Homemade Coconut Cake Recipe
For the Cake:
- 3/4 pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, softened at room temperature, with additional butter 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, and extra flour for lightly coating the pans
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup milk + 1 tablespoon vinegar
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 4 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
For the Frosting:
- 4 blocks cream cheese, at room temperature
- 2 sticks salted butter, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 1 tablespoon coconut milk
- 3 cups confectioners' sugar, sifted
- 6 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 3 (9-inch) round cake pans, then line them with parchment paper. Grease them again and lightly dust with flour.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream the softened butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 to 5 minutes, until the mixture turns light yellow and fluffy.
- Crack the eggs into a small bowl. While the mixer is running at medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, ensuring to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and blend thoroughly. Don't be concerned if the mixture appears curdled; it's normal.
- In another 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 (mixed with vinegar) to the batter in 3 parts, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Fold in the 4 ounces of shredded coconut using a rubber spatula.
- Divide the batter evenly into the 3 pans and smooth the tops with a knife. Bake in the center of the oven for 45 to 55 minutes, or until the tops are browned and a cake tester comes out clean.
- Allow the cakes to cool on a baking rack for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a baking rack to finish cooling.
- For the frosting, in the bowl of an electric mixer equipped with a paddle attachment, combine the cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and almond extract at a low speed.
- Frost the cake generously with the cream cheese frosting and sprinkle the remaining shredded coconut on top.