The BEST Coconut Pound Cake

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I don’t use the word “best” very often, but this cake? It is truly the BEST Coconut Pound Cake I have ever tasted! Oh my heavens. This cake. It is EVERYTHING I want in a coconut cake.

The BEST Coconut Pound Cake - get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

Dense enough to not fall apart when you slice it, tender and fluffy enough for the perfect crumb, sweet but not overly sweet, with just the right amount of coconut flavor in every bite.

I could quite possibly talk your ears off about how much I LOVE this Coconut Pound Cake. The crumb is spectacular, the crust has the perfect crunch, this beauty of a cake is drizzled with a sweet coconut icing, and topped with an extra sprinkling of coconut.

The BEST Coconut Pound Cake (traditional and gluten free recipes included) get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

This cake has pretty much destroyed my self-control. I sliced it after dinner a few nights ago and then I could not stop slicing slivers to taste for the rest of the night.

This is going to be in my dessert line-up for both Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. I am beside myself thrilled with this cake.

The BEST Coconut Pound Cake (traditional and gluten free recipes included) get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com
Kitchen Tip: I use this (perfect every time!) bundt pan and this mixer to make this recipe.
Oh! And if you do have coconut lover’s in your life, you’re going to want to save this recipe for my Grandma’s Coconut Chews as well.

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The BEST Coconut Pound Cake

4.67 from 48 votes
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Ingredients 

  • Cake Ingredients:
  • 1 cup butter room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons coconut extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
  • Glaze Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons butter melted
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract
  • Topping:
  • 2/3 cup shredded sweetened coconut toasted

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 325°F. Arrange an oven rack in the center of the oven. Thoroughly grease and lightly flour an 8 or 10-cup bundt pan. Beat the butter and sugars together, on medium speed, until fluffy crumbs form. Add the eggs, vanilla, and coconut extract, beat again until smooth. Add the milk, beat on low speed to combine. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt. Beat again, just until combined. Stir in the coconut.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 60-65 minutes, until golden on top and light brown on the edges. Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, place the cooling rack on top of the cake, hold the sides firmly and invert the pan over the rack. The cake should drop smoothly out of the pan. Tap firmly on the pan with a wooden spoon, if necessary to free the cake from the pan. Let the cake cool completely before glazing.
  • To make the glaze, melt the butter in a small glass bowl. Add the powdered sugar, milk, and coconut extract. Whisk together until smooth. The glaze should pour off the spoon in a white stream. Add a teaspoon more milk to thin it, or 1-2 tablespoons more powdered sugar to thicken it, if necessary. Drizzle the glaze over the cake. Sprinkle generously with coconut. Store at room temperature, loosely covered, preferably not airtight. This cake will keep nicely and stay very moist for 3-4 days. Enjoy!

Notes

COOK’S NOTE: I’m not an advocate for buying a slew of specialty ingredients, but the coconut extract is key to the lovely flavor in this cake. While I would typically not use an imitation "vanilla" extract, I used an imitation coconut extract (because it was the only option at the store) for this recipe and it worked beautifully.
Tried this recipe?Mention @barefeetkitchen or tag #barefeetkitchen!

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{originally published 11/20/15 – recipe notes and photos updated 5/2/17}
The BEST Coconut Pound Cake (traditional and gluten free recipes included) get the recipe at barefeetinthekitchen.com

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Mary Younkin

Mary Younkin

Hi, I’m Mary. I’m the author, cook, photographer, and travel lover behind the scenes here at Barefeet In The Kitchen. I'm also the author of three cookbooks dedicated to making cooking from scratch as simple as possible.

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  1. Evelyn Timmons says

    I made this coconut pound cake and it was simply delicious I had to share with my neighbors and grand children I’ll be baking another in about a week Thanks for sharing5 stars

  2. Patsy says

    I don’t have any coconut on hand and just wanted to make the cake. Can I add more flavoring and no icing?

    • Mary Younkin says

      Unfortunately, I don’t think that will work very well, Patsy. You’ll get a coconut flavor with a bit more extract, but the cake definitely won’t be quite the same without the texture and added flavor of the actual coconut.

  3. Sharon says

    I’m going to say this cake was so OVERLY sweet that I just couldn’t eat more than the first slice, same for the others in my house. It ended up in the trash cause there was nothing I could turn it into.1 star

    • Mary Younkin says

      I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy it, Sharon. Apparently it’s not for everyone. For what it’s worth, you can reduce the sugar in this cake by a third without any issues. We enjoy it as a sweet cake, so we typically bake it exactly as written.

