This is how you faceplant into cake on a Friday.

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I

I’m not even the biggest cake person ever and I’m about to do the faceplant.

I’m actually weird about cake. I like it when it’s chocolate chocolate chocolate.

I’m even weirder about angel food cake and I HAVE to be in the mood for it. You might remember when I made angel food cupcakes – I’m more in the mood for those because they are sort of bite sized. You also might remember that I made angel food French toast and well… who the heck wouldn’t be in the mood for that?

But the cake? You know. It’s a thing.

Slicing it into layers and adding just the thinnest spread of whipped cream is incredible. It makes this usually light cake a bit more rich, but not in a bad way. I don’t sweeten the cream so it truly just adds a decadence that angel food cake lacks. I’m a bit obsessed.

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I

Let’s also take a moment to realize that angel food cake making is NOT easy. At least not for me. The first time I made one, I figured it would be an actual piece of cake. My grandma made them all the time and it seemed like no biggie.

Oh it is though. Crazy flours, fine sugars, egg whites that need to sit out and lots of folding – not stirring. Super high maintence.

I have no idea what that’s like.

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I

Sidenote: if you’re soooo not into coconut, use regular old whipped cream! I won’t hate you.


Coconut whipped cream. UGH. So good.

It also does not have a strong coconut taste. Nor does it squeak beneath your teeth. Did you just cringe?

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I

Can we discuss the most important part of this whole thing? The grapefruit syrup. OH MY GOSH. This syrup. I want to drink it. I did eat a few spoonfuls. If you’re a grapefruit freak like me, it adds the perfect touch. I also made more citrus syrups and more recipes with them because once I get on a recipe tangent I just can’t quit.

Even better… this makes a lot of syrup. Like, a lot. You can cut the recipe in half but, obviously, what you should do is make the entire batch and store it in the fridge for cocktails.

See. I know what you like.

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I


Angel Food Layer Cake with Coconut Whipped Cream and Grapefruit Syrup

Yield: makes 1 cake

Total Time: 1.5 hours


grapefruit syrup
1 cup freshly squeeze grapefruit juice
1 1/4 cups sugar

10 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 cup cake flour
1 1/4 cups caster sugar (I blend granulated sugar in my food processor to get this amount)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cans cold (refrigerated overnight) full-fat coconut milk


grapefruit syrup
Combine the juice and sugar in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk constantly so the sugar dissolves. Continue to simmer the juice for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally so it doesn't bubble over. Remove from heat and let sit at room temperature until it cools and thickens. You can make this ahead of time and store it in the fridge.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Make sure the egg whites are at room temperature before using. Sift together the flour, 1/2 cup of the sugar and salt, repeating the sifting process 3 times. Yes this is a pain, but necessary.

Add the egg whites to the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on medium speed until frothy, then add in the cream of tartar and vanilla extract. Beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add in the remaining sugar a few tablespoons at a time, beating until incorporated.

Remove the bowl from the stand and using a spatula, slowly fold in the flour mixture in two or three additions. Do not stir - use the spatula to turn over the egg whites consistently until the flour is incorporated.

Spoon the batter into the pan, evenly the top off with a spatula. Bake the cake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until golden on top and spongy. Immediately invert the cake and allow it to cool completely.

To make the coconut whipped cream, make sure the cans have been refrigerated overnight. Turn them upside down, open the cans and pour out the liquid (you don't need it for this recipe, I keep it for smoothies, etc), leaving you with the thick cream in the can. Add it to the bowl of your electric mixer and using the whisk attachment, beat it on medium-high speed until thick and creamy. I do not add any extra sugar, but feel free to do so if you'd like.

Gently slice the angel food cake into three layers using a large serrated knife. The coconut cream is thick, so take a spoon and spatula and using small amounts, frost the top of each layer (I use a very line layer of coconut cream) and then add the other layer of cake. When the cake is assembled back to it's normal shape, begin frosting the outside. I like to do a thin coat on the outside edges and a thicker coat on the top.

I find that it's best to frost the cake close to serving time, but I do like to refrigerate it for about 30 minutes before serving. Slice the cake into wedges and serve with the grapefruit syrup for drizzling on top.

[cake recipe from this lime angel food cake]

Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup I

so fluffy. !!

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88 Responses to “Angel Food Layer Cake with Whipped Coconut Cream and Grapefruit Syrup.”

  1. #
    ATasteOfMadness — February 23, 2014 @ 11:35 am

    I’m also not much of an angel food cake fan, but I could get behind this cake. This looks too good!


    • kristenmarwales — February 26th, 2014 @ 9:46 am

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  2. #
    layal — February 23, 2014 @ 12:45 pm

    Looks so light and i just want to make it right now!!!! I’m going to use the ready made angel food cake mix though. Would it work with coconut milk or does it have to be milk??


  3. #
    Dana Shultz — February 23, 2014 @ 2:44 pm

    oh my gawwwwwwwwsh. I WANT THIS BEAUTY NOW!


  4. #
    cheri — February 23, 2014 @ 7:38 pm

    i’m not a cake person but I am this kind of cake person, wow! just pinned this. thanks.


  5. #
    Lily (A Rhubarb Rhapsody) — February 24, 2014 @ 12:34 am

    I’m a simple creature I could be totally content just with the bowl of whipped coconut cream. ;)


  6. #
    Domestic cleaners Camden — February 24, 2014 @ 6:58 am

    I’m a big grapefruit lover and this cake looks heavenly delicious! I just can’t wait to try it!


  7. #
    Sandra — February 24, 2014 @ 5:57 pm

    This looks amazing, and SO TIMELY because my mom just requested a coconut cake for her birthday. This will be perfect!!! Question – I’ve only worked with coconut whipped cream once, and it liquefied when it sat at room temp for more than 2 hours. If I store the cake in the fridge, will the frosting hold its shape for a day or two? Because – LEFTOVERS. Yum.


  8. #
    Larry — February 24, 2014 @ 9:05 pm

    I swear, our minds meld MELD I TELL YOU! I was staying the night at my friend’s place after going to a wedding and he made angel food cake with strawberries & whipped cream for dessert and I was like “This food blogger that I’m obsessed with, err, follow, had a recipe for French toast made with angel food cake! IT LOOKED AMAZING”


  9. #
    Danielle @ TheCharmItSpot — February 25, 2014 @ 12:20 pm

    This looks amazing! Adding citrus to baking is SO great! I love your pictures and blog! Thanks for sharing!


  10. #
    Nutmeg Nanny — February 27, 2014 @ 3:40 pm

    Drooling over this cake, oh my gosh it looks so perfect :)


  11. #
    Cate — March 1, 2014 @ 4:26 am

    I l.o.v.e grapefruit, this sooo looks delicious!x


  12. #
    lily — March 2, 2014 @ 6:34 pm

    This looks to die for! I have 2 questions before I attempt this recipe. 1) Can I use a bundt pan, and 2) do you need to prepare the pan in any way before pouring the batter in? Should I spray it with oil or anything to keep the cake from sticking? Thanks!


  13. #
    Melissa @ Treats With a Twist — March 5, 2014 @ 2:43 pm

    Ok I’m a total freak but I’ve literally been putting off reading this in my Bloglovin because I love Angel Food Cake, grapefruits, and coconut cream SO much…I couldn’t handle it. Seriously?! Yes, seriously.
    Grapefruit and cake belong together. Creamy whipped cream on cake…duh. Omg I want this. Please. Ok, printed the recipe and will make it for a summertime plea to Mother Nature


  14. #
    Kim Shook — March 10, 2014 @ 4:44 pm

    I tried this recipe out this week. I was thinking that it would make a good dessert for Mother’s day. It is truly wonderful. I loved every bit of it and the folks at my husband’s office devoured it! I garnished it with candied grapefruit peel. Thanks so much for posting the recipe!


  15. #
    Colleen — August 10, 2015 @ 2:29 pm

    I made this cake yesterday for a family gathering. Mixed reviews on the frosting, but the cake turned out great. I would note whether or not the pan needs to be greased (I think it does). Also, the coconut milk is very messy to whip, so plan accordingly. Overall, I think the cake was okay. The coconut and grapefruit was an intriguing idea, but I’m not sure the format worked well. As a lover of both flavors, I still think this cake was better on its own (without the syrup).



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