Coconut Poke Cake

Welcome to the world of delicious and indulgent desserts!

If you need a dessert that will transport your taste buds to a sunny island, then look no further.

In this blog post, we will bring you to a tropical paradise of flavor with this delectable coconut poke cake recipe.

Whether you’re hosting a summer barbecue or simply craving something sweet, this tropical twist on a classic dessert is sure to become a favorite for any occasion.

So sit back, relax, and let me take you through the steps for creating this irresistible treat that will transport your taste buds to a sunny beach getaway.

Ingredients Of Coconut Poke Cake

To create this heavenly coconut poke cake, you’ll need a combination of simple yet flavorful ingredients.

Below is a list of what you’ll need to start your culinary adventure:

1. White Cake Mix: For the base layer of this cake, we will be using a white cake mix. This makes the process much easier and quicker while still resulting in a deliciously moist and fluffy cake.

2. Cream Of Coconut: To infuse this cake with a burst of coconut flavor, we will be using cream of coconut. This sweet and creamy ingredient is essential for achieving the perfect tropical taste.

3. Sweetened Condensed Milk: To add sweetness and richness to the cake, we will be using sweetened condensed milk in the filling. This ingredient helps to keep the cake moist and adds a delicious layer of flavor.

4. Coconut Flakes: For an extra touch of texture and coconut flavor, we will be topping our cake with shredded coconut flakes.

5. Whipped Topping: Finally, to finish off our coconut poke cake, we will be using cool whipped topping. You need to buy frozen whipped topping then thaw it. This light and airy topping perfectly complements the rich and creamy flavors of the cake.

With these selected ingredients, you’re equipped to bring the essence of the tropics into your kitchen.

How To Make Coconut Poke Cake?

The process of making this coconut poke cake is delightfully straightforward and immensely satisfying.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you create this tropical delight:

Step 1: Prepare The Cake Mix

Start by preheating your oven according to the cake mix package instructions.

Then, in a large mixing bowl, combine the white cake mix with the required amount of water, oil, and eggs.

Beat the mixture until smooth and well combined.

Step 2: Bake

Pour the batter into a greased 9×13-inch baking dish and bake as directed on the package.

Once baked, allow the cake to cool for a few minutes.

Step 3: Poke Holes

While the cake is still hot, use the handle of a wooden spoon to poke holes evenly across the entire surface of the cake.

The holes should be made while the cake is still warm, as this will allow the filling to seep into the cake more effectively.

Step 4: Mix The Coconut Flair

In a medium bowl, whisk together the cream of coconut and sweetened condensed milk until smooth.

Step 5: Add Coconut Flair

Carefully pour this mixture over the surface of the cake, taking care to fill the holes.

This step infuses the cake with a rich coconut flavor and ensures it stays moist.

Step 6: Chill

Allow the cake to soak in the coconut mixture at room temperature for about 20 minutes, then refrigerate the cake for at least 4 hours, or overnight if possible.

This chilling time helps the cake to set and absorb all the flavors.

Step 7: Add The Toppings

Once the cake is thoroughly chilled and set, spread the thawed whipped topping over the top of the cake.

Sprinkle the shredded coconut flakes evenly over the whipped topping to add texture and an extra burst of coconut flavor.

Step 8: Serve and Enjoy

Your coconut poke cake is now ready to be served.

Cut into squares, serve, and watch as your guests are transported to a tropical paradise with each bite.

By following this guide, you’ll have a deliciously moist and flavorful coconut poke cake that’s perfect for any summer gathering or whenever you desire a taste of the tropics.

What To Serve With?

Pairing the perfect side with the coconut poke cake can elevate your tropical-themed dessert experience to new heights.

Here are a few recommended pairings:

1. Tropical Fruit Salad: A light and refreshing tropical fruit salad, featuring a mix of mango, pineapple, and kiwi, can be a fantastic side dish. The freshness of the fruit contrasts beautifully with the richness of the cake, offering a balanced dessert experience.

2. Coffee or Tea: For those who prefer a warm beverage with their dessert, a cup of freshly brewed coffee or a pot of herbal tea makes an excellent companion.  The bitterness of the coffee or the subtle flavors of the tea can cut through the sweetness of the cake, making each bite even more enjoyable.

3. Ice Cream: A scoop of vanilla or coconut ice cream served alongside this cake can be a decadent addition. The cold, creamy texture of ice cream paired with the moist, flavorful cake creates a delightful contrast.

4. Piña Coladas: For an adult gathering, serving piña coladas can keep the tropical theme going strong. The creamy coconut and pineapple flavors of the drink harmonize wonderfully with the cake, making for a truly festive dessert course.

While this cake is delightfully satisfying on its own, complementing it with the right beverage or side dish can enhance its flavors and make your meal even more memorable.

Tips For Delicious Cake

Crafting the perfect coconut poke cake requires not just the right ingredients but also a touch of baking finesse.

Below, you’ll find invaluable tips that ensure your cake turns out moist, flavorful, and irresistibly delicious every time.

1. Ensure even baking: Preheat your oven at least 15-20 minutes before baking to ensure an even temperature. Also, placing the baking dish in the center of the oven can help avoid uneven baking.

2. Poking the right way: For the poking process, ensure the holes are evenly spaced and go deep enough into the cake to allow the coconut mixture to penetrate effectively but not so deep that the cake falls apart.

3. Cooling is crucial: Allow the cake to cool slightly before poking holes; this makes the cake more receptive to absorbing the coconut and condensed milk mixture without falling apart.

4. Opt for quality ingredients: Using high-quality cream of coconut and sweetened condensed milk makes a significant difference in the depth of flavor in your cake.

5. Go for garnish: Garnishing the cake with toasted coconut flakes instead of regular ones can add an extra layer of texture and a nuttier flavor.

6. Storage matters: If not serving immediately, cover and store the cake in the refrigerator to maintain its moisture and flavor. This cake often tastes even better the next day as the flavors have more time to meld.

Following these tips and tricks can help you create a perfect coconut poke cake that will have everyone asking for seconds.

Experiment with different toppings, sides, and even fillings to make this cake your tropical masterpiece!

FAQs About Coconut Poke Cake Recipe

1. Can You Use Coconut Milk Instead Of Cream Of Coconut?

While both coconut milk and cream of coconut are made from grated coconut, they have different consistencies and levels of sweetness and fat content.

So the answer is no, you can’t.

Cream of coconut is thicker, sweeter, and has a higher fat content than regular coconut milk due to the added sugar, which is what recipes need.

2. Can You Use Freshly Whipped Cream Instead Of Cool Whipped Topping?

Yes, you can use freshly whipped cream instead of cool whipped topping if you want a more natural and less sweet option.

However, freshly whipped cream will not hold its shape as well as the store-bought cool whipped topping since it is stabilized with gelatin.

3. Can You Use A Yellow Cake Mix?

Yes, you can use a yellow cake mix instead of a white cake mix.

The only difference will be in the color and slightly different flavor of the cake, but it will still turn out just as delicious.


In conclusion, mastering the art of making the perfect coconut poke cake is a delightful culinary adventure that rewards you with a dessert that’s not only aesthetically appealing but also rich in tropical flavors.

This cake, with its moist texture, creamy coconut infusion, and the delightful contrast of the whipped topping and coconut flakes, promises to be a crowd-pleaser at any gathering.

By adhering to the tips provided and considering the suggested pairings, you can elevate your dessert experience, making the coconut poke cake not just a treat, but an unforgettable part of your culinary repertoire.

Now go forth and impress your loved ones with this delicious tropical dessert.


coconut poke cake

Coconut Poke Cake

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Cooling time 4 hours
Total Time 5 hours 30 minutes
Servings 24 slices


  • 1 package (15.25 oz) of white cake mix
  • 1 can (14 oz) of sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 package (8 oz) of coconut flaked
  • 1 package (16 oz) of thawed frozen whipped topping
  • 1 can (14 oz) cream of coconut


  • Preheat the oven according to package directions. Grease a 9x13-inch baking dish.
  • Prepare the white cake mix according to package instructions and pour it into the baking dish that has been prepared before.
  • Bake as guided on the package, or until a toothpick that is inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Using a fork, poke holes all over the warm cake, spacing them out evenly.
  • In a medium bowl, mix together sweetened condensed milk and cream of coconut until well combined.
  • Pour the coconut mixture over the cake, using a spatula to spread it evenly over the entire surface.
  • Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.
  • Spread thawed whipped topping over chilled cake and sprinkle with flaked coconut.
  • Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Keyword coconut poke cake

Chef Chip Roman is one of the most exciting and talented chefs in Philadelphia. He has his own catering business, Charles Roman Catering, as well as Roman Restaurant Group which includes Blackfish, Mica, and Ela. He graduated from Drexel University in 2002 with a degree in business and culinary arts. Chip Roman is a classically trained chef who has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens and chefs in Philadelphia, including Le Bec Fin’s George Perrier and Marc Vetri’s Vetri.

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