How to Make Strawberry Sauce Topping

5 from 1 vote

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This easy strawberry sauce topping is made with 5 ingredients in 15 minutes. Sweet and versatile, it pairs well with everything from cheesecake to ice cream, waffles, and more.

A glass jar of homemade strawberry sauce topping.


Why you’ll love this recipe:

I love to enjoy sweet strawberries by the handful, but one of my favorite ways to put them to use is in homemade strawberry sauce topping. 

  • Made with just 5 ingredients. 
  • Ready in 15 minutes. 
  • Can be made smooth and silky or chunky. 

Make a big batch to drizzle, dip, and smother cakes, crepes, waffles, cheesecake, ice cream, and all your favorite desserts! 

Close up image of chunky strawberry sauce.

Key Ingredient Notes:

  • Strawberries – Fresh or frozen strawberries work great! Frozen strawberries don’t need to be thawed to make this strawberry sauce, but you’ll want to reduce the amount of water used. Otherwise, your sauce will be too runny! 
  • Sugar – Granulated sugar helps sweeten the sauce and thickens it as it cooks. If you prefer a natural sweetener, raw honey is a great alternative. 
  • Cornstarch – This is slowly added to the sauce to help it thicken. 
  • Lemon juice – Fresh lemon juice enhances the fruity flavor. Combined with cornstarch, the acidity helps thicken the sauce as well. For the best results, use freshly squeezed lemon juice.  
Bowls of frozen strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, cornstarch, and water to make strawberry sauce.

How to make strawberry sauce:

  1. Combine the strawberries, sugar, and water in a medium saucepan. And bring the mixture to a rolling boil, stirring frequently. 
  2. In the meantime, whisk the cornstarch and lemon juice together in a small bowl until no clumps remain. 
  3. Slowly pour the cornstarch slurry into the saucepan, mixing continuously as you do. 
  4. Reduce the heat to medium. Then, let the strawberry sauce cook until it thickens, stirring occasionally. Feel free to smash the berries to your desired consistency.

Let the sauce to cool completely. Or, use it right away! 

Four images showing the process of making strawberry sauce in a pot.

Tips for Success:

  • Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan. I use a 2.5qt stainless steel saucepan to help distribute the heat evenly. 
  • Don’t mash the strawberries before cooking the sauce. It will still taste good, but it’s likely to become slightly gray in color and not at all like the beautiful, vibrant strawberry sauce pictured above. 
  • Be sure to form the cornstarch slurry, and pour it in slowly. If you add the ingredients to the pan without stirring them together, they won’t mix well. Additionally, if they’re poured in too quickly, gelatinous balls form in the sauce. 
  • The longer you cook the sauce, the thicker it will be! 
  • There’s no need to thaw frozen strawberries as the extra liquid will evaporate as they cook. 
  • Keep in mind that the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools
  • Adjust the consistency to suit your preferences. For a chunky sauce, leave it as is. Or, use a fork or potato masher to smash some of the berries for a semi-chunky texture. Alternatively, if you prefer a smooth, jelly-like strawberry sauce, transfer the mixture to a blender or use an immersion blender to smooth out the berries.            
Overhead image of a spoon sticking out of a glass jar full of chunky strawberry sauce.

Ways to use homemade strawberry sauce:

I can’t think of many foods that this strawberry sauce recipe wouldn’t taste amazing with, but here are a few ideas to get you started: 

  • Donuts – Use strawberry sauce to stuff homemade donuts. Drizzle it on top, or pour it into a bowl for dipping. 
  • Cakes – I love to use this sauce to add color and flavor to cakes! Drizzle it over slices of cake like Angel food cake and cheesecake. Or, use it as a refreshing filling for layer cakes
  • Yogurt – Make a gourmet-looking yogurt bowl when you stir in sweet strawberry sauce. Don’t forget to top it off with crunchy granola and fresh fruit, too! 
  • Oatmeal – Swirl this sauce into a warm bowl of oatmeal for a fruity kick. 
  • Ice cream – You can never go wrong with a vanilla ice cream sundae topped with sweet sauce and a dollop of whipped cream! 
  • Waffles and pancakes – Drizzle it over warm waffles and pancakes for a restaurant-inspired breakfast. 
  • Crepes – Stuff it inside or spoon it over your favorite crepes
  • Drinks – If you’re feeling fancy, strawberry sauce works great for homemade lattes and milkshakes.
A bowl of smooth strawberry sauce with a spoon sticking out.

Storing Tips:

  • This easy strawberry sauce will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. 
  • For longer-lasting storage, freeze any leftovers in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months! Let the frost thaw in the refrigerator before using. 


Why isn’t my strawberry sauce thickening? 

If your sauce isn’t thickening, it’s likely because there is too much water. Slowly stir in extra cornstarch slurry to thicken it up. 

Does soaking strawberries in vinegar make them sweeter? 

No, like many people, I like to clean my strawberries with vinegar. It’s a great way to eliminate dirt and chemicals, but it doesn’t affect how the berries taste. 

How can I make strawberry puree without a blender? 

If you don’t have a blender but prefer a smooth sauce, you can mash the berries with a fork or potato masher. It’s just a little more difficult to remove all the clumps!

Overhead image of a spoon sticking out of a glass jar full of chunky strawberry sauce.
5 from 1 vote

Strawberry Sauce Recipe

Make this easy strawberry sauce recipe with 5 ingredients in 15 minutes for a sweet sauce to add to all your favorite breakfasts and desserts!
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 12 servings
Yields: 1.5 cups (450g) of sauce


  • 1 lb (450 g) strawberries fresh or frozen Note 1
  • ¼ cup (50 g) (50g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (120 ml) water if using frozen strawberries, use ¼ cup water
  • 1 tablespoon (8 g) cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon (15 g) lemon juice


  • 1 medium saucepan


  • In a medium saucepan, combine strawberries, sugar, and water.
  • Bring it to a rolling boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix cornstarch and lemon juice until smooth.
  • Slowly pour the cornstarch mixture into the strawberries while mixing continuously. Reduce heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Smash the berries with a fork or potato masher for a smooth consistency.

Tips & Notes

Notes 1: Both fresh and frozen strawberries work wonderfully. No need to thaw frozen berries. If desired, you can half the berries. I usually leave them whole.
– If you add cornstarch slurry too quickly or without stirring, it can firm up into gelatinous balls in the sauce.
Customize your sauce consistency:
– For a chunky topping consistency: don’t smash the berries.
For a semi-chunky consistency: smash the berries with a fork or potato masher.
For a smooth consistency: use an immersion blender to blend the sauce. 
Storing Tips: 
This easy strawberry sauce will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. 
– Freeze leftover sauce in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months! Let the frost thaw in the refrigerator before using. 


Servings: 2 tablespoons
Calories: 31kcal
Carbohydrates: 8g
Protein: 0.3g
Fat: 0.1g
Sugar: 6g
Sodium: 1mg
Course: Condiments, Dessert
Cuisine: American

Hi, I’m Shinee!

Welcome! I’m so happy you’re here! I believe anyone can cook restaurant-quality food at home! And my goal is to help you to become a confident cook with my easy-to-follow recipes with lots of tips and step-by-step photos.

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