Jello Poke Cake

A Jello poke cake is a fun way to celebrate any holiday. Using a white cake mix and different colors of Jello, you can create a cake in any color combination that you desire!

a slice of Jello poke cake in front the the cake on a stand

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Colorful Holiday Poke Cake

I love this holiday poke cake. While you should use a white cake mix you can use any color of Jello you want. This way your cake can be themed any way you like.

Before you make one of these cakes, check out this article on 11 Crazy Discontinued Jell-O flavors.

Make a fun and festive cake!

This cake is always in season. If you want to have fun with the holidays, use lime and cherry for Christmas.

You could use a double layer of cherry Jello for Valentine’s day.

And use cherry red and berry blue Jello for a patriotic Fourth of July poke cake.

Now, you don’t have to limit yourself to just the holidays. If you have a favorite sports team, school, or perhaps you just want to try out different color combinations, this is the cake for you!

Jello Flavors and Colors

Not all flavors of Jell-O are available all year long. Amazon has a good year-round selection, but prices are generally less in your local grocery store.

Jell-O FlavorPoke Cake Color
ApricotWarm Orange
Berry BlueBlue
Black Cherry Jell-ODark Red
Blackberry Fusion Jell-OMaroon Red
Cherry Jell-ORed
Cranberry Jell-OWarm Red
Fruit Punch Jell-ORed
Grape Jell-OPurple
Lemon Jell-OYellow
Lime Jell-OLight Green
Melon FusionBright green
Peach Jell-OOrange Peach
Island Pineapple Jell-OBright yellow
Raspberry Jell-ODark Warm Red
Strawberry Jell-OCooler red
Strawberry Banana Jell-ORed
Watermelon Jell-ODark Pink


Here’s a list of what you need

  • White cake mix and ingredients listed on the package
  • Water
  • Jell-O
  • Cool Whip
Jello poke cake ingredients

How to Make Jello Poke Cake

  1. Prepare white cake layers in round 9-inch pans as instructed on the package.
  2. Place cooled cake layers top side up in the cake pans.
  3. Pierce cake layers with a large fork at ½-inch increments.
  4. Stir boiling water into each flavor of Jello in separate bowls for 2 minutes or until dissolved.
green and red jello
  1. Carefully pour one color of Jello over one cake layer and the other color of Jello over the second cake layer.
red and green Jello poke cake layers in the pans
  1. Refrigerate cake layers for 3 hours.
  2. Dip one cake pan in warm water for 10 seconds then unmold onto a serving plate.
  3. Spread whipped topping over the cake layer.
  4. Unmold the second layer and carefully place it on top of the first layer.
  5. Frost the top and sides of the cake with whipped topping.
  6. Refrigerate for one hour before serving.
a slice of red and green Jello poke cake with Cool Whip frosting

Jello Poke Cake Frequently Asked Questions

Should poke cakes be refrigerated?

Yes, they should be refrigerated. The Jello will dissolve into the cake when left at room temperature for too long.

Why do they call it a poke cake?

When you make this cake, you will poke holes in it after you bake it to allow the Jello to have enough room to go into the cake.

Can I use sugar-free Jell-O for poke cake?


Can I make poke cake with pudding instead?

You can, BUT, the Jell-O stays put, pudding slides around more.

What do you use to poke holes in a cake?

Use a large serving fork, skewer, or wooden spoon handle.

Have fun with your own holiday poke cake or special occasion cake! If you have made one, let me know the colors you used.

a slice of jello poke cake with cool whip frosting

Can’t get enough cake? Try these recipes!

Favorite Jello Recipes

Be sure to check out more of my easy cake recipes and the best dessert recipes to make for your family and friends.

a slice of Jello poke cake in front the the cake on a stand

Jello Poke Cake

Make your holiday or special occasion fun and festive with your own Jello poke cake.
5 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate Add to Collection
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Holiday Poke Cake, Jello Poke Cake, Poke Cake
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 220kcal


  • 2 baked 9-inch white cake layers
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 packages Jell-O colors/flavors of choice
  • 12 ounces Cool Whip


  • Place cake layers top side up in two 9-inch round cake pans. Pierce cake layers with a large fork at 1/2 inch increments.
  • Stir 1 cup boiling water into each flavor of the gelatin in separate bowls for 2 minutes or until dissolved.
  • Carefully pour 1 gelatin over 1 cake layer and the other gelatin over the second cake layer.
  • Refrigerate for 3 hours.
  • Dip 1 pan in warm water for 10 seconds; unmold onto a serving plate.
  • Spread with 1 cup of whipped topping.
  • Unmold the second layer and carefully place it on top of the first layer.
  • Frost with remaining whipped topping.
  • Garnish as desired.
  • Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.


Calories: 220kcal | Carbohydrates: 47g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 319mg | Potassium: 51mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 50IU | Calcium: 105mg | Iron: 0.6mg

About Stephanie Manley

I recreate your favorite restaurant recipes, so you can prepare these dishes at home. I help you cook dinner, and serve up dishes you know your family will love. You can find most of the ingredients for all of the recipes in your local grocery store.

Stephanie is the author of's Dining Out in the Home, and's Dining Out in the Home 2.

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Reader Interactions


  1. Korene

    5 stars
    I made this cake for the holidays. I used strawberry and lime flavored Jell-O. The cake was a winner that year. I plan to make this cake again.

5 from 7 votes (3 ratings without comment)

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