Photo: Charles Walton; Styling: Gage Trinda
Makes 1 (3-layer) cake

This coconut pineapple cake recipe is sure to please family and friends, with its surprising blend of flavors and a "secret" ingredient: lemon-lime soft drink. 

How to Make It

Step 1

Grease bottom and sides of 3 (9-inch) round cakepans; line bottoms with wax paper. Grease and flour wax paper.

Step 2

Drain pineapple, reserving 3/4 cup juice. Remove 1/4 cup reserved juice for Cream Cheese Frosting, and reserve crushed pineapple for Pineapple Filling.

Step 3

Beat butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add sugar, beating well. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition.

Step 4

Combine 1/2 cup reserved pineapple juice and soft drink. Add flour to butter mixture alternately with juice mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Beat at low speed until blended after each addition. Stir in extracts. Pour into prepared cakepans.

Step 5

Bake at 350° for 25 to 30 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pans immediately; cool on wire racks.

Step 6

Spread 3/4 cup Pineapple Filling between cake layers and remaining filling on top of cake. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting on sides of cake; pipe border around top, if desired. Sprinkle with coconut. Garnish, if desired.

Step 7

*For lemon-lime soft drink, we used 7-Up. Its specific level of carbonation makes the layers rise beautifully.

Ratings & Reviews

July 01, 2018
I found the cake too dense for my taste as did many others.  Instead of criticizing the review why not make a suggestion on how to fix it?

debramcgill's Review

February 26, 2009
I made this Cake and everyone loved it, including a little Russian boy, who when they operated on him, I asked him what he wanted, his reply was the Beautiful Cake with Coconut on it.

Lisset's Review

December 08, 2013
I made this cake twice the flavors are delicious! I followed directions and the only problem was that the cake was too dense.

YvonneReed's Review

April 18, 2014
This is the best coconut cake EVER...I made with Swans Down Cake Flour, turned out light and wonderful. Tried King Arthur Cake Flour, and cake was very dense, but still wonderful. I also used filling between layers, and covered entire cake with frosting, and covered with coconut. Have had several request for recipe. Delicious!

Buddielee's Review

March 17, 2009
This cake won awards and rightfully so. anyone rating this cake lower than "totally outstanding" clearly should consider farming out their baking to a talented professional


July 20, 2017
This look ridiculously good.I absolutely love cake.Thanks to share your step by step coconut pineapple cake recipe.

OK look, but too dense for me

July 01, 2018
Is there a way to keep the flavor and make the cake a bit lighter?  Like maybe adding a bit of baking powder or something?   

pfoster1980's Review
April 24, 2011
I made this cake for Easter and everyone loved it! It came out perfectly and it was super moist! I think what helped was I poked holes in the cake and poured some of the leftover pineapple juice on the three layers. Definitely worth a try

Blueyedtiger's Review

April 27, 2013
I am a celiac so my mom and I tried to convert this recipe to gluten free. We replacing the flour with gluten free flours but it was very dense. I just tried converting a gluten free recipe to make it similar to this one using Gluten Free Pantry's Old Fashion Cake mix and using the ratios of dry mix to fats, liquids and eggs as listed on the box. Here is how I did it: 1 Gluten Free Pantry Old Fashioned Cake Mix 1/2 c butter softened 2 eggs 1/4 c 7-Up 1/4 c pineapple juice 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 1/2 tsp lemon extract This time it was fluffy and fantastic. I loved the frosting and filling when my mom made it as the whole cake but typically I don't eat much frosting and filling so when I make it just for myself I make them into cupcakes (bake 18 min) and don't frost them. All my friends loved this cake, even the dense versions. :)

Callahan's Review

May 19, 2009
The cake layers were very thick and heavy and smelled a little like cornbread. The pineapple layer was too sweet to one taster and good to one person. The frosting was way too sweet and I had to add 5 more ounces of cream cheese and more butter and it was still too sweet. The cake looked beautiful when finished, but looks were extremely deceiving. This was a major disappointment and expensive. I will never make this again. When I threw it away it stood up in the garbage can (did not crumble). And yes, I followed the recipe to a