Coconut Cake - VeryVera

Coconut Cake

A Southern classic and our December Cake of the Month, the Coconut Cake uses both coconut extract and coconut milk. Instead of sprinkling the coconut on top, I like to mix it into the cream cheese icing. Keep this cake refrigerated and note that it may be good cold but it’s amazing at room temperature.

  • Prep Time: 40m
  • Cook Time: 20m
  • Serves: 20 to 24 (¾” or 1” slices)
  • Yield: 1 cake
  • Category:



  • Floured baking spray
  • 1 1/3 c unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 2/3 c granulated sugar
  • 5 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 4 c cake flour
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/3 c whole milk, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. coconut extract
  • 2/3 c coconut milk


  • 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 16 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 2 tsp. coconut extract
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 lb confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 ¼ cups sweetened coconut flakes



  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Grease and flour three 9-inch pans lined with parchment paper.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed for 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
  3. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  4. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  5. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl again.
  6. Combine the cake flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl and mix with a wire whisk.
  7. Combine the milk, flavorings, and coconut milk in a large liquid measuring cup.
  8. With the mixer on low, alternately add the flour mixture and milk mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture, beating until well blended.
  9. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and incorporate any unmixed batter if necessary.
  10. Beat the batter for 7 minutes on medium speed.
  11. Divide the batter evenly between the three prepared pans. Tap the pans on the counter to ensure there are no air bubbles.
  12. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes. Test doneness by touching a cake top. If it springs back, it is done. If the indentation stays, it needs 2 to 3 minutes longer.
  13. Cool the cakes for at least 10 minutes on a cooling rack before removing from the pans.


  1. Cream the butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer for 3 minutes. At the end of the 3 minutes, scrape the bowl extremely well.
  2. Add the flavorings and beat for 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Slowly add the confectioners’ sugar, beating on low to ensure the sugar does not fly out of the mixing bowl.
  4. After each addition of confectioners’ sugar, scrape the bottom of the bowl extremely well.
  5. Once all the confectioners’ sugar is incorporated, add the coconut and beat on low speed for 3 minutes.
  6. Spread icing between the cake layers and then on the top and sides of the stacked layers.