Coconut Cupcakes

Let your tastebuds go on a tropical vacation with these sweet and flavorful coconut cupcakes.

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean

Growing up, I went to the Philippines every summer to visit my grandmother. During my stay, I’d eat my weight in coconuts.  Coconuts can be found everywhere, from the roadside stand to your neighbor’s backyard.

Coconuts are very versatile, producing a variety of products: coconut oil, coconut vinegar, coconut milk, coconut water, etc.  But my favorite way to enjoy coconuts- coconut cupcakes!

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean

Coconut Cupcakes

These cupcakes get their flavor from coconut milk and toasted sweetened shredded coconut.  I’m not a fan of coconut extract, as I think it tastes fake.  I prefer canned coconut milk (mainly because that’s what I grew up cooking with).

Canned coconut milk has a tad more fat because it includes coconut cream.  Be sure to shake the can well, if not- you’ll end up with a thick layer of cream on top.

I don’t suggest using the boxed coconut milks found in the market along with almond milk and soy milk as those may be too watered down.  You won’t get the same flavor and richness.

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean

While you can certainly make cupcakes by hand, it’s so much easier when you have mixer.  I’ve partnered with Hamilton Beach to give one lucky reader a mixer set which includes this 6-speed soft scrape hand mixer and this 6-speed stand mixer.  YES, you can win TWO MIXERS!

A hand mixer and a stand mixer are perfect for these coconut cupcakes.  As pictured above, the eggs are separated in this recipe.  In order to make the cupcakes a bit more fluffy, the egg whites are whipped separately and folded into the cupcake batter at the very end.

Since I don’t like to whip egg whites by hand, this is where the hand mixer becomes my hero.  While I have the rest of the ingredients mixing in the stand mixer, I can multi-task by whipping the egg whites at the same time.  How easy is that?!


Hamilton Beach Hand Mixer:

Plus, a hand mixer comes in very handy when you want to whip up a bowl of fresh whipped cream!   I’m really liking my  Hamilton Beach hand mixer.  It’s so powerful and compact.  And I absolutely love the snap on storage case that neatly holds all the attachments.  No longer do I have to fumble through my kitchen drawer looking for that darn beater attachment.

I was quite surprised by the Hamilton Beach stand mixer as I’ve been using the same Kitchen Aid stand mixer for over 10 years.  The stand mixer is quite strong.  It can knead bread doughs with the same ease as cupcake batters.  It comes with three attachments: a flat beater, dough hook, and whisk.  But my favorite thing about this mixer, it has a special fold setting for gentle mixing!

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean

I like hide a little frosting inside the cupcakes for a sweet surprise.  Take a small round cutter and punch out a little hole on the top of the cooled cupcakes.  Fill the hole with frosting and then pipe a large rosette over the hole to cover it up.

Honestly, I like to do this because it leaves me with a pile of cupcake cutouts to snack on while I’m decorating.

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean

With summer on the horizon, these coconut cupcakes are the perfect little tropical treat for your tastebuds.  While I could eat the cupcakes by themselves, they are completely transformed with the addition of the coconut cream cheese frosting.

I think coconut and cream cheese are meant to be best friends.  Taste the frosting and let me know how you feel.

Coconut Cupcakes

Let your tastebuds go on a tropical vacation with these sweet and flavorful coconut cupcakes. Quick and easy to make, these cupcakes are perfect for summertime parties and picnics!

Yield: makes 12 cupcakes

Author Maryanne Cabrera


Coconut Cupcakes:

  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup canned coconut milk, full-fat, well-shaken*
  • 1 cup dried sweetened shredded coconut, lightly toasted

Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2 Tablespoons canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of fine sea salt
  • 1/2 cup dried sweetened shredded coconut, lightly toasted


Coconut Cupcakes:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line 12 muffin tin with paper liners and set aside.

  2. In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

  3. In the bowl of stand mixer, cream butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add egg yolks and vanilla extract. Mix on medium speed until lighter in color and thoroughly mixed.

  4. Add half of flour mixture, then half of coconut milk. Repeat and mix until just combined. Add 1 cup of toasted coconut and fold to combine.

  5. Using a hand mixer, whisk egg whites to soft-medium peaks. Add half of egg whites to batter. Fold to combine. Add remaining half and fold until combined. Do not overmix.

  6. Divide the batter between prepared muffin tin. Bake for 18-20 minutes until toothpick inserted in center of cupcake comes out clean. Remove from muffin tin and allow to cool to room temperature on wire racks. Allow cupcakes to cool to room temperature before frosting.

Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:

  1. Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat together butter and cream cheese until smooth.  Add sifted powdered sugar.  Mix until combined.

  2. Add coconut milk, vanilla extract, and salt. Beat on medium speed until frosting is smooth and creamy.

  3. Transfer frosting to a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Make little holes in center of cupcakes, if desired, and fill with frosting. Pipe frosting over hole to cover it up. Sprinkle remaining toasted coconut over frosting cupcake.

