Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake

This page may contain affiliate links. See my disclosure for more information. Thank you for supporting Flippin' Delicious!

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

This post is Sponsored by Glutino and Earth Balance. As always, all opinions are entirely my own. 

Coconut Layer cake is a classic, especially in the spring. I actually planned to make a dairy free gluten free coconut layer cake before Easter last year. And the year before that.

A layer cake can seem like a daunting and difficult dessert. Last year starting one just took more energy that I had because I had a 5 month old and my house was on the market. The year before I was still in the midst of morning sickness so baking a gluten free coconut layer cake was not in the cards.

But that was because I was planning to make a gluten free coconut layer cake completely from scratch.

NEWS FLASH!

You (and I) don’t need to make everything from scratch!

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

Especially during any holiday season. There is already enough going on. Baking all of the holiday classics from scratch takes time away from the holiday that you could be enjoying with your family and loved ones.

That is why holidays are one of my FAVORITE times to use some shortcuts- like using Glutino’s Old Fashioned Yellow Cake Mix– to make this stunning gluten free coconut layer cake.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

Using a cake mix takes a lot of the “guess work” out of baking and frees up more of your time to dye eggs, eat ham, or do whatever else you love to do during Easter (or any other day.)

I made just a few tweaks to the instructions on the back of the box to make a white cake (instead of a yellow cake) and to add several different layers of coconut flavor. This is no “white-cake-with-coconut-frosting.” It is a dairy free gluten free coconut layer cake, with coconut all the way throughout it.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

Did you catch my recipe for Homemade Coconut Extract? The whole reason I made Homemade Coconut Extract is because I wanted to really pump up the coconut extract in this dairy free gluten free coconut layer cake. The homemade coconut extract does just that! Obviously, you can substitute a store-bought coconut extract if you’d like. Making the coconut extract only takes a few minutes of prep, but you have to start it at least a few days before you plan on baking your cake.

I also used full-fat coconut milk in the frosting and in the cake. I refrigerated my coconut milk to separate the creamy solids to use for the frosting and then I used the remaining liquid for the cake.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

Using Glutino’s Yellow Cake Mix, baking the cake layers was quick and easy.

The frosting was pretty simple to make too.

I just whipped up 2 Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks (to keep it dairy free) with the creamy solids from the coconut milk. Then I added powdered sugar and some of my homemade coconut extract and whipped it up some more. The coconut cream, or whatever you call it, made the frosting silky smooth. It is so light and creamy, and not overly sweet or rich. It really is something else!

If you don’t want to go to the extra effort of separating a can of coconut milk just use the dairy-free option for my easy American buttercream, using Earth Balance, and then add some coconut extract.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

The last secret to the ease of this cake is covering the entire dairy free gluten free coconut layer cake in toasted coconut. It hides any and all cake layering imperfections in its fluffy coconut goodness making this dairy free gluten free coconut layer cake look impressive.

This diary free gluten free coconut layer cake is sure to be the center of attention during your Easter dinner. The shortcuts will be our little secret😉.

Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.
Author:
Recipe type: cake
Serves: 10-12
Ingredients
For the Cake
  • 2 Glutino Old Fashioned Yellow Cake Mixes
  • 1 cup oil (melted coconut oil or vegetable oil)
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon (or 2) homemade coconut extract (will need less if using a commercial coconut extract)
  • 1 cup coconut milk (I used the liquid separated from the solids in a chilled can of full-fat coconut milk. See note)
For the Coconut Buttercream
For the Toasted Coconut
  • 1 bag of shredded coconut (mine was sweetened, but you can use unsweetened if you prefer)
Instructions
To Bake the Cake
  1. Preheat the oven to 350F. Line 2 9inch round cake pans with a parchment paper circle and lightly grease OR lightly grease and dust with gluten-free flour.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together all of the cake batter ingredients until smooth.
  3. Divide evenly between the 2 pans and bake until a toothpick comes out clean, 25-28 minutes.
  4. Let cool before removing from the pans.
For the Coconut Buttercream
  1. In a stand mixer, or using a heavy-duty hand mixer, whip the Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks and the coconut milk solids for approx 5 minutes. It should become fluffy and smooth. If it isn't there yet, just keep whipping. Mine tend to look curdled at first.
  2. Add about half the powdered sugar and the coconut extract, and whip until smooth.
  3. Gradually add more powdered sugar until you have a smooth, spreadable, and not runny frosting. I used the whole bag, but you might need less depending on how much liquid was left in your coconut solids.
To Toast the Coconut
  1. Preheat the oven to 325F. Spread the shredded coconut evenly on a baking sheet. Bake, stirring every 2 minutes for 5-10 minutes or until it is beautifully toasted. It will toast quickly, so keep a close eye on it.
To Stack your Cake
  1. Carefully trim any dome off of the top of each cake layer using a serrated knife.
  2. Place the one layer in the center of your cake plate or stand, securing it with a dab of frosting (optional.)
  3. Spread a layer of frosting on the top, sprinkle with toasted coconut (optional) and then center the second cake layer on top.
  4. Place strips of wax paper on the cake plate, slightly under the edge of the cake, so that the cake plate stays clean while frosting(optional.)
  5. Spread the rest of the cake with an even layer of frosting.
  6. Sprinkle and gently press toasted (or untoasted) coconut all over the cake.
  7. If you used wax paper strips, gently pull them away from the cake before serving.
Notes
Before making the cake or frosting chill a full fat can of coconut milk overnight in the fridge. Open it and then carefully drain off all the liquid, separating the solid coconut cream. I had approx ¾ a cup of solids and 1 cup of liquid, which was exactly what I used in this recipe. If your can of coconut milk has less solids, or a little more, it will be just fine. If you don't have enough liquid, just add enough dairy-free milk to equal 1 cup.

