Decadent coconut flakes…sweet vanilla buttercream…tart lemon curd. One slice of this Lemon Coconut Cake will whisk you away to a warm Caribbean island!
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Bob’s Red Mill. The opinions and recipe are all my own.
This post may contain paid links. For more information, please see our disclosure policy.
We stuck that lemon bush (along with it’s 6 mini lemons) on our back porch where it got a ton of afternoon sunlight. That was one happy tree! It grew quite well, and those lemons (which were green when they were small) slowly started turning yellow. Some sort of creature…I suspect a squirrel…stole 3 of our lemons, but we still ended up with 3 lemons from that little bush. (On a side note, I would’ve loved to see the look at that squirrel’s face when he bit into that lemon.)
We brought the bush indoors once the weather started turning, and we watched the lemons continue to grow bigger and bigger indoors. Finally, we picked our first lemon a few weeks back, and it was one of the best lemons I’ve ever tasted! We’ve been saving the last lemon on the tree for something really special, and after much debate I finally settled on making a batch of fresh lemon curd. I had big plans for that lemon curd!
We were hit with snowstorm after snowstorm this winter in upstate New York, and all I could think about lately was sitting on a warm beach somewhere. I’m not even that much of a beach guy…but I would’ve traded all of those snow mounds outside for sand dunes in a heartbeat!
Lemon Coconut Cake
Partially inspired by my longing for a warmer climate, I decided to whip up this Lemon Coconut Cake. The cake itself is lightly flavored with coconut, and I pressed Unsweetened Coconut Flakes all around the outside of the cake. Then the aforementioned lemon curd got spread onto the top. This cake was magical! While it didn’t whisk me away to the Caribbean like I had hoped, it did help me forget about all of the snow outside…at least momentarily!
I used Unsweetened Coconut Flakes from Bob’s Red Mill to make this cake. I don’t know if you’ve ever looked, but unsweetened coconut flakes can be kinda tricky to find. I prefer to use the unsweetened version whenever possible as sweetened coconut flakes can change the flavor profile of your recipe. In this case, the unsweetened coconut flakes were perfect! The large flakes are packed with coconut flavor, and they look awesome when pressed into the side of this cake. The tasty coconut flakes combined with the sweet vanilla buttercream and the tart lemon curd produce a perfectly balanced cake. Just close your eyes when eating a big slice of this Lemon Coconut Cake, and you just might find yourself drifting away to a warm Caribbean island somewhere! Enjoy!
P.S. I just noticed that our little lemon bush now has it’s first bud of the year. I didn’t realize that it would bud indoors, but I’ll take it! That little bud doesn’t know it, but it’s destined to become lemon curd on the top of another Lemon Coconut Cake next winter!
Did you make this Lemon Coconut Cake at home? Leave a comment, or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog)!
Lemon Coconut Cake
For the Cake
For the Frosting
For the Cake
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour (3) 8" round cake pans; set aside.
- In the bowl of a countertop mixer, combine all of the dry ingredients (cake flour, sugar, baking powder and salt). Stir until well combined.
- Add the butter, egg and egg whites; mix until well combined. (Tip: Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a spatula occasionally to ensure batter is well mixed.)
- Add half of the coconut milk to the bowl; mix until well combined. Repeat with the remaining coconut milk and the vanilla extract.
- Mix for 2-3 minutes on medium speed, or until batter is fluffy and well mixed.
- Divide batter evenly into (3) 8” round pans.
- Bake at 350° for 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Allow cakes to cool in pans and then transfer to a cooling rack until fully cooled.
For the Frosting
- Using a countertop mixer, cream the butter on medium speed for 2-3 minutes, or until light and fluffy.
- Add the vanilla and powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing after each addition until fully absorbed.
- Add the milk and mix on medium speed until well combined. (Note: If the frosting is too thick or thin, just add a bit of additional milk or powdered sugar.)
- Whip the frosting for another 3-4 minutes on high speed.
For the Lemon Curd
- Using a medium saucepan, whisk together the lemon juice, zest, sugar and eggs. Add the pieces of butter and place pan over medium-low heat.
- Cook, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a wooden spoon (~7-8 minutes).
- Let cool and then refrigerate until firm.
To Decorate Cake
- Place the first layer of cake on a large plate and spread a generous layer of Frosting on top. Spread ½ cup of coconut flakes evenly on top of the frosting.
- Repeat with the second layer of cake, spreading another ½ cup of coconut flakes on top of the Frosting. (Tip: When frosting the inner layers, make sure to save enough Frosting to cover outer edge of cake.)
- Frost outer edge of cake with the remaining Frosting. (Tip: This will get covered with flaked coconut, so it doesn’t need to look perfect!)
- Gently press remaining coconut flakes into outer edge of cake.
- Using an offset spatula, spread the lemon curd evenly across top of cake.
- Serve cake either chilled or at room temperature.
Looking for more tasty cake recipes? Check out these other favorites, too: