Berry Trifle Recipe

Berry Trifle in a trifle bowl

The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Prep: 25 mins
Cook: 0 mins
Chill: 4 hrs
Total: 4 hrs 25 mins
Servings: 8 to 10 servings
Yield: 1 trifle
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
460 Calories
36g Fat
33g Carbs
5g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8 to 10
Amount per serving
Calories 460
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 36g 46%
Saturated Fat 21g 104%
Cholesterol 107mg 36%
Sodium 310mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 33g 12%
Dietary Fiber 5g 18%
Total Sugars 20g
Protein 5g
Vitamin C 37mg 186%
Calcium 104mg 8%
Iron 1mg 5%
Potassium 258mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

No-bake berry trifle is an easy, yet impressive-looking, layered berry-filled dessert. Buy a premade angel food cake or pound cake, whip the cream, and toss the berries with sugar. Layer them in a beautiful clear bowl, and you’ve got a gorgeous dish. It’s casual enough for picnics but beautiful enough to finish off a fancy dinner. 

Cubes of cake are pressed up against the glass of the clear trifle dish, then topped with berries. This shows off the beautiful layers and colors. Then mascarpone cream is layered in between for a silky and creamy texture. 

You can also make this dessert in individual clear glasses for a cute, personalized dessert. These are a great alternative when you don’t want guests scooping out of a large bowl.

Berry Trifle Recipe/Tester Image

"It’s amazing how well the lemon zest permeates every bite with brightness. Since this recipe uses mascarpone whipped with cream instead of homemade custard, it’s very quick and easy to make and doesn’t get as soggy." —Danielle Centoni

A Note From Our Recipe Tester


For the Mascarpone Cream:

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream

  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar

  • 1 (16-ounce) container mascarpone cheese

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

For the Macerated Berries:

  • 12 ounces fresh raspberries, more for garnish

  • 12 ounces fresh blackberries, more for garnish

  • 12 ounces fresh strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced, more whole berries for garnish

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • 1 homemade or store-bought angel food cake, cut in to 1-inch pieces

Steps to Make It

Prepare the Mascarpone Cream

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Mascarpone Cream ingredients

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  2. Add the heavy cream to a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until soft peaks form, being careful not to overbeat.

    Whipped heavy cream in a glass bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  3. Whisk in the confectioners' sugar, mascarpone, vanilla extract, and lemon zest until light and fluffy. Alternatively, use a hand mixer or whisk by hand.

    Mascarpone Cream in a glass bowl with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Prepare the Berries

  1. Gather the berry ingredients and cake cubes.

    Berry Trifle ingredients

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  2. Add the raspberries, blackberries, and strawberries to a medium bowl. Toss with the sugar and lemon juice until well coated. Set aside for five minutes.

    Berries, sugar and lemon juice in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  3. Place a thin layer of cream on the bottom of a trifle bowl. 

    Trifle bowl with a layer of cream

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  4. Add a layer of cake cubes, pressing the ones rimming the glass against its surface.

    Layers of cake cubes and cream in a trifle bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  5. Top with 1/3 of the berry mixture, gently pressing some of the larger pieces of berries against the sides of the bowl.

    Layers of berries, cake cubes and cream in a trifle bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  6. Top with 1/3 of the cream and smooth evenly on the surface.

    Layers of cream, berries and cake cubes in a trifle bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

  7. Repeat this process again, with another layer of cake, berries, and cream. until you have used all of your cake, berries, and cream, ending with a layer of berries. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Top with additional fresh berries before serving. 

    Berry Trifle in a trifle bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Cara Cormack

Recipe Variations

  • Add whatever berries you like or have on hand. Peaches and other stone fruits also work very well.  
  • You can add in some liquor to the mascarpone mixture if you want a little kick. Grand Marnier works great. Just add a 1/4 cup.

How to Store and Freeze

  • You can make this trifle up to three days in advance and store it, covered in plastic wrap in the refrigerator. 
  • If you make it ahead of time, the flavors of the berries and cream will soak into the angel food cake for extra flavor. This can change the texture of the dish by making the cake layers softer. It’s up to personal preference whether you want the cake to be firmer or softer. It should be refrigerated for at least four hours. 
  • You can freeze the trifle if you wish, but it will change the texture of the cake and will make it softer once it has thawed.

How do you serve trifle?

Use a large, long-handled spoon to scoop out the trifle. You want to scoop straight down into the bowl so each serving gets a section of cake, cream, and berries. 

You can also serve the trifles in individual clear glasses.

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