These Lemon Coconut Cupcakes are as tasty as they are festive! Fluffy & moist lemon cupcakes topped with the most amazing coconut whipped frosting and toasted coconut.
Normally I’m a cake girl through-and-through. I really couldn’t care less for frosting. It’s usually overly sweet – sickening almost – and piled on so high that I can basically feel my teeth falling out.
As a kid, I’d get a slice of birthday cake at a friend’s party and use the fork to scrape allllll the icing off to one side of the plate. I’d then get a new fork (since the first was tainted with frosting, obvi) and eat the bare cake, handing the frosting remnants to my mom, who happily ate straight buttercream.
Clearly I didn’t inherit that gene.
But this frosting – this wonderfully sweet and nutty and creamy frosting – is to-die for. No joke.
I could not. stop. eating. the frosting.
The frosting is the same frosting I made a trillion years ago for my Triple Coconut Cupcakes. It’s light and creamy and fluffy and just totally perfect. And it’s made with a surprise ingredient: coconut instant pudding mix!
If you can’t find the pudding mix, simply make a coconut whipped cream frosting, but I really think the pudding adds a wonderful extra dose of coconut flavor, and makes the frosting extra creamy & smooth. Try it my way just once – I have a feeling you won’t go back 🙂
In fact, I gave these cupcakes to my sweetie pie downstairs neighbor who declared these the BEST cupcakes she’s ever had. Just sayin’!
The frosting sits atop a buttery, zesty lemon cupcake that’s moist and has a lovely, tender crumb. It’s bright and fruity from the fresh lemon zest swirled throughout and makes for a great tart contrast to the sweet & nutty frosting. And of course, the whole thing is dredged in toasted coconut because toasted coconut = life.
Now I don’t know about you, but I need a cupcake.
- FOR THE CUPCAKES:
- 1 box lemon cake mix
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup lemon juice
- ½ cup oil
- 3 eggs
- One 3.4 ounce box INSTANT dry lemon pudding mix
- Zest of one lemon
- FOR THE FROSTING & TOPPING:
- One 3.4 ounce box INSTANT dry coconut cream pudding mix
- 1 cup cold milk
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp coconut extract
- 4 ounces whipped cream cheese (about ½ of a tub)
- 2 cups whipped topping or fresh whipped cream
- About 2 cups toasted coconut for garnishing
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 muffin tins with 16-18 paper liners. Set aside.
- Beat the cake mix, water, lemon juice, oil, eggs, lemon pudding mix and lemon zest together with an electric mixer until smooth, about 2 minutes. Portion the batter evenly among the muffin cups, filling about ¾ full.
- Bake for approx. 15-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Cool completely.
- While the cupcakes bake, make the frosting: Whisk together the coconut cream pudding mix, the milk, and the powdered sugar together until thickened, about 2 minutes. Beat in the coconut extract and whipped cream cheese until smooth. Fold in the whipped cream/topping. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until set.
- Pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcakes and cover the frosting with the toasted coconut. Store in the fridge, covered.
Lemony, zesty cupcakes topped with that heavenly coconut pudding frosting… this recipe is a must-make for springtime!
Have a super sweet Tuesday!