For the cheesecake layer:
  • 1 recipe homemade sweetened condensed milk (recipe below) or 1 14 oz can store-bought sweetened condensed milk
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 16 oz heavy cream
For the strawberry layer:
  • Approx 2 quarts fresh strawberries, washed and hulled plus extra whole strawberries for garnish
  • 1-2 Tbl sugar
For the cookie layer:
  • Half box gluten-free vanilla wafers, such as Kinnikinnick brand
  • 3 Tbl unsalted butter, melted
Homemade Sweetened Condensed Milk The serving options are endless: consider a jelly jar, a stemmed wine glass, small juice glass, footed ice cream bowls, or clear plastic drinking cups. How cute would these be as mini desserts in tall shot glasses?


Make the homemade sweetened condensed milk. Whisk together the milk and sifted powdered sugar in a medium saucepan until the mixture comes to a light boil. Add the butter pieces and stir to combine. Reduce heat to barely a simmer and cook for 2 hours, stirring every 15-20 minutes. The milk mixture will thicken substantially and reduce to about half the original amount. Be sure to keep the heat low so you do not burn the milk mixture. After the mixture has thickened, remove from the heat and add the vanilla and whisk to incorporate. Let cool. Prepare the strawberry layer. While the milk is cooking, use a food processor to puree approximately 2 quarts of fresh strawberries. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula and spoon into a bowl. Add up to 2 Tbl sugar and stir well. Set aside. Whip the cream. Also while the milk is cooking, whip the heavy cream in the bowl of a stand mixer or use a handheld mixer for 2 minutes on high speed or until stiff peaks form. Make the cookie layer. Process the vanilla wafers in the bowl of a food processor until broken down into crumbs. Add the melted butter and process well to combine. Finish the cheesecake mixture. Once the sweetened condensed milk has cooled, beat the condensed milk and cream cheese together in a large bowl with a handheld mixture or in the bowl of a stand mixer. Fold in the whipped cream until fully incorporated. Spoon the cheesecake mixture into a large zip top bag. Assemble the trifles. As shown in the photos with this recipe, I used 8 oz drinking glasses. Spread 2 teaspoons cookie crumbs in the bottom of the glass, pipe in a layer of cheesecake filling and then add 2 heaping tablespoonfuls of the strawberry puree. Repeat layers once more and top with additional cheesecake filling and cookie crumbs. garnish with a whole strawberry. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. Makes 8+ 8oz servings Adapted from the CakeSpy and Live Life Liz blogs.