Coconut Lime Cupcakes
In addition to the brownie pops I made for the surprise party we threw, I also made some cupcakes. Hubby’s mom calls me the cupcake queen and always asks me to make some for special occasions. Last year for her birthday I made Pina Colada cupcakes which she loved. She really enjoys coconut cake. This year I wanted to do something a bit different. I love the flavor combo of coconut and lime, so I decided to go with it. I have made Coconut Margarita cupcakes before, but I wanted to have kid-friendly cupcakes, and I am not one to remake a recipe (my To-Bake list is just too long to justify that!), so I set out to find a lime and coconut cake recipe. I came across this one in my Google Reader just a couple days after deciding to go with coconut and lime. I knew it was a sign.
I wanted the cupcakes to be fresh, so I packed up my KAM and all my baking supplies and brought them to the party location with me. I baked them up that morning and was so glad I did. I’m definitely keeping my baking supplies packed up like this in case I need to bake at someone else’s house while our kitchen is being renovated. I meant to grab a picture of my KAM buckled into the back seat like a small child, but I forgot, and I don’t think Hubby would want to carry it back out to the car just for a picture…
These little cupcakes got rave reviews. A ton of people at the party asked me for the recipe and they disappeared very quickly. I left the pineapple out of the recipe and doubled the amount of lime zest in the frosting. I also used more coconut extract and less vanilla extract to really enhance the coconut flavor in the cake. I liked this coconut cake recipe much more than the one from the Pina Colada cupcakes. I used foil mini-cupcake liners so I didn’t need to use a cupcake pan. Other than that, I followed the directions exactly. I got about 60 mini cupcakes from the recipe and had barely enough frosting. The cupcakes baked for about 18 minutes.
One note about coconut cream. Be sure you use coconut cream not coconut milk. They have very different consistencies. Look in the aisle where the cocktail mixes are since coconut cream is used in Pina Coladas. I found a squeeze bottle of coconut cream that had a recipe for Pina Coladas that I’m definitely going to have to try…
Coconut Cupcakes with Lime Cream Cheese frosting – makes ~60 mini cupcakes – found on Cook Like a Champion – originally from Ladies’ Home Journal
1 cup unsalted butter, softened, plus additional for pans
3 cups cake flour, plus additional for pans
1 tablespoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup cream of coconut
1/4 cup whole milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract – I used 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 teaspoon coconut extract – I used 1 tsp coconut extract
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 large whole eggs
3 large egg whites
Preheat oven to 325° and line the bottom of 2 buttered 9×2-inch round cake pans with parchment (I used mini cupcake liners).
Butter paper and dust pans with flour, knocking out excess flour.
Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
Whisk together cream of coconut, milk, and extracts in a bowl.
Beat together butter and granulated sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer on high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
Add whole eggs and egg whites, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition, until combined well.
On low speed, beat in flour mixture and cream of coconut mixture alternately in batches, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until just combined (do not overbeat).
Pour batter evenly into the prepared cake pans (about 2-3/4 cups per pan) and smooth tops.
Bake cake layers in middle of oven until golden and a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes (my mini cupcakes baked for about 18 minutes).
Transfer pans to racks and let cool for 5 minutes.
Run a small knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Peel off paper, then invert layers right side up and cool (I let my cupcakes cool on a rack).
Lime Cream Cheese Frosting
12 ounces cream cheese, not whipped
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon finely grated fresh lime zest – I used 2 Tbsp or the zest of 3 limes
2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/2 cup chopped, drained, canned pineapple chunks – I omitted
5 1/2 ounces unsweetened or sweetened flaked coconut
Beat cream cheese in a large bowl with an electric mixer until fluffy.
Beat in butter and lime zest until smooth.
Slowly beat in confectioners’ sugar on low speed until smooth for frosting.
I skipped the next few steps and just piped the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes. I only sprinkled coconut on some of the cupcakes since not everyone likes coconut flakes. Here are the directions for making a layer cake:
Transfer 1 cup of frosting to a bowl and fold in pineapple for filling.
Place 1 cake layer on a serving platter and spread top evenly with filling.
Refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes.
Top with second layer, then spread top and sides with frosting.
Chill cake until frosting is slightly firm.
Coat top and sides of cake evenly with coconut flakes.