Coconut raspberry cake lightly soaked with coconut vodka filled with thin layers of raspberry jam and frosted with coconut cream cheese.
I set about making this cake for my husband’s birthday. We ate a slice of coconut raspberry cake eat for breakfast. Then, spent the entire day being kids at Disneyland.
I have since made the cake several times. It has been an absolute hit with each taster! Even my parents were convinced that I had bought it as fancy Westside bakery.
Coconut Cake with raspberry jam
This is definitely not your average coconut cake.
First of all, it doesn’t have coconut flakes all over the outside, coconut cake’s most distinguishing feature.
Rather than put coconut on the outside, I packed it all on the inside. You could never guess this cake was full of coconut until you taste it, or you take a big whiff of it while it bakes.
If you are interested in a more traditional coconut cake, try these:
- Coconut Cream Cake: This coconut cream cake features three layers of coconut cake filled with coconut pastry cream, and frosted with lemongrass pandan Swiss buttercream.
- Chocolate Caramel Coconut Cake: An ode to the Samoa or Caramel deLites Girl Scout cookie.
- Coconut Cake: Simple coconut layer cake frosted with coconut cream cheese.
- Coconut Cake Doughnuts: Fried doughnuts topped with coconut milk glaze and a generous sprinkling of dried shredded coconuts.
For the coconut lovers!
The layer cake is made with coconut milk, coconut oil, and unsweetened dried coconut flakes. If you want to go coconut crazy, you can sub in coconut sugar. I used regular granulated sugar because I wanted to keep the cake white.
When assembling the cake, I soaked the cake layers with simple syrup spiked with a little coconut vodka. Yes, coconut vodka!
It’s this amazingly delicious and tropical vodka that is perfect for summer. I used this one by Ciroc. There are other coconut vodkas out there, but Ciroc makes my favorite one.
To balance out the coconut cake, I added a thin layer of raspberry preserves for a pop of tart flavor and a layer of coconut cream cheese frosting. I’m not one for tons of icing, so I left the outside of the cake unfrosted.
The cake is sweet enough on it’s own. This is one of those instances where less is more.
Finally, the top of the cake is garnished with fresh raspberries and salted pistachios. Pistachios add a nice crunch and pistachio + raspberry + coconut is an excellent combination.
Alex LOVES coconut. Coconut macarons, coconut ice cream (Filipino macapuno ice cream!), coconut shrimp. It’s only natural I make him a coconut cake for his birthday this year.
Now that his birthday is over… it’s time to plan my birthday cake!
Coconut Raspberry Cake
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup + 3 Tablespoons coconut oil
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs, room temp
- ½ cup well shaken full-fat coconut milk, canned, unsweetened
- ½ cup dried unsweetened coconut flakes, or shredded coconut*
Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 4 oz cream cheese, room temp
- 3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 2 Tablespoons well shaken full-fat coconut milk, canned, unsweetened
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- pinch kosher salt
Topping and Assembly:
- ¼ cup simple syrup*
- 3 Tablespoons coconut vodka*
- ½ cup raspberry preserves or raspberry jam
- fresh raspberries as needed to garnish
- pistachios as needed to garnish
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two 6-inch round cake pans with parchment paper. Grease lightly and set aside.
- Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. In the bowl of stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine melted butter, coconut oil and sugar. Add eggs and beat until mixture is pale in color. Scape down bowl as necessary to ensure thorough mixing.
- Alternate adding flour mixture and coconut milk, beginning and ending with the flour. Mix on low speed until combined. Fold in dried coconut.
- Divide batter between the two prepared cake pans. Level batter and bake for 35-40 minutes until cakes are golden brown and toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes before unmolding. Allow to cool to room temperature on wire rack.
Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Scrape down bowl as needed. Add sifted powdered sugar. Mix on low speed while adding coconut milk and vanilla extract. Add pinch of salt and mix until frosting is smooth.
- Slice each cake into two layers so you end up with 4 layers of cake. Place one layer on a cake stand or cake plate.
- Combine ¼ cup simple syrup and 3 Tbsp coconut vodka. Lightly moisten the cake layer with coconut vodka syrup using a pastry brush.
- Spread a thin layer of raspberry preserves over moistened cake. Add about ⅓ cup frosting and spread into an even layer. Place another cake layer on top. Moisten cake with syrup, follow with raspberry preserves, and top with frosting. Repeat until you finish with the top layer.
- Spread any remaining frosting on the sides of the cake, if desired. Otherwise, smooth the top of the cake and finish my smoothing the sides the cake with an offset spatula. Garnish the cake with fresh raspberries and pistachios.
- Keep cake stored in the fridge until ready to serve. Let cake sit at room temperature for at least 45 minutes before serving to allow cake to soften.
- Be sure to use unsweetened coconut flakes! Sweetened coconut will make this cake way too sweet.
- I used Ciroc coconut vodka