Strawberry Bread

published May 4, 2022
Strawberry Bread Recipe

This tender, sweet loaf is the perfect way to make use of your in-season berries.

Serves8 to 10

Makes1 (9x5-inch) loaf

Prep30 minutes

Cook50 minutes to 1 hour

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a loaf of strawberry bread with pink, strawberry frosting and sliced strawberries on top, with three slices cut into it.
Credit: Kayla Hoang

When I was little, my family went strawberry picking every May at the farm just minutes from our house. I remember walking through the fields, in that almost-summer heat, searching for the plant with the most vibrant red berries. Sweet, juicy, and red all the way to the center, it was hard to not pick more than you could chew. If you, like me, have always found yourself with an abundance of berries during strawberry season, this tender strawberry bread is the answer. 

Pretty in pink with a strawberry-speckled crumb and irresistible golden-brown crust, this strawberry bread makes great use out of fresh strawberries and comes together easily. Brown sugar provides warmth without overpowering the berry flavor. Rubbing lemon zest into the sugars releases the oils from the zest, furthering the lemon flavor that enhances strawberries so beautifully. A bright pink glaze made from fresh berries takes it over the top. 

Baking with fresh strawberries can sometimes be tricky, but a few thoughtful techniques — such as draining the strawberries of excess moisture as you would a ripe tomato and cutting the strawberries small so that they almost become one with the bread — eliminates any unpleasant mushy strawberry texture and ensures the best loaf possible. 

Credit: Kayla Hoang

What Is Strawberry Bread?

Strawberry bread is a quick bread, meaning it is leavened with a chemical leavener — in this case both baking soda and baking powder — which produces a tender, cake-like loaf. In this recipe, the bread is finished with a vibrant pink strawberry glaze. The batter also works perfectly as a muffin

How to Serve Strawberry Bread

  • Glazed and served with fresh strawberries on the side for dessert.
  • Unglazed and sliced, served alongside a hot cup of coffee for a not-too-sweet breakfast.
  • Dusted with powdered sugar and eaten like a snacking cake, in little bites here and there throughout the afternoon.

Main Ingredients for Strawberry Bread

  • Fresh strawberries — be sure to use the best ones you can get your hands on!
  • Eggs for structure and buttermilk for an extra kick of fat and tang that contrasts well with the sweet berries
  • Unsalted butter
  • Flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt
  • Light brown and granulated sugar, which provide flavor to, tenderize, and moisten the bread 
  • Lemon zest and vanilla extract, which enhance the flavor of and pair well with the strawberries

Strawberry Bread Recipe

This tender, sweet loaf is the perfect way to make use of your in-season berries.

Prep time 30 minutes

Cook time 50 minutes to 1 hour

Makes 1 (9x5-inch) loaf

Serves 8 to 10

Nutritional Info


For the bread:

  • 2

    large eggs

  • 3/4 cup


  • Cooking spray

  • 8 ounces

    fresh strawberries

  • 8 tablespoons

    (1 stick) unsalted butter

  • 2/3 cup

    granulated sugar, plus more as needed

  • 3 tablespoons

    packed light brown sugar

  • 1

    medium lemon

  • 2 cups

    plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/4 teaspoons

    baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt, plus a pinch for the strawberries

  • 1/2 teaspoon

    baking powder

  • 2 teaspoons

    vanilla extract

For the glaze and serving (optional):

  • 1

    medium lemon (use the zested lemon from the bread)

  • 7 to 8

    medium to large fresh strawberries, divided

  • Pinch

    kosher salt

  • 1 1/2 cups

    powdered sugar


Make the strawberry bread:

  1. Place 2 large eggs and 3/4 cup buttermilk on the counter and let sit until room temperature, about 1 hour.

  2. Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Meanwhile, coat a 9x5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Trim and cut 8 ounces fresh strawberries into 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 1/2 cups). Transfer to a small bowl, add a pinch of kosher salt and a pinch of granulated sugar, and toss to combine. Transfer a plate lined with paper towels or a clean kitchen towel and let sit for 15 minutes. Place 1 stick unsalted butter in a large microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30-second intervals until completely melted, about 1 minute. (Alternatively, melt on the stovetop and pour into a large bowl.) Let cool until the strawberries are ready.

  3. Place 2/3 cup granulated sugar and 3 tablespoons packed light brown sugar in a small bowl and stir to combine. Finely grate 1 medium lemon until you have 2 teaspoons zest. Add the zest to the sugar mixture and use your fingertips to rub the zest in until fragrant and well combined. Reserve the zested lemon for the glaze.

  4. Place 2 cups of the all-purpose flour, 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder in a medium bowl and whisk until combined.

  5. Add the eggs, buttermilk, and 2 teaspoons vanilla extract to the butter and whisk until well combined. Add the lemon sugar mixture and whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture and fold with a flexible spatula until just combined. Some dry spots are okay. The batter may look similar to pancake batter — thin with lumps— but will thicken in the short time it takes to toss the strawberries with flour.

  6. Blot away any excess moisture from the strawberries with more towels. Sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour and toss to coat. Add to the butter and fold until evenly distributed and no dry bits of flour remain.

  7. Pour into the loaf pan and smooth the top with the spatula or a small offset spatula. If not glazing, sprinkle the top with a pinch of granulated sugar to form a thin, crackly crust. Bake until golden brown and toothpick or cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.

  8. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool slightly, 5 to 10 minutes. Flip the bread out onto the wire rack to cool completely, about 1 1/2 hours.

Make the glaze: (optional)

  1. Juice the reserved, zested lemon into a medium bowl until you have 4 1/2 teaspoons. Trim and coarsely chop 1 of the strawberries. Add the strawberries and a pinch of kosher salt to the bowl. Use the back of a fork to mash the strawberries to create a sort of purée/strawberry juice (about 2 tablespoons).

  2. Add 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar and whisk until smooth, thick, and the consistency of molasses. If the glaze to be too thin, whisk in a little bit more powdered sugar. If the glaze is too thick, whisk in a few drops of lemon juice.

  3. Pour the glaze evenly over bread, allowing some to drip down the sides. Let set before slicing, about 45 minutes. If topping with fresh strawberries, trim the remaining strawberries and halve or quarter lengthwise, then pat dry with a towel while the glaze is setting. Just before serving, arrange the strawberries down the center of the loaf.

Recipe Notes

To make muffins: Coat a standard 12-well muffin tin with cooking spray or line with paper liners. Divide the batter evenly between the 12 wells, sprinkle with granulated sugar if desired, and bake at 350°F until the tops are rounded and golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 18 minutes.

Storage: If you don’t plan on finishing the whole loaf, skip the fresh strawberry garnish and serve fresh strawberries on the side. Once the glaze is completely hardened and set, the bread can be stored covered with plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 4 days.