Recipe Notes

Chaokoh and Aroy-D are my favorite brands of canned coconut milk

To toast shredded coconut: spread shredded coconut over parchment lined baking sheet.  Toast in 350 degree oven for 8-10 minutes, stirring every 3 minutes to evenly toast coconut.

Coconut Cupcakes | The Little Epicurean
To enter giveaway leave a comment below.  Tell me what you would make with your new mixer! [CLOSED]

Disclosure: Hamilton Beach is providing the hand mixer and stand mixer for this giveaway.  I was given the same mixers for review.  All opinions are my own. 

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Two mixers are better than one! I want you to make me waffles! ;)


Two words: coconut brownies! They are to die for! I have a huge aversion to shredded coconut, but love coconut milk, coconut water, anything coconut flavored, so I keep cans of coconut milk on hand. Pour it into your brownie mix and you get chocolate coconut deliciousness!

Erica Best

i would make a pound cake

Renee Richardson

I really want to make cookies, brownies, cakes and cupcakes. Thanks for the awesome giveaway :)

fattybumpkins at yahoo dot com

Amy @ Chew Out Loud

So, I just recently started enjoying coconut (i know!) and just had to stop over and tell you that these cupcakes look awesome :)


I’d make a fluffy batch of whipped cream over fresh strawberries with my cousin and then surprise her by gifting it to her! (And then we’d probably make these coconut cupcakes together too;)

Lisa Brown

I would make my favorite chocolate chip cookies, thank you for the chance!


they look great!

Amanda Sakovitz

I would love to make cookies and brownies!


I love making cookies and other baked goods, but the worst part is the mixing! I’d make a lot more if I had a good mixer, especially a stand one! Shortbread is my favorite and mixing up all that butter by hand is difficult.


I would bake someyhing different every weekend instead of every other weekend. I baked these and topped them with a coconut caramel sauce I make. They were pretty to look at and tasted fantastic. Thanks for sharing your recipes


We don’t have a stand mixer, only a hand mixer. We make a lot of dough and using a hand mixer takes too long, while a stand mixer does all the work unattended. Dough would definitely be the first thing I would make.


I would make snickerdoodle cupcakes

Bianca @ Sweet Dreaming

i would make your peaches and cream cupcakes :)


I would love to make meringues! I’ve been wanting to make some really good meringues and I can’t seem to do it with my hand-me-down mixer.


I would bake macarons! I have been perfecting a recipe ever since I came home from Paris 4 years ago! :D

Erin B

I would make my grandmother’s Red Velvet Cake recipe!

Judy Freedman

I think I would make these fabulous coconut cupcakes. Yum!


I would make brownies.


I have a much loved stand mixer but my hand mixer is over 24 years old and just about done. If I had the privilege to win this mixer set, I’d make a yummy birthday cake for my son’s 9th birthday in August.

Thanks for the fab giveaway and good luck to everyone entered!


I would make strawberry lemonade cupcakes as we head into summer! :)


Chocolate chip cookies!


I would make my favorite chocolate chip coconut cookies! These cupcakes look delicious by the way, I’m going to make them today for an anniversary party. Thanks for the recipe!


I’d make some nice sugar cookies.

Cindy A.

I would make a chocolate and peanut butter icebox cake.

Sonia Salgafo

I would make cookies for my students,


Strawberries are in season, so I’d make a pound cake eat them on.

Cindy Garcia

I would let my fifteen year old daughter use the mixer to create all kinds of yummy desserts. She loves to bake and her creations are always delicious and amazing!


I would make lemon cheesecake mousse

Celyne L

1. Whipped cream! 2. Soft Pretzel. I love my whipped cream in absolutely everything. My five years-old son loves pretzel so much, he requests to have them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner by saying “Lets grow pretzel mommy”. He calls the dough rising (waiting period) growing pretzel time.


I would make dark chocolate chip cookies with walnut for my wife every Friday night. She would be shocked to see me using the right tools to bake and mixing the wet with wet and dry with dry ingredients. I can’t wait to her face.


I want and need to perfect my cheesecake recipe. Mmmmm, I can almost taste it now.


I will be making cupcakes and frosting all year round. I make cupcakes and mini-cupcakes for every social event. My latest cupcake was a pina-colada cupcake with fresh pineapple pieces in the frosting.


I would make nutella soufflés all the time! Because frankly, whipping the egg whites by hand is not necessarily the ideal workout!

Brienne Lee Brown

I would definitely make some dark chocolate fudgy brownies. And lick the bowl of course ;)

Britt L.

I would make a chocolate cake milkshake an maybe try to make a French macaron!


I’ll win this and come back to your blog to find a recipe for it!

Thomas Murphy

I would make a cake.

Harmony B

Would love to make a strawberry cheesecake


I would bake and make too many treats with a mixer! I’ve been using a whisk and fork which I think is the main reason my macaroons failed!

Anita H

Can’t wait to try these delicious recipes from The Little Epicurean…two mixers for twice the fun!

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