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Coconut cake is a southern classic and the perfect dessert for Kwanzaa. But we’re taking it up a notch with this recipe by combining the flavors of coconut and mango. This coconut cake (a family favorite), is made with coconut oil and coconut milk, filled with mango curd and then frosted with a coconut mango buttercream. If your family celebrates the holidays with coconut cake, you’ll definitely impress them with this amazing Coconut Mango Cake. If they don’t consider coconut cake a must-have, this recipe may start a new tradition! Pair it with California Moscato or California Riesling for a fabulous celebration.

coconut mango cake


Cake Release

  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

Mango Curd

  • 1/2 cup (134 grams) mango puree
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 large (50 grams) egg
  • 2 large (40 grams) egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons (42 grams) unsalted butter
  • 3/4 teaspoon powdered gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons water

Coconut Cake

  • 2 2/3 cups (340 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup (57 grams) coconut flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 1/4 cups (450 grams) white granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 16 tablespoons (227 grams) unsalted butter room temperature, 60-65°F
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups (510 grams) full-fat coconut milk, room temperature

Coconut-Mango Ermine Frosting

  • 1 1/2 (300 grams) cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup (35 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons (24 grams) cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup mango puree
  • 24 tablespoons (342 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

Coating for the Cake

  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut


Mango Curd

Place a medium sized bowl with a fine mesh strainer over the bowl next to the stove.  Place 2 tablespoons of water in a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the water.

Combine the mango puree, sugar, lemon juice, egg, and egg yolks in a 3-quart saucepan.

Whisk the ingredients together over medium heat until the temperature reaches 185 degrees F.  When the mixture has reached temperature whisk in the butter 1 tablespoon at a time.  Heat the gelatin in the microwave for about 30 seconds until it liquid and warm.  Whisk the warm gelatin into the mango curd.

Cover the surface of the gelatin with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 4 hours.  The mango should be firm and hold its shaped with scooped with a spoon.

Prepare the Cake Pans

Melt the butter in a small bowl, add 1 tablespoon of flour and stir together until it is smooth paste. With a pastry brush thoroughly coat the bottoms and sides of two 9-inch aluminum cake pans and line them with parchment paper.

For the Coconut Cake

Preheat to 350°F (180°C).

Place the all-purpose flour, coconut flour, and baking soda in a medium bowl and whisk to combine and remove any lumps. If you don’t have coconut flour, replace it with an equal amount of all-purpose flour.

Crack the three eggs into a bowl large enough to hold all three eggs.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine sugar, salt, vanilla extract, butter, and virgin coconut oil. Mix on low speed to roughly incorporate, then increase to medium and beat until fluffy and light, about 5 minutes. Halfway through, pause to scrape the bowl and beater with a flexible spatula.

Add eggs one at a time and beat on medium until each egg is fully incorporated before adding the next egg. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix on low speed until incorporated, then add 1/3 of coconut milk and mix until just incorporated. Repeat with remaining flour and coconut milk, working in thirds as before.

Scrape bowl and beater with a flexible spatula and resume mixing on medium speed for about 5 seconds to ensure everything is well combined. The batter should look creamy and thick, registering between 65 and 68°F on a digital thermometer.  Using a flexible spatula, fold batter once or twice from the bottom up, then divide evenly between prepared cake pans.

Bake until the cakes are firm, pale gold, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 minutes.

Cool cakes in their pans for 15 minutes, then run a butter knife around the edges to loosen. Place a piece of parchment paper on the wire rack and invert onto a wire rack, peel off parchment, and return cakes right side up. Allow the cakes to completely cool, about 1 hour. (Covered in plastic, the cakes can be left at room temperature for a few hours.) Prepare the frosting.

For the Coconut Mango Ermine Frosting

This recipe makes 5 cups, enough for a 9-inch two-layer cake or an 8-inch three-layer cake.

Add 3/4 cup of coconut milk and 3/4 cup of mango puree to a 2-cup measuring cup and whisk together.  In a 3 or 4-quart nonreactive pan whisk together the sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt.  Slowly whisk the in the coconut milk and mango mixture until smooth.  Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly and scraping the corners of the saucepan, until the mixture boils and is very thick, about 6-10 minutes.  Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer to a wide bowl or glass pie plate and let cool completely, about 2 hours.

Using a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the butter (which should be between 65-68 degrees F) on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 5-minutes.  Turn off the mixer, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl and add the cooled coconut milk-flour mixture. Mix on medium speed until combined.  Increase speed to medium-high and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes.

Assemble the Cake

Reserve 1 cup of the coconut frosting in a smaller bowl for decorations.  Place one cake layer on a cake board or plate.  Use 1 cup of frosting for the center and evenly spread across the layer.  Pipe a dam around edges of the cake and fill the center with the mango curd.  Place the second cake layer on top.  Crumb coat the cake by spreading a thin layer of frosting over the entire layer of the cake to lock in the crumbs.  This technique will prevent cake crumbs from getting mixed into the final frosting.  Frost the cake with the remaining frosting.

To coat the cake with the shredded coconut, place coconut in your hand.  Hold the edge of your hand close to the bottom of the cake, tilt your hand up and lightly press the coconut into the frosting.  Repeat this process to coat the sides of the cake.

*Recipe by Cheryl Norris, Bakes by Brown Sugar

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