• All hail the humble combination of sponge, chocolate and coconut on this most welcome day: Lamington Day. (Alan Benson)Source: Alan Benson

These lamingtons are based on a super simple, super quick, one-bowl butter cake recipe that requires no fussing at all. It is baked in a thin layer and then cut into fingers.






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (144 votes)

The resulting lamingtons don’t have the height of the traditional ones but it does mean you get more chocolate icing and coconut to butter cake – a little cheeky but definitely a good thing! Feel free to use desiccated or flaked coconut instead of the shredded, depending on what ‘look’ you want for your lamingtons.


  • 195 g (3 cups) shredded coconut

Butter cake

  • 110 g (¾ cup) self-raising flour
  • 75 g (½ cup) plain flour
  • 165 g (¾ cup) caster sugar
  • 125 g butter, softened
  • 80 ml (⅓ cup) milk
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 tsp natural vanilla extract or essence

Chocolate icing

  • 465 g (3¾ cups) pure icing sugar
  • 55 g (¼ cup) cocoa powder
  • 150 ml boiling water
  • 1½ tsp vanilla essence

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 20 minutes

To make the butter cake, preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a 20 x 30 cm (base measurement) shallow cake tin and line the base and two longs sides with one piece of baking paper.

Place both the flours, sugar, butter, milk, eggs and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer to beat on low speed until combined. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 3 minutes or until the mixture is well combined and very pale in colour. Spoon the mixture into the lined tin and spread evenly using the back of a spoon.

Bake for 20 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool for 5 minutes in the tin, then turn onto a wire rack to cool.

Cut the cooled cake into 15 equal ‘fingers’ (each will be about 4 x 10 cm).

To make the chocolate icing, sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder into a medium bowl. Add the boiling water and vanilla and stir until smooth (it should be the consistency of pouring cream).

Spread the coconut on a tray or plate. Rest a cake ‘finger’ on a fork and dip it into the icing to coat (see Baker’s tips). Lift it out and allow any extra icing to drip off. Roll the cake ‘finger’ in the coconut to coat evenly. Place on a wire rack to set. Repeat with the remaining cake ‘fingers’, icing and coconut.


Baker’s tips

• You can also spoon the icing over the cake to help coat it.
• If the icing becomes to thick while you are coating the cake pieces, stir in enough extra boiling water, adding it a teaspoon at a time, to thin to the right consistency.
• These lamingtons will keep in an airtight container in a cool spot, but not in the fridge, for up to 2 days.


Anneka's mission is to connect home cooks with the magic of baking, and through this, with those they love. Read our interview with her or for hands-on baking classes and baking tips, visit her at BakeClub. Don't miss what's coming out of her oven via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

For more lamington recipes, view our online column Bakeproof: Lamingtons. 


Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Kristine Duran-Thiessen. Food Preparation by Tina McLeish.