Pineapple Coconut Cake

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I love Pineapple and coconut together, and in today's Pineapple Coconut Cake, we're combining moist pineapple cake layers with a thick pineapple filling and coconut cream cheese frosting.

This cake is a slice of heaven, and PERFECT for spring and summer gatherings!

Pineapple Coconut Cake Recipe

I love that we finally have a pineapple cake recipe to share, we've been wanting to add one for a while now! (Our other Pineapple Cake is absolutely delicious but uses yellow cake layers with a pineapple & cream filling).

The pineapple flavor in today's cake layers comes from crushed pineapple pieces in the batter as well as pineapple juice.  

Assembling the Pineapple Coconut Cake

When it was time to assemble our cake, we placed the first cake layer on the cake plate, then piped a dam of cream cheese frosting about ¼ inch from the edge. 

Next, we filled inside of the dam with a layer of coconut cream cheese frosting, followed by a layer of pineapple filling.

Then, I repeated these steps for the next layer of pineapple cake. After adding the final layer, check to see if you have any gaps in between your layers.

You can fill those with more cream cheese frosting. (This helps to prevent air pockets and also prevents your filling from escaping.)

I chilled my cake at this point for about 20 minutes in the freezer to firm things up so that I could frost the cake without worry of the layers sliding around while I frosted. This can sometimes happen with softer fillings. 

Decorating the Pineapple Coconut Cake

The easiest way to decorate a coconut cake is to cover it with shredded coconut! Hooray for quick and easy decorating!

After chilling the cake, I frosted the top and sides of the cake with cream cheese frosting and immediately pressed in the shredded sweetened coconut all over. So pretty!

Delicious Pineapple Coconut Cake

Recipe FAQs

Yes, these cake layers can be frozen! After baking, allow the layers to cool and then wrap each cake layer in plastic wrap followed by aluminum foil. (We often wrap ours while they are still a bit warm.)

For more support, we like to place each layer on a foil wrapped cake board before wrapping. Then, into the freezer they go! They will stay fresh for up to three months!

To thaw, move the wrapped cake layers from the freezer to the kitchen counter. Keep them wrapped for 30-45 minutes or until condensation stops forming on the wrapping. Then, unwrap and thaw to desired amount. (Some bakers prefer to assemble their cakes while they are still partially frozen. as they are less fragile.)

For today's pineapple cake, we didn't use any pineapple extract or pineapple baking emulsion. However, you could if you would like!

The crushed pineapple in the cake, along with the juice, gives it a delicious, yet light pineapple flavor.

If we weren't using pineapple in the filling as well, I may have added a tiny bit of pineapple extract (1 tsp) to give it an extra boost. However, that wasn't necessary with this recipe because of the homemade pineapple filling.

This cake is bursting with pineapple flavor, and is perfectly balanced with the coconut in the recipe! (If I could have gotten away with eating the entire bowl of coconut cream cheese frosting, I would have, it is just that good!) I can't wait for you to try it!

Yes, because of the pineapple filling and coconut cream cheese frosting, this cake should be refrigerated, preferably in an airtight container or under a cake dome.

For best flavor and texture, remove the cake from the refrigerator a couple of hours before serving. This will give the pineapple coconut cake time to warm and soften.

More Spring and Summer Cakes

This Pineapple Coconut Cake is a perfect birthday cake recipe or special occasion cake no matter what the season, but we especially love it in the spring and summer!

It reminds me in some ways of our Pina Colada Cake, only there's no rum flavor- haha- and also, the roles are reversed as our Pina Colada Cake has coconut cake layers.

Other favorites are our Strawberry Cake, Lemon Cake Recipe, Raspberry Cake, and Orange Cake!

Make sure to check out our full roundup of the BEST Cake Recipes for Spring and Summer!

Thanks so much for stopping by! We hope that you give this Pineapple Coconut Cake a try! Don't miss our other pineapple cakes, including our Pineapple Dream Cake, Pineapple Cake, and Pineapple Upside Down Cake!

Make sure to check out our full Cake Recipes section, which includes favorite Cake Recipes from Scratch as well as Cake Mix Recipes!

Yield: 15 servings

Pineapple Coconut Cake

This Pineapple Coconut Layer Cake is moist and so moist and flavorful!

This moist and flavorful Pineapple Coconut Cake consists of homemade pineapple cake layers with a delicious pineapple filling and coconut cream cheese frosting!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Additional Time 35 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients

For the Pineapple Cake Layers

  • 3 cups (342g) cake flour (**see below if you do not have cake flour)
  • 1 Tablespoon (12g) baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt (2g)
  • 6 egg whites (180g)
  • ¾ cup (8oz.) (227g) crushed pineapple in juice, do not drain juice
  • ⅔ cup (152g) milk
  • 1 teaspoon (4g) vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup (54g) vegetable oil ( we used Canola Oil)
  • 2 cups (400g) sugar
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) (226g) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • **Substitution for cake flour: If you only have all purpose flour (plain in the UK), measure out 3 cups all purpose flour, remove 6 Tablespoons of the all purpose flour and replace it with 6 Tablespoons cornstarch (corn flour in the UK). Whisk to blend and proceed with the recipe.

