Coconut Cake

Total Time:
1 hr 55 min
Prep:
35 min
Inactive:
30 min
Cook:
50 min

Yield:
10 to 12 servings
Level:
Intermediate

Ingredients
  • 3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for greasing the pans
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure almond extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the pans
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 4 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
  • For the frosting:
  • 1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 1 pound confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 6 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 2 (9-inch) round cake pans, then line them parchment paper. Grease them again and dust lightly with flour.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until light yellow and fluffy. Crack the eggs into a small bowl. With the mixer on medium speed, add the eggs 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl once during mixing. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well. The mixture might look curdled; don't be concerned.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. With the mixer on low speed, alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk to the batter in 3 parts, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Fold in the 4 ounces of coconut with a rubber spatula.

Pour the batter evenly into the 2 pans and smooth the top with a knife. Bake in the center of the oven for 45 to 55 minutes, until the tops are browned and a cake tester comes out clean. Cool on a baking rack for 30 minutes, then turn the cakes out onto a baking rack to finish cooling.

For the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter, vanilla and almond extract on low speed. Add the confectioners' sugar and mix until just smooth (don't whip!).

To assemble, place 1 layer on a flat serving plate, top side down, and spread with frosting. Place the second layer on top, top side up, and frost the top and sides. To decorate the cake, sprinkle the top with coconut and lightly press more coconut onto the sides. Serve at room temperature.


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4.3 440
Wonderful - very rich with good coconut flavor.  We used jumbo eggs and whole milk (not two percent) and followed the recipe exactly..  Very rich - serve in thin slices.  Ample frosting - would put a thicker layer of frosting between the two layers next time. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This cake was terrible. The frosting was great, but the cake itself tasted awful. I don't know if it was the taste of the almond extract that I didn't like, or if I should have used cake flour vs. all purpose flour. I ended up having to throw away the entire cake. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Followed all the directions and the cake turned out super dense and super sweet... similar to a 7-egg cake. The coconut flavor didn't come through at all. It tasted more like an almond flavored cake. Check it at 35 minutes, as mine was done at that time. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I made this cake for Christmas, yesterday and I came home from our celebration with 3/4 of the cake. I followed the entire recipe and it was very dense/heavy. I don't want to throw away the cake because it was costly to make. Can I poke holes and infuse it with coconut mike? Or ANY IDEAS...HELP item not reviewed by moderator and published
The best cake of all time. Period. item not reviewed by moderator and published
these are delicious! has anyone ever made cupcakes from this recipe? if so, how many does it yield? item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was my 1st cake ever. I usually bake yeast breads. I made this for the Thanksgiving crowd and it was a huge hit. The cake is a bit pricey (the ingredients) but what an outstanding result. If you want to "Wow" your friends, this is the way. Even friends who enjoy teasing about my baking were sincerely complimentary. Candidly speaking, the cake was easy to make, so give it a try you won't be disappointed. Regards item not reviewed by moderator and published
First time making it & here's the feedback: My husband said this cake was "scary good" and "like eating a "warm, creamy coconut." He told me to hurry up & write down what I changed in Ina's recipe so I could remember & make it exactly like this again. I read a lot of the comments here before making it so thank you all! Changes I decided to make: BAKE TIME: Only cooked for 35 min. Halfway through, I turned the heat down to 325 degrees. CAKE BATTER: 1.) Used cake flour instead of AP; 2.) 1.5 tsp of Vanilla & 1.5 tsp of Coconut extract only -- no almond. 2.) Used only 1/2 cup of whole milk; 3.) Added 10oz of Coco Lopez cream of coconut; 4.) Added 7oz of sweetened, coconut flakes instead of just 4oz; 5.) Added 1/4 cup of unsweetened shredded coconut. FROSTING: 1.) Used only 1 cup of sugar to give cake a little more tang; 2.) Only 1/8 tsp of almond extract to avoid an "eggy" taste; 3.) Only 3oz sweet coconut flakes; 4.) + 1/4 cup of unsweet, shredded coconut. ENJOY & THANKS INA! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Moist and delicious. Cake was done baking in about 35min. For frosting, I used 3 3/4cups of powdered sugar. Stored cake in refrigerator. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Very very good! item not reviewed by moderator and published
There is a cupcake recipe that uses the same mix. Makes 20 cupcakes. http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/coconut-cupcakes-recipe.html item not reviewed by moderator and published
then it really isn't ina's recipe right? Why do people feel the need to rate and post "their" recipes. item not reviewed by moderator and published

Not what you're looking for? Try:

Coconut Cake with 7-Minute Frosting

Recipe courtesy of Alton Brown