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I feel like too few people make desserts from scratch these days.
Of course, I should probably admit that I am one of those people more often than not…
However, I’ve fallen back in love with making cakes like this one from scratch. There’s something about being in the kitchen, making a sweet treat, that totally makes me channel my grandmother.
She was the queen of desserts in our family. My grandmother would always make these elaborate sweets that we would all indulge in every weekend, when we had dinner at her home on Sundays.
I would always try to go over early so I could help her out, and also learn from her brilliance.
I mean, let’s face it, baking can be a bit tricky. If you aren’t paying attention to the measurements and the instructions for the recipe, it’s pretty easy to go wrong quickly.
When it comes to this recipe, I find it’s actually one of the easier ones to make. The ingredients aren’t complicated, and neither are the instructions.
The tart and sweet passion fruit glaze drizzled on top is the cherry on the top of the tropical sundae, so to speak. It gives an extra burst of flavor, and complements the other tasty ingredients in this dessert.
My top tips to make this recipe are:
Make sure that you are using measuring cups for dry ingredients when you should be, instead of wet. You need to spoon the flour into the cups and lightly level it off with the straight edge of a knife.
Use Room Temperature Ingredients
The butter and cream cheese need to be at room temperature, because this will give more volume to the ingredients and they will mix together more thoroughly, resulting in a better finished product.
Alternate the Dry Ingredients
There’s a reason that dry ingredients should be alternated with the liquid that you add to the batter. Start alternating with the dry ingredients, and end with them as well. This way, they will be distributed evenly in the batter. Make sure you don’t overmix.
There’s really something special about a homemade cake, isn’t there? It’s a simple dessert to begin with, but it’s also so easy to customize like what I’ve done with this recipe.
When it’s fresh out of the oven, just take a whiff of the intense scent. Trust me, it’s absolutely fantastic.
It’ll fill you with all the homey feels that you want to have anytime you bake, you know?
When you are enjoying a slice of this dessert, be sure that you have some ocean sounds or even some tropical music going in the background. I swear, if you close your eyes after taking a bite, you can almost feel the warm breeze off the ocean running through your hair.
For a final touch of elegance, pick up some toasted flakes of coconuts at your local store, or order a package online. Sprinkle those on top, and voila! You are ready to dive in.Print
With a slice of macadamia nut coconut cake, you will sail away to tropical bliss. The flavorful crunch in each bite is pure decadence.
For the Cake:
- 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
- 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
- 3 cups granulated sugar
- 6 large eggs
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1 cup chopped roasted and salted macadamia nuts
- 1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut flakes
- 1/3 cup toasted coconut flakes, for garnish
For the Glaze:
- 1/4 cup plus two tablespoons passion fruit juice
- 1 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt pan.
- Add butter and cream cheese to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat on medium speed until creamy, about 2-3 minutes.
- Gradually add sugar and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes.
- Add eggs one at a time, beating until combined between each addition.
- Add half of the flour, and beat until just combined on low speed. Add milk and beat until just combined. Add remaining flour and beat until just combined.
- Fold in vanilla extract, coconut extract, nuts, and 1/2 cup shredded coconut until combined.
- Transfer batter to the pan. Bake for 70-80 minutes, until set and golden brown. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.
- Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool completely on wire rack, for about 2 hours.
- When completely cool, make the glaze. Whisk together juice and sifted confectioners’ sugar until smooth and glossy. Spoon the glaze over the cake and garnish with toasted coconut flakes.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes
- Category: Cake
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: Dessert
Keywords: cake, macadamia nut, coconut, passion fruit
Cooking by the Numbers…
Step 1 – Chop Nuts and Measure Remaining Ingredients
If you haven’t already, place your unsalted butter and cream cheese on the counter for a few hours to soften. This can also be done quickly in the microwave, but you need to be careful to heat them on low power in short increments, to avoid melting.
Chop enough roasted and salted macadamia nuts until you have one cup total.
Measure out the remaining ingredients as listed on the ingredients list.
Preheat oven to 325˚F. Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt pan.
Step 2 – Make Batter
In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat butter and cream cheese together on medium speed until creamy. This should take about 2-3 minutes.
Gradually add the granulated sugar, beating on medium speed until light and fluffy. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
Beat in one egg at a time, beating until combined between each addition.
Add half of the all-purpose flour, and beat until just combined on low speed. Beat in the milk until just combined. Add the remaining flour and beat until just combined.
Step 3 – Bake
Transfer the batter to the prepared bundt pan. Bake for 70-80 minutes, until set and golden.
A toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean when it is done.
Step 4 – Cool
Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10-15 minutes.
Remove from pan and cool completely on a wire rack. This will take about 2 hours.
Step 5 – Make Glaze
When the cake is cool, make the glaze.
Add 1/4 cup passion fruit juice and the confectioners’ sugar to a medium bowl. Whisk until combined, smooth, and glossy. If the mixture is too thick, gradually add more passion fruit juice until you reach a consistency that’s to your liking.
Spoon the glaze over the cake. Garnish with toasted coconut flakes.
What If I Can’t Find Passion Fruit?
If you can’t find fresh passion fruit or bottled juice, you can switch things up and use pineapple instead for the glaze. The tartness of the pineapple achieves a similar tropical flavor profile that pears so well with the coconut and macadamia nuts.
You want that acid tang to complement the richness, after all. Fresh pineapple juice is a great substitute.
Do you need more cake recipes to make from scratch? Check out the following:
And if you love bright, fruity flavors that bring a bunch of sunshine to the dessert course, you’ll love our satsuma layer cake!
What occasion will you serve this elegant cake for? Tell us in the comments below. Once you try the recipe, be sure to come back to rate it!
Photos by Meghan Yager, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. With additional writing and editing by Allison Sidhu.
Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.
About Meghan Yager
Meghan Yager is a food addict turned food and travel writer with a love for creating uncomplicated, gourmet recipes and devouring anything the world serves up. As the author of the food and travel blog Cake 'n Knife, Meghan focuses on unique foodie experiences from around the world to right at home in your own kitchen.