2 cups crushed vanilla sandwich cookies (I used 20 Golden Oreos)
6 tablespoons crushed freeze-dried strawberries
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 cups heavy cream, very cold
1½ cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
½ cup granulated sugar
1 cup strawberry preserves (I used Smucker’s brand)
1 teaspoon strawberry extract
1 (11-ounce) box of vanilla wafer cookies
1 pound fresh strawberries, rinsed and sliced (¼-inch slices)
HOW TO MAKE THIS STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE ICEBOX CAKE RECIPE
STEP ONE: Divide the crushed vanilla sandwich cookies evenly (1 cup in each bowl) into two small mixing bowls.
STEP TWO: Add the crushed freeze-dried strawberries and 3 tablespoons of melted butter to one of the bowls of crushed cookies. Stir to combine.
STEP THREE: To the second bowl of crushed vanilla sandwich cookies, stir in the remaining 3 tablespoons of the melted butter until evenly coated.
STEP FOUR: Combine the strawberry-coated crushed cookies with the plain crushed cookies to create a strawberry shortcake crumble topping. Set aside.
STEP FIVE: In a large mixing bowl, add the very cold heavy whipping cream. Using a hand mixer, starting on low speed, beat the heavy whipping cream for 1 minute. Gradually increase the speed on the mixer up to high, and beat the heavy cream for another 2 to 3 minutes or until it reaches soft peaks.
STEP SIX: Add the powdered sugar and vanilla extract and continue to beat the whipped cream until stiff peaks form. Be careful not to over whip your heavy cream. Your whipped cream should be soft but able to hold its shape on the tip of your beaters. Set aside.
STEP SEVEN: In another large mixing bowl, add the room temperature cream cheese and granulated sugar. Beat on medium speed, using a handheld mixer, for 2 minutes until the cream cheese is fluffy and smooth.
STEP EIGHT: Add the strawberry preserves and strawberry extract to the bowl of beaten cream cheese and beat for an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until you have a nice creamy strawberry cream cheese mixture.
STEP NINE: Add half of the whipped cream to the bowl of the strawberry cream cheese mixture. Gently fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese until you have a light and fluffy strawberry cheesecake filling and no longer see streaks of whipped cream. Reserve the other half of the whipped cream.
STEP TEN: To the bottom of a 9×13-inch glass baking dish, add half of the strawberry cream cheese filling to the bottom of the dish and spread it into an even layer.
STEP ELEVEN: Using 42 to 44 vanilla wafers (about half the box), cover the bottom layer of the strawberry cream cheese filling so that you have a single solid layer of cookies.
STEP TWELVE: Layer the sliced fresh strawberries over the top of all the vanilla wafer cookies so that they are in a single layer.
STEP THIRTEEN: Spread the remaining strawberry cheesecake filling evenly over the fresh sliced strawberries being careful not to disturb the fresh strawberry layer. Top this layer with the remaining half box of the vanilla wafer cookies in a single layer.
STEP FOURTEEN: Spread the other half of the homemade whipped cream evenly over the top of the final layer of vanilla wafer cookies.
STEP FIFTEEN: Finally, top the homemade whipped cream with an even layer of the reserved strawberry shortcake cookie crumble.
STEP SIXTEEN: Chill the strawberry shortcake icebox cake in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 hours or up to overnight.