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White Chocolate Coconut Cake

This eye-catching cake is my own creation. The white "snowball" look makes it the perfect choice for a holiday celebration. —Greta Kirby, Carthage, Tennessee
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 1 package white cake mix (regular size)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 can (15 ounces) cream of coconut, divided
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 can (5 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 2/3 cup vanilla or white chips
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 3-1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
  • 1/4 cup sugar


  • In a large bowl, combine the cake mix, water, 3/4 cup cream of coconut and egg whites; beat on low speed for 30 seconds. Beat on medium for 2 minutes.
  • Pour into three greased and floured 9-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 22-26 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  • For filling, in a small saucepan, combine the evaporated milk, chips, cream cheese, 3 tablespoons heavy cream and remaining cream of coconut; cook and stir over low heat until chips are melted.
  • Remove from the heat; stir in 1-1/2 cups coconut and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Transfer to a large bowl; cover and refrigerate until mixture reaches spreading consistency, stirring occasionally.
  • For frosting, in a large bowl, beat remaining cream until it begins to thicken. Add sugar and remaining vanilla; beat until stiff peaks form.
  • Place bottom cake layer on a serving plate; spread with half of the filling. Repeat layers. Top with remaining cake layer. Frost top and sides of cake; sprinkle with remaining coconut. Refrigerate leftovers.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 625 calories, 32g fat (23g saturated fat), 36mg cholesterol, 436mg sodium, 80g carbohydrate (61g sugars, 1g fiber), 6g protein.

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  • Melissa
    Jul 3, 2018

    This is one of the most impressive looking, and best tasting, cakes I have ever made. I used two boxes of cake mix because I felt the layers were too thin. I had a little trouble with the filling being too runny so I cut back on the liquid and doubled the white chocolate and cream cheese. Cooking it a little longer did help it thicken up as well. You almost have to experiment to see what works best for you. I did end up doubling the icing recipe just because I needed more coverage and I like it thick. Every time I make it, it’s a hit!!!

  • batemanj
    Mar 3, 2018

    Didn't use the evaporated milk(due to others reviews) but wondering if the small can of evaporated milk(not the bigger can) would make a difference with people who complained of too runny filling. I did have to use more cream since I did not use the canned milk. Cake was very good!

  • Rebecca
    Jan 10, 2018

    I've made this cake twice during the Christmas holidays, but read the reviews first. Here are my recommendations: Don't add the evaporated milk. It's not needed. I also used heavy coconut, but did not stir the coconut and only added the cream that floated to the top for the filling. This resulted in a thicker filling that didn't need as long to set. When I make this the next time, I will make the cake from scratch to increase the depth of the cake layers. The cake mix made layers that seemed too small. Otherwise, this was a wonderful cake and I got rave reviews.

  • mrichards1993
    Aug 6, 2015

    This recipe is amazing, but I also had some difficulty with the filling the first time I made it. My solution was to omit the evaporated milk which fixes the problem (and reduces the cost of the cake). I allow the filling to bubble for a few minutes, then I transfer it to a metal bowl seated inside of a larger bowl filled with ice. I stir it every few minutes until it reaches the desired consistency. This has become one of my signature cakes. Delicious!**UPDATED REVIEWI think that I may have figured out part of the issue with the filling. My local grocery store stopped carrying the brand of cream of coconut that I had been using and I ended up buying a new brand which was not as thick. My filling did not set, no matter what I did to it. I think the bulk of the issue is that the evaporated milk is unnecessary, but the other variable here is the brand and consistency of the cream of coconut. I had the best success with Goya cream of coconut. Now if only I could find it again...

  • Shar55
    Mar 18, 2015

    I haven't attempted this cake yet but coconut is my favorite cake. I did read all the reviews and couldn't believe how many made it only to fail. If you think about it the chips will set up and the cream cheese will set up as it chills. That should be enough to thicken it as it cools down so I will add another 1/4 cup of chips to thicken it up if it doesn't do what its suppose to. You want a frosting consistency so you don't want to make it to thick..... cannot wait to make it myself. As for the outside, I will buy a big container of cool whip and finish it off with that! I have so many cake recipes that call for Cool Whip............ don't know why it wouldn't work for this cake and I have a coconut cake recipe that calls for yellow cake mix....don't know why it wouldn't work for this instead of white, yellow has much more flavor.

  • dreamingfordragons
    Mar 15, 2015

    I found a lot of difficulty making this cake. To begin, the recipe tells you to divide the five ounces of evaporated milk, however it also tells you to put all of it into the filling. It also does not tell you how long you are supposed to let the filling sit in the fridge. This recipe is extremely flawed and needs to be edited with correct instructions.

  • LindaCarr
    Jan 31, 2015

    This cake is very impressive looking and delicious too. If you love coconut this is the cake to make.

  • djrachels
    Jan 30, 2015

    It tastes great. It took forever to thicken I even put in freezer . It was enough for 5 cakes. It ran over the sides. Too much of something in filling. I will try again. The frosting needed tripled. Thank you

  • Sassy Grandma
    Feb 7, 2014

    The recipe calls for evaporated milk, but some people said they used condensed sweetened milk. Which is it? I made it, and it was very yummy. I had trouble getting the filling to set up also. I added more white chocolate to make it thicker. I used evaporated milk. The sweetened condensed would make it thicker.

  • MomsCorner
    Feb 6, 2013

    Taste is great and well worth making again, but will make as a poke cake in a 9x13 pan.