Coconut Cupcake Recipe

My husband is a huge fan of coconut-flavoured foods, more than anyone else in our house. Coconut ice, Bounty bars, cocktails with coconut in… he’ll demolish them all.  I believe our marriage has been so successful in part because I had a great coconut cupcake recipe! (I’m only kinda joking)

This cupcake recipe is not complicated, but it does have a few more ingredients than a simple, basic recipe. It requires a little bit more thought and planning than a simple recipe.

If you’re looking for an incredibly light and fluffy cupcake, this is for you. What’s more, it has some hints of coconut in the sponge, and some decadent, creamy icing.  

Ingredients for the cupcakes

  • 340g unsalted butter (brought to room temperature)
  • 400g granulated sugar
  • 5 extra-large eggs (brought to room temperature)
  • 1.5 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1.5 teaspoons almond extract
  • 420g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1.5 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 1.5 teaspoons salt
  • 240ml buttermilk
  • 400g sweetened, desiccated coconut

Ingredients for the icing

  • 450g cream cheese (brought to room temperature)
  • 340g unsalted butter (brought to room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 675g icing sugar, sifted


First of all, preheat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius.

Using an electric mixer (paddle attachment), cream the butter and sugar together on high speed. You’re looking for a light and fluffy mixture. It should only take about 5 minutes as you have warmed up the butter to room temperature. It should be much softer than if you took it straight from the fridge.

With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs one at a time. Make sure you scrape down the sides after adding each egg so it is fully enveloped into the mixture. Once the eggs are mixed in, add the vanilla and almond extract.

Take a separate bowl.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt.

In 3 separate lots, alternate adding the dry mixture and the buttermilk (the wet ingredients) to the main cake mixture. Begin and end with the dry ingredients. We add the ingredients this way so that too much wet doesn’t make it curdle, and too much dry doesn’t make it impossible to stir!

Mix until well-combined. Fold in 200g (half) of the desiccated coconut.

Line a muffin or cupcake tray with cake liners. Fill each one to the top with the cake mix.

Bake for 25 to 35 minutes. You want golden brown tops. If you put a toothpick into the mixture it should come out clean – this means you’re ready!

Allow the coconut cupcakes to cool in the baking tray for 10-15 minutes.

Remove the cupcakes and put on a baking tray to cool.

Now the fun bit – making the icing!

Back to the electric mixer (hopefully you’ve cleaned the bowl!) and paddle attachment. On a low speed, gently cream together the cream cheese, butter, vanilla and almond extracts.

Add the icing sugar and continue to mix until smooth.

Ice the cupcakes and you can sprinkle with some of the remaining desiccated coconut. Alternatively, you can add something coconut related – a slice of a Bounty bar, or some coconut ice!

For something fruitier, try our Strawberry Coconut Cupcake recipe, or if you’re feeling a bit more ‘grown-up’ some Coffee Coconut Cupcakes are just the ticket 🙂

      About The Tray Bakers

      We’re a family-run baking website full of recipes, news and shopping recommendations for baking gifts and accessories for all budgets and all occasions. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases – so if you do buy any products via our site, thank you very much. It will mean we can buy some more flour!

      © 2023 Thetraybakers

      The Tray Bakers
      Compare items
      • Total (0)