17 Delicious Coconut Dessert Recipes Worth Mastering

Photo: Chris Court

From a beloved coconut-sugar hummingbird cake to a decadent double-coconut cream pie, here are our favorite coconut dessert recipes.

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Chris Court

There are so many coconut products on the market that go beyond sweet flaked coconut. In our coconut dessert recipes, we use everything from unsweetened coconut flakes and sweetened shredded coconut to coconut milk and coconut cream. Each coconut product brings a special flavor and texture to our recipes for cakes, cookies, pies, and donuts.

Looking to make something that requires surprisingly little effort but delivers major flavor? Our crowd-pleasing Chocolate-Coconut Sheet Cake, pictured here, fits the bill and will have family members and friends asking for seconds. That's not the only crave-worthy recipe in this mix. In fact, all of the coconut-based desserts featured here will entice you to go back for more. Our Powdered-Sugar Coconut Layer Cake, for example, is so light yet decadent that we think you won't stop at seconds—it's so good you'll probably want to reach for thirds. Its texture is similar to angel food cake; that's thanks to its use of nine egg whites and cake flour, which has less protein than all-purpose flour resulting in a fine crumb and light texture.

Another guaranteed fan-favorite is our one-pan Chocolate-Chip Oat-Coconut Skillet Cookie. Made with oats, flaked coconut, and chocolate chips, it has a very appealing mouthfeel. Pro tip: The skillet cookie is best eaten warm, so don't be afraid to dig in after it has cooled ever so slightly at room temperature. If a classic cake is more your speed, you'll be pleased to know that we also have a fabulous layer cake recipe. Coconut and lemon flavors come together in our Meyer-Lemon and Coconut Layer Cake, which showcases coconut in the cake, filling, and in the frosting; candied lemons and fresh mint leaves make this a dessert that truly tastes as good as it looks.

For a taste of something sweet any time of the year, make these fabulous coconut dessert recipes.

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Coconut Cloud Cake


This light and airy layer cake is one of our most popular coconut recipes. And for good reason! It's made with cake flour and 14 egg whites (yes, 14!), which creates a cloudlike texture.

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Coconut-Sugar Hummingbird Cake

coconut sugar hummingbird cake
Jonathan Lovekin

Three kinds of coconut are used in the layers of this traditional Southern banana-pineapple cake: coconut sugar, unsweetened shredded coconut, and unsweetened coconut flakes. All add texture and just a hint of sweetness to each of the tiers.

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Almond-Coconut Chewy Chocolate Cookies

almond coconut chewy chocolate cookies
Chris Simpson

These gluten-free wonders are sweet and delicious year-round. They get a bevy of texture from bittersweet chocolate, roasted almonds, and sweetened shredded coconut.

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Chocolate-Chip Oat-Coconut Skillet Cookie

chocolate chip skillet cookie served with ice cream
The Ingalls

What looks like a jaw-dropping dessert for the table is actually a super easy way to impress your friends. Making the dough is no different than any other cookie recipe, but pressing it all into one cast iron pan is so much easier than forming individual cookies.

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Double-Coconut Cream Pie

double-coconut cream pie on gold table cloth
Johnny Miller

This isn't any regular coconut cream pie. The filling includes coconut milk and sweetened shredded coconut for maximum flavor. If that wasn't enough, top homemade whipped cream with shredded coconut for a hint as to what's on the inside.

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Coconut Chiffon Cake with Chocolate Frosting

passover coconut chiffon cake with chocolate frosting
Armando Rafael

Light as air but rich with flavor, this coconut cake makes a sweet ending to a Passover celebration (it's made with matzo cake meal and potato starch). The rich chocolate ganache on top should entice you to cut a slice and dig in.

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Gluten-Free Baked Coconut Donuts

rows of doughnuts on green countertop
Will Anderson

Start your morning off with these picture-perfect doughnuts made with coconut oil, coconut milk, and sweetened shredded coconut. Top with an indulgent chocolate frosting or our raspberry-coconut glaze.

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Meyer-Lemon and Coconut Layer Cake

meyer lemon coconut cake
Johnny Miller

Perfect for a spring soirée, lemon and coconut complement each other in this memorable cake. From the cake to the lemon curd and coconut buttercream, there's bright flavor in every bite.

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Cowboy Coconut Bars


Nutty, chewy, and so sweet, these cookie bars made with pecans, chocolate chips, oats, and coconut will disappear in one, two, three bites. They will stay fresh for two days in an airtight container stored at room temperature.

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Pomegranate-Coconut Trifle

pomegranate coconut trifle with whipped cream
Ryan Liebe

Homemade pomegranate gelatin serves as the base for this lovely layered treat. And while we could eat the coconut pastry cream—made with cream of coconut, heavy cream, egg yolks, and pure vanilla extract—on its own, it's even more magical when paired with a pomegranate-studded, coconut gelatin.

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Powdered-Sugar Coconut Layer Cake

Will Anderson

Even if you forgo the piped Christmas tree pattern on this cake, it's still a stunner. Cake flour and egg whites keep the batter super light and create a fine crumb that falls apart gently when you dig in. It gets its delicious flavor from a combination of coconut milk and sweetened shredded coconut.

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Chocolate, Almond, and Coconut Clusters

Marcus Nilsson

Perfect for garnishing ice cream or pudding, these nutty clusters add crunch and sweetness. Just combine slivered almonds, sugar, flaked coconut, and melted semisweet chocolate, chill, then shape into mounds with a fork.

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Coconut Ice Cream

Mike Krautter

On a hot summer day, you'll want to grab a spoon and dig right into homemade coconut ice cream. The coconut flavor doesn't come from the milky base but from a combination of unsweetened coconut flakes and shredded sweetened coconut.

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Coconut Meringue Cakes

Johnny Miller

Here's a very chic twist on a classic layer cake that requires very little baking. In between thin meringue cookies are heaping scoops of store-bought coconut sorbet. When you don't have a lot of time to spare but want something really impressive, this is the dessert for you.

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Coconut-Lime Bars

coconut lime bars
Romulo Yanes

Macadamia nuts, grated lime zest, and sweetened shredded coconut are the beauty and brains behind these individual tart bars.

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Coconut Rice Puddings with Raspberries

Chris Court

A light, not-too-sweet end to dinner, coconut milk and half-and-half work together to create the creamy base for this fruity dessert.

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Coconut-Chocolate Sundaes

Marcus Nilsson

Remember those Chocolate, Almond, and Coconut Clusters? Now's your time to use them. These fabulously rich vanilla ice cream sundaes feature the clusters along with sweetened shredded coconut and a waterfall of Vanilla-Bourbon Butterscotch Sauce.

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