Easy English Trifle | The Recipe Critic

Easy English Trifle is a light, delectable, sweet treat. It’s so easy and so delicate and beautiful. Make sure you spotlight this fanciful dessert in a clear bowl, for all to see it’s luscious layers.

Everyone loves dessert! And when they’re easy it’s even better. Try some of these other easy desserts the next time you need a quick treat. Easy Tiramisu, Easy Brown Butter Almond Cake, or Easy Crème Brulee

English trifle in a glass layered together.

Layered English Trifle Recipe

Who knew that such simple ingredients could become such a stunning dessert. Clearly it’s treat not just for the taste buds, but for the eyes as well with it’s beautiful layers. I love the addition of cream cheese to the heavy cream, it adds such richness and tang. It’s a perfect combination with the pudding and fruit.

English Trifle is often used at special occasions and festivities, especially holiday season. It’s so easy and beautiful you can make it whenever you get the craving. Buying already made pound cake is the secret to its easiness. You can have this ready in no time for that special event!

What is an English Trifle?

Trifles date back to the late 1500’s in England. The word “trifle” is defined as “a thing of little value or importance.” This dessert probably came about from tossing leftovers into a bowl to be used up and wasn’t anything of super importance. This fun whimsical dessert now has a rich history that has evolved over the centuries to become a favorite all over the world. With all of it’s varieties and flavors this is truly a dessert to try over and over again.

Ingredients for Traditional English Trifle

Simple elegance is what I call this dish!

  • Pound Cake: Frozen and thawed pound cake
  • Cream Cheese: Low fat will work here
  • Heavy Cream: Creamy goodness right there.
  • Sugar: Adds just a touch of sweetness.
  • Vanilla Pudding: One small box
  • Milk: To make the pudding with
  • Strawberries: Washed and sliced
  • Almonds: Sliced almonds that are slightly toasted.

Glass bowls with all the ingredients.

Making the Perfect Trifle

Super easy and so yummy! You can use frozen or fresh pound cake. You can even make your own if you wish. Regular cake can be used as well, but because it’s less dense it will get soggy faster.

  1. Cut: Cut the pound cake into bite sized cubes.
  2. Cream: In a medium bowl add the cream cheese, heavy cream, and sugar and beat till soft peaks form.
  3. Mix: In another medium bowl add the pudding and milk and mix till it starts to thicken
  4. Layer: In a glass trifle dish add a layer of the heavy cream mixture, then pound cake, a layer of strawberries and then a layer of pudding. Repeat the layers.
  5. Top: Top with heavy cream mixture and sprinkle with almonds. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Process of making and layering the trifle.

More Variations of a Traditional English Trifle

This is such a fun dish to mix things up however you desire! This is your basic trifle, feel free to mix up flavors and fruit as you see fit.

  • Cake: Try a lemon or almond flavored pound cake. There a many different types of pound cake out there from chocolate to butter. Experiment with your favorites.
  • Fruit: The possibilities of fruit are endless. From the tropical to all the different kinds of berries to everything in between. Bananas, peaches, pineapple, dragon fruit, kiwi, raspberries, and I could go on and on. Pick what you love best.
  • Pudding: If it comes in pudding form you can use it in a trifle. Let your imagination run with it.

How to Store a Trifle

  • Make ahead: Although this sets for about 2 hours in the fridge, I wouldn’t make it much further in advance. You want the flavors to meld but not get soggy. This should be made the same day you are going to eat it.
  • Storing: Trifle is not meant to be stored for very long, it should keep for at least 2 days in the fridge, but note depending on the fruit and pudding and cake it could super soggy fast.

The English trifle in a tall glass dish layered together.

More Decadent Desserts

English Trifle

Prep Time 15 minutes

Total Time 15 minutes

Author Alyssa Rivers

Servings 12 People

Easy English Trifle is a light, delectable, sweet treat. It’s so easy and so delicate and beautiful. Make sure you spotlight this fanciful dessert in a clear bowl, for all to see it’s luscious layers.

  • 10
    frozen pound cake
  • 8
    cream cheese
  • 2
    heavy cream
  • 1/4
  • 1 3.5
    packet vanilla pudding
  • 2
  • 1
  • 1/4
    sliced almonds

*Can also use fresh pound cake

Serves: 12

Calories272kcal (14%)Carbohydrates12g (4%)Protein4g (8%)Fat24g (37%)Saturated Fat14g (70%)Cholesterol79mg (26%)Sodium94mg (4%)Potassium188mg (5%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar9g (10%)Vitamin A907IU (18%)Vitamin C22mg (27%)Calcium104mg (10%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.


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