For the Pineapple Filling:

  • One 20 ounce can (567g) of crushed pineapple
  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons (14g) cornstarch

For the Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 2 sticks (1 cup) (226g) unsalted butter, slightly softened
  • 2 (8oz.) packages cream cheese (452g. is the total gram weight) use full fat cream cheese, slightly softened. Using reduced fat will cause it to be too soft
  • 1 ½ teaspoons (6g) coconut extract (adjust to your liking)
  • 1 teaspoon (4g) vanilla extract
  • 6 to 6 ½ cups ( 747g) powdered sugar
  • pinch salt

For Outside of Cake

  • 1 bag (14oz (396g) of sweetened coconut

Instructions

For the Cake Layers

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, grease and flour 3 (8 inch) round pans and place a circle of waxed or parchment paper in the bottom of each pan. Cakes with fruit have a tendency to stick
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt for at least 30 seconds to blend.
  3. In another bowl, add the egg whites, crushed pineapple +juice, milk, vanilla and vegetable oil. Blend with a fork
  4. In the bowl of your mixer add the butter and beat at medium speed until soft and smooth. Gradually add the sugar and continue to beat until lightened in color and fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes, longer if using a hand mixer.
  5. Alternately add the flour mixture and the wet ingredients, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients (3 additions of dry and 2 of wet). Beat on low to medium speed until the ingredients are mixed in. Do not mix above medium speed or over mix. 
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, check at 18 minutes. When a toothpick pulls out clean or with just a few crumbs attached, the cake is done.
  7. Cool the cakes on a cooling rack for 5 minutes then turn out. Makes 7 ½ cups batter
  • This cake recipe can be used for cupcakes also and the layers are sturdy enough for fondant.

For the Pineapple Filling

  • Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and cook over medium heat. When the mixture begins to boil, stir constantly until it begins to thicken, approximately 1 to 2 minutes.
  • Keep in mind that it will thicken even more as it cools. Cool completely in refrigerator before using.

For the Coconut Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Add the butter to the mixing bowl and beat until smooth.
  2. Add the cream cheese that has been cut into small to medium size pieces, beating with the butter until well blended and smooth.
  3. Add the coconut and vanilla extracts
  4. Slowly add the powdered sugar, beating until smooth. Do not beat above medium speed or for too long. The longer you beat the softer the frosting becomes. If it becomes too soft to pipe, just refrigerate for a short while.
  5. Use the frosting while it is still chilled. If it becomes too soft, refrigerate until it firms up a bit or put in the freezer for 5 minutes or so to return to a good piping consistency.

Assembly:

To assemble the cake, place your first layer on your pedestal or cake board. Then pipe a dam of the cream cheese frosting about ¼ inch from the edge of the cake. Fill with cream cheese frosting followed by pineapple filling.

Repeat for the next layer. Fill in any gaps with your cream cheese frosting and freeze for about 15-20 minutes to firm things up. (I often do this with cakes that have soft fillings so that the layers don't slide around while frosting).

Frost the cake and immediately press on your flaked coconut.

This cake needs to be refrigerated until within a couple of being served.

 

 

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48 Comments

  1. Hi Seryll, You can frost 12 cupcakes with 1 cup of frosting, piping a simple low swirl using a 1M or 2D piping tip. You could also just frost using a spatula. Cutting the recipe in half, I think you should have enough because you will have 3 to 3 1/2 cups frosting. I am not sure about cutting the filling in half. It could depend on how long you cook down the filling.

  2. Hi Linda, The recipe should work well in a 9x13 pan. I think you need at least 7 cups of batter for a 9x13 pan and this recipe has 7 1/2 cups. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 min. Check on it at 30 minutes. It will be done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean or with just a few crumbs attached. After the cake cools spread with the cooled pineapple filling. You will probably need to pipe on the frosting then finish with a spatula. Hope you will enjoy the cake.

  3. Can I make this with cupcakes? If so how long do I bake? I’m going to use the pineapple filling to put inside the cupcakes before adding cream cheese on the top.

  4. Hi Monique, Yes, the cake recipe will work for cupcakes. For standard size cupcakes bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes, keep an eye on them. Since I have not tried the filling in cupcakes, I don't know how much filling you will need. You may be able to make 1/2 of the filling recipe, just not sure. The cupcakes will need refrigeration, taking out 30 minutes to 1 hour before serving.

  5. I used this recipe for the filling and icing for my coconut cake recipe. The filling and icing were delicious! I'd half t he icing recipe next time since I am only icing the outside. Definitely making again.

  6. I also made the cake flour recipe u listed,the cake came out kind of dense no soft crumb like cake flour gives u kinda disappointed with this recipe.

  7. OH THANK YOU! I can't tell you how much I appreciate your helpful site!!! I have struggled with making cakes.....until I found you! This time it was a huge success! I'm so grateful to have found your website.

    1. I'm sorry, I must have missed your comment earlier but I'm so glad to hear that you are enjoying the recipes! Thanks for your feedback! ;0) xo

  8. Made this for my family for Thanksgiving. It was amazing! It was gone before the day was over. If this recipe had a rating between 1-5... I'd give a 6!