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Easy Chocolate Coconut Cake

A few months ago I needed a quick and easy dessert to send to work with my husband. I did not have a lot of time and I knew I could make an easy dessert by doctoring up a cake mix. I pulled my Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor cookbook off the shelf and started looking through it.

If you  are a beginner cook, or often need a quick and easy dessert, I highly recommend  The Cake Mix Doctor cookbooks.

I have owned the The Cake Mix Doctor and Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor for years and have used them so much. They really do make desserts quick and easy. The author has even written The Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten-Free that my girls love to use.

Now, I will say that in general I am not a big fan of cake mixes, especially when just baked plain with frosting. I would prefer a homemade chocolate layer cake with homemade frosting over a chocolate cake mix any day, but doctored up cake mixes work great for quick and easy desserts. And I don’t mind admitting that I often use them for just that.

Enough about cake mixes, let’s get back to the recipe.

One of the recipes that caught my attention in the cookbook was a chocolate coconut cake. Chocolate and coconut are a classic combination that go so well together. I knew everyone would love it.

And I actually followed the recipe on this one. I don’t think I made any changes. Can you believe it?!

And although I did not have a taste of this, everyone seemed to enjoy it very much.

What do you think of cake mixes? Do you use them or avoid them all together?

Lynn's Kitchen Adventures


  1. I am so glad that you posted this today. Very timely. This past weekend was my son’s sixth birthday. I typically grind my own flours and make baked goods from scratch. I struggle with finding a cake recipe that competes with a box mix. So I bombed his homemade birthday cake yet again. I should have just used a mix for this one time a year. Note to self: a boxed cake mix every once in a while is no big deal… Your recipe looks fabululous and I will probably make that for my husband’s birthday. 🙂

    • I am all for healthy eating, but I am also all for an occasional treat. 🙂 I think often we are too hard on ourselves trying to do it all. If a box cake mix once in a while helps make life a little easier I am all for it. 🙂

  2. Is cream of coconut the same as the canned coconut milk?

  3. So, what do we do now that Betty Crocker is reducing her cake mix sizes by 3 ounces?

    • What?! I had not heard that! Do you know if they will still be for a 9×13 pan?

      • It is my understanding that it can be baked in a 13×9, but will not be as high. Many have been complaining, so maybe it is going to be reconsidered. Duncan Hines say they will not be changing. Pillsbury said, “Not yet.” I have not personally verified with the companies.

        • I just read on a Taste of Home site that the smaller Betty Crocker will ‘still make a 9×12’ cake. My pans are 9×13. Originally, I think the Relish, or Dash newspaper supplement mentioned the size change, and it is my understanding that grocers have been notified. Maybe all the recipes that used to call for 8 oz of yogurt and one mix will now work with the small mix and 6 oz yogurt? Or, maybe from now on, cupcakes are the best option???

  4. I have used one cake mix in 26 years of marriage at the absolute insistence of a friend – and it bombed! Turned around and duplicated the flavor from scratch, and it was delicious. While we do enjoy desserts/treats on Sundays, holidays, and family birthdays, I just generally prefer knowing what is in there – even when not every ingredient is *healthy* – so we make everything homemade. To me, processed foods have never even seemed a reasonable option for feeding a large family; too many boxes and cans to get the job done. On the other hand, I truly enjoy cooking so maybe that is why homemade is not a problem to me.

  5. I LOVE all of her books:) I have the two you mentioned plus the Dinner Doctor and the cupcake one! I have found that Duncan Hines cake mixes work best for her recipes because it is the only one that I know of that doesn’t already contain pudding in the mix. She talks in both books, but I think more in the Chocolate one about adding dry pudding vs it already being in the mix and what has worked best for me is to always use Duncan Hines and add dry pudding mix if it is called for OR if it calls for using mix with it already added. It just seems that with all the doctoring you’re doing if I use any other brand of cake mix, it turns out way too moist and just doesn’t hold up. Which is ok if you’re making a sheet cake, but if you’re making layers, it makes a big mess! I use her recipes often and I have no shame in doctoring up a cake mix!

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