I can hardly believe that around this time last year we were getting ready to move into our very first home! And while it’s been a whirlwind of a year, with a lot of wins and just as many losses, I can say with certainty that homeownership has taught me more about myself than I ever imagined.
I’ve learned to practice gratitude and patience in the same breath, and most importantly, I’ve learned when and how to confront my husband with bad news. For instance, when a pipe is leaking through the ceiling - call immediately! But if an animal dies in the wall, maybe just wait until he gets home.
Together, we've learned that owning an older home isn't for the faint of heart, but we're stronger and more resilient for it and we'll be mighty grateful when this old gal is fixed up and humming along.
So what does all this have to do with these lil mini coconut cakes?? Absolutely nothing! Except the fact that this year, we get to spend Easter at home with family (instead of eating pizza on a table made of boxes) and at Mama Bird's house, Easter means coconut cake!
These here Mini Key Lime Coconut Cakes (AKA Jumbo Cupcakes) are light, fluffy and not overly sweet. They feature just a hint of key lime and coconut and are best served with a big ole dollop of key-lime infused whipped cream. Top them off with a sprinkle of toasted coconut flakes and you have yourself one delish dessert!
I look forward to enjoying these sweet little cakes this weekend with my family and I hope you do as well!
Mini Key Lime Coconut Cakes
* Makes 6 mini cakes (aka large cupcakes) or 10-12 small cupcakes
- I used this 6-cup muffin tin to yield these mini cakes
- If you have trouble finding desiccated coconut (I purchased mine at Sprouts), you may substitute unsweetened shredded coconut. Shredded coconut has a bit more moisture content, but it will work!
- You can find coconut extract at most major grocers (Publix, Kroger, etc.) but if you cannot find any, just use an extra 1/4 tsp. of vanilla extract.
for the cakes:
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter, softened
- 1/3 + 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1.5 cups cake flour
- 1.5 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- zest and juice of 3 key limes (or 1 large lime)
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup desiccated coconut
- Large coconut flakes, toasted, for garnish (about 1/2 cup or more as desired)
for the whipped cream
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 Tbsp. lime zest
- 1-2 Tbsp. sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Then, grease and flour a jumbo 6-cup muffin tin. If you are using paper liners, you can skip that step.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, desiccated coconut and salt. Set aside. Next, place coconut flakes in a skillet and toast on low heat. Remove once they begin to brown, place in a bowl and set aside.
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, or another medium bowl, cream together the softened butter and sugars using the paddle attachment for about 2-3 minutes or until fluffy.
- Then, add in one egg at a time, mixing after each egg until just incorporated. Then add in the lime juice, lime zest, vanilla and coconut extracts and mix until just combined. Lastly, add in the coconut milk and stir until just combined.
- Next, add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir together, being mindful not to overstir.
- Then, distribute the batter evenly among the muffin cups, to about 2/3 full. Place in the oven and let bake at 350 degrees F., for about 22-26 minutes, checking for doneness around 22 minutes. The mini cakes are fully baked when a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Once baked, remove and let cool for about 5 minutes in the pan. Then, transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- While the mini cakes cool, make the whipped cream. Add the heavy whipping cream, sugar and lime zest to the bowl of your stand mixer and mix on high until stiff peaks form. Tip: Make sure the heavy whipping cream is very cold. You can also place the mixing bowl in the fridge/freezer before mixing to help.
- Once the mini cakes have cooled, top with whipped cream using your favorite icing tip or a good ole fashioned dollop. Then, sprinkle with toasted coconut and a slice of lime and serve!