Coconut & Lemon Cake

Sunday 23 June 2019

I decided to bake a cake for Todd so as to make up for having baked Brownies the other day. He is not fond of chocolate as you know.  He loves coconut, and so I decided to bake him a Coconut Cake.

I had seen a recipe a few weeks back on Clodagh McKenna's FB  Page for a Cloudy Coconut Cake. (Way back in the archives of 2017) But the link never took me to any recipe for it. I decided to wing it.

Winging it isn't something I would recommend to people without much experience in the kitchen.  You are likely to experience many more failures than successes.  I have been baking and cooking for about 50 years now so I can do so without too many problems.

I used a basic layer sponge cake recipe and replaced milk with coconut milk and added a bit of coconut oil as well . . .  for plenty of coconut flavour and moistness. 

The lemon in the cake batter comes from the use of the juice of one lemon.  When you use something like lemon juice in a cake, you need to add bicarbonate of soda to counteract the acidity and help get a rise. Not sure why that is.  Its a chemical reaction of sorts.

You could use half butter and half shortening and get  a lighter cake, but I don't mind cakes which are a bit dense and so use all butter.

There are more coconut and lemon flavours in the frosting/filling.  A bit of coconut oil and the zest and juice of one lemon goes into the butter cream.

I went for broke and added a layer of lemon curd to fill as well . . . Todd was not so happy about that, because he not only doesn't like chocolate, but he also doesn't like lemon . . .

If I had left out the lemon curd he probably would not have noticed . . .  but alas . . .  I never do anything halfway . . .  and so he did.

He really enjoyed the cake otherwise however  . . .  I know  . . . its not quite natural to dislike chocolate and lemon . . . 

I used large natural, raw coconut flakes to decorate the top of the cake. 

I think they looked really nice.  They are also not sweetened . . .

The cake itself is pretty sweet enough. You could toast them I suppose, but I liked the way they looked in their raw state. I thought they gave the cake a really pretty finish!

Yield: Makes one 8 inch layer cake
Author: Marie Rayner

Coconut & Lemon Cake

A rich and moist layer cake with beautiful coconut and lemon flavours. Frost  and fill with a lemon frosting and dust with coconut flakes to finish. You can also add a layer of lemon curd to the filling if you wish. (completely optional)


For the cake layers:
  • 300g plain flour (2 cups plus 2 1/2 TBS)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 285g caster sugar (1 1/2 cups)
  • 240g butter, melted (1 cup)
  • 240ml coconut milk (1 cup)
  • 2 large free range eggs
  • the juice of one lemon
  • 1 TBS coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
For the frosting:
  • 120g butter softened (1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • the finely grated zest and juice of one lemon
  • 250g icing sugar, sifted (scant 2 cups)
  • 100g raw coconut flakes to decorate (1 cup)
  • Lemon Curd to fill (Optional)


How to cook Coconut & Lemon Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 180*C/350*F/ gas mark 4. Butter 2 8-inch round layer cake tins and line the bottoms with baking paper.
  2. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and soda. Stir in the sugar. Whisk together the melted butter, coconut milk, eggs, lemon juice, coconut oil and vanilla. Add all at once to the dry ingredients. Using an electric whisk beat together until smooth and well combined, stopping to scrape the sides occasionally. Divide between the two cake tins, levelling each off. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes, until risen and golden brown. A toothpick inserted in the centre should come out clean.
  3. Let cool in the tins for 10 to 15 minutes before tipping out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  4. To make the icing, place all of the ingredients into a bowl and beat well with an electric mixer until smooth, light and fluffy. Place one cake layer, top side down, onto a cake plate. Cover with a portion of the icing and lemon curd if using. Top with the other cake layer, top side up. Cover the remainder of the cake with the icing and then sprinkle the coconut over all to decorate. Cut into wedges to serve.
  5. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.
Created using The Recipes Generator

Can you see how  moist and delicious that cake is?  Its just wonderful.  I am afraid I will never win any awards for food photography.  I am far too impatient  to leave things for hours and hours in the refrigerator setting up.  I find myself just wanting to dig in! 


  1. That’s a beauty of a cake and if it was sitting on my counter I would call it breakfast lol

    1. Thanks Laurie! A slice for breakfast is always very tempting! lol xoxo

  2. Sure is pretty! I have that big coconut too..makes everyhthing look special!

    1. Isn't it fab! I love it. I use it in my granola also! xoxo

  3. It looks delicious, but where do you buy coconut like that? All I ever see is the tiny bits of dessicated and sweetened.

    1. I suppose it depends on where you are ToffeeApple. Here in the UK I get mine on Amazon:

      That is the link to the one I actually buy. It lasts a long time, so I keep it in the freezer. I also use it in my granola! Seriously tasty! xoxo

  4. That looks just to die for! I might have to copy this one down. I love the big fluffy coconut!

  5. This cake looks delicious..can you send me the link for the coconut and a good lemon curd recipe

    1. I get my coconut on Amazon here in the UK:

      There are quite a few options on that page. In North America, just do a google search for Coconut Chips and your country.

      I make my own lemon curd:

      Hope this helps!

  6. You knew I'd not be able to stay away from this one :)

    It's a beautiful cake - a perfect pairing of flavours and I thoroughly recommend the lemon curd in the filling - it just makes it. We actually can get coconut flakes here (both raw and toasted) which surprised me, so I was able to do this one without having to substitute anything. Big, big thumbs up!

    1. I am so happy you baked and enjoyed this cake Marie! It truly is a lovely cake. I am surprised more people haven't tried it really! I love coconut flakes. I often put them in my homemade granola! xoxo


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