Coconut Buttermilk Pound Cake

coconut-buttermilk pound cake


Dessert at my house looks a little something like this: chocolate chip cookies; brownies; cookies; brownies; chocolate cake; cookies; brownies; brownies; cookies. It’s apparent that we are in dire need of a break from our old stand-by desserts. Chocolate has become a requisite when dessert is concerned in my house. Convincing my kids that something can still be considered a dessert, even if it is devoid of chocolate, is nearly impossible. My kids, and my husband for that matter, are completely content with our normal, but sometimes ordinary desserts. I need a bit more variety than they do I suppose.

More often than not, my family will turn their noses up to chocolate-less desserts. This means that I am the one left to eat it. Like, the whole thing. All. By. Myself. You can see why I am usually reluctant to veer from our normal chocolate-y desserts. I have learned that the best way to deal with this dilemma is to make mini desserts. That way, I can have some now and freeze the rest for another time. Unfortunately, I failed to take my own advice when I made this coconut buttermilk pound cake. Instead, I just pretended I was living in the 50’s where eating a stick of butter at every meal was practically required. Pound cake for breakfast with my latte? Works for me!

This coconut pound cake is moist with a tender crumb. Although the cake itself had over a cup of coconut in it, the flavor was not overwhelmingly coconutty (spell check says that ‘coconutty’ is not a real word – but in my opinion, it should be). For a more intense coconut flavor, I might try using coconut milk instead of buttermilk next time. The addition of lime would also be great in this pound cake. Next time, I’ll add a tablespoon of lime zest to the cake itself, or make a lime flavored glaze with a teaspoon of lime zest and lime juice in place of the buttermilk. Regardless, this is a great cake for those days when chocolate just won’t cut it.

Coconut Buttermilk Pound Cake
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
Everyday Food October 2012
**To toast the coconut, spread coconut onto a baking sheet and place in a 350 degree oven and allow to toast for about 10 minutes.
  • 1½ sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 2 c all-purpose flour
  • 1½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp fine salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 c + 2 tbsp buttermilk, divided
  • 1½ c sweetened, shredded coconut, toasted and divided
  • 1 c powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Grease 4½" x 8½" loaf pan, or 3 mini loaf pans, set aside
  3. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together butter and granulated sugar. Beat on medium-high for 6-8 minutes until pale and fluffy.
  4. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  5. Add vanilla extract to butter mixture.
  6. Add eggs, one at a time, to butter mixture. Scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  7. With the mixer on low, add ⅓ of the flour mixture, stir to combine.
  8. Add ½ of the buttermilk, incorporating well.
  9. Add another ⅓ of the flour mixture, then the remaining buttermilk, stirring well after each addition.
  10. Add the final ⅓ of the flour mixture. Beat until combined.
  11. Stir in 1¼c of the toasted coconut. Combine well.
  12. Pour into prepared pan(s).
  13. Bake until toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out with just a few moist crumbs, about 65-75 minutes for standard loaf pans, or 25-35 minutes for mini loaf pans.
  14. Allow pound cake to cool in the pan for about an hour.
  15. Transfer pound cake to a wire rack.
  16. To make the glaze, combine 1c powdered sugar and remaining 2 tbsp buttermilk, stirring to combine.
  17. Pour glaze over pound cake then top with remaining ¼c toasted coconut.


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