Strawberry Cobbler~A delicious cobbler made with fresh strawberries crowned with a cakey topping that has a lovely hint of lemon flavor. Easy and quick to put together.
Is there anything better than spring and summer fruit?
There’s not a variety of this seasonal fresh fruit that I don’t absolutely love!
Strawberries are the first of these treasures to hit the streets.
As soon as those cute little baskets overflowing with those beautiful red berries show up at the local farm stands, I start buying, buying, buying! Believe it or not, even in busy, urban Southern California, we still have a few farm stands left.
I love to eat them fresh out of the carton, generally unwashed, and really only seconds after I’ve paid for them. I don’t get home, heck I don’t even make it to the car before I have half of the carton devoured. Really, there are few things as glorious, in my book, as juicy, fresh, handpicked, farm stand strawberries.
As to the surviving berries, if there are any, they’re headed to my kitchen to make strawberry desserts!
This yummy fresh Strawberry Cobbler is pure comfort food. It’s quick and easy to put together and the warm, cooked strawberries with the fabulous topping is absolutely divine.
Filling~ You might see other recipes for Strawberry Cobbler that call for the strawberries to be cooked in a saucepan before the cobbler is baked in the oven. I remember seeing a recipe for Strawberry Cobbler by Paula Deen in one of her magazines, some time back that did this. I love, love, love Paula but I have to say, I don’t get the point of precooking the strawberries. I wondered if it was used to get a thicker consistency for the filling. I will tell you, one of the things I love about the recipe below, is that the strawberries come out soft and tender and the filling is nice and thick. Just like what you’d expect in a great cobbler. And no precooking the filling!
Fresh~ Rinse the fresh strawberries, then set them out on paper towels or clean dish towels to remove any excess water. Any extra water will dilute the filling and make it runny.
Slice them or quarter them depending on the size of the berries and your preference. I personally like them cut simply in half or quarter, rather than thinly sliced, so the cooked fruit is still a little chunky even after it’s cooked.
Frozen~ Of course you can make this recipe with frozen strawberries. I must say though, I like it best made with fresh strawberries. The most important thing about using frozen berries is to make sure that they don’t have any extra water/moisture clinging to them.
It’s one of those things that often occurs in frozen fruits. If you’re in doubt, you can add more instant tapioca.
Thickener~ Let’s face it, there are a lot of variables when it comes to thickening a cobbler or fruit pie. Because of this, you need to know your results may vary a bit.
It’s tricky to achieve a thick, non-runny strawberry cobbler or pie filling.
One of the easiest things you can do, to help keep your filling nice and thick, is to not add any unnecessary liquid to the cobbler. Especially any liquid like water that doesn’t even add any extra flavor to the cobbler. I know I touched on the point above, and also suggested in my instructions below, that you dry your strawberries after you rinse them. This extra step really helps. To do this, I simply spread out layers of paper towels or clean dish towels and let the strawberries sit for 10 minutes or so. I gentle turn them over a couple of times during the drying time, so that any excess water is absorbed and removed.
The funny thing about using thickening agents in fruit cobbler or pies is that most experienced bakers have very strong opinions about them and which ones should be used. Very often, they believe that there are “rights and wrongs,” if you will, or cardinal rules regarding their use. If you have a strong preference, by all means, please use what works for you!
Like I said above, I find that the type thickening agent for a strawberry cobbler is really important. In my experience, when I use enough flour or cornstarch to thicken the cobbler to my liking, both leave a distinct, gluey, very unpleasant flavor and a gummy texture. Interestingly, I haven’t ever had that experience with other fruits and often use both of them with great results.
To thicken my Strawberry Cobbler, I add 3 tablespoons to a 1/4 of a cup of instant tapioca and have been really pleased with the results. If you’re using early spring strawberries, they probably won’t be extra juicy, so I’d use 3 Tablespoons to the cobbler filling to thicken it. If you’re using late summer strawberries, which naturally contain a lot more juice, I’d use 1/4 quarter cup of the instant tapioca to the filling.
Just to be clear, I want to make sure we’re all on the same page regarding one very important point! After you cut the strawberries you allow them to macerate in the sugar. During this process, the strawberries will release a lot of their juice. This is a good thing. All of that juice is an integral component of the flavor and texture of the cobbler. Obviously, the juice isn’t like the extra water from washing the strawberries. By all means add all of it!
