The One Cupcake Recipe You’ll Need For The Holidays

Atlanta Eats | Mom Thyme


When asked to choose between savory and sweet, I’ll usually pick savory each and every time (especially if it’s salty or crunchy!). For some reason, I’ve never really had much of a sweet tooth. The one exception to this – when it comes to one of my very favorite recipes by Ina Garten, Coconut Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting. I’ll admit, I find these cupcakes to be ABSOLUTELY IRRESISTIBLE! 

I first made these cupcakes a few weeks ago for my Mom’s birthday dinner and, at the end of the evening, there wasn’t a single one left. They look and taste like cupcakes you’d buy from a high-end bakery and, after making them for the first time, you’re going to smile with pride and think, “Wow! I can’t believe I just made these from scratch!!” 

Now, the ingredient list may look a little long at first, but don’t let that deter you from whipping up these scrumptious treats (I promise you it’s worth it!). It’s important to note that you’ll need a stand mixer with a paddle attachment in order to make both the cupcakes and the frosting. I like to pipe my frosting on the cupcakes using a Wilton Tip 1M (it’s included in the Wilton Extra Large Tip Set, this tip set is pretty inexpensive and can be found in the cake decorating section of Wal-Mart or Target). However, it’s perfectly fine to frost the cupcakes with just a knife or spatula. You’ll find that the Cream Cheese Frosting is super easy to make, spreads very easily on the cupcakes, and, is so delicious it’s impossible not to eat it straight out of the mixing bowl! 

Perfect for birthdays, holidays (instantly turn these into Halloween cupcakes with a little orange food coloring), or any type of celebration, I’m certain that these cupcakes will soon become one of your family’s very favorite desserts too! Enjoy!

Coconut Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes 20 – 24 cupcakes

¾ pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 cups sugar

5 extra-large eggs at room temperature

1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1 ½ teaspoons pure almond extract

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon kosher salt

1 cup buttermilk

14 ounces sweetened, shredded coconut

For the frosting:

1 pound cream cheese at room temperature

¾ pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

½ teaspoon pure almond extract

1 ½ pounds confectioners’ sugar, sifted


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on high speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the eggs, 1 at a time, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix well.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In 3 parts, alternately add the dry ingredients and the buttermilk to the batter, beginning and ending with the dry. Mix until just combined. Fold in 7 ounces of coconut.

Line a muffin pan with paper liners. Fill each liner to the top with batter. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until the tops are brown and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove to a baking rack and cool completely.

Meanwhile, make the frosting. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, on low speed, cream together the cream cheese, butter, and vanilla and almond extracts. Add the confectioners’ sugar and mix until smooth.

Frost the cupcakes and sprinkle with the remaining coconut.

Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten


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