This coconut frosting is smooth, creamy, delicious, and packed with coconut flavor. It’s the perfect topping for cakes, cupcakes, brownies, and so much more!

Several cupcakes topped with coconut frosting.

One of my goals this year has been to share more frosting recipes with you. Because let’s be honest, nothing makes a cake, or a batch of cupcakes, more than the actual frosting itself. So today I’m sharing my current favorite flavor, this easy coconut frosting!

Why You Will Love This Recipe

An overhead view of the various ingredients needed to make coconut frosting.

Recipe Ingredients

  • Butter: As always, I use unsalted butter whenever I’m baking because it allows you to control the amount of salt. I don’t recommend using salted butter for this recipe, otherwise the frosting will turn out too salty.
  • Powdered Sugar: Also known as icing sugar or confectioners sugar, this is used to thicken and sweeten the frosting.
  • Unsweetened Canned Coconut Milk: Instead of heavy cream or milk, we’ll be using canned coconut milk. You will have quite a bit leftover, but you can refrigerate it and use it later or use the rest to make my coconut cream pie.
  • Vanilla & Coconut Extract: To add even more flavor. I recommend using both pure vanilla and coconut extract for best results.

How To Make Coconut Frosting

  1. Beat the butter until smooth: This will ensure that there are no lumps in your frosting and also make it much easier to mix in the powdered sugar.
  2. Mix in the powdered sugar: I recommend mixing the powdered sugar into the butter in two separate batches. Make sure to mix it in on low speed as well so you don’t throw powdered sugar all over the place.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients: Add the canned coconut milk, vanilla extract, and coconut extract and continue mixing until fully combined. If needed, stop and scrape down the sides of your bowl to make sure everything is thoroughly mixed together.
A bowl of coconut frosting with a spoon resting in it.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add shredded coconut to the frosting?

Yes! You may fold in 1/2 cup of sweetened shredded coconut and add more, if desired.

I don’t recommend doing this if you plan to pipe the frosting though because the coconut can get stuck inside of the piping tip. However, you could top your piped frosting with some toasted coconut for more flavor.

How much frosting does this recipe make?

This recipe makes a little under 3 cups of frosting. It’s enough to generously frost 12 to 14 cupcakes or one 9×13 cake.

If you are making a layered cake, I recommend increasing the recipe by at least half to have enough frosting to decorate with.

Does coconut frosting need to be refrigerated?

While this frosting is technically okay at room temperature for a few hours, I do suggest storing it in the fridge so that it stays fresh longer. If stored properly, it can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.

Several coconut cupcakes topped with coconut frosting and toasted coconut.

Baking Tips

  • If your powdered sugar is lumpy, I recommend sifting it before you mix it into the frosting.
  • Don’t mix the frosting at too high of a speed. This can introduce more air in the frosting and you will end up with a lot of air bubbles.
  • Make sure to shake your canned coconut milk well before opening it. If the coconut milk has separated, pour it into a bowl and whisk well before measuring it out.
Several coconut cupcakes topped with coconut frosting.

Coconut Frosting

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
This coconut frosting is smooth, creamy, delicious, and packed with coconut flavor. It's the perfect topping for cakes, cupcakes, brownies, and so much more!


Servings: 12 servings
  • 1 cup unsalted butter softened (230 grams; 2 sticks)
  • 3 cups powdered sugar (360 grams)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons canned full fat coconut milk at room temperature (30 to 45 ml)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon coconut extract


  • In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer, beat the butter until smooth.
  • Mix in half of the powdered sugar on low speed. Then mix in the remaining half of the powdered sugar until fully combined.
  • Add the coconut milk (start with 2 tablespoons and add a little more if needed), vanilla extract, and coconut extract and continue mixing on low speed until everything is well combined, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Use to frost cakes, cupcakes, etc.


Storage Instructions: Frosting may be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Freezing Instructions: Frosting will freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the fridge and bring to room temperature before using it.
Cuisine: American
Course: Dessert
Author: Danielle
Did you make this recipe?Mention @livewellbakeoften on Instagram or tag #livewellbakeoften.