This Dairy Free Gluten Free Coconut Layer Cake is a stunning spring dessert. The toasted coconut sprinkled all over the silky dairy free coconut buttercream hides any imperfections making this is an easy, show-stopping dessert for Easter.

Comments

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Thank you Jules! It was so hard to wait. I didn’t wait a second to smear a little frosting on the trimmings from leveling the cake. I knew in an instant that the cake was a winner.

  1. Jo Locke says

    If I don’t care whether my cake is yellow or white, can I use three whole eggs rather than 6 egg whites?

  2. Lynne says

    Hi Brianna, just made the cake for Easter Sunday dessert. It looks beautiful and the bits that I was eating as I was making it were very good. I did buy the full fat coconut milk but after putting it in the fridge for a couple of hours, it didn’t really separate and the whole thing was very creamy so I just measured out 3/4 cup of that. ( I had coconut milk in my fridge that I used for the cake mix). How runny is the frosting supposed to be? Mine was very runny but as as you said, you can hid a lot of imperfections with the coconut. I’m sure that it will be a hit. Thanks!

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Hi Lynne!
      Your frosting was probably runny because the coconut milk didn’t have enough time to separate and harden. Normally I chill my coconut milk overnight. You’ll end up with a very firm and solid coconut cream and watery liquid. Closer to butter in consistency than cream.
      I am glad that it tasted good, and I hope you enjoyed it. Happy Easter!

  3. says

    I’m eager to try this recipe, but can you please clarify the 4th sentence in NOTES. It’s gobbledygook on my screen. It starts “If your can of coconut milk has . . .” & then becomes unintelligible. Thank you for any help you can give me.

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Sorry Carolyn, somehow the recipe card swapped in a bunch of computer code. I am fixing it right now! It should say “If your can of coconut milk has less solids, or a little more, it will be just fine.”
      Thanks for letting me know so I can fix it.

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      You are very welcome Lauren! It brings me so much joy that you and your family enjoyed it so much!

  4. Renee says

    I’m making this tomorrow for my mothers birthday. I can’t wait to try! I couldn’t find the Glutino yellow cake mix so I had to sub for another gluten free cake mix that requires water and the box contains 25g more. Am I safe to use your receipe or should I follow my box directions and add the water but omit egg yellows and add more egg whites? Thanks 🙂

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Hi Renee!
      I am not sure what changes you’d need to make without experimenting myself with the cake mix.
      I used all egg whites instead of the yolks because I wanted to keep the cake itself as white as possible. You can use whole eggs if you’d prefer. Then I would suggest subbing coconut milk for any of the liquid (water or milk) that it requires. Hope it turned out ok! Happy Birthday to your mom!
      (I usually only check comments once a week, but I check my email at least once a day. If you ever need to email me a question when you don’t have the time to wait a week for an answer go ahead and shoot me an email. flippindelicious(at) gmail (dot) com )

      • Renee says

        Hi! Thanks for your reply. I ended up sticking to your recipe pretty closely. My box mix required the same amount of eggs as the Glutino so I used 6 egg whites. The mix also called for oil (which I used coconut) and water (I used the coconut liquids from a can). It turned out really well! It was amazing, everyone loved it!!

        I did have a problem with the frosting. Not sure if it’s because I used regular butter with the coconut solids or if my butter wasn’t room temperature enough but it looked curdled. I kept mixing and there was a moment when I thought everything would work out and then I added the powdered the sugar and everything went sour again. So I scrapped that and just made a regular butter cream frosting and flavored with coconut. Thanks again for the recipe, it was a HUGE hit 🙂

        • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

          I am happy to hear that!
          The coconut cream can curdle the frosting if it has too much liquid in it. That seems to be a common issue that people have been having.
          I’m so glad that you and your family enjoyed the cake!

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Thanks Erica!
      I don’t think I’m going to have room for any luggage next time I drive through Phoenix. 😉 My entire van will be filled with cakes and cookies. You are going to have to pick your favorites.

  5. says

    My mother-in-law LOVES toasted coconut layer cake. I used to be a cake decorator years ago and I learned from many experienced bakers that you can often ‘fake’ a cake by using a box mix, but don’t ever skimp on the frosting – always make it from scratch 🙂

    Love your recipe, can’t wait to make it (and share it!)

    Thanks,
    ~Christine
    Christine @ Gluten-Free-Bread recently posted…14 Gluten Free Protein Bars, Snack-Worthy and HealthyMy Profile

    • flippindeliciousflippindelicious says

      Thanks Christine! I agree, the frosting should always be fresh, sweet, and fluffy. It is ok to take a shortcut or 2 with the cake 😉

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge