vegan butter and sugar until light and fluffy. (It took me about 5 minutes).
- Add vanilla extract and vegan yogurt and beat again to mix with the creamed sugar-butter mixture.
- Sift in flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Mix on the lowest speed until just combined (no more than half a minute). Over-mixing will lead to a denser, tougher, cake.
- Scoop mixture into a round 9-inch baking pan and gently smooth the top over with the back of a spoon or spatula.
- Press strawberry slices into the batter, deep enough so that they are level with the surface of the cake.
- Optional: Sprinkle a spoonful of coarse sugar evenly over the top of the cake before putting it in the oven.
- Bake at 350 °F for 45 minutes on the center rack (see Note 2).
- Transfer to a cooling rack. Serve at room temperature.
- I used 3/4 cups of homemade strawberry soyogurt (strawberries blended with same amount of yogurt by weight). Plain yogurt works just fine though. If you’re using sweetened yogurt, you’ll want to reduce the amount of sugar by up to 1/4 cup (50 g).
- I use an oven thermometer to ensure that the temperature is maintained at 350 °F. Your oven may run hotter or cooler so if you don’t have a thermometer, go by the colour of the top of the cake:
- If it looks lightly golden, it’s good to go.
- If it browns well before the 45 minute mark, then it’s too hot; turn the oven off and put a piece of aluminum foil on top of the cake to cover it and prevent further browning, then allow it to reach 40 minutes of total baking time before taking it out.