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Caramel Coconut Cake (No-Bake & made entirely from coconut - top to bottom)

Caramel Coconut Cake


  • Author: Audrey @ Unconventional Baker
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6" cake
  • Category: Cake
  • Method: No-Bake
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Description

Delish, unique no-bake cake that uses only one food item — coconut! Perfect for coconut lovers or restricted diets. Vegan, gluten-free, no refined sugar.


Ingredients

Cake:

  • 2 ½ cups coconut cream (I used nearly two 400ml cans chilled overnight, but removed ½ a cup of cream from one of them for use in the frosting first)*
  • 2 cups coconut flour
  • 1 ½ cups coconut palm sugar
  • ¼ cup coconut manna (also known as coconut butter)
  • ¼ cup coconut syrup (can also use coconut blossom nectar)
  • ¼ cup water

Frosting:

  • 1 ½ cups coconut manna
  • ½ cup coconut cream (only the firm layer that you get at the top of the can after chilling it overnight in the fridge)
  • ¼ cup coconut syrup

Caramel:

  • about ⅓ cup coconut syrup

Instructions

  1. Place all cake ingredients in a food processor and process into a uniform fine crumb mixture. Test to see if you can roll a bit into a ball with your hands (to see if it sticks together) — if too wet, add a tiny bit more coconut flour, and if too dry, add a tiny bit more water or coconut milk, then process again.
  2. Take about 2 tbsp of this mixture and roll into a ball, set aside and repeat 5 more times (to make 6 balls). Place those in a parchment-lined container and freeze while working on the rest of the cake.
  3. Line a 6″ round cake pan (or 6″ springform pan, or any dish of a similar size) with parchment paper along base and sides. Transfer the remaining cake base mixture into the pan and press down as much as possible to compact. I used the back of a spoon at first, then covered the cake with a sheet of parchment and pressed down even more using a flat-bottomed object to compact the cake as much as possible and level out the top. Freeze the cake for about 1 hour (or longer).
  4. To make the frosting, first read the notes below for additional tips**. When ready, blend all frosting ingredients into a smooth consistency. Then bring it to the right temperature for frosting texture.
  5. When ready to frost, remove cake from the freezer and carefully un-mold out of the pan and parchment paper, and transfer to a serving plate. Remove a bit of the frosting into a pipping bag if you want to make shapes, otherwise frost cake top and sides as desired. Decorate with finishing touches of choice (with the frozen cake balls, piped swirls, pressing shredded coconut into the sides, etc.). Then drizzle the top of the cake with coconut syrup. Freeze the cake for another 30 mins to fully set, then serve. If not intending to serve straight away, keep the cake refrigerated (or freeze then thaw out gently to a sliceable consistency). Enjoy!

Notes

*My coconut cream was completely additive and gum-free as per the recipe request, though feel free to use whatever brand you like.

**This frosting is made up of coconut cream, coconut manna, and coconut syrup blended together. One thing that’s a little tricky is that the coconut manna, which is what gives the frosting its sturdiness and which is what makes it lend itself to piping so well, is a bit temperature-temperamental.

What I mean by that is that it firms up when it touches anything cold and softens when warmed up. The coconut cream in this frosting came from a can of pure coconut cream (no guar gum or additives, as requested) which I chilled overnight in the fridge so that more of the solid cream separates and comes to the top in the process (I used the remainder of the can for the cake). What that means though is that after separating the 1/2 cup cream needed from the chilled can the substance was cold. So I then had to let it warm up to room temp for a bit before tossing it in the blender with the coconut manna so that its coldness doesn’t make the whole thing in the blender firm up and not blend through.

Once blended my frosting was on the soft / fluffy side — perfect if you just wanted to spread some frosting on something, but if you wanted to pipe it then it needed to chill a bit. I chilled it in the fridge for 15-20 mins and then stirred it up and it was at the perfect temperature to frost and pipe at that point.

So basically, you can control the softness / firmness of the frosting by chilling then stirring, or lightly warming up / bringing to room temp depending on how soft or firm you want it. The consistency can vary a lot depending on your room temperature, etc. so just adjust as needed based on what you’re experiencing as you go.

One other thing on that note is that even when the frosting is on the soft side, because you’ll be frosting a frozen cake it will firm up / set quite quickly upon contact with the cake. So try and get the smoothness / texture you want in as quick of a go as you can (don’t worry, you have a few minutes!), as otherwise it will become firmer and a bit more challenging to spread. A quick tip to fix that in case you need to adjust something once it set is to warm up your spreading spatula a little before making adjustments (run under hot water for a bit to warm it up, then wipe dry and frost).

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