I came up with this recipe after a friend of mine requested coconut cupcakes for her birthday. Having never made coconut cupcakes before, I decided to use my yellow cake recipe but substitute coconut extract for the vanilla extract. Then, before the batter was spooned into the cupcake liners, I folded in coconut flakes. For the frosting, I used my vanilla frosting recipe but substituted coconut extract, and then the frosted cupcakes were topped with more flaked coconut. The result? A moist, light, delicious cupcake bursting with coconut deliciousness. And my friend still requests them every year!
1 2/3 cup sugar
2/3 cup softened butter
½ cup sour cream
2 tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
½ cup milk
2 cups plus 2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
3 ¼ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. baking soda
¾ tsp. salt
2 tbsp. coconut extract
3/4 cup flaked coconut
3 sticks unsalted butter, softened
5 cups of powdered sugar
1 tbsp. coconut extract
¼ cup heavy cream
Flaked coconut for garnish, about ½ cup
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 2 cupcake tins (12 cupcakes each) with paper liners.
Step 2: In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a bowl and then combine with the butter and sugar. Add the sour cream, oil, milk, coconut extract, and egg yolks (reserve the egg whites in a separate bowl). Beat for 2 minutes on medium-high speed.
Step 4: Clean the beaters to the mixer and beat the egg whites on high speed for about 15 seconds. Add to the rest of the batter and with a rubber spatula or a spoon fold in the egg whites until it is uniformly incorporated into the batter. Then fold in 3/4 cup flaked coconut.
Step 5: Spoon the batter into the cupcake tins, filling each liner ¾ full. Bake for approximately 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Let cool 5 minutes, then remove the cupcakes from the pan to cool completely.
Step 6: For the frosting: In a large bowl, beat the butter with an electric mixer at medium speed for about 30 seconds, then gradually add the powdered sugar and beat until fully combined, about a minute. Gradually add the heavy cream and the coconut extract and beat for another minute or two, or until the frosting is a desired consistency.
Step 7: Pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes. If you do not have a pastry bag, you can fill a Ziplock bag with frosting, cut the tip off one of the bottom corners of the bag, and pipe the frosting onto the cupcake. Sprinkle flaked coconut on top of the frosted cupcakes.