How To Make Strawberry Puree For Cake


Have you ever wondered how to make strawberry puree for cake? Making homemade puree is not as hard as you might think, and it always tastes better. It only requires a few simple ingredients and about half an hour of your time. There are many health benefits to baking with this homemade puree as opposed to using the store bought variety.

Strawberry Puree Recipe

This is my recipe for reduced strawberry puree! It takes the sweet flavor of ripe strawberries and intensifies them so that you can use it for baking, using as a sauce and so much more

Easy strawberry reduction 

Strawberry reduction is super easy to make. In a nutshell, you puree strawberries, add a little lemon, salt and maybe some sugar and reduce by half over low heat. I typically use it for my strawberry cake recipe, strawberry buttercream, or as a cake filling so I like mine to be a bit thicker. 

strawberry puree on cheesecake with fresh berries

How to make a strawberry reduction

To make your strawberry puree thicker, you’re going to want to simmer it for a few minutes. Simmering the mixture reduces the amount of moisture that is in the puree allowing for a stronger strawberry flavor with less liquid. The best thing about making a reduced strawberry puree is that it keeps all the flavor of the strawberries without adding extra moisture.

strawberry reduction

Fresh or frozen strawberries for strawberry puree?

I prefer to use frozen strawberries because frozen fruit is generally picked at the peak of freshness and then frozen. You get the most flavor in frozen strawberries.

frozen strawberries in a box

If strawberries are in season though and you need to use them up, making puree is a great option. You can freeze leftover puree and defrost as you need it. If you’re super talented and know how to can, you can make canned puree. This is definitely on my to-learn list.

When buying fresh strawberries, choose brightly colored, shiny berries that are dry, firm, and plump. They should still have fresh-looking green caps attached. Avoid soft, dull-looking, or shriveled berries. Since strawberries do not ripen after being picked, avoid berries that are partly white as that means they are unripe.

Anyone can make a strawberry puree. It’s super easy and you know I like easy. It just takes two very important things. Strawberries and some patience.

How to make a strawberry reduction in 5 easy steps

  1. Defrost strawberries or chop up your fresh strawberries
  2. Place them in a small saucepan and give them a quick blend if you like a smoother reduction
  3. Add in sugar, lemon zest, extract and salt and bring to a simmer on medium-high heat
  4. Reduce the heat to low and allow to reduce (15-20 minutes) Stir occasionally to prevent burning. The reduction should look like tomato sauce, not watery. 
  5. Let cool before using
how to make a strawberry reduction

How to store the leftover strawberry reduction

You can store leftover strawberry reduction in the fridge for two days or you can freeze it up to 6 months. Fresh strawberries are very prone to mold so be sure to only leave cakes with fresh fruit fillings at room temperature for no more than 2 hours. Cakes with fresh fruit filling can be refrigerated for two days before consuming. Did You Make This Recipe?Leave a rating and tell me how it went!

Strawberry Puree Recipe

This is my recipe for reduced strawberry puree! It takes the sweet flavor of ripe strawberries and intensifies them so that you can use it for baking, using as a sauce and so much more.


  • ▢36 oz (1021 g) fresh or frozen strawberries
  • ▢4 oz (170 g) sugar
  • ▢2 tsp (2 tsp) lemon zest
  • ▢1 Tbsp (1 Tbsp) lemon juice
  • ▢1 pinch (1 pinch) salt


  • Defrost strawberries if frozen or cut up strawberries if whole
  • Blend strawberries if you prefer a smoother texture of strawberry puree
  • Place strawberries and sugar into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over med heat
  • Once bubbling, reduce heat to low and let slowly reduce until berries begin to break up and liquid is almost gone. 
  • Occasionally stir the mixture to prevent burning. Add in lemon zest, juice and salt and stir to combine. Transfer to another container and let cool before use. 
  • Store extra in the freezer for up to 6 months

How to Make Strawberry Puree

Learn how to make Strawberry Puree! Perfect to add to your cake, cupcake, or cheesecake batter. It will add lots of strawberry flavor to your desserts, without adding extra moisture, and a lovely pink color! Recipe includes step-by-step photos and lots of tips.

homemade strawberry puree in a glass bowl with a fresh strawberry in the side.

Strawberry Puree for Flavoring Cakes, Cupcakes and Buttercream 

This Strawberry Puree is super easy to make and so convenient. Made with just fresh strawberries, no sugar added!

It concentrates the strawberry flavor within a little amount of liquid, which makes it perfect to be added to batters, such as cakes, cupcakes, cheesecakes, and more. I love to use it to make Homemade Eggless Strawberry Bundt Cake and my Best No-Bake Strawberry Cheesecake.

It also adds a lovely pink color to your desserts!

Important: This recipe is NOT meant to be used as a sauce to top desserts or ice cream. If you want a strawberry topping sauce, please use my Easy Strawberry Sauce Recipe.

strawberry puree in a bowl with fresh strawberries in the side.

Ingredients You’ll Need

Please check the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact quantities and instructions (scroll down).

To make strawberry puree you will need only one ingredient: STRAWBERRIES!

Fresh Or Frozen Strawberries for Strawberry Puree?

