• Coconut cake with lime syrup (Chris Middleton)Source: Chris Middleton

The coconut and lime in this simple cake gives it a distinctively tropical feel – which will keep you coming back for more!






Skill level

Average: 4.5 (11 votes)


  • 150 g (5½ oz/1 cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 90 g (3 oz/1 cup) desiccated (dried shredded) coconut
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 eggs
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) coconut milk 
  • 100 g (3½ oz/⅓ cup) Apple purée
  • 50 g (1¾ oz) butter, melted
  • ½ tsp liquid stevia 
  • pinch of salt
  • creamy natural yoghurt or cream, to serve

Apple purée

  • 4 large apples (about 800 g/1 lb 12 oz)

Lime syrup

  • 85 g (3 oz/¼ cup) rice malt syrup
  • 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) freshly squeezed lime juice

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Cooling time: 5 minutes

For the apple purée, peel, core and roughly chop the apples. Put the apples and a splash of water in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8–10 minutes or until tender. Stir and mash the apples, still over the heat, until broken down – they should be mushy and quite thick. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. It is fine to have a little bit of texture, but if you prefer a smooth sauce, whiz in a food processor or use a hand-held blender and purée until smooth. The purée will keep for 3–4 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It also freezes well for a couple of months – portion the purée into small containers or spoon into ice-cube trays, freeze and seal in an airtight container.

Preheat the oven to 160°C/320°F (fan-forced). Grease a deep 18 cm (7 in) cake tin and line the base with non-stick baking paper.

Combine the flour, desiccated coconut and baking powder in a large mixing bowl. Separate two of the eggs and put the whites in the bowl of an electric mixer and set aside. In another bowl, whisk the yolks, remaining eggs, coconut milk, apple purée, butter and stevia together and set aside.

Beat the egg whites with the salt just until firm peaks form. Fold half of the egg white and all of the liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients until combined. Add the remaining egg white and gently fold into the mixture until combined. Pour into the prepared tin and spread evenly. 

Bake for 35–40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a serving plate with a rim. 

For the lime syrup, combine the rice malt syrup, lime juice and 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl and stir until the syrup dissolves. Poke lots of holes in the cake with a skewer and slowly pour about half of the syrup over the cake. 

Serve warm or cold with a dollop of creamy yoghurt or cream on the side and the remaining syrup.

This cake will keep for 2–3 days in an airtight container.


This recipe is from Incredible Bakes (Smith Street Books). Photography by Chris Middleton.