Strawberry Jell-O Poke Hole Cake {Allergy Friendly}

One of the biggest challenges I have had eating gluten-free has been passing on cakes and breads. Now I know there are gluten free options out there, but there are few and far between that taste as good as the real thing. Why eat the extra calories if it isn’t going to be worth it? I’ve tried some recipes that require special trips to special markets…not going to happen all the time with this stay at home mom of 3.

Tonight I decided to make a dessert for the family. Hodgson Mills makes a pretty good gluten-free cake mix but I knew it could use a little help with texture and flavor. I changed some ingredients and added a few too-would you know it turned out delicious!!!?? Wohoo!  My husband took a bite and asked “Is this glutenous minimus?!” lol…why, yes it is Dear….tricked ya, did I? It was so nice to have a moist piece of cake again!!! YEA!

You may use your cake mix of choice {my friends who do not have allergies- you may use a regular yellow cake mix}

I followed the package instructions but I used coconut milk instead of butter milk and coconut extract instead of almond.

Spread batter into a prepared pan {this is an 11×7, you can use an 8×8- a 9×13 would work with a regular boxed cake- gluten free boxed cake mixes have less in them} Bake at 350 for apps 25 mins or per package instructions.

While the cake is baking, make your jell-o. Combine the packet with boiling water, then add your cold water. {If you are using bulk gelatin- this is 1/3 cup jello with 1 cup boiling and 1 cup cold}

1 container of vanilla frosting combined with 2 Tbsp of strawberry gelatin and 1/2 cup chopped strawberries. Blend together. 


When cake is done baking, poke all over with a fork and pour jell-o over top. You may not need to use all of your jell-o. Place in refrigerator for 2 hours. 

Beautiful, isn’t it? Tasty too! What a treat for this “glutenous minimus” girl…lol.

Strawberry Jell-o Poke Hole Cake {Allergy Friendly}
Serves: 8
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Gluten and Dairy Free
  • 1 box gluten free yellow cake mix
  • ½ cup softened butter (or butter flavored crisco)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp coconut extract
  • 2 (3 oz packages) strawberry jell-o (1 packet for pouring and 2 Tbsp for adding flavor to frosting)
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 cup strawberries (1/2 diced ½ sliced for garnish)
  • 1 container vanilla frosting
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Make caked by creaming softened butter or shortening with cake mix.
  3. Add eggs, coconut milk, vanilla, and coconut extract.
  4. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 350 for 25 mins or until golden brown.
  5. Make jell-o by combining jell-o packet with 1 cup boiling water. Whisk, then add 1 cup cold water.
  6. Make strawberry frosting by combining 2 Tbsp dry strawberry jell-o and ½ cup diced strawberries to vanilla frosting-blend together.
  7. When cake is done baking and still hot- poke holes in it with a fork.
  8. Pour prepared jell-o over top. You may not need to use all of the jell-o.
  9. Place in refrigerator for 2 hours (make sure to put a pot holder underneath so your dish doesn't crack-the heat can build up.
  10. Frost with strawberry frosting and garnish with sliced strawberries.
You make make this with a regular cake if you do not have food allergies! You may also use strawberry frosting instead of adding strawberry gelatin flavoring.




  1. Yummy! Hodgson Mill is just down the road from where I live (the original mill). It’s a beautiful place!!

  2. This looks irresistible. I had to pin it! Gorgeous. 🙂

  3. Oh thank you, thank you, thank you! It is so hard to find easy and yummy GF baked goods.

  4. Oh Janelle, I have so been down the gf, dairy free, sugar free, ‘and doesn’t taste good’ free path! I lived in the alternative world of medicine for 8 yrs. and lived with chronic ill health for 10. It was by far the most difficult trial I have lived through and I’ve lived through a foreclosure, my self-employed hubby losing his business and then having to live with friends; so trials and me, we’re good friends!

    I hated cooking (and still do-just being real!) so what a wonderful blessing to see you sharing these alternatives on your site! You are helping many women and their families to live a better health-related life so ultimately they can bring God glory.

    So my encouragement to you dear friend…is that God has a wonderful plan in all of your physical limitations. It shapes us to be more God-reliant rather than self-reliant!

    Much love to you!

  5. I see in your comments that you used coconut milk instead of buttermilk and coconut extract instead of almond. So does the original recipe call for buttermilk and almond?

    This looks so yummy and I have just about everything i need to make this.

    Thanks! BTW love your web site.

  6. desiree says:

    Hi I have a question if I will be using my own cake mix do I still have to add coconut milk and the extract.

  7. I have just this week found your blog and LOVE it! I was looking for a cute Valentine’s day (pink basically) recipe to make my family and I found this just in time! I’m going to try the non-gf version and I’m hoping they turn out just as moist and yummy in cupcake format! Thanks for the great recipes! I,m very excited to try so many of your ideas.

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