What To Do When Your Angel Food Cake Doesn’t Rise High Enough | Strawberry Snowball Cake

Fruity Snowball Cake-6

Strawberry Snowball Cake

Making an angel food cake from scratch is an exercise in anxiety management for me.  Will it rise to the top of the pan?  Will the volume hold after I pull it out of the oven?

Luckily, I have the perfect solution if it doesn’t.

This Snowball Cake (not to be confused with the pink fluffy concoctions you see next to the Twinkies at the grocery store) is a light and summery dessert full of fresh fruit, angel food cake torn into bite-sized pieces, and whipped cream. I’ve been making it for years, for several very good reasons.

fruity snowball cake-9.jpg

Before adding coconut


  • This dessert can be, and actually must be made ahead so it can be chilled before serving.
  • In addition to pineapple, you can try adding different fresh fruits.  My favorite is strawberries, but I can imagine that blueberries, peaches, or cherries would be tasty and colorful.
  • Use a store-bought angel food cake, a mix, or make your own cake from scratch.
  • Although delicious with real whipped cream, whipped topping sold in the freezer section holds up better overnight.
  • Coconut on the outside is not required but then it won’t look like a snowball unless coconut is used.
  • This recipe is easy to cut in half–and I recommend it. Just use a smaller mixing bowl when assembling. In fact, the cake you see in the pictures is a half-batch that will easily feed 8 people.
Fruity Snowball Cake

Make layers with the fruity gelatin and torn angel food cake in a wax paper or plastic wrap-lined mixing bowl.

Strawberry Snowball Cake
Recipe type: Dessert
Serves: 12-14
Prep time:
Total time:
A light and summery dessert--the perfect ending for a sumptuous meal
  • 2 packages unflavored gelatin (2 tablespoons total)
  • 4 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup pineapple juice drained from 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple (add water to make 1 cup if necessary)
  • Crushed pineapple from 20-ounce can
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, chopped
  • 2 8-ounce containers whipped topping
  • 1 angel food cake, baked
  • Whole strawberries for garnish
  1. Sprinkle gelatin over cold water and allow to dissolve.
  2. Add boiling water, pineapple juice, sugar, lemon juice, and strawberries and stir to combine.
  3. Refrigerate until slightly jelled and gently fold in whipped topping.
  4. Tear angel food cake into bite-sized pieces.
  5. Line a 4-quart mixing bowl with plastic wrap or criss-cross 2 long and narrow pieces of wax paper over the bottom of the bowl.
  6. Then start with a handful of angel food cake pieces as your first layer. Now add a layer of the gelatin/fruit mixture, then another layer of angel food cake. Alternate layers until all is used. It's a good idea to push the cake pieces against the side as you build your cake so it will hold together and have a firm base for the whipped topping later on.
  7. Refrigerate overnight.
  8. The next day, turn cake out onto a cake plate with the help of the plastic wrap or wax paper. Remove the wrap and frost with the second container of whipped topping. Decorate with flaked coconut for a "snowball" effect.

 Related posts:


Chocolate and Vanilla Angel Food Cake with “Dipped Cone” Icing

Espresso Angel Food Cake

Divide and Conquer– A Skinny Secret for the Holidays

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{ 12 comments… read them below or add one }

Nancy in NW PA July 4, 2012 at 5:48 pm

I made this for a July 4th family picnic today and it’s wonderful. What a great EASY way to make dessert for a crowd. I can see how you could add other fruits and flavors too. And, drizzle a piece with chocolate or fudge sauce – just to make it even better! Thanks.


Connie June 6, 2012 at 1:30 pm

This sound wonderful. Can not wait to make it for Sunday. Do you mix the 20 ounce can of pineapple with the gelatin fruit mixture? Thanks for a scruptions blog and the ideal to cut the recipe in half.


Paula June 6, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Yes, Connie. The pineapple goes into the gelatin with the other fruit.

Thanks for stopping by.


The Café Sucré Farine June 6, 2012 at 9:19 am

Wow, Paula – looks so…. pretty! And very yummy!


Janet June 5, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Paula, that looks just perfect for summer……….must try making half a recipe!
Thanks for sharing!


Natasha June 4, 2012 at 2:23 pm

You’d almost wish for an unsuccesful angel cake if you’ve got this as a back up plan!


Diannia June 4, 2012 at 11:45 am

I’m wondering if a person doesn’t like coconut (I do but there are “those people” out there that don’t if shaved white choc could give it the snowball look???


Paula June 4, 2012 at 10:33 pm

Hi Diannia,
Haven’t tried it but seems like a good idea. Sure would be sweet though. 🙂


Paula June 4, 2012 at 11:34 am

I’ve never made an angel food cake yet. Love this solution if it does not rise enough. Looks scrumptious.


Gary June 4, 2012 at 5:26 am

Haven’t made this in ages–thanks for reminding me! Yes, it is the perfect summer dessert. LIght. Fruity. Delicious.


Faith Fry June 3, 2012 at 10:29 pm

ohhh la la! looks so delicious! Watching these makes me hungry.. I’m gonna try this soon.


Connie June 3, 2012 at 11:04 am

What a wonderful way to salvage a less-than-perfect cake. I’m putting this aside for a future cake mishap. Typically, I’d cut it up in cubes and make a trifle.


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