Two favorite cakes combined into one towering dessert, this Red Velvet Coconut Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting is bright and festive.  A great dessert to share with anyone you love.

slice of red velvet coconut cake on a white plate with the whole cake in the background.

 

I made you a cake.  It’s another gigantic cake and I couldn’t decide which flavor to make so I made both….in one mammoth cake mashup.  What do you think?  Do you think it’s big enough? This Red Velvet Coconut Cake is the best of both worlds and you’re just going to love it.

RED VELVET COCONUT CAKE

My grandmother used to make a red velvet cake when I was like 2 feet tall.  I loved it….it was my favorite cake by far and, maybe, not because of the flavor but because of the color.  Growing up north of the Mason Dixon Line, you didn’t see a lot of Red Velvet Cake flying around like you do today.  She didn’t even call her’s a red velvet cake….it was known as Flame Cake to us Northerners.  

And I’m not sure that it’s even the same cake come to think of it….maybe this story is completely irrelevant.  But whatever, I used to request Flame Cake for my birthday every year.  

Now, Red Velvet Cake has made it’s way to the millions of bakeries that are pushing red velvet everything. But what if we blended it with some sweet coconut and top with a Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting. What if?

I went with it and now you have a recipe for this towering Red Velvet Coconut Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting.

Slice of red velvet cake on a white plate with a fork.

HOW TO MAKE IT

The instructions in the recipe card describe the naked cake I made originally but have since taken a liking to frosting the whole cake. You can do either, it’s just a preference I lean towards at times.

  1. Coat three 8 inch round cake pans with cooking spray and line with parchment circle on the bottom.
  2. Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  3. Pulse the coconut in a food processor until it is very finely chopped.
  4. In a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar, and coconut with an electric mixer on medium speed until thoroughly combined, about 2 minutes.
  5. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  6. In a small bowl, stir together the red food coloring, buttermilk, and coconut milk.
  7. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stop and scrape down the bowl twice.
  8. In a small bowl, stir together the vinegar and the baking soda. With the mixer set at medium speed, beat the vinegar mixture into the batter.
  9. Divide the batter evenly into the cake pans.
  10. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool on a rack.
  11. Beat the cream cheese with the butter until light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla and coconut cream. Slowly add the confectioners’ sugar 1/2 a cup at a time until the mixture reaches the consistency of frosting and can hold it’s shape. Store in an airtight container at room temperature until ready to use.
  12. In a small bowl, whisk together the milk and vanilla to make the cake soak.
  13. Dip a pastry brush in the cake soak and brush the soak over the cake rounds.
  14. Use an offset spatula to spread one-fifth of the frosting in an even layer over the cake.
  15. Sprinkle one-third of the shredded coconut evenly over the frosting. Use the back of your hand to press them in place.
  16.  
  17. Set the second cake round on top of the frosting, and repeat the process for layer 1 (if 1 of your 2 cake rounds is uglier than the other, use it here on the bottom and save the prettier one for the top).
  18. Cover the top of the cake with the remaining frosting and frost the sides of the cake. Garnish the frosting with the remaining coconut.
  19. Transfer the cake to the freezer and freeze for a minimum of 12 hours to set the cake and filling. The cake will keep in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.
  20. At least 3 hours before you are ready to serve the cake, pull the cake out of the freezerand transfer the cake to a platter or cake stand. Allow it defrost in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours (wrapped well in plastic, the cake can be refrigerated for up to 5 days).

slice of red velvet cake being served with a cake server

HOW TO FREEZE THE CAKE

Red Velvet Coconut Cake can be assembled and frozen up to 2 months in advance. Just wrap with plastic wrap and then cover with foil. Transfer to the freeze and freeze until firm. 

You can transfer to a freezer safe container or bag if you have one large enough to fit the cake. This step will help ensure freshness.

slice of red velvet coconut cake on a white plate

MORE EASY LAYER CAKE RECIPES

 If you love this Red Velvet Coconut Cake, you should also try out favorite Copycat Milk Bar Birthday Cake and Apple Pie Layer Cake.

