A Top-Notch Trifle

by Apr 16, 2024Food & Recipes, Southern Sandi

A simple berry trifle is the perfect light summer dessert.

“WOW!” we all said in unison when my Aunt Cyndi set her colorful fruit trifle on the counter.

My family and friends met at our house on Easter Saturday in preparation for my son’s baptism that evening at the Holy Service. We were gathering to eat dinner before we headed to the church. I had fried chicken, my mom made slaw, my mother-in-law made cucumber salad and a friend brought chips. Sitting alongside all that was my aunt’s most beautifully layered fruit trifle.

We ate most of the trifle before we left the house so I just put the leftovers in the refrigerator. When we returned home from church, we all went straight to the refrigerator to finish it off. Even my son had another big helping.

If you want to prepare a light and delicious dessert that will impress your guests, then this is the one. The combination of sweet, tart, crisp and velvet is a pleasant surprise with every bite. The light whipped mixture adds a creamy yet delicate texture with lemony notes of freshness. The sweet, refreshing berries are not only vibrant, but also pair perfectly with the fluffy filling. The angel food cake creates an airy addition to this trifle. It is one of my favorite cakes because it is not overpowering and absorbs just about any flavor it is paired with.

Although I think this recipe is perfect as is, there is plenty of room for versatility. The typical trifle consists of a thin layer of sponge cake or lady fingers soaked in fruit juice or sherry, a custard or whipped cream and fruit layered in a glass bowl. You can use lady fingers instead of angel food cake if you prefer. This trifle is also great with banana pudding mix instead of lemonade and the incorporation of bananas instead of berries. Peaches and peach preserves would also create a delicious twist.

A trifle bowl is essential so you can see all the pretty layers. If you do not already own a trifle bowl, this recipe is sure to be your inspiration to find one!

Photography by James Stefiuk

Fruit Trifle

A simple berry trifle is the perfect light summer dessert.
Course: Dessert
Keyword: angle food cake, Berry, trifle
Author: Sandi Grigg


  • 1 Trifle Bowl Or any clear glass bowl


  • 1 angle food cake cut into bitesize pieces
  • 1 pint fresh blueberries
  • 1 pint fresh strawberries topped and halved
  • 1 pint fresh blackberries
  • 6 ounces frozen lemonade
  • 8 ounces Cool Whip
  • 12 ounces sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • additional berries for garnish


  • In a bowl mix the lemonade, Cool Whip, sweetened condensed milk and lemon zest.
  • Layer the cake, fruit and whipped mixture into the trifle bowl. Repeat two or three times for beautiful, colorful layers.
  • Top with additional berries for a pleasing presentation.
  • Let the trifle sit in the refrigerator soaking in the juicesfor 24 to 48 hours before serving.

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