SMiLes by Meg

Coconut Cupcakes

Anyone following my Instagram (@smilesbymeg) knows that Easter dessert involved more than just a Carrot Cake Roll, but also some coconut cupcakes. Since it’s my parents’ anniversary – Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad! – and my mom always insists on celebrating with coconut cake, it seemed fitting to post this recipe now.

Also, I had a ton of work this weekend and no time to bake, but the other story sounded a lot nicer.

Anyways, start by whisking together the flour, baking powder, salt, and coconut in a small bowl and set aside.Coconut Cupcakes - 1Note those red bowls – for every yellow thing in my own kitchen, my mom’s has a red complement.

Next, in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium high speed for about three minutes, until light and fluffy.Coconut Cupcakes - 2 Coconut Cupcakes - 3Add the egg, egg white, and vanilla extract and beat until combined.Coconut Cupcakes - 4 Coconut Cupcakes - 5Add the flour mixture in three separate portions, alternating with two additions of the coconut milk, and beat on low after each addition to incorporate.Coconut Cupcakes - 6 Coconut Cupcakes - 7 Coconut Cupcakes - 8Divide the batter evenly between 12 muffin tins lined with cupcake wrappers.Coconut Cupcakes - 8Bake at 350°F for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. This is the part where I left to go for a run and my mom kindly took them out of the oven. It’s a big step when I trust someone else to remove a baked good from the oven for me. Means I’m trusting their judgment on doneness – something I’m pretty particular about.Coconut Cupcakes - 10Clearly, my mom’s love of coconut means my trust was well-placed. They were perfectly golden when I got back.Coconut Cupcakes - 11Anyways, allow the cupcakes to cool completely and make the frosting. To do that, Beat the butter, vanilla, and coconut extracts together until fluffy. Then add the powdered sugar and continue to beat until desired spreading consistency.Coconut Cupcakes - 12 Coconut Cupcakes - 13Frost the cupcakes and decorate as desired! Coconut Cupcakes - 15I didn’t have my cake decorating kit with me, which meant I had no decorating tips to speak of other than a plastic bag if I felt like getting creative. So I went with the cover-it-with-sprinkles approach.Coconut Cupcakes - 15Then, to bring it one step further, I added the bunnies-on-toothpicks. So many pastels.Coconut Cupcakes - 17Obviously, coconut cupcakes are not Easter-exclusive. So if bunnies and pastels aren’t your thing, do something else. All cupcakes are good cupcakes.

Enjoy!Coconut Cupcakes - 16

Coconut Cupcakes



  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut 
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg + 1 egg white, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut milk, stirred


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract



  1. Whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and coconut in a small bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 3 minutes or until light and fluffy.
  3. Add egg, egg white, and vanilla extract, beating to combine.
  4. Add the flour mixture in 3 additions, alternating with 2 additions of the coconut milk, beating after each addition until smooth.
  5. Distribute batter evenly between 12 cupcake tins lined with papers.
  6. Bake at 350°F for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack.


  1. In a stand mixer fit with the paddle attachment, beat together the butter, vanilla extract, and coconut extract on medium speed until smooth and fluffy.
  2. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until desired consistency.
  3. Frost and decorate cupcakes.

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