Outer Banks Gluten Free Baker Blog

Gluten-Free Coconut Cake

Gluten-Free Coconut Cake

Gluten-Free Coconut Cake---

Coconut Cake is a special treat that my grandmother made one time a year, usually around Christmas. This is a tradition, from the pomp and circumstance of opening a fresh coconut (or three), to moist cake from scratch. There are  no mixes for this recipe. That being said, this recipe is not conducive to saving time or being easy. However, the results are fabulous! 

Let's make some Gluten-Free Coconut Cake! 



  • 1 1/2 cups milk, whole
  • 3 1/4 cups gluten-free all purpose flour (we used Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour)
  • 2 1/2 sticks butter
  • 4 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 6 eggs, large
  • 3 tsp. vanilla extract

Buttercream icing:

  • 4 sticks butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 (2 lb.) bag powdered sugar
  • 6 tsp. heavy whipping cream
  • 5 cups fresh coconut, grated


  • Use fresh coconuts, drill holes and drain water into a small container, use a hammer and crack the coconut shell in half.

  • Use knife to remove the meat, remove the outer skin, shred with a food processor or grater.

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Spray and flour (gluten-free) three 9 in. round cake pans.
  • Add butter and milk to small pot, heat until butter is melted, set aside to cool.

  • In a medium mixing bowl, add gluten-free flour, salt, and baking powder. Whisk well.

  • In a small mixing bowl, add eggs and sugar. Beat well with hand mixer.

  • In the medium mixing bowl, add the egg mixture, the room temperature butter/milk, and  the vanilla extract to the flour mixture. Combine well. Evenly the divide the batter to the cake pans. Bake for 25 minutes until golden. Set aside to cool for icing.

To make the buttercream:

  • In a medium mixing bowl, beat the butter and vanilla flavoring until creamy.

  • Slowly add the powdered sugar. Mix until smooth. Add the whipping cream one teaspoon at a time until the desired consistency.

  • Add coconut and fold into the buttercream. 

  • Assemble the cake by adding the first layer, topping with the buttercream. Repeat with the other two layers. Cover the assembled cake with the coconut buttercream.

VIOLA! We have gluten-free Coconut Cake! 

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