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This pretty coconut cake from Paula Deen is infused with delicious, coconutty flavor. She uses a boxed cake mix to help speed things along, but makes the layers and frosting from scratch.

For another take on coconut cake (with 2 store-bought shortcuts!), check out this Coconut Cake recipe from Buddy Valastro.


For the cake:
  • 1 box (18 ¼ ounces) yellow cake mix
  • Whole milk, as called for by cake mix
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 12 ounces canned or frozen shredded coconut
For the frosting:
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons light corn syrup or ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • About ½ cup shredded sweetened coconut


Preheat the oven to 350 °F. Grease three 9-inch round cake pans with butter, oil or cooking spray. To make the cake: Follow the directions on the cake mix box, substituting milk for water. Divide the batter among cake pans. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pans for 5 minutes on a wire rack, then remove the cakes from the pans to cool completely.

In a medium bowl, stir together sour cream, sugar and coconut. Spread between the slightly warm cake layers, piercing each layer with a toothpick as you stack them, but don't pierce the top of the top layer. Store the cake in a container in the refrigerator 2-3 days to allow the flavors to soak through.

On the day you are ready to serve the cake, make the frosting: In the top of a double boiler, combine the egg whites, sugar, corn syrup or cream of tartar, and salt. Do not place over the heat; instead beat for 1 minute using a handheld mixer. Then place over simmering water and cook, beating constantly, until the frosting forms stiff peaks. This should take about 7 minutes. Remove from the heat. Add vanilla and beat until it reaches spreading consistency, about 2 minutes. Frost the top and sides of the cake and sprinkle all over with shredded coconut. Besides tasting great, yall, this cake is just so pretty.