Sugar~Okay so ultimately the amount of sugar you’ll use in this recipe will vary on the sweetness of the strawberries. Very often late season strawberries are naturally higher in sugar than those that have been picked in the earlier part of the season.
If your strawberries are super sweet, or you just like your fruit cobbler, less sweet, feel free to cut back on the sugar. For my taste, 1/3 cup is the amount I generally use.
Topping~I can’t tell you how much I adore this topping! It’s basically the same topping I use on my Southern Peach Cobbler. The only difference in the two toppings is that when I use it for Strawberry Cobbler, I add 1-2 teaspoons of fresh lemon zest to the dough. I love the way the lemon flavor compliments the strawberry flavor! The topping is, in my humble opinion, perfectly soft, tender and cake-y.
The dough is dropped by the large spoonful onto the fruit mixture, then a little extra sugar is sprinkled over the dough. The result is that when it bakes up, the crust has delicious little sugary crusted edges. SERIOUSLY, Supa YUM!
Variations~ So are you a single berry cobbler kinda person or a mixed berry cobbler person? I must admit, I’m a single berry kinda girl, but I totally understand how you might enjoy combining the flavors of different berries. Here are just a few combinations that I think work really well together. Everything stays the same in the recipe except the quantity of strawberries. The second berry replaces the amount of strawberries removed. I would keep the lemon zest in the topping because I really think it nicely compliments all the berry flavors.
Strawberry Blueberry Cobbler: use 2 1/2 cups of chopped strawberries and 2 cups blueberries
Strawberry Blackberry Cobbler: use 2 1/2 cups of chopped blackberries and 2 cups blueberries
Strawberry Raspberry Cobbler: use 2 1/2 cups of chopped raspberries and 2 cups blueberries
Strawberry Cobbler Bisquick: I know a lot of people like to top their cobblers with a Bisquick topping. In my opinion, the only reason it could be considered easier to make than the one made from scratch listed below, is that you don’t have to cut cold butter into the dough. Typically a Bisquick topping uses just a little melted butter. Feel free to use the Bisquick topping if you’d like. Here’s how I’d do it:
- Follow the recipe instruction below through step 3.
- In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup of Original Bisquick, 1/4 cup milk, 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar, and 1 Tablespoon melted butter.
- Resume and continue the instructions below at step 5.
Accoutrements~ This amazing Strawberry Cobbler is beyond delish all on its own. Warm or room temperature it’s totally strawberri-a-lious!
But if you’re so inclined, I promise I won’t judge if you want a little extra~extra! Who doesn’t need a little extra every once in a while 🙂
It’s really scrumptious with a dollop of fresh whipped cream or a big ole scoop of vanilla or french vanilla ice cream.
How Many Servings~ It‘s really hard for me to tell you how many people this will serve! I think for most people, it’s safe to estimate that it will feed 4-6 people. Honestly, in my house, with my family, it wouldn’t be enough for 6 people. 4 Is the maximum I can plan on serving, but if I’m totally being honest, sometimes this will only feed one of my boys!
- Yield: Serves 4-6
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 35-40 minutes
- Fresh Strawberries - 4 Cups, Quartered
- Sugar - 1/3 Cup
- Fresh Lemon Juice - 1/2 Teaspoon
- Instant Tapioca - 1/4 Cup
- All-Purpose Flour - 1 Cup
- Sugar - 1/4 Cup
- Brown Sugar, Firmly Packed - 1/4 Cup
- Baking Powder - 1 Teaspoon
- Salt - 1/2 Teaspoon
- Cold Unsalted Butter, Cut Into Small Pieces - 6 Tablespoons
- Boiling Water - 1/4 Cup
- Sugar Topping:
- Sugar - 1 1/2 Tablespoons
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 X 8 inch baking pan with nonstick baking spray.
- Rinse the strawberries, let whole berries dry, then slice in half or quarters.
- In a large mixing bowl, gently fold together cut strawberries, sugar, brown sugar, lemon juice and tapioca. Pour fruit mixture into prepared baking dish.
- Meanwhile, in a medium bowl,mix together all the topping ingredients, except the butter and boiling water. Add the butter and cut in with a pastry blender or 2 knives until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Pour the boiling water into the boil and stir just until the mixture comes together.
- Drop the topping dough by the large spoonful evenly over the fruit mixture. Evenly sprinkle the top of the dough with 1 1/2 Tablespoons of sugar.
- Place the baking pan on a cookie sheet and bake in the preheated oven for about 35 minutes, or until the topping is cooked through and golden and strawberries are tender.