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+ servings

The Best Moist Chocolate Coconut Cupcakes

Easy Cupcake Recipe Without Baking Powder with Decadent Buttercream
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 17 mins
Cooling Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 47 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 cupcakes
Calories 260 kcal


For the cupcake sponge

  • 300 g All-Purpose (Plain) Flour
  • 300 g Granulated Sugar
  • 30 g Dark Cocoa Powder
  • teaspoon Salt
  • 2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 tablespoon Desiccated Coconut grated
  • 120 ml Sunflower Oil or vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon Coconut Essencee/Extract or maple syrup
  • 360 ml Water

For the buttercream

  • 2 tablespoon Cornstarch
  • 240 ml Soy Milk dairy milk if non-vegan
  • 250 g Vegan Butter dairy unsalted butter if non-vegan
  • 250 g Granulated Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Coconut Essencee/Extract or maple syrup

For the toasted coconut

  • 2 Tbps Desiccated Coconut grated


The chocolate coconut cupcakes

  • Preheat the oven to 350 Fahrenheit or 180 degrees Celsius if using a FAN oven, 400 Fahrenheit or 200 degrees Celsius if using a static oven, gas mark 6.
  • Start by sifting the all-purpose flour and baking soda in a large bowl; mix them well and add the sugar, desiccated coconut, and salt, and mix well again.
  • In a separate container add your wet ingredients: sunflower or vegetable oil, apple cider vinegar, water, and your flavoring essence of choice.
  • Start adding the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients a bit at a time, mixing in between; once they are all mixed well together, you will have a smooth batter.
  • At last, sift the dark cocoa powder on top of the cupcake batter and mix it in - without necessarily combining it completely, as you can get some nice coconut and chocolate swirls in the sponge.
  • Line the cupcake pans with cupcake liners and fill them halfway; this recipe will prepare 24 medium-sized cupcakes.
  • Bake the cupcakes in the center of the oven, on the middle tray, for 16-18 minutes; once they are baked, remove them from the oven immediately and place the cupcake pan on a cooling rack, so that they start cooling down straight away.

The perfect creamy frosting

  • The first component to prepare for the buttercream is what I call a thickener, which is made by combining milk and cornstarch. Put the mixture in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil on low-medium heat; as soon as it starts simmering, bring the flame to low and keep on stirring throughout the process.
  • Once you achieve a thick consistency, like a thick custard, remove the pan from the hob and transfer its contents in a bowl, so it starts cooling down. Before moving to the next step, the thickener needs to be completely cool and if bringing it to room temperature takes too long, you can cover the bowl with some plastic wrap and put it in the fridge.
  • In a food processor, using the attachment with the metal blades, add the sugar and the butter, which will be at room temperature and cut into small pieces. Mix the two ingredients until the sugar completely melts in the butter and you obtain a thick and smooth cream; this step can take up to 15 minutes, but using granulated sugar in the butter will make the result with it!
  • Next, add the same extract you used in the cupcake and the thickener to the food processor and mix again until peaks form. Beat the butter until pale and creamy, yet thick.

Chocolate coconut cupcakes with buttercream icing: decorating

  • It is best to use the buttercream immediately, as putting it in the fridge will make it harden.
  • Chose a nice tip and place the coconut-infused frosting in the piping bag; decorate the cupcakes as liked dividing the buttercream equally.
  • To toast the grated coconut, add it to a large pan and heat it on a low flame, and stir constantly; toast until golden brown and move to a cool plate straight away. If your flame is too high or the coconut toasts for too long it will burn quite quickly, as the oils in it will act fast - so keep an eye on it, and a low flame!
  • Once the toasted coconut has cooled down completely, sprinkle it on top of the cupcakes and enjoy!


The batter ingredients can be easily mixed with a fork, but should you prefer, a stand mixer or electric mixer can be used instead - although not necessary!
If you fill the cupcake liners more than halfway, like ⅔ full, they will create a very rounded dome during the baking and they will be harder to frost (plus, you will have fewer cupcakes with more calories!).
For ease, try using an ice-cream scoop to fill the cupcake tins.


Calories: 260kcalCarbohydrates: 35gProtein: 2gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 1gSodium: 230mgPotassium: 59mgFiber: 1gSugar: 23gVitamin A: 437IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 19mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Chocolate Coconut Cupcakes, Coconut Buttercream
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