Coconut Cake with Seven-minute Frosting

Homemade Coconut Cake is a delightful cake made from scratch with a rich and luscious seven-minute frosting that never fails. This cake has been a family favorite for special occasions and holidays all year round. I stumbled upon this recipe in an old box of my grandmother’s papers. She had typed it out on her company letterhead and even wrote “Real good” next to it. After giving it a try, I have to agree with her! This cake is incredibly moist and delicious. It’s so good that you may find yourself chasing crumbs around your plate with your finger.

You can enhance the cake’s flavor by adding a sprinkle of coconut and topping it off with the foolproof seven-minute frosting. The great thing about this frosting is that you don’t need a double boiler to make it, and it always turns out perfectly, regardless of the weather. If you plan to make a layer cake and love generous amounts of frosting, consider doubling the frosting recipe.

Coconut Cake with Seven-minute Frosting

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 43 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 13 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American


Basic 1-2-3-4 Cake:

  • 1 cup 2 sticks butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups sifted self-rising flour
  • substitute all-purpose flour + 4 1/2 t powder + 1 1/2 t salt
  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut

Frosting(7 min):

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar or 1 tablespoon white corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Flaked sweetened coconut, for sprinkling


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) cake pans. (I also use parchment paper) Using an electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugar and continue to cream well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and milk alternately to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and continue to beat until just mixed. Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 3 or 4 inches above the counter, then dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure you of a more level cake. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until done. Remove cake layers from oven and allow the cake to remain in pans as you prepare to stack and fill. Remove the first layer and invert onto a cake plate. Using the wrong end of a wooden spoon, poke holes approximately 1-inch apart until the entire cake has been poked. Spread 1/3 of filling mixture on the cake layer. Top with second layer, repeat process. Top with the last layer and repeat process again.
  • While the cake is baking, prepare to fill. Stir together sugar, sour cream, milk, and coconut in a bowl until well blended.

Prepare 7-Minute Frosting.

  • Place sugar, cream of tartar or corn syrup, salt, water, and egg whites in the top of a double boiler. Beat with a handheld electric mixer for 1 minute. Place pan over boiling water, being sure that boiling water does not touch the bottom of the top pan. (If this happens, it could cause your frosting to become grainy). Beat constantly on high speed with an electric mixer for 7 minutes. Beat in vanilla.
  • Frost top and sides of the cake. Sprinkle top and sides of cakes with additional coconut.
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