White-on-White Coconut Cupcakes

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Hands-on time:
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Yield: 12 cupcakes

Recipe photo

These pure white cupcakes are a symphony of coconut flavor.

White-on-White Coconut Cupcakes

star rating (8) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: 12 cupcakes
Published: 01/18/2010



  • 1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk powder
  • 1/4 cup toasted coconut
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cake enhancer, optional
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon coconut flavor
  • 3 large egg whites
  • 3/4 cup milk, at room temperature


  • 1/2 cup (4 ounces) soft butter
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk powder
  • 1 tablespoon cake enhancer, optional
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar or glazing sugar, sifted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/16 teaspoon coconut flavor


  • 3/4 cup coconut flakes


Note: Thanks to reader feedback, this recipe has been amended as of 12/18/12, as follows: the milk has been omitted from the frosting, to make a firmer frosting.

1) Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a 12-cup muffin pan, or line with cupcake papers and grease the papers, for easiest removal.

2) To make the cupcakes: Whisk together the cake flour blend, coconut milk powder, and toasted coconut.

3) In a separate bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, cake enhancer, salt, baking powder, and flavors until the mixture is well blended.

4) Beat in the eggs whites one at time, beating until fluffy after each addition.

5) Add the dry ingredients alternately with the milk.

6) Scoop about 1/3 cup batter into each muffin cup.

7) Bake the cupcakes for 16 to 18 minutes, until they're very lightly browned and test done with a cake tester. Remove from the oven, after 5 minutes turn out of the pan, and cool on a rack.

8) To make the frosting: Beat the butter, coconut milk powder, cake enhancer, and a pinch of salt until fluffy.

9) Add the sugar in 3 parts, beating until fluffy after each addition. If the frosting is too stiff to spread, beat in a little milk or cream.

10) Beat in the vanilla and coconut flavor.

11) Ice each cupcake with about 2 tablespoons of frosting. Roll in coconut flakes.

Yield: 12 cupcakes.


  • star rating 03/09/2011
  • plmezzano from KAF Community
  • Although I have not made these cupcakes yet (I am very sorry I know you want us to make them first). I am sure they are excellent and I will be making them for my dad's birthday next month I just want to point out one thing. I have noticed that some people have been having problems with the frosting and sometimes the wording of a recipe gets in the way. For example: 1 cup of flour, sifted or 1 cup of sifted flour 1 cup flour, sifted means you put the flour into the cup and then sift it. 1 cup sifted flour means to set the cup on a counter and sift the flour into the cup until it mounds above the top. Then, with a metal spatula or knife, level it off. Be sure to use a cup with an unbroken rim, referred to as a dry measure as opposed to a liquid measure which has a spout. With this second method you will have the least amount of flour because the flour is aerated. Do not be tempted to shake the cup or tap it as that compacts the flour. Just an FYI. It could be that there is not enough confectioners' sugar being used, hence the water frosting.
  • star rating 12/19/2010
  • shelzacat from KAF Community
  • Wonderful cupcakes! I used whipping cream instead of milk in the frosting and it was amazing. The flavor is fantastic in both the cupcakes and the frosting. I did not have the cake enhancer, but they had a wonderful texture and were kind of buttery. I like them a lot more than the chocolate ones I made at the same time. Easy to make, and fantastic results :)
  • star rating 09/07/2010
  • simsfraser from KAF Community
  • Made these this weekend for my husbands' birthday. They were the best cupcakes I have ever made. I did cut back on the amount of milk in the frosting, I toasted the coconut for the top. There was sooo!! much coconut flavor it was like biting into a freshly cut coconut. I will make these again and again.
  • star rating 08/30/2010
  • maryrmaddox from KAF Community
  • The cake was course and heavy. The frosting was the consistency of a milkshake. I had to add several more cups of confectioners sugar to a third of it and saved the rest. I think I will use what's left of the milky frosting to make a base for coconut muffins..
    I am sorry to hear of your difficulty. Please give us a call, 800-827-6836. We're happy to send a replacement mix for you. Our bakers would be happy assist you with tips for success. Frank @ KAF.
  • star rating 05/22/2010
  • Lisa from California
  • These were delicious! I used the coconut flavor and coconut powder that I bought from KAf, but I used regular, sweetened coconut flakes from the grocery store. I looked at the other comments, and reduced the milk in the frosting to 3 Tbsp. I also lightly toasted the coconut for the topping, which increased its flavor and added a bit of crunch. I brought these to a fundraiser bake sale, and wished I had made 2 dozen instead of just one! Many coconut cakes just seem like white cakes with coconut sprinkles -- these tasted of coconut through and through!
  • star rating 05/13/2010
  • Linda from Eureka, CA
  • These cupcakes are wonderful! My son, who doesn't usually like coconut, loved them. The only problem I came across was in the frosting: 1/3 cup milk is simply just too much! The frosting was extremely runny, to the point where I had to add an extra cup of powdered sugar to salvage it...better, but still too runny. Next time I'll cut the milk all the way down to 3 tablespoons and increase the powdered sugar to almost 2 cups. Also, think I would have preferred toasted coconut on top.
    Thanks for letting us know about your adjustments, Linda. Elisabeth @ KAF
  • star rating 05/03/2010
  • Sally from West Chester, PA
  • Loved this recipe - the flavors are great (used the coconut milk powder what a neat ingredient!). My husband likes the coconut flavor but not the texture so I simply left a few without the coconut on the icing for him! I need a little help, though. My cupcakes almost always flatten out rather than being nice little mounds of cupcake so I am doing something wrong (had fresh levening)...and also I think I did something wrong with this icing (loved the flavor!) because it was a little soft. I added more sugar than called for (my mother always did!) and it became a little soft. Input? Thanks
    Sally - Nice to know you enjoyed the flavor of this recipe. Cupcakes do have a tendency to flatten out vs. dome. I do not believe you are doing anything wrong as long as you are measuring your ingredients correctly (especially the flour) and your oven is preheated to the correct temperature before baking ( an oven thermometer can be one of the best investments you will ever make!). I do not think this icing is incredibly stiff. It is more airy and fluffy. Next time, cut back on the milk for a stiffer consistency. Elisabeth @ KAF
  • star rating 04/05/2010
  • Julie from Indio
  • I made these cupcakes for an Easter picnic after seeing the recipe in the King Arthur Flour catalog. I am not a experienced baker, but the recipe was easy to follow. They were absolutely delicious!

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