- 1 box (18.5 ounces) Butter Recipe Cake Mix (I prefer Duncan Hines Moist Deluxe Butter Recipe Cake Mix)
- 1 box (3.9 ounces) vanilla instant pudding
- ½ cup sugar
- ¼ cup oil
- ¾ cup coconut milk
- 4 large eggs
- 8 ounces sour cream
- 1 pound cream cheese, at room temperature
- ½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract
- 1 pound confectioner’s sugar, sifted
- 6 ounces sweetened shredded coconut, toasted
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease and flour two 8- or 9-inch round cake pans. I recommend lining the bottom of your cake pan with parchment paper. It makes it easier to remove from the pan.
Combine cake mix, instant pudding and sugar in mixing bowl. Mix with a whisk to remove any lumps. Add the next 4 ingredients and with a hand-held or standing mixer on medium low; mix until combined. Scrape down sides and bottom of mixing bowl with a spatula to make sure all dry ingredients are incorporated. Continue to mix on medium-high for about 2 minutes. Divide batter evenly in your two cakes pans.
Bake at 350 degrees for 45–50 minutes or until cake is a nice golden brown and you can insert a toothpick or cake tester and it comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10–15 minutes on a wire cooling rack, then remove cakes from pan, remove parchment paper and allow to completely cool on a wire cooling rack. I usually make the cake the night before and wrap in plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator overnight. I find that cold cakes are easier to frost and you end up with fewer crumbs in your frosting.
In an electric mixer or with a hand-held mixer on medium-high, cream the cream cheese, butter, sugar, vanilla and almond extract until it is light and fluffy. Reduce the speed to medium-low and slowly add the confectioner’s sugar and mix until smooth. Spread shredded coconut on a baking sheet and place in 350-degree oven for about 5 minutes. Coconut toasts quickly, so keep a close eye on it until it reaches a light golden color.
If your cakes are domed on the tops, take a serrated knife and cut tops flat. Place first layer on cake plate and frost the top only. Place second layer on top of the first and frost the cake starting with the top, then the sides. Once cake is frosted, allow to chill in the refrigerator for about 15-20 minutes. Once chilled, you can cover just the top or the top and sides with the toasted coconut.
Option: For a cute Easter cake, you can skip the toasted coconut and use a drop or two of green food color to make the shredded coconut “grass” green. Cover top and sides of cake with “grass” and decorate with jelly beans or Easter decorations.