Strawberry Icebox Cake {No Bake}


Easy, old fashioned no bake icebox cake recipe (refrigerator cake), homemade with simple ingredients with layers of graham crackers, vanilla or cheesecake pudding/ Cool Whip filling and fresh strawberries.

Yum! You just can’t go wrong with making a dessert with fresh berries and creamy filling. This is a perfect, cool summer treat that is simple to make, but hard to resist! For more yummy no bake cakes, check out my Cookies and Cream Cake (Oreo Cake) or these Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes (No Bake).

Slice of Traditional No Bake Refrigerator Cake With Strawberries on White Plate

How to make old fashioned icebox cake recipe?

  1. Make filling– By mixing together pudding mix, milk, Cool Whip.
  2. Assemble- Line pan with graham crackers, followed by filling, strawberries. Continue repeating until you have 3 layers.
  3. Cover- And chill.
Classic Refrigerated No Bake Graham Cracker Cake With Pudding and Cool Whip and Strawberries- Closeup Shot

Can you freeze no bake icebox cakes?

Yes! With a few extra steps you can make this into a frozen dessert. Simply wrap the pan in plastic saran wrap first, followed by aluminum foil, and then store it in the freezer overnight. When you are ready to enjoy this delectable delight, take it out of the freezer to thaw for 30-40 minutes at room temperature. Then simply slice and enjoy!

How long does an icebox cake need to be refrigerated? Frozen? 

  • Refrigeration time- For this cake is about 6-8 hours overnight to make sure the filling is set.
  • Freezer time- This usually takes approximately 3-4 hours, but I recommend freezing it over night.

Why is it called icebox cake?

Although the term “icebox” isn’t used in our everyday conversations now, an icebox was basically an early version of the appliance we now call a refrigerator. Back then, in the 1930’s, this cake was used to promote the new refrigerator and entice housewives to purchase it for ease of preparation and cooking methods.

Easy Old Fashioned Strawberry Icebox Cake on White Background

Variations for refrigerator cake

Switch up the fruit– For different flavors, try raspberries, peaches, bananas, mango, pineapple, or blueberries.

Change the filling– Try a different flavor of pudding, like chocolate, or something entirely different like ice cream or flavored yogurt or flavored whipped creams.

Sprinkle and drizzle– There are so many different options to top off your cake besides berries. Try adding sprinkles or various chopped nuts, marshmallows, chocolate chips or shavings or even Caramel Sauce.

Try other cookies– Such as Oreos, Nutter Butters, Biscoff cookies instead of graham crackers.

Freeze- This makes a firmer, cooler cake. Just make sure to wrap the pan in saran wrap and tin foil to prevent ice formation.

Smore’s version– Use graham crackers for the crust, marshmallow cream for the filling, and chocolate chips for the topping. Or you can switch it up and do melted marshmallows for the topping with your favorite chocolate filling.

Loaded chocolate version– Pile on the chocolate! Use chocolate pudding for the filling, Oreo crackers for the crust, and chocolate chips, candy bars and/or chocolate ganache for the topping.

Chocolate peanut butter version-Replace strawberries with Reese’s peanut butter cups and peanut butter chips. Mix in some cocoa powder in the filling mixture.

Slice of Easy No Bake Cake With One Spoonful Removed

Tips and techniques

Use fresh fruit– If you are thinking of using that bag of frozen strawberries – Don’t! This is because frozen fruit will get soft and make your cake watery, which then makes it fall apart and have a strange soggy texture.

Pat fruit dry- This is very important otherwise there will be extra liquid in your cake, making it very soggy.

Use full fat ingredients– Because this makes the cake have the best texture and helps it stay together. Besides, it will just taste so much creamier and better!

Homemade pudding vs. Pudding mix– The truth is, either can be used for this recipe. However, I use store-bought boxes for convenience.

Plan ahead– This dessert cannot be served immediately, because it must chill in the fridge or freezer in order for the crackers to soak in that cream and really unify the flavors. I highly recommend making this 1 day in advance.

Serve more– If you are looking to serve more people, then go a head and double it. Just make sure to use a bigger pan or use two 9×13 pans.

Use cold milk- Because it helps in setting the filling better than warm milk.

Collage Image With Step By Step Pictures on How to Make Icebox Cake


Refrigerator– Store leftovers in a sealed container for up to 3 days.

Freezer– Wrap the pan first with saran wrap and then, wrap in tin foil. Then, freeze for up to 1 month. When you are ready to enjoy it,  let it thaw for 30-40 minutes at room temperature and then, slice and dig in!

More Strawberry Desserts

Slice of Old Fashioned No Bake Icebox Cake With Strawberries on White Plate
Print Recipe Pin Recipe
5 from 3 ratings
Rate this Recipe »

Easy Icebox Cake

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Chill time: 6 hours
Total Time: 6 hours 10 minutes
Easy, old fashioned no bake icebox cake recipe (refrigerator cake), homemade with simple ingredients with layers of graham crackers, vanilla or cheesecake pudding/ Cool Whip filling and fresh strawberries.
Yield: 15 Slices


  • 3 boxes Instant cheesecake pudding, Dry powder, 3.4 oz each, Can also be replaced with vanilla pudding, Full fat
  • 4 cups Whole milk, Cold
  • 2 cups Cool whip, Full fat
  • 1 box Graham crackers, 14.4 oz. box
  • 3-4 cups Strawberries, Fresh, Washed, Diced, Patted dry


  • In a large mixing bowl, add pudding mix, cold milk and whisk until combined. It should become smooth and slightly thick.
  • Gently fold in the Cool Whip until combined. Keep aside.
  • In a rectangle pan(Dimensions: 9×13), line graham crackers on the bottom to cover the whole pan.
  • Spoon a third of the pudding/cool whip mixture on top of the crackers and spread gently and evenly with a spatula.
  • Toss some strawberries on top.
  • Arrange another layer of graham crackers on top of the strawberries, spread more pudding/cool whip mixture on top, followed by more strawberries.
  • Arrange a final layer of graham crackers, spread remaining pudding/cool whip mixture on top, followed by remaining strawberries.
  • Cover and chill in fridge 6-8 hours or overnight to let the filling set.
  • If you like, you can turn this into a frozen dessert. Wrap the pan in plastic saran wrap first, followed and aluminum foil and then, store it in the freezer overnight. Let it thaw for 30-40 minutes at room temperature and then, slice and enjoy.


  • Read all my tips above.
  • Leftovers can be stored in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 3 days. 


Calories: 250kcal, Carbohydrates: 46g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 5g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 8mg, Sodium: 481mg, Potassium: 174mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 27g, Vitamin A: 125IU, Vitamin C: 11mg, Calcium: 109mg, Iron: 1mg
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Calories: 250
Author: Abeer Rizvi

6 comments on “Strawberry Icebox Cake {No Bake}”

  1. Hi made this for Memorial Day, only I didn’t have cheesecake pudding so used chocolate, was a huge hit! I’m making it again for 4th of July but I’m using nilla wafers instead of graham crackers! So looking forward to it!5 stars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating