Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake combines a light, fluffy coconut cake with a creamy, tart lime curd for the perfect bite of Spring!
I love coconut cake, if fact, it’s probably my favorite kind of cake. I especially love coconut cake mixed with tart, fruity flavors which originally inspired my holiday Festive Italian Cream Cake with Cranberry Curd and led me to create this Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake!
Except for the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake, I simplified the coconut cake recipe a bit since my prior recipe was labor intensive which means making a scratch-made cake plus homemade lime curd & buttercream frosting results in a 4-5 hour baking project and that’s before doing the dishes. And seriously, who has time for that when all you really want to do is eat cake?
In addition to my quickie coconut cake and lime curd recipes, I’m also sharing the COOLEST baking tool used to create beautiful, even cakes that make layering a breeze!
Let’s get to it!
Let me start by saying this is a judgment free zone and utilizing box cake mix is 100% acceptable because we’re still jazzing it up with a few key ingredients to make our Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake.
With the addition of coconut milk, coconut oil, and shredded coconut this semi-homemade box cake recipe turns out 3 luscious layers of super moist, super coconut cake.
You can utilize white or yellow cake mix for my Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake — I prefer white because I love the pristine white layers and it’s more representative of coconut when you dig your fork into it. I will advise against using the coconut box cake mix though as sometimes that flavor can be very artificial and with all the true coconut we’re adding into the mix, there’s no need to jeopardize the flavor with fake coconut extract.
Curd of any sorts is SO easy to make as long as you’re attentive while it’s cooking. The key to cooking curd is to cook it slowly over low heat and stir it constantly. Since curd is egg based, you don’t want to cook it on high heat or you’ll end up with lime flavored scrambled eggs.
The curd within the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake is a bit on the tart side but I chose to add less sugar on purpose since the coconut cake and vanilla frosting are sweet.
You must cool the curd before layering it into the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake. When cooling the curd, be sure to place plastic wrap on top of curd where the plastic wrap touches the curd itself. This will ensure a skin doesn’t form overtop of the curd while cooling.
Pro Tip: Use a vegetable peeler to peel strips of rind from your lime then stick it in your food process to save time zesting!
To ensure an even cake once stacked and layered, it’s best to cut the dome top off of each cake prior to frosting and stacking to assemble this Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake. Creating flat cake tops will help ensure stability in your cake. Unfortunately, no matter how many times I’ve tried to carefully cut even layers off my cakes, they always end up slightly slanted.
Until now, with the help of Zenker Stainless Steel Layer Cake Slicing Kit I can now cut perfectly even layers every. single. time.
This Zenker’s Slicing Kit is SO easy to use, you simply drop your cake in the middle and using the large knife provided, slide it into the metal guides and slice away. Remove the knife, spin the slicer around and repeat! As long as you cut at the same level for each cake, your cakes will be equal in height and be perfectly level and ready for their lime curd! Check out my step by step below! Or check out Zenker’s quick how-to video
Step 1: Place your cake in the middle of the Zenker Cake Slicer and determine where you’ll cut your cake to evenly remove the dome. For this cake, I cut 3 up from the bottom.
Step 2: Using your large knife, cut halfway through the cake, spin the slicer around and cut the cake from the other side so the dome’s cut all the way off
Before & After: A straight even top from the Zenker Cake Slicer!
The other tip for layering the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake is for you to very lightly coat the top and bottom of each cake with a thin layer of frosting before putting the curd on.
The first time I made this Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake, I didn’t seal in the cake with frosting and the curd soaked right into the cake. It was still super delicious but it simply looked like three cake rounds stacked on top of one another without the beautiful lime curd filling visible in-between. Here’s a couple pictures and a little diagram to help you assemble the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake!
I went with a classic, vanilla buttercream frosting for the Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake
When making frosting, I like to use half butter and half shortening. The shortening adds stability while the butter adds flavor. In my mind, it’s the best of both worlds.
I also prefer to use clear vanilla extract rather than the brown extract as the colored vanilla adds a slight tint to your frosting. That, mixed with the yellow butter often results in a beige colored buttercream which isn’t super appealing to the eye.
My last pro tip, which is completely optional, is to add a bit of meringue powder to your frosting for additional stability and instead of using water or plain milk as the liquid component, I highly recommend using half & half.
The addition of half & half leaves the frosting light and silky when spread onto the cake. Whenever I make frosting with half & half, I always get compliments on its texture and taste!
Alright friends, that’s my tips and tricks for this Springtime Coconut & Lime Curd Layer Cake! It’s perfect for Spring or even this upcoming Easter weekend! Enjoy.
I did receive the Zenker product in return for a post. All thoughts and opinions about the product are my own.
- For the Cake:
- 2 boxes white or yellow cake mix
- 16 ounces sour cream
- 15 ounces coconut milk
- 6 large eggs, beaten
- ½ cup coconut oil, melted and cooled
- 1½ cups sweetened, shredded coconut
- 1 cup of sweetened, shredded coconut, toasted
- For the Curd:
- ½ cup, 1 stick butter softened to room temperature
- zest of 4 limes, medium to large in size
- ½ cup fresh lime juice
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs
- pinch of salt
- For the Frosting:
- ½ cup, 1 stick butter softened to room temperature
- ½ cup vegetable shortening
- 2 pounds confectioner’s sugar
- 2 tablespoons meringue powder
- pinch of salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extra
- 4-6 tablespoons half & half
- For the cakes:
- Preheat oven to 350*
- Lightly grease and flour 3 9-inch cake pans. If available, line the bottom of each pan with a round parchment circle to make cake removal even simpler. Set aside while you assemble the batter.
- Pour the 2 cake mixes into a large bowl. Using a whisk, combine the cake mix with the sour cream, coconut oil, coconut milk, and eggs.
- Fold in 1½ cups of shredded coconut.
- Evenly distribute the batter among the 3 prepared cake pans.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until a cake pin inserted into the middle comes out clean.
- Let cool 10 minutes then turn out on to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing, layering and frosting.
- To toast the remaining 1 cup of coconut, place a pan on the stove over medium heat.
- Stir the coconut constantly for 5-7 minutes until lightly brown and golden.
- Remove from heat and set aside until you are ready to assemble the cake.
- For the curd:
- In an electric mixer, cream together the softened butter and sugar.
- Add in the zest of 4 limes.
- One at a time, add in the eggs mixing each well into the butter & sugar before adding the next.
- Lastly, add in the lime juice and a pinch of salt.
- Transfer the entire mixture to a medium-size saucepan and place it on low to medium-low heat.
- Stir the mixture constantly for 10-15 minutes, being sure to scrape the bottom of the pan.
- The curd will begin to thicken after 10 minutes, when the mixture reaches 170-175*
- Once thickened, remove from heat and transfer to a clean bowl
- Place plastic wrap on top of curd so the plastic touches the curd itself. This will ensure a skin doesn’t form overtop of the curd.
- Place the curd in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours until chilled before layering in the cake.
- For the frosting:
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter and shortening.
- Add in 4 tablespoons half & half and the vanilla extract. Combine well.
- Add in the meringue powder, salt and 1 cup of confectioner’s sugar and combine.
- Continue adding the confectioner’s sugar, 1 cup at a time until it’s all combined into the frosting.
- Add in the additional tablespoons of half & half to achieve desired thickness.
- To Assemble:
- Slice the top off of each cake so an even top is formed.
- Frost a thin layer of buttercream on the top of each cake layer.
- Place the first frosted layer on the serving tray.
- On top of the thin layer of frosting add a spoonful of cooled lime curd and spread it evenly across the cake.
- Taking the next cake layer, place the frosted side down, facing the curd.
- Now frost the top of the 2nd layer with a thin layer of frosting. Add a spoonful of curd on top of the thin layer of frosting and spread it evenly across the cake.
- Taking the last cake, place the frosted side down, again facing the curd.
- Using the rest of your frosting, frost the top and sides of the cake.
- Top the cake with the toasted coconut.