While this classic recipe is traditionally served as dessert, my family has long enjoyed it for the occasional dinner when local strawberries are in season. Served with milk or yogurt, it’s great for breakfast, too!
Growing up, making strawberry shortcake with freshly picked, local berries was tradition.
My sister and I loved to toss the sliced berries with a few spoonfuls of sugar and watch as the natural juices accumulated into a rosy syrup. The texture of the modestly sweet shortcake was light and somewhere between a scone and actual cake.
In those days, after spooning a generous amount of sweet, macerated berries and accompanying juices over the warm cake, we poured milk into the bottom of our bowls and ate it as one would enjoy cereal or stovetop oatmeal.
The thing that might seem really strange to some is that my family enjoyed this meal for dinner－not as dessert but as the main course! In the fall, we served apple dumplings in similar fashion.
When I got married, however, I realized that not every family shared this dessert-for-dinner tradition. When I made strawberry shortcake for the first time as a newlywed, my husband actually thought I was kidding and looked in the oven where he was sure he’d find the real dinner hiding!
The following shortcake is my mom’s classic recipe. It’s easy, completely delicious, and allows for a store-bought shortcut in the form of Bisquick.
For those who need it, the company sells a spot-on gluten-free option. And happily, if you don’t have either on hand, I have a spot-on Homemade Bisquick Mix, which you can quickly whip up at home using all-purpose or gluten-free flour.
Not too sweet, this shortcake allows the strawberries to shine. Desired level of sweetness can be adjusted to taste via an extra sprinkle of sugar on top.
Though I still enjoy the warm shortcake served with milk, I also enjoy it with a hearty spoonful of vanilla yogurt. Of course, traditionalists may absolutely opt for whipped cream…whether served for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or dessert!
While strawberries are in season, you may also enjoy Gluten-Free Almond Coconut Shortcakes, which is naturally grain- and dairy-free, naturally sweetened, and another family favorite. Feel free to try either recipe with fresh peaches (with a few raspberries mixed in for good measure) or other fruits and berries you enjoy.
- 2⅓ cups biscuit mix (like Bisquick or this homemade version)
- ½ cup milk, plus a few extra tablespoons as needed
- 2-3 tablespoons sugar
- 3 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 pint strawberries (stems removed, sliced, and tossed with 2 tablespoons additional sugar)
- Warm milk, whipped cream, or yogurt for serving
Preheat the oven to 425℉.
In a mixing bowl, stir together the biscuit mix, ½ cup milk, sugar, and melted butter. Stir in additional milk, a tablespoon at a time if needed, until the batter comes together. Mix until just combined.
Drop by 6 large spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet or spread the batter into a 9×9 pan. (No need to grease.)
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden. Individual shortcakes will take a minute or two less. (If you only have an 8×8 pan, the increased thickness will likely require closer to 15 minutes. Either way, check a few minutes early and be careful not to overcook.)
Serve warm with strawberries and milk, yogurt, or whipped cream.
You may enjoy making the shortcake with a homemade version of Bisquick.