Here’s a new favorite recipe in our house. Make the cake in a 9 inch cake pan, or make minis in a muffin pan, or mini loaves. The top is just like a macaroon, and the cake is super moist thanks to coconut milk. It’s best the day it’s baked before the chocolate completely hardens, but is still delicious a day or so later. Since it doesn’t have “frosting” feel free to serve for brunch, afternoon tea, or dessert!
Coconut Chocolate Chunk Cake

Coconut Cake with Chocolate Chunks and Coconut Drizzle


  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1-2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel (dried is OK too)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup canned unsweetened coconut milk
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate bars (do not exceed 61% cacao), broken into 1/2-inch irregular pieces, divided (OR use semisweet or bittersweet morsels)
  • 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut (OR stir unsweetened coconut with some agave nectar until slightly moistened)

Coconut Drizzle:

  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) canned unsweetened coconut milk**
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Generously butter 9-inch-diameter cake pan with 2-inch-high sides; dust pan with flour, shaking out excess. To make mini-cakes, use a muffin pan. You may have extra, in which case you will end up with more than 12 cakes or an additional mini-loaf like I did. Sift 1 3/4 cups flour, baking powder, and sea salt into medium bowl. Stir in unsweetened shredded coconut and set aside. Using electric mixer, beat sugar, butter, and orange peel in large bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Add flour mixture in 3 additions alternately with coconut milk in 2 additions, beating just until blended after each addition. Fold in half of bittersweet chocolate pieces. Spread batter evenly in prepared cake pan. Sprinkle remaining chocolate pieces over batter, then sprinkle with sweetened flaked coconut.

Bake cake until golden and tester inserted into center comes out clean, tenting with sheet of foil if coconut atop cake is browning too quickly, 60 to 70 minutes. Transfer cake to rack and cool in pan 45 minutes. Cakes in a regular sized muffin pan will take around 30 minutes. Check often to make sure they are not getting too brown or overcooked.

Coconut Drizzle
Whisk powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut milk, and vanilla in small bowl to blend well, adding more coconut milk by 1/2 teaspoonfuls until mixture is thin enough to drizzle over cake.

Carefully run small knife around sides of cake to loosen. Invert cake onto platter, then carefully invert again onto another platter, coconut side up. Using small spoon, drizzle powdered sugar mixture decoratively over cake. Cool cake completely on platter.

adapted from Bon Appetit, January 2010