strawberry shortcake

Lemon Coconut Strawberry Shortcake

This strawberry shortcake base packs a citrus punch!

We love the fresh flavors of summer desserts. Strawberry, lemon, and coconut all make it into this recipe! The traditional shortcake base gets a little makeover with the addition of tropical and citrus flavors.

Heather Thomas shares why she loves this version of the classic strawberry shortcake. She shares why having all the ingredients at room temperature makes a big difference in the final texture. A pop of citrus and sweet coconut flavor puts this treat over the top!

Find more recipes from Heather on Instagram, @thatbreadlady, or at


The Ultimate Strawberry Shortcake


For the bread:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 & 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • the zest of 2 lemons
  • 6 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 34 Tablespoons milk
  • the zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut shavings


  • 1-pint heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 lb sliced strawberries
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon finely sliced fresh basil or fresh mint


Start by making the Lemon Coconut Bread:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar for two minutes until fluffy, using the paddle attachment. Stop halfway through to scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula and return to mixing. Be sure there are no clumps of unmixed butter.
  3. Add the lemon zest and combine.
  4. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition.
  5. Add the sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla. Mix until combined. (Mixture may separate a bit, but it will come together when flour is added)
  6. Slowly add the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Stop the mixer, scrape the sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula and mix for another 10 seconds. Try to avoid over-mixing.
  7. Grease loaf pans generously with nonstick spray. Spoon batter into pans, filling no more than two-thirds full.
  8. Bake for 45-60 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out mostly clean with only a few crumbs. Mini loaf sizes will need less bake time (closer to 45 minutes). Full size loaves will need more bake time (closer to 60 minutes). All ovens bake differently so be sure to keep an eye on it.
  9. Let bread cool in the pans for 30 minutes before removing and cooling completely on a wire rack.
  10. Prepare the glaze by combining the powdered sugar, milk and lemon zest. Add more powdered sugar or milk to get a thick consistency.
  11. Drizzle over loaves after they have completely cooled. Sprinkle coconut shavings on top before glaze hardens. The glaze should set up and harden in about 30 minutes.

Prepare the Toppings:

  1. With an electric mixer, beat the whipping cream, vanilla extract and powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the sliced strawberries and granulated sugar. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. The sugar will macerate the strawberries, softening them and forming a sweet syrup!

Building your Strawberry Shortcake:

  1. Slice a thick piece of Lemon Coconut Bread and place in bowl.
  2. Top with prepared Whipped Cream.
  3. Top with macerated Strawberries. *If desired, add sliced fresh basil or fresh mint to the strawberries, just before serving – this gives the strawberries a fresh-from-the-garden flavor!
  4. Enjoy the Ultimate Strawberry Shortcake!