Smaller Batch Coconut Lime Cupcakes

These cupcakes taste like summer! Take a bite and be transported to a tropical paradise, in your mind. This one bowl recipe is super easy to make. Coconut and lime pair perfectly together in these delightful dozen cupcakes!

Photo by Allison of

Cupcakes got their name from how they were originally prepared. Before muffin tins were invented cupcakes were baked in individual “cups” like ramekins, molds, or pottery cups. The first written description of cake made in a cup was in the 1796 cookbook American Cookery by Amelia Simmons. Cupcakes were described as “a light cake to bake in small cups”. The first written documentation of the term “cupcake” was featured in 1828 in a cookbook by Eliza Leslie.

These are called “smaller batch” cupcakes because the recipe creates twelve or one dozen cupcakes. I thought it was appropriate because typical batches of cupcakes made in recipes create two dozen cupcakes, and my “small batch” cupcake recipes create only six cupcakes total. This is a great recipe for a small party or get together!

This recipe was inspired by my mother. She loves tropical fruits and I was stuck on what kind of cake to make her for her birthday. Then I thought that the flavors of coconut and lime would make for a cake bursting with tropical fruit notes. The dominant flavor in this cake is coconut, but the lime gives it an added brightness in color and in taste

Smaller Batch Coconut Lime Cupcakes Recipe

Yields 12 cupcakes

Specialty Tools: Electric Stand Mixer or Electric Hand Mixer

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Bake Time: 18 to 20 minutes

Inactive Time: 2 hours

Drink Pairing Suggestion: Milk


3/4 cup granulated sugar

2 eggs

Zest of one lime

1 cup full-fat coconut milk, shaken or well stirred

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut flakes


1/2 cup – 1 cup shredded sweetened coconut flakes

Vanilla Icing (recipe below)*


Preheat oven to 350 F.

Line a standard size 12 crevice muffin tin with paper liners, set aside.

In a large bowl, add sugar, eggs, and lime zest. Whisk with a mixer until foamy, about one minute.

Pour coconut milk, vanilla, butter, and salt into the large bowl. Mix until emulsified, two to three minutes.

Add flour, coconut flakes, baking soda, and baking powder. Mix until everything is well incorporated and the batter is smooth.

Using a standard ice cream scoop, scoop batter into prepared muffin tin. This will ensure all the cupcakes are the same size.

Bake in the oven for 18-20 minutes, until golden and toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Remove cupcakes from the tin and cool on the rack.

Make sure they are cooled completely before frosting, about two hours.


Using a knife, ice the cupcakes with desired amount of vanilla frosting*.

Pour coconut into a small bowl, then dip the top of each cupcake into the coconut flakes until evenly covered. Repeat until all cupcakes are decorated.

This recipe can also make an 8 inch cake! Prepare batter as instructed above, but pour into a 8 inch cake pan that has been sprayed. Bake for 30-40 minutes.

Room temperature eggs and butter are best for baking.

Substitute the lime zest for lemon zest to make Coconut Lemon Cupcakes!

Vanilla Frosting Recipe*


1 cup powdered sugar

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon butter

2 teaspoons milk


Whip all the ingredients together in a bowl until smooth, thick, and creamy.

Use to frost cupcakes or cake.

A hand mixer is preferred when mixing frosting. It will end up very smooth.

Want other cupcake recipes? Try my recipes for Lemon Blackberry Cupcakes or Carrot Cake Cupcakes!


Tag @culinary_cupcake when you upload your photo on Instagram and hashtag #culinary_cupcake


3 thoughts on “Smaller Batch Coconut Lime Cupcakes

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