Pineapple cupcakes with spicy coconut topping

Culinary Adventures: Easy Pineapple Cupcakes with Spicy Coconut Topping

Culinary Adventures: Easy Pineapple Cupcakes with Spicy Coconut Topping


One Saturday, my attempt at a Pinterest cupcake recipe failed miserably (who writes a recipe with all the dry ingredients in a recipe in cups except for the flour anyway?).  I needed cupcakes to bring to a party that I was heading to and was running out of time.

Looking at what I had in my pantry to work with, I found a Pillsbury yellow butter cake mix and some pineapple juice. It’s just not my style to bring boring, run-of-the-mill vanilla cupcakes to a party, so I took a small yet calculated risk–I substituted the pineapple juice for water.

For the frosting, I took a bit more of a creative license. The basis of every buttercream frosting is about a half cup of butter (softened), and about 3 cups of powdered sugar, and about 1/4 cup of a liquid. These ingredients can be adjusted to create the right consistency.

I used pineapple juice as the liquid in the frosting, along with a dash of salt, about 1/4 tsp of cayenne pepper.

Finally, for the topping: I had this:

Indonesian fried spicy coconut
Indonesian fried spicy coconut

I have a habit of going to the local Asian markets and buying things I’ve never heard of with absolutely no plan for its use. A while back I’d found this little bag of Serungdeng Indonesian fried spicy desiccated coconut. It enticed me, and I had to have it. I also had no idea what I was going to do with it. I decided that today was the day to give it a shot.

I opened it and tasted. It was sweet, but also savory and really spicy. I thought it might be a bit too savory to use as a cupcake topping by itself, so I toasted some sweetened shredded coconut and mixed it together with some of the Indonesian spicy coconut.

When I frosted my pineapple cupcakes and added the topping, the result was fantastic.

Pineapple cupcakes with spicy coconut topping
Pineapple cupcakes with spicy coconut topping

Easy Pineapple Cupcakes with Spicy Coconut Topping:


1 box yellow butter cake cake mix

3 eggs

1 stick (1/2 cup) butter (softened)

1 cup pineapple juice


Make cupcakes according to directions on the box, substituting pineapple juice for the water.




1 stick (1/2 cup) butter (softened)

3 cups powdered sugar

1/4 cup pineapple juice

dash of salt

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper


Mix ingredients together with an electric mixer, adjusting by adding more of any ingredient to desired consistency and taste.


1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut–toasted

3 tbsp Indonesian spicy desiccated coconut

Directions: mix the sweetened toasted coconut with the spicy Indonesian coconut in a bowl. Adjust ratios to desired taste. Sprinkle/spoon onto freshly frosted pineapple cupcakes.


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