    • Nurse Toi says

      Wow, well this was rude. Sharon, you can always decrease the sugar and sodium(salt) in any recipe. As they are truly only optional for taste.. Next time if you know you dont like things to overly sweet. Try this trick dear! 🙂

    • Angelene says

      Absolutely moist and delicious cake. Took alot of will power not to finish it in a day.
      Based on other comments, I reduced my quantity of sugar as I don’t like over sweet cakes. I also did not bother to glaze my cake. I also substituted sour cream for the milk.
      Also the instructions said to add the milk and mix, and then add the flour, salt and baking powder. I decided to add my salt and baking powder to the flour and then alternate the flour mixture and milk as I normally do in other cakes.
      This is definitely my new coconut cake recipe. Thank you.5 stars

  4. Suzanne says

    Thank you for not requiring my information in order to print a recipe. The coconut pound cake sounds delicious plus I learned something – I need to get coconut extract – never knew it existed and I love coconut! BTW – great job on te site!5 stars

  5. Glends says

    Hi Mary, I like your take on using coconut milk with this recipe?! Also I read a reply that cake recipe is awfully sweet? Should I only use 2 cups of sugar will there be any other adjustment to recipe to get best results? Plan to bake cake soon, pls respond ASAP, thanks Glenda

    • Mary Younkin says

      I like the recipe exactly as written, Glends. I have no idea how reducing the sugar might change the final result. It should work the same with coconut milk.

  6. Joan Simpson says

    I love this cake. It’s super moist and I make it all the time. I have made it with the icing and without for anyone who may feel it is too sweet, simply leave off the icing.5 stars

  7. Nurse Toi says

    This pound cake was truly tasty and delicious. A new household favorite! It does go great with a hot beverage of your choice. Thank you for sharing this recipe. 😀5 stars

  8. Karen says

    Followed directions perfectly. Opened oven when timer went off at 60 min. and cake had fallen more than half way down the pan. Total disaster.
    Is 2 1/2 cups flour enough for this recipe? Had to get off the bottom with a spoon. Was supposed to be a birthday cake tomorrow. Not now!1 star

    • Mary Younkin says

      I’m very sorry to hear that the cake didn’t work out for you, Karen. It sounds like it might not have been cooked through. I can’t imagine what caused the cake to fall like that. Did you by chance substitute any ingredients?

  9. Jeanette Rumsey says

    This is an exquisite cake that is so flavorful and easy to make. I have used this recipe without fail more than a dozen times and will continue to do so for every special event we celebrate. Thank you so much!5 stars

  10. Warning says

    This recipe is great, except for one thing… It’s simply wrong. Your recipe includes half pound of butter, flour and eggs, but 1 pound of sugar. Please stop ignoring wake-up calls and fix your recipe. I’m guessing that the positive comments come from people who know what a pound cake is and rightly used half the amount of sugar (like I did). I can’t imagine the frustration after baking a cake for the first time, putting double the amount of sugar than everything else in a cake, and then glazing it with more sugar… Forget the frustration, your teeth would fall out.

    • Mary Younkin says

      Awe, Senor Warning, I’m pretty sure that in today’s age of internet kindness that is exactly what’s happening here. People are quietly fixing a recipe that doesn’t work without complaining about it a bit. Ha – thanks for that laugh. This is a much loved, very sweet pound cake recipe, that gets rave reviews from most people who bake it. Luckily, with your infinite pound cake wisdom, you knew better than to make such a subpar cake. The cake does work beautifully as written. Yes, it’s a sweet pound cake. Traditional pound cakes are often topped with sweetened whipped cream, fruit sauces, or other sweet toppings, this coconut cake proudly stands alone. Sometimes we glaze it, other times we do not. It’s terrific with a cup of coffee and luckily, none of our teeth have fallen out yet.

  11. Arlene Clouatre says

    Don’t know what happened. Double checked every ingredient. Cooked 1 1/2 hr. Would not get done. Then fell in Went exactly by recipe. Sound so delicious. Now will go buy for my son’s birthday. He always gets home made 🙃🙃🙃😐1 star

  12. Mark says

    Wow
    You need to work on this. Followed exactly, but way too dense and a under baked texture even though I cooked 15 minutes longer.
    Disappointing1 star

    • Mary Younkin says

      Sorry to hear that you didn’t love the cake. I adore this recipe (as do many others) exactly as written, Mark. It is a fairly dense pound cake (as most pound cakes are) but it certainly should’ve been cooked through – especially with an additional 15 minutes. Do you by any chance keep a thermometer in your oven? It sounds like it may not have been fully to temperature.

  13. Cheryl says

    Can’t wait to make this! I don’t have a Bundt pan… can I use a round cake pan or a loaf pan? How long should I adjust the baking time to?
    Thanks!,

    • Mary Younkin says

      I don’t have all the times, but yes you can bake this in all pan. You’ll want to watch for it to turn golden and then be sure to test with a toothpick for doneness.

  14. Kevin S says

    This is now one of my favorite recipes can’t wait to try it with other flavors. Although I did make adjustments to recipe after reviewing comments I decided to decrease the sugar amount I added 1 and 3/4 cup of sugar, add it 3 teaspoons coconut extract and substituted regular milk for coconut milk. Cake was extremely moist with lots of coconut flavor.5 stars

  15. Peso says

    I made this cake and got rave reviews. Served with whipped cream and blueberries/strawberries mix. Has anyone tried putting this into two loaf pans to make? I was wondering about trying that(if someone has the time in the oven info) so that it could be sliced and grilled. Then served with ice cream and a fruit sauce. I don;t know if it is possible to improve on this but would like to try the loaf pan idea. Thanks if anyone has done this.5 stars

  16. Patricia Ling says

    I tried this recipe yesterday and didn’t use icing. Love this cake. Delicious and personally I’d reduce the sugar slightly. Thank you5 stars

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