We also love this Pink Champagne Cake for special occasions and this Kentucky Bourbon Cake is nothing short of amazing.

Slice of Pink Champagne Cake being served.

 

My cake is an old favorite that I tore from a newspaper and I didn’t keep the name of the paper or anything for credit so if you know where the cake recipe is from….just comment below…shout it out, tell me on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram.  

But right now, I got nothing.  I adapted the mystery recipe a bit to include balsamic vinegar because it just adds something mysterious to the flavor, then I included shredded coconut and coconut milk to the batter.  

The cake itself doesn’t taste overly coconutty…it’s subtle and amazing.  The frosting is where you get that punch of coconut flavor, the coconut cream adds exactly what you’re looking for in a coconut dessert and the cream cheese adds the perfect tang.  

This cake is seriously amazing and makes the most festive Valentine’s dessert.  You don’t always need chocolate.  Ok, yes, you do.  Just serve a slice of this with a Chocolate Martini and you’re good to go.  Have a very Merry Valentine’s Day. 🙂

Fork with a bite of red velvet cake.

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slice of red velvet cake being served with a cake server

Get the Recipe: Red Velvet Coconut Cake with Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

Southern style red velvet cake kicked up a notch, this Red Velvet Coconut Cake is the bee's knees!
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Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour, plus more for the pans
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, shake before measuring
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • For the frosting
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 15 ounce can coconut cream
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4-6 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 cups sweetened shredded coconut
  • For the cake soak:
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 350˚F.
  • Coat three 8 inch round cake pans with cooking spray and line with parchment circle on the bottom.
  • Whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • Pulse the coconut in a food processor until it is very finely chopped.
  • In a large bowl, beat the butter, sugar, and coconut with an electric mixer on medium speed until thoroughly combined, about 2 minutes.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  • In a small bowl, stir together the red food coloring, buttermilk, and coconut milk.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture in 3 batches, alternating with the buttermilk mixture, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Stop and scrape down the bowl twice.
  • In a small bowl, stir together the vinegar and the baking soda. With the mixer set at medium speed, beat the vinegar mixture into the batter.
  • Divide the batter evenly into the cake pans.
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool on a rack.
  • Beat the cream cheese with the butter until light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla and coconut cream. Slowly add the confectioners' sugar 1/2 a cup at a time until the mixture reaches the consistency of frosting and can hold it's shape. Store in an airtight container at room temperature until ready to use.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the milk and vanilla to make the cake soak.
  • Dip a pastry brush in the cake soak and brush the soak over the cake rounds.
  • Use an offset spatula to spread one-fifth of the frosting in an even layer over the cake.
  • Sprinkle one-third of the shredded coconut evenly over the frosting. Use the back of your hand to press them in place.
  • Set the second cake round on top of the frosting, and repeat the process for layer 1 (if 1 of your 3 cake rounds is uglier than the other, use it here on the bottom and save the prettier one for the top). Repeat with remaining cake layer.
  • Cover the top of the cake with the remaining frosting and frost the sides of the cake. Garnish the frosting with the remaining coconut.
  • Transfer the cake to the freezer and freeze for a minimum of 12 hours to set the cake and filling. The cake will keep in the freezer for up to 2 weeks.
  • At least 3 hours before you are ready to serve the cake, pull the cake out of the freezerand transfer the cake to a platter or cake stand. Allow it defrost in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours (wrapped well in plastic, the cake can be refrigerated for up to 5 days).
Serving: 0g, Calories: 679kcal, Carbohydrates: 91g, Protein: 9g, Fat: 34g, Saturated Fat: 27g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 63mg, Sodium: 336mg, Potassium: 394mg, Fiber: 3g, Sugar: 67g, Vitamin A: 338IU, Vitamin C: 2mg, Calcium: 75mg, Iron: 2mg