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easter cupcakes

Do you ever get so excited about a recipe that you find yourself making it over and over again, despite your husband's hatred for coconut? My latest obsession are these coconut cupcakes, made from Ina Garten's recipe (aka the Barefoot Contessa). I am a fan of most things Ina makes, simply because they usually turn out exactly as I expected (and sometimes even better than I dared hope!).

When I was an art director at Martha Stewart Living, Ina had a monthly entertaining column. She would plan a menu or a little party and share her recipes and tips. You may not know that Ina was a very successful caterer for years, running her shop and catering business The Barefoot Contessa in East Hampton. I had the chance to art direct a few of those entertaining columns, and though it was sometimes crazy getting up at 5 AM to make it out to East Hampton at a decent hour, I always enjoyed being in Ina's home. She had a lovely garden just out the back door where you could cut some lettuce for a recipe or grab some fresh herbs. And spending any day in the Hamptons was always a treat.

But back to the cupcakes. These are the best cupcakes I have ever made. The cake itself is super moist and chewier than a standard cupcake because it has coconut in the batter (as well as coconut on top). The cream cheese frosting has a bit of almond extract that makes me crazy. And they're just so pretty.

I'm thinking if you toasted the coconut in the oven for a bit and then added a few candy eggs on top, this might be the perfect Easter cupcake.

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Reader Comments (29)

These look so yummy. I'm planning on tinting coconut green for the top of some lemon cupcakes I made then placing a Peeps chick on top.

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney

What is it with husbands hating coconut??? I've wanted to make these for years, but I've never tried since I would have to eat every single last cupcake, which is a little much for any of Ina's desserts. Maybe this would be a good dessert for bookclub.

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterJennie

How I wish I wasn't the only one in the house who liked coconut! I've one yet who isn't quite cupcake age yet---maybe he and I can finish off a batch of these one day!

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

Those are my most favourite cupcakes ever too and I make them every year for Easter as well, but I'm torn this year between that and a lemon bundt. Argh, decisions!

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterNisa

Oh my -- those cupcakes take me back! My grandma used to make ones like those for Easter every year --- and she would make special ones for the kids -- she would color some coconut green, sprinkle it on top and "hide" a few jellybeans on top to look like Easter eggs.

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterHeatherC

I've been trying to decide what to have for dessert. These sound perfect. I can't wait to try them.

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

these look just delightful!

04.10.2009 | Unregistered Commenterdesiree fawn

I LOVE Ina Garten. I became obsessed when I realised that she hadn't always had a food-related job. That and the fact that even when it is stormy the Hamptons look lovely and cozy and amazing.
I am definitely going to try the cupcake recipe. Thank you for suggesting!

04.10.2009 | Unregistered CommenterRhiannonM

these are a little addictive- toasting the coconut makes them almost taste like a homemade marshmallow! Have a great Easter-

04.11.2009 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

My husband hates coconut, too! :D

04.11.2009 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

I am a big Ina fan, too, but for some reason have never made these. Do your kids like coconut? Not sure mine will, but it's worth a try...

04.11.2009 | Unregistered CommenterLecia

I love coconut. I'm going to have to make these.

I had dinner at a friend's house last week and she was raving about Ina Garten. She said the same thing you did - everything turns out just like you hope it will.

I'm going to have to check out her cookbooks.

04.11.2009 | Unregistered Commenterchrissie

Hey Brooke, I was just wondering (since you used to work at MS) whether you think Ina's coconut cupcakes are even better than Martha's coconut cupcakes that I've seen blogged about. I didn't know which to try out :) Have you tried Martha's too? These look delicious!

04.11.2009 | Unregistered Commenterjen jafarzadeh

I just finished making them - wonderful! Yes, I did toast the coconut and decorated with jelly beans! Adorable!! Thank you so much the the suggestion and tip!

04.11.2009 | Unregistered Commenterclaudia

I also LOVE this recipe and Ina Garten, she's always fabulous!

04.11.2009 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

I love these cupcakes, I love Ina, and I love you, Brooke. And about all these coconut-hating husbands... I also have one. So strange.

04.12.2009 | Unregistered CommenterRobin

PS - you sold me on these - it's 6:52am on Easter and I'm gonna try to get these in the oven before the kids are up!

That is sooo cool that you used to get to work with Ina (!) and have been to her house (!).

04.12.2009 | Unregistered CommenterLecia

just had to let you know that this is one of my favorites too! i made them for christmas one year and that became the thing that i was asked to bring over and over every year! my nephew spent his first birthday away at college this year, and his friends called my sister to ask for a cake recipe to make for him. she told me he requested "my" coconut cupcakes! they are just that good!!!

04.12.2009 | Unregistered Commenterheather

this is a great recipe.

I'm a baker (I get to say that's my job!) and this by far is one of the most popular cupcakes we make at my sister's specialty shop...her mixes aren't too bad, especially if you are in a pinch or not a lover of baking!

04.12.2009 | Unregistered CommenterCarol

Hmmm... I'm pretty sure I'm the only one in my house that likes coconut. I might have to try these. I love not having to hide my treats!

04.12.2009 | Unregistered Commenterpamela

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