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Easy Cranberry Poke Cake Recipe For Christmas

This Cranberry Poke Cake recipe is the perfect dessert for the holiday season. It is a delicious dessert that can be made ahead of time for holiday parties.

slice of cranberry poke cake on white plate

If you’ve never made a poke cake recipe before you should know, it’s easy to make and honestly, sort of fun too.

This Christmas poke cake is as delicious as it is beautiful. It is an easy recipe made with a box of cake mix, cranberry jello poured into the holes made by a handle of a wooden spoon and then topped with a whipped topping made with cranberry sauce and Cool-Whip.

Trust me, this Cranberry Poke Cake is going to be your new favorite to make for any special occasion.

slice of cranberry poke cake with bite taken out of it

Looking for poke cake recipe? Try this Grinch Poke Cake recipe or this Oreo Poke Cake recipe. This Orange Poke Cake would be perfect too!

And if you’re looking for another cranberry recipe, give our Cranberry Fluff Salad recipe a try!

up close shot of cranberry poke cake slice

Helpful Tips:

  • Store in the fridge in a cake saver or similar container, for up to 5 days. Freeze without frosting in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Frost when ready to serve.
  • If you like more frosting, double the frosting recipe.
  • If you don’t want to use cranberry sauce for the frosting, you can skip it, or use a pack of cranberry jello mixed into it.
  • Do not cook the cake any hotter than 325 degrees or it will be burnt in some places and raw in others. Slow and steady wins the cake game.
  • If you don’t want to make such a thick cake, you can use just one with a smaller pan and cut the cake part of the recipe in half. You’ll want to adjust your oven temperature to 350 degrees and start checking the cake around 20-30 minutes through.
  • It’s important to keep in mind that every oven is different and knowing your own oven is helpful in ensuring that you end up with the perfect cake.
slice of cranberry poke cake on spatula

Ingredients Needed to Make Cranberry Poke Cake

  • White Cake Mix – I prefer Duncan Hines or Betty Crocker box mix
  • Large Eggs
  • Vegetable Oil – Can use olive oil or any other oil you prefer
  • Cold Water + Boiling Water
  • Whole Milk – Can use a milk alternative such as almond milk, soy milk, etc.
  • Cranberry Jello
  • Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce
  • Cool Whip
  • Fresh Cranberries (optional garnish)
  • Fresh Rosemary Sprigs (optional garnish)

You will also need:

How to Make This Cranberry Fluff Recipe

This cranberry cake recipe is so easy to make.

Simply prepare and bake your cake and allow it to cool. Then, use your wood spoon to create holes and prepare your cranberry jello mixture.

Pour the mixture into the holes and place into the fridge to set.

Once set, frost the cake and then Serve and Enjoy!

step-by-step process of how to make a cranberry poke cake

Cranberry Poke Cake

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Brittanie Pyper
This Cranberry Poke Cake recipe is the perfect dessert for the holiday season. It is a delicious dessert that can be made ahead of time for holiday parties.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Additional Time 4 hours 20 minutes
Total Time 5 hours 25 minutes
Servings 12 Servings


  • 2 White Cake Mixes 15.25 ounces each
  • 6 Large Eggs
  • 1 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Cup Cold Water + 1 Cup Boiling Water
  • 1 Cup Whole Milk
  • 1 Box Cranberry Jello 3 ounces
  • 1 Can Whole Berry Cranberry Sauce 15 ounces
  • 1 Tub Cool Whip 8 ounces


  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and spray a deep 9×13 cake pan with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the two cake mixes, eggs, oil, milk, and 1 cup of cold water. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat until no lumps appear. It will seem thin, but this is what you want.
  • Pour into your prepared cake pan and bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake (deeper than just the top bit of cake) comes out clean. Let cool for about 20 minutes.
  • With the handle of a wooden spoon, or with a similarly shaped object, poke holes in the cake. There should be a hole about every inch and be careful to not go all the way through the cake. Just go a little over halfway through with the holes.
  • Add the jello and boiling water to a medium mixing bowl and stir until the jello is dissolved. Place the jello in a pourable container (I use a glass measuring cup).
  • Slowly pour the jello over the top of the cake, first covering the holes and then any surface of the cake left after that.
  • Place the cake in the fridge, covered with plastic, for 4 hours or until the jello is set.
  • Place the cranberry sauce in a medium mixing bowl and use a fork or other utensil to break it up until no large chunks remain and it resembles a homemade style cranberry sauce.
  • Add the cool whip to the bowl with the cranberry sauce and fold it together until fully combined.
  • Frost the top of the cake with the mixture. Slice, serve, and enjoy!


Serving: 1 | Calories: 293kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 90mg | Sugar: 13g

Nutrition information is a rough estimate only; actual values will vary based on the exact ingredients used and amount of recipe prepared.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
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