Strawberry season may be drawing to a close for the year, but you still have time to grab the last of these delicious morsels! To help you know what to do with your end of season strawberries I have compiled a round up of some of our favorite strawberry recipes!
But first….wanna hear a funny “strawberry season in the midst of a pandemic” story?
Strawberry Season Story
The most delicious berries in the state of Arkansas, in my opinion, are found at Holland Bottoms Farm in Cabot. I follow them on Facebook and towards the end of March I start watching, although stalking might be a more accurate description, their facebook page. Of course in April of 2020 we were also in the early stages of the pandemic.
Here is what I wrote on my instagram on April 3, 2020:
"It’s strawberry season in Arkansas, y’all! Every year as soon as they announce that the strawberries are ready to be sold I make the drive out of Little Rock to Holland Bottom Farms. They grow the reddest, sweetest, juiciest strawberries I’ve ever tasted. This year I have been stalking their Facebook page where they announce when they start selling. Their plan is for the farm stand to be drive-thru only so that customers can maintain distance. I missed day 1 of the berries and noticed that the farm mentioned on their page that they sold out in 35 minutes. Wow. I’ve arrived on day 1 before and never remember them ever selling out that quickly! The announcement comes that they will open on day 2 at noon. I decided to arrive early to make sure that I get some of those delectable berries. Knowing that I would be 45 minutes early I was naive enough to think that I might even be the first one there. Hah! I blissfully drove down the little 2-lane highway where the farm stand is located and came to a complete stop in traffic at least a mile away. What the heck? This couldn’t be because of strawberries, right? There had to be some construction up ahead or...something... Wrong. This was the line for strawberries! The police had to come out and direct traffic and the whole thing was a mess! Then I realized that the television news stations were there. Oh please, I thought, don’t interview me! I haven’t been out of sweatpants or worn makeup in two weeks and I sure didn’t change that to go to a drive-thru strawberry stand Too late. Big camera, long boom mic, properly socially distanced reporter yelling questions from afar into my car window. Questions like, “what are you here for?” “Ummm, strawberries?”
People are bored, y’all. Really, really bored. Buying strawberries has now become an event!
The Best Strawberry Recipes
I’m starting with shortcake because it is the very first thing that we want in this household once the strawberries ripen. But, let’s get real. I don’t use a recipe.
Here’s the way we do strawberry shortcake:
- wash and hull the strawberries
- slice ’em up into a bowl and sprinkle some sugar on them
- toss them with the sugar and let them sit on the counter until they get all juicy
- while the strawberries are marinating in the sugar, whip up some whipping cream
- spoon those juicy berries over some store bought angel food cake
- top with a dollop of whipped cream
- dig in
That’s how we do it, but it you want a real recipe check out this one from Taste of Home.
Spinach salad with strawberries
This is usually the second thing I make when the strawberries arrive. We LOVE this salad. It is also delicious with some grilled chicken sliced on top.
Usually you see poppy seed dressing in the recipes for this salad but I just mix up a simple olive oil and white wine vinegar dressing. Why? Because I don’t like to get poppy seeds stuck in my teeth! Many recipes also call for pecans, but we prefer almonds on this particular salad.
Here is the recipe that is the closest to the way we make it that I can find.
Or if you are ok with not having a real recipe here is what we do:
- Put about 3/4 cup of sugar in a skillet and start letting it heat up on low to medium heat until it starts to melt. Put a cup or more of slivered almonds in the same skillet and stir it all up until the almonds are getting brown and are all coated with melted sugar. Take off the heat, dump the almonds out onto a plate and let them cool while you make the rest of the salad. Those almonds will be SUPER hot so don’t be tempted to nibble on them…yet.
- Put some good fresh washed spinach in a bowl. I chop mine up a bit first because we don’t like huge pieces
- Wash and hull and dry some amazing strawberries and slice them onto the salad – however many you like – we like a lot. The proportions are up to you!
- Add some feta cheese. We like a lot. You follow your conscience.
- Once the almonds are cool break them up and add to the salad. Now you can nibble!
- Make the dressing by mixing some olive oil and white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar together. Most dressing recipes call for about two parts oil to one part vinegar but we like our dressing a little more vinegar-y than that, then add a little sugar to the dressing. Not too much. You aren’t going for sweet, more like tart-sweet.
- Dress the salad and serve and watch everyone gobble it up!
Strawberry Arugula Salad
Absolutely, positively my favorite blog for vegetarian recipes is Cookie and Kate. This is my go-to place when I need more vegetables in my life. Every single recipe I’ve tried from this blog has been amazing, I highly recommend it for vegetarian recipes.
If you are looking for a salad that contains strawberries but also has a little bit of kick you MUST try her Strawberry Arugula Salad. It is fantastic!
You get a sweet and spicy thing going with the strawberries and jalapenos. Then add in that peppery, slightly bitter flavor of arugula along with the creamy goat cheese. Plus there is a crunch from the radish and sunflower seeds.
Oh. My. Word. This is everything that there is to love about a salad. I wouldn’t change a thing about it.
Strawberry Freezer Jam
This might burst your bubble but I have to tell you that most of us Southern women aren’t spending hours over a boiling pot of water canning the fruits from our gardens. However, when strawberries are in season we will make freezer jam!
This year I couldn’t find pectin so I made this recipe that doesn’t use any. The jam tastes amazing. We love it because you get a bit of the tartness from the lemon juice in the recipe. But I’m not going to lie, it took more time and effort than I was expecting. Also, I was making a double patch so I had to boil the mixture way longer than I anticipated. If you do use this recipe I suggest that you keep a close eye on the boiling mixture because it might foam up and boil over. (Mine did and it was a big mess on my cooktop. Learn from my mistakes!) It is, however, delightful. This is the jam pictured in the photo below.
Usually we use this recipe from Pioneer Woman which you don’t have to cook at all. It is about as simple as it can be and also excellent.
You can actually use almost any type of freezer proof container for the freezer jam. I was able to find the Ball canning jars at our nearby grocery store. I also think these little 4 ounce jars are adorable to give as gifts or favors.
For all of Emily’s childhood birthdays she requested strawberry cake. We lived in Hobe Sound, Florida during those years and there was an amazing bakery in town that was known for their strawberry cake. Oh my gosh, i hadn’t thought of that cake in years! It had a whipped frosting and they would top the cake with artfully arranged glazed berries. It was beautiful AND delicious! Dang, I wonder if that bakery is still in business?
Anyway, because I had this gem of a bakery nearby I rarely made a homemade strawberry cake. Once we moved back home to Arkansas from Florida I started trying to make my own strawberry cake and the results have always been ho-hum.
This year I was determined to find a good recipe for strawberry cake!
I was lucky to land on this one from the website Sally’s Baking Addiction. It takes a bit of work because she recommends that you use a strawberry reduction. This will allow you to pack a bunch more flavor in a smaller punch. And guess what? It works!!! This made a delicious cake…but it wasn’t easy!
It also calls for freeze dried strawberries in the icing which might be hard to find – although I was able to get some at Trader Joe’s and you can find freeze dried strawberries here them here as well.
You also might want to check out this interesting cake from Once Upon A Chef. I would say that it’s a cross between a cake and a cobbler and uses fresh strawberries on top of the batter rather than in it.
Strawberry pretzel icebox pie
Do you remember Strawberry pretzel icebox pie from when you were younger? No? Maybe you aren’t as old as me. This was a favorite summertime treat when I was a kid. It has that sweet and salty thing that southerners seem to love so much! Coca Cola and peanuts anyone?
My husband and I made this together and decided to use this recipe from Southern Living Magazine.
This recipe makes a lot of crust and I would suggest not pressing it in too thickly into your pie plate. Other than that – this pie was delicious and just like I remembered.
It would be fun to make for the 4th of July. You could decorate the top with some blueberries and strawberries to get a red, white, and blue color scheme going.
If you don’t like the sweet and salty combination first of all, bless your heart, and secondly I think this filling would also be excellent in a graham cracker crust.
Strawberry Ricotta Cake
One of my very favorite foodie / travel instagram accounts to follow belongs to Elizabeth Minchilli. She is a blogger and cookbook author from the US who has lived for many years in Italy and splits her time between Umbria and Rome. She also leads week long food tours in various parts of Italy and they look amazing!
She posted a recipe for Strawberry Ricotta Cake on her blog and Instagram and people have gone crazy for it! They send her photos of their cakes after they make them and Elizabeth posts them on her stories. It has been great fun to see people from everywhere making this cake! A spring form pan will make this recipe easier.
I find her Instagram and her Instagram stories to be both restful and inspiring. Check it out for peaceful photos of flowers, and cocktails, and gorgeous Italian landscapes seen through windows. You will also find delicious Italian recipes on her Instagram as well as her blog.
I love flavored butters both sweet and savory. I mean, garlic butter, y’all…or if you are craving something sweet how about honey butter slathered on a piece of whole wheat toast for a late night snack? Oh my!
Here is an easy recipe for Strawberry Butter. I can imagine this on a fresh from the oven biscuit, or even on banana bread!
For one bottle of Champagne or Prosecco just puree about a cup of fresh strawberries in a blender, then add in about two cups of orange juice and pulse that up just for a second until it is well mixed and smooth. Make sure your strawberry orange juice mixture and your Champagne are both well chilled before you serve them.
To serve pour Champagne into a flute about half way and then top with the strawberry/orange juice mixture.
Easy peasy! These are such a beautiful color and the strawberries add a bit of sweetness to the typical Mimosa! Wouldn’t these be pretty at a wedding shower or a ladies brunch?
You could also make these Mimosas non-alcoholic by using sparkling water or sprite or ginger ale in place of the alcohol.
Homemade Strawberry Ice Cream
This is probably my favorite application for strawberries!
We usually make this recipe from Ree Drummond every fourth of July. Her recipe does use eggs, but they are fully cooked into a custard so you don’t have to be worried! I’m not brave enough to eat ice cream recipes made with raw eggs! We really prefer the texture of custard style ice cream, but I admit that the custard style is harder to make.
If you prefer not to use eggs at all or prefer not to have to cook up a custard there are also lots of recipes for homemade strawberry ice cream without eggs or cooking! This one from the blog Like Mother Like Daughter would be a good one to try.
I often order raspberry vinaigrette when I’m getting a salad at a restaurant, but I’ve never made any at home. Recently I stumbled across a Southern Living recipe for strawberry vinaigrette! It is so easy to make, with a sweet and tart tang that is delicious on all kinds of salad greens! I especially like it paired with some goat cheese and a few pecans on a salad.
I hope you have enjoyed this list of some of the best strawberry recipes!
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