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Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

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Strawberries are some of the first fruits of spring in Georgia. I love them and when they are in season, I eat them nearly every day.  One of my favorite breakfasts is strawberries and buttermilk. Yes, I know how country-sounding that is, but if you like yogurt you will like buttermilk! It’s the same flavor profile. Plus, red Chanel lipstick or not, I am really a country girl. I am certain you are going to love my Strawberry Buttermilk Cake. Since it contains buttermilk and pureed strawberries, I was able to eliminate adding butter or oil — and it’s still super tender and moist. And, best of all — I make it in the food processor!

Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

Baking with Buttermilk

Buttermilk is a staple in my refrigerator. And, before you ask — if it’s past the date, I keep it. As long as it pours I consider it usable. 😉 Buttermilk can give baked goods a fuller body and a hint of tartness due to lactic acid. The lactic acid helps keep baked goods moist and tender by breaking down long, tough strands of gluten. It also produces a chemical reaction when combined with baking soda, producing carbon dioxide gas, contributing to the leavening or rise of many baked goods.

Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

Strawberry Health Benefits

According to WebMD, strawberries increase HDL (good) cholesterol, lower your blood pressure, and guard against cancer. Packed with vitamins, fiber, and particularly high levels of antioxidants known as polyphenols, strawberries are a sodium-free, fat-free, cholesterol-free, low-calorie food. One of my go-to recipes is this Strawberry Shrub. It is so refreshing!

Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

Cookbooks with Virginia

A few folks asked me to feature my new ebook Fresh Start on my weekly Livestream, Cookbooks with Virginia. You can check out the IGTV video below. I share my 7 tips on healthy eating and weight loss. Heads up, I get a little emotional. Weight is a very intense subject — my new expression is that it is a “minefield of mind feels.” Check it out….

Point it Out

This cake comes in at only 5 points a slice! It surprised me, too! I was going to substitute applesauce, but then I considered that the pureed strawberries would act the same way and gave it a shot. It’s incredible how it worked so well! Woo-hoo!! I hope you enjoy it – so moist, tender, and delicious. If you give it a try, please tag me if you post on social. I’d love to see it! Thanks so much for reading.

Bon Appétit, Y’all

Virginia Willis

Strawberry Buttermilk Cake

This comes in at only 5 WW green points a slice!
It does bake more purple than pink, so if you want to you can add a drop or two of red food coloring.
Servings: 16
Author: Virginia Willis


  • Nonstick baking spray
  • 15 medium strawberries hulled, plus some halved for garnish
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk + 1 Tablespoon
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup of confectioner’s sugar
  • 4 ounces Neufchatel


  • Heat the oven to 350°F. Spray an 8-inch cake pan with nonstick baking spray. Set aside.
  • Combine the strawberries and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Puree until smooth.
  • Add the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, egg, 2/3 cup buttermilk, and vanilla. Puree until smooth. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Bake until the cake comes away from the side of the pan and a toothpick inserted into the center is dry, about 25 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, combine the confectioner’s sugar, Neufchatel, and remaining tablespoon of buttermilk in a bowl. (You can do it by hand or with a hand mixer.)
  • Ice the top of the cake and decorate with additional halved strawberries.

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Heads up! I am not a doctor, RD, or health professional nor am I an official WW ambassador or representative. I am sharing here what works for me. Thanks for reading!

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Please note that this post may contain affiliate links.

Virginia Willis

Georgia-born French-trained Chef Virginia Willis’ biography includes making chocolate chip cookies with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, foraging for berries in the Alaskan wilderness, harvesting capers in the shadow of a smoldering volcano in Sicily, and hunting for truffles in France. She is talent and chef-instructor for the digital streaming platform Food Network Kitchen. Her segments feature authentic and innovative Southern cooking. She was the celebrity chef at the Mansion at Churchill Downs for the 143rd running of the Kentucky Derby. Virginia has spoken at SXSW, cooked for the James Beard Foundation, and beguiled celebrities such as Bill Clinton, Morgan Freeman, and Jane Fonda with her cooking — but it all started in her grandmother’s country kitchen. Recently, her work has been inspired by her weight loss success story, Virginia has lost 65# and kept it off for over 2 1/2 years! “If a French-trained, Southern chef can do it, you can, too.” She is the author of Fresh Start; Secrets of the Southern Table; Lighten Up, Y’all; Bon Appétit, Y’all; Basic to Brilliant, Y’all; Okra; and Grits. Lighten Up, Y’all won a James Beard Foundation Award of Excellence in the Focus on Health Category. Lighten Up, Y’all as well as her first cookbook, Bon Appétit, Y’all, were finalists in the Best American Cookbook for the International Association of Cookbook Awards and were also named by the Georgia Center of the Book as “Books Georgians Should Read.” She is the former TV kitchen director for Martha Stewart Living, Bobby Flay, and Nathalie Dupree; has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants; and traveled the world producing food stories – from making cheese in California to escargot farming in France. She has appeared on Food Network’s Chopped, CBS This Morning, Fox Family and Friends, Martha Stewart Living, and as a judge on Throwdown with Bobby Flay. She’s been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, People Magazine, Eater, and Food52 and has contributed to Eating Well, GRLSQUASH, Culture, Garden & Gun, and Bon Appétit, and more. The Chicago Tribune praised her as one of “Seven Food Writers You Need to Know.” Her legion of fans loves her down-to-earth attitude, approachable spirit, and traveling exploits. Her culinary consulting company, Virginia Willis Culinary Enterprises, Inc specializes in content creation, recipe development, culinary editorial and production services, cookbook writing, media training, spokesperson and brand representation, and public speaking. Virginia is on the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Blue Ribbon Task Force, the Atlanta Community Food Bank Advisory Board, as well as the Community Farmers Market Advisory Board. She is a food and hunger advocate for No Kid Hungry and a premier member of the No Kid Hungry Atlanta Society. She a member of The James Beard Foundation, Chef’s Collaborative, Georgia Organics, and Southern Foodways Alliance.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Annie M

    Virginia, I just watched you on my computer. You’ve inspired me to go back to WW. Just turned 80 ( Can’t believe it !!!) and want to get rid of 12-15 lbs. Lost 32 years ago on WW, and it does creep back up. I definitely want to get your new book. You’re gorgeous, and always have been. I’m so glad you’re feeling better about yourself. From another “broad-shouldered girl.”

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