You can use both! If strawberries are in season, I recommend using fresh strawberries, if not, frozen will work fine, but the puree will take longer to reduce. If using frozen allow defrosting before using.

fresh strawberries in a wooden basket.

Step By Step Recipe Photo Tutorial

Please check the recipe card at the bottom of the post for exact quantities and instructions (scroll down).

1 – Add the strawberries to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth.

How to make strawberry puree step 1

2 – Add the strawberry puree to a saucepan or skillet. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture begins to thicken and bubble, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and allow the strawberry mixture to simmer for 15 -20 minutes until reduced to half.

How to make strawberry puree step 3

3 – Remove from heat, pour into a bowl, and set aside to cool.

PRO TIP: Since the reduced strawberry puree needs to completely cool down, I suggest getting started the day before. Just let the reduced strawberry puree sit in the refrigerator overnight and use it the following day.

a glass bowl filled with homemade strawberry puree.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is strawberry puree made of?

Strawberry puree is made with strawberries. Some recipes call for sweetener and lemon juice.Why this recipe does not call for sugar?

This recipe is not meant to be used as a topping or sauce for dessert, so it does need the extra sweetness. Instead, this strawberry puree is intended to be added, as an ingredient, for flavoring recipes, such as cake and cupcakes batter, cheesecakes, buttercream, etc. If you are looking for a strawberry sauce/topping for desserts use my Easy Strawberry Sauce Recipe.Can I use frozen strawberries to make puree?

Yes, frozen strawberries will work fine, but the puree will take they take longer to reduce. If using frozen allow defrosting before using.

How to Make Strawberry Puree

The easiest strawberry sauce for all your favorite desserts! Simple Strawberry Puree is made with just a couple ingredients and two minutes….and it’s fantastic on ice cream, angel food cake, in your yogurt, sweeten your smoothie and more!

Blue spoon drizzling strawberry puree over an angel food cake on a white plate.

Strawberry Puree

Strawberry season is winding down but that doesn’t mean we can’t preserve the fresh summer flavor to enjoy all year long.  I LOVE to add bright, fresh strawberry flavor to a lot of my recipes and not just limit it to summer so we always make Strawberry Puree this time of year to have in the freezer for a fresh taste of summer.

We didn’t get to go strawberry picking this year because the season seemed to fly by so quickly but isn’t that how summer always works? Summer just didn’t hang around quite as long as I’d like because 

This easy Strawberry Puree recipe comes together in seconds, too! You just throw everything into your blender or food processor and whirl away for a few minutes until it’s smooth.  And voila….you have a sweet Strawberry sauce to use on anything you want.

Strawberries in a ceramic blue and white berry container.

I even used to make strawberry puree for an easy baby food recipe that my son just LOVED!  And I could make it in just a few seconds, as smooth or as chunky as I like. You can make a big batch and either stash it in the refrigerator or freeze it for later.

How to Make Strawberry Puree

This recipe for Strawberry Puree is so simple to make and takes virtually no time at all. All you need are three ingredients….strawberries, sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice.

You can make your strawberry puree using fresh or frozen strawberries (here’s how I freeze FRESH strawberries) for great results…there’s really not much difference in flavor or texture one you make the strawberry sauce.

Strawberries in the bowl of a blender.

To make strawberry puree:

  1. Place the strawberries, sugar and lemon juice in a food processor or blender.
  2. Puree the berries until smooth, approximately 1-2 minutes.
  3. Transfer the strawberry puree to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. OR FREEZE your strawberry puree for up to 3 months in an airtight container.
Overhead shot of pureed berries in the bowl of a food processor.

The strawberry puree will be on the thinner side, like a loose strawberry sauce and is perfect for filling your favorite cakes and cupcakes.  Drizzle a bit of sauce over your favorite cheesecake or stir into a refreshing drink like lemonade

Strawberry puree being poured into a bowl.

How to Reduce Strawberry Sauce

If you want a thicker Strawberry Puree you can easily reduce it on the stovetop in a large saucepan.

  1. Place the strawberry puree in a large saucepan and stir in 1 cup of water.
  2. Bring the puree to a boil over medium heat and then turn the heat to medium.
  3. Continue to simmer for approximately 15 minutes or until the sauce has thickened and reduced by 1/2.

Thickened Strawberry Puree is fantastic served over pancakes and waffles for a simple but elegant breakfast!

Angel food cake with strawberry puree overtop.

How to Remove the Seeds from Strawberry Puree

If you want an even smoother sauce you can strain out the seeds from your strawberry puree using a fine mesh sieve.  Some smaller seeds may sneak through the wholes of the sieve but most of them will be strained out.  

For an even smoother strawberry puree, line you mesh sieve with cheesecloth and strain your puree by pouring it through the cheesecloth and press it down with a rubber spatula.

Strawberry puree on a white plate.

How Long Does Fruit Puree Last

You can store this puree in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in an airtight container.

You can also FREEZE your strawberry puree in an airtight and freezer safe container for up to 3 months. To use frozen fruit puree, simply thaw in the refrigerator overnight or heat in the microwave for 30-40 seconds, stirring after 20 seconds.

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