Can a cake be both decadent and refreshing? It sure can! Coconut Cake with a hint of key lime will make you feel like you are on a tropical vacation.
I absolutely love anything coconut. After craving coconut cake for days on end (no I'm not pregnant LOL), I decided to make one. Before I got started though, I asked myself "How can I turn this up a notch?" That's when I decided a hint of lime was exactly what it needed.
Husband and son approved, I bring you Key Lime Coconut Cake!
A few notes about this recipe: This recipe makes either 24 cupcakes or a 3 layer cake (using 9 inch pans). I recommend using parchment paper liners for both. If you choose to make the cupcakes, use a large amount of icing on each one or you will have leftover icing which works great on sugar cookies. Be sure the ingredients noted at room temperature are at room temperature. And if you can't find coconut flakes, you can put coconut shreds in the food processor to get them more fine. Oh, and definitely use fresh lime juice, not jarred. A few drops of food coloring in the icing will give the perfect pale green color!
For the Cake:
2 1/2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup butter, soft (not hot melted)
1 3/4 cup sugar
5 large egg whites at room temperature
4 ounce cream cheese, soft
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp coconut extract
8 ounces canned coconut milk at room temperature
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut flakes
For the Icing:
1 cups unsalted butter, soft
12 ounces cream cheese, soft
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp coconut extract
4 cups confectioners sugar
4 tbsp fresh lime juice
2 cups sweetened shredded coconut flakes
How to Make:
Preheat oven to 350 and line muffin pan or cake pans with parchment liners.
In a bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, and baking soda.
In a large bowl with a hand mixer or in a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar.
Add in the egg whites, cream cheese, vanilla, and coconut extract.
Add in the cake flour mixture and canned milk.
Stir in the coconut flakes.
For cupcakes, fill the liners about 3/4 full (will make 2 dozen). For cake pans, fill about 1/3 full.
For cupcakes, bake about 20 minutes. For cake, bake 30-35 minutes.
Let cool completely before icing.
For the icing, use a large bowl with a hand mixer or a stand mixer.
Cream together the unsalted butter, cream cheese, vanilla, coconut extract, and lime juice.
Add in the confectioners sugar one cup at a time.
Add the coconut one cup at a time.
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