Southern-Inspired Pistachio Coconut Cake

This wonderful dessert is a dream for any coconut lover.

Southern-Inspired Pistachio Coconut Cake

This wonderful dessert is a dream for any coconut lover.


For the Pistachio Coconut Filling to Spread between the Cake Layers:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 7 tsp all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup condensed milk
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 6oz shredded coconut
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp coconut extract
  • ½ cup pistachios, very lightly toasted and chopped

For the Cake:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 2.5 cups white granulated sugar
  • 8 Tbsp butter (1 stick), softened to room temperature
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 tsp coconut extract
  • 4 whole eggs, plus whites from 2 eggs
  • 3oz toasted coconut shavings, for garnish

For the Pistachio Whipped Cream Frosting:

  • 12oz heavy whipping cream
  • 3 Tbsp confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 tsp coconut extract
  • ¼ cup fresh shelled pistachios, finely chopped


  • For the pistachio coconut filling, use a stand mixer or electric hand mixer to cream together the white granulated sugar with the eggs.
  • Add the flour and condensed milk and whole milk and gently mix until combined.
  • Pour mixture into a sauce pot on medium-low heat until the mixture reaches roughly 165F.
  • Lower the heat to low, stirring frequently, and cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until the mixture has thickened.
  • Try to avoid overcooking the mixture, as the eggs will scramble.
  • Remove the filling mixture from the heat.
  • Add the shredded coconut, vanilla extract, coconut extract, and toasted chopped pistachios and mix until evenly distributed.
  • Set pistachio coconut filling aside in fridge for later.
  • Clean stand mixer or electric hand mixer.
  • For the cake, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
  • In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream together the 2.5 cups white granulated sugar with the stick of softened butter, the cup of shortening, and the coconut extract.
  • Add the eggs one at a time and mix until completely combined.
  • Using a rubber spatula or paddle attachment on the stand mixer, incorporate the dry ingredients into the egg and sugar and butter mixture until the dry ingredients are combined with the wet ingredients.
  • To bake the cakes, preheat the oven to 395F.
  • Grease four 9” round cake pans with an ample quantity of softened butter, lightly covering the bottoms and all of the sides.
  • Pour the prepared cake batter mixture into the pans, evenly distributing the mixture across the four cake pans.
  • *If you want to get specific with this, weigh your total batter (excluding the mixing bowl) and evenly distribute the batter in four ways, weighing out the batter needed in each pan.
  • Bake the cakes for roughly 18-22 minutes, or until a cake tester or toothpick stuck into the center of each cake comes out clean.
  • Remove cakes from the oven and allow to cool for 25 minutes at room temperature.
  • Carefully invert the cakes onto a plate to remove them from their cooking pans, and again invert the cakes onto wire racks to fully cool at room temperature.
  • As the cakes are cooling, prepare the pistachio whipped cream frosting.
  • To make the pistachio whipped cream frosting, whip the heavy cream until gentle soft peaks form.
  • Add the confectioner’s sugar and coconut extract and continue to whip until stiff peaks form.
  • Reserve whipped cream mixture for when the cakes have cooled and are ready for assembly.
  • When the cakes have cooled, gently spread the filling mixture between the inside layers of the cakes as you stack them.
  • After the inside cake layers have been topped with the filling, gently spread the whipped cream frosting on the outsides and top of the entire cake.
  • Garnish frosted cake with the finely chopped pistachios and the toasted coconut shavings.
  • Serve immediately after frosting and garnishing.


Adding the extra egg whites to the cake mixture can help provide a bit more of an airy structure to the cakes.
Any extra cake should be stored away in the fridge for a day or two.
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