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The Best Coconut Cake Recipe. Moist coconut cake with sweet cream cheese frosting. The perfect Southern Coconut Cake Recipe. www.modernhoney.com

Coconut Cake

The perfect coconut cake with sweet cream cheese frosting.
Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Total Time 37 minutes
Servings 16
Author Melissa Stadler, Modern Honey


  • 2 1/2 cups Cake Flour
  • 1 3/4 cup Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 cup Dry Pudding Mix coconut, vanilla, or white chocolate
  • 1 cup Butter cut into cubes, softened
  • 1 cup Canned Unsweetened Coconut Milk full-fat
  • 1/3 cup Buttermilk
  • 4 Egg Whites
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 - 2 teaspoons Coconut Extract

  • Sweet Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 1 cup Butter softened
  • 1 - 8- ounce pkg. Cream Cheese softened
  • 4 3/4 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Heavy Cream Milk, or Cream of Coconut
  • Coconut Extract optional

  • 1 1/2 cups Coconut Sweetened or Flaked

  • Simple Syrup optional but will keep the cake moist:
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1/2 cup Sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a standing mixer, stir together flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and pudding mix.
  3. Beat the butter into the flour mixture, one cube at a time. Continue to beat until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  4. In a small bowl, whisk together coconut milk, buttermilk, egg whites, egg, and coconut extract.
  5. Add the 1/2 of the egg-milk mixture and beat the batter is light and fluffy. Add remaining egg-milk mixture and mix just until combined.
  6. Take a spatula and scrape the sides of the bowl.
  7. Spread into greased pans and smooth tops with a spatula. Use two 9-inch pans or three 8-inch cake pans.
  8. Bake for 16-22 minutes, depending on the depth of pans. If the cake layers are thin, they will cook for less time than the thicker layers. This time is for three thin 8-inch layers. Check for doneness by placing a cake tester or toothpick in center of the cake.
  9. Let cakes cool. Run a knife around edge of cake pan and flip over.
  10. To make simple syrup: heat water and sugar in a small pan over medium heat. Let it come to a simmer. Once the sugar is completely dissolved and is clear, remove from heat. Let cool. Brush simple syrup over cake layers.

  11. To make Sweet Cream Cheese Frosting:
  12. In mixing bowl, cream together butter and cream cheese for 4 minutes until light and fluffy. Stir in powdered sugar and heavy cream, milk, or cream of coconut. Add coconut extract, if so desired. Once the cake has cooled and has been removed from pans, frost each layer with frosting.
  13. Top each layer with sweetened coconut or place all flaked coconut on top of the cake or all over sides and top of the cake.