Coconut Cake Recipe

Goodday my sweets, today I am serving coffee and cake to you, or cake and tea if you prefer.

You see I have been baking, and I need a little help with getting this yummy thing out of the house, because right now it is going straight to my hips……..

 Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


So if you happen to love coconut as much as I do, come on in and have a piece of my Christmas cake…..

I have baked this cake pretty often, it never fails. It is a recipe from my mom’s baking cookbook from the fifties. The little book is in quite a state, smudged, torn and pretty ragged, but the recipes never disappoint. I love cooking from this book, it has several chapters that all start with a basic explanation of how to make a particular kind of dough and then it follows with different recipes to make with that dough. Mind you the instructions all say  stuff, like ‘whisk with a fork’ , ‘whisk for 30 minutes until smooth’, cause this particular book is from the days before KitchenAid machines. Heck there isn’t even an electrical hand mixer in sight. All is done by hand and with muscle power.


illustrations baking book


This book really takes you back, back to a time when there were little more choices for women than to become housewives and mothers. Back to a time when every woman was expected to be a domestic goddess, cooking and baking up a storm in her cute apron while simultaneously minding five children, cleaning the house and doing the laundry by hand. You know that time, that probably only looks nice and romantic in pictures, but was just freaking hard work in real life.


Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


I am no domestic goddess, heck no. I am glad on any day my house doesn’t embarrass me on first glance with unexpected visitors. And any week where we don’t run out of clean socks is a triumph in my book. And frankly I am modern and feminist enough to believe that I am not the only one who is responsible for all the housework (and since I am really a smart cookie, I choose a man who agrees  😀 ). But there is something enticing about those images of women in their fifties kitchens. And there sure are days when I wish someone else would make the choices for me from time to time, and simply tell me what I should do and who I should be.


Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


The thrill of that wouldn’t last long of course. I am deeply grateful for all the opportunities and choices women have these days. But every once in a while I like to play ‘domestic goddess’  and that is when I get out this old baking book, strap on an apron and start whisking (with an electric mixer, I am not that crazy).

And this coconut cake is one of my favorites to make. It is light and fluffy, it is sweet and good and it fits in so very well in this Christmas season.

 Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


The basic recipe is just a cake, but I always double it and then use my old turband (bunting?) cake form. The addition of the chocolate coat and the sprinkling of coconut is also my own invention. It just makes it more wintery, more christmassy so to speak. And let’s face it everything tastes better with a bit of chocolate……

Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


So let’s get on with it and start the baking…


Christmas Coconut  Cake Recipe

For one cake (double if you want to make a big one like I do):

3 egg yolks

2 table spoons of hot water

150 grams of sugar (= 3/4 cup) and a bit extra for buttering the pan

1 bag of vanilla sugar (= 8 grams, = 2 teaspoons) (or substitute a table spoon of vanilla extract)

pinch of salt

3 egg whites

125 grams of flour (I use self rising flour) (= 1/2 cup)

3 g baking powder (or use self rising flour) (=1 teaspoon)

75 grams fine coconut flakes (for this recipe I don’t use the extra  coconut flour, but the tiny coconut flakes) (1 cup)

75 grams of butter, melted and cooled. (= 1/3 cup)


  1. Whisk the egg yolks with the hot water until smooth and frothy, slowly, while stirring, add in 2/3 of the sugar and the vanilla sugar.
  2. Whisk until light and creamy, add pinch of salt.
  3. Stiffen the egg whites, add the remaining sugar.
  4. Pour stiff egg whites onto creamy mass, sift flour on top, add coconut flakes.
  5. Pour in the cooled but melted butter
  6. Gently scoop everything until well mixed, Do Not Stir.
  7. Place in well buttered baking tin, and bake immediately.
  8. Bake for circa 45 minutes on 175 Celsius (=347 F).


Let cool, remove from tin, let get cold. Pour on chocolate icing. Look for that sweet spot where the chocolate has dried enough to not soak the coconut but is still a tiny bit sticky. Sprinkle on coconut flakes.

Serve and enjoy!

Look at my Coconut Christmas Cake baked by other baking godesses:




Delicious Coconut Cake Recipe perfect any time of the year, but especially at Christmas


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  1. Marilyn says

    This looks delicious–and your presentation is beautiful! I wish I could pop in and visit, but I guess I’ll just have to make one myself. Thanks for the inspiration. Think I’ll make mine in my bundt pan, too. It’s just so pretty.

    Merry Christmas, Marianne!

    • Marianne Songbird says

      Bundt pan!!! That is the word! Ah sometimes finding the proper English terms can be so difficult. Bundt pans do say Christmas don’t they. Well they do in my world.
      Merry Christmas to you and your family.

  2. Gwen says

    Oh yes I agree with the above two. Your photos, the inviting slice all cut for me… But I enjoyed the look of the old cookbook. The memories woven into your story in a good way…wanting to share because of those pesky hips !!! I laughed!! My sis has never had that problem but you across the ocean can relate and I giggled! The cake stand…so pretty. I have one from my wedding so I should stir up a coconut cake and serve it on a stand of honor with a dusting of coconut for inspiration. I’m inspired!! Thank you!

    • Marianne Songbird says

      Such a sweet comment, thank you so much. Yes please make yourself a coconut cake and serve it up on that special cake stand. You deserve it.

  3. Emilou says

    Good Morning Marianne, well, I’ll be right over with freshly ground coffee!!!! (oops, guess I’m a little too far away to just come by ). Your photos are just amazing, as I can (almost) smell the cake. It is beautiful in itself. Your contrast of the chocolate covering and white is amazing. I will be making this for our Christmas here and hope it comes close to looking like your cake. Thank you again for sharing such warm memories with us.

    • Marianne Songbird says

      Oh I love the smell of freshly ground coffee, although I am not a big coffee drinker myself. I need a whole lot of milk to water it down.
      Bon appetit if you make the cake, will you let me know how it turned out?

  4. Marlene Mueller says

    I’m with Judy. PLEASE HELP to put the measursements in our US conversion. The cake looked fabulous, but do not understand the European measurements. Thanks so much

  5. Victoria Kadous says

    This sounds like a great idea for christmas! I was just wondering how much chocolate you use or recomend for covering the cake?I can’t wait to make it!

  6. Livie says

    Thank you for posting this recipe. It’s a beautiful cake. I made this yesterday and doubled the recipe, baked it in a regular size bundt pan, yet the cake isn’t half as high as yours. I used coconut flakes instead of the powder, and was careful about folding in the batter ingredients. Also, I became a bit confused about the 1/3 cup of oil listed in the ingredients. After reading the directions, I assumed that it was to be used for greasing the pan? I didn’t add it to the cake, but was wondering why this cake doesn’t include butter or oil. I am having this cake for a party, so I haven’t tasted it yet, but am worried that it will be too dry and am thinking of not taking a chance on serving it to guests until I try it, unless I get some reassurance from you that the oil was not meant for the cake batter. The directions you wrote we’re unclear about that.

    • Marianne Songbird says

      Ah, thank you for bringing this to my attention. I missed a step.
      There is a step five. When you scoop the stiffened egg white and the flower and coconut unto the egg/sugar mass, you stir in the melted but cooled butter too. You need to use a bit extra butter to thoroughly butter your pan.
      I don’t know if it was the missing butter that prevented your cake from rising. I always use self-rising flower and never had any problems with it. So sorry I didn’t get it right the first time.

      • Livie says

        I cut the cake for my company, and knew immediately that it was a major failure. It looked like bread dough and was rubbery. I tasted it, and it was chewy and bland. It immediately went into the trash. Luckily, a guest brought a chocolate cake. In any case, thanks for correcting the error. Your cake looks so amazingly delicious.

        • Marianne Songbird says

          I am so sorry your cake failed. Maybe it was the missing butter then. I’ll bake it again soon and recheck and double check my directions. It has never gone wrong for me.