Coconut Cupcakes


3 cups cake flour (not self rising)
2 heaping tsp Baking Powder
3 sticks (1.5 cups) salted butter
2 1/4 cups sugar
.5 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup coconut milk
8 large egg whites
1 1/3 cups shredded sweetened coconut
frosting of your choice (I’ll cover this later)
toasted coconut for garnishing (optional)
Makes 2 dozen

  • Preheat over to 350. Line cupcake pans with paper liners.
  • In a bowl mix together flour and baking powder.
  • In another bowl beat butter and 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. With an electric mixer this should be about 3 or 4 minutes.
  • Add vanilla. Carefully add one third of the flour mixture while still beating. Then add half of the coconut milk. Then add the second third of the flour mixture, and then add the rest of the coconut milk. Finish by adding the rest of the flour mixture. When it is combined (careful not to overmix!) set aside.
  • In a clean bowl, whisk together egg whites and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar. You can do this manually or with an electric mixer. Beat until stiff and glossy peaks begin to form. 
  • Gently fold the egg mixture into the butter and flour mixture. Until combined. You might want to do this in 2 parts. Then carefully stir in the shredded coconut. Don’t over mix!
  • Divide batter in cupcake pans, using about 1/4 cup of batter for each cupcake.
  • Bake for 20-25 minute. Rotate pans half way through. The cupcakes are down when they turn golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean from the center. 
  • Allow to cool.
  • For toasted coconut: I use fresh coconut. It has amazing flavor and really adds a nice touch. This will go on top of the frosting. You can buy coconut meat, raw, or buy the whole coconut and go from there. Use 2 coconuts. Grate the coconut meat. Spread out on baking sheet and place in over preheated to 350. Allow to cook keeping an eye on it! If it’s cooking unevenly, rotate the pan. It’s done when it’s just starting to turn golden brown.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Makes enough frosting for about 2 dozen cupcakes

1 cup (2 sticks) of unsalted butter, room temperature
6-8 cups of powdered sugar
1/2 cup of milk
1.5 tsp vanilla extract

1. In an electric mixing bowl fitted with the paddle attachment or if you don’t have an electric mixing bowl use a large bowl and an electric mixer, mix the butter until smooth and creamy (a few minutes).
2. Add 4 cups of the sugar, the milk and vanilla and on low speed mix until combined.
3.Add two more cups of sugar and on low speed mix until light and fluffy. If you need to, add the remaining two cups of powdered sugar.

Tips: When mixing together the buttercream frosting ingredients, be aware that powdered sugar is very light and will get into the air. You will know this is happening because when you breathe in you will feel and taste a sweetness in your breath. To avoid this, place a clean dish towel over the mixing bowl.

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