Mounds Cake featured image
Mounds Cake has a creamy coconut filling sandwiched between the layers of baked chocolate cake. It tastes like the classic chocolate covered coconut candy bar, but better because it's meant for slicing and sharing.
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Mounds Cake recipe combines a rich chocolate cake with a creamy coconut filling, all covered with a smooth chocolate frosting to finish. Easy to make completely from scratch, it takes just like the classic Mounds candy bar!

Mounds Cake hero image


Mounds Cake With Coconut Filling

Our easy chocolate Mounds Cake recipe is made completely from scratch (not that there’s anything wrong with cake mix shortcuts), because it most closely resembles the dark chocolate flavor found in the original Mounds candy bar.

And while you can use your favorite cake mixes to make your Mounds layer cake, it won’t save you much prep time so you may as well follow my simple scratch version instead.

The cakes bake soft and moist and are sliced into four horizontal halfs; and just like the middle of a Mounds bar, the coconut filling is sweet and gooey with the perfect consistency for spreading between the cake layers.

Cover your cake with chocolate frosting and add some sliced almonds to make it taste just like an  Almond Joy – a chocolate cake with coconut cream filling is the perfect dessert for curing a candy bar craving.

Why We Love Mounds Layer Cake

  • Quick and easy to prepare in 20 minutes
  • Uses simple kitchen staple ingredients.
  • Decadent chocolate cake filled with sweet coconut and covered in chocolate frosting is delicious.
  • Tastes like a candy bar that you eat with a fork instead of your fingers.
  • Perfect sweet treat for parties, potlucks, and Easter celebrations.
Mounds Cake ingredients

Mounds Cake Ingredients

  • All-purpose flour
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Baking powder
  • Baking soda
  • Table salt
  • Granulated sugar
  • Buttermilk
  • Pure vanilla extract
  • Vegetable oil
  • Extra-large eggs
  • Water
  • Salted sweet cream butter
  • Powdered sugar
  • Whole milk
  • Sweetened condensed milk
  • Sweetened coconut flakes

Substitutions and Additions

  • Pick Your Cocoa Powder: You can use unsweetened dark cocoa powder or unsweetened Dutch cocoa powder for this recipe.
  • Make With A Cake Mix: Feel free to use your favorite box of chocolate cake mix to bake your cakes. Some ideas include Chocolate Fudge, Triple Chocolate, or Devil’s Food cake mix.
Mounds Cake sliced on a plate
  • (2) 9-inch round cake pans
  • Baker’s spray
  • Stand mixer or handheld mixer
  • Cake leveler or a serrated knife
  • Offset spatula

How to Make Mounds Cake

  1. Make The Cake Batter: Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and vegetable oil. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the boiling water.
    Pro Tip: The batter will be a bit thin, but it is supposed to be.
  2. Bake The Cakes: Divide the batter between the 2 cake pans and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30-35 minutes.
  3. Form The Frosting: Beat the butter until smooth then mix in the vanilla and cocoa powder. Add the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, and the milk, beating after each and alternating between the powdered sugar and the milk. Beat until smooth.
  4. Make The Coconut Mixture: Whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, and salt until smooth. Stir in the coconut flakes until completely coated.
  5. Assemble: Remove the cakes from the pans and slice each in half horizontally. Spread the coconut mixture over the bottom layer of the cake. Place the second layer of cake on top of the coconut layer and repeat for the remaining layers. Lay the top layer of cake on top of the last layer of coconut.
    Pro Tip: The very top layer of the cake will not have any coconut on it. 
  6. Frost: Spread a thin layer of frosting on the outside of the cake, followed by a thicker layer of frosting over the sides and top of the cake.
  7. Serve: Chill in the refrigerator until you are ready to slice and serve. Enjoy!

Tips For Making Mounds Cake

  • You can substitute 3 canisters of premade whipped chocolate frosting for the homemade chocolate frosting.
  • To help the cake to bake level and more evenly, I do suggest using cake bands. Be sure to soak the bands in water before squeezing out the excess water before placing them around the outside of the cake pans.

How to Store Mounds Cake

  • To Store: Store any leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. 
Mounds Cake sliced

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Frequently Asked Questions

What if I do not have buttermilk?

If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, you can add 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice to the whole milk. Be sure to stir well and allow the milk to thicken for a minute or so before adding it to the cake batter.

Can I prepare my mounds cake with a box mix?

Yes, you can make your Mounds Cake with a box mix. Once baked, follow the same instructions for the coconut filling and frosting.

Mounds Cake on a plate

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4.63 from 8 votes
Mounds Cake featured image

Mounds Cake

Serves — 12
Mounds Cake has a creamy coconut filling sandwiched between the layers of baked chocolate cake. It tastes like the classic chocolate covered coconut candy bar, but better because it's meant for slicing and sharing.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Rest Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients
  

Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour spooned and leveled
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • cups granulated sugar
  • cups buttermilk
  • teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • cup vegetable oil
  • 3 extra-large eggs room temperature
  • 1 cup boiling water

Chocolate Frosting

  • cups salted sweet cream butter
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • cups powdered sugar
  • ½ cup whole milk

Coconut Filling

  • cups sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups sweetened coconut flakes

Instructions
 

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray two 9-inch round cake pans with baker’s spray. (Baker’s Joy or generic version)
  • Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and sugar to a large mixing bowl. Whisk to combine.
  • Whisk in the buttermilk, vanilla, and vegetable oil. Whisk just until combined.
  • Whisk in the eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each egg until no streaks remain.
  • Carefully whisk in the boiling water. The batter will be a bit thin, but it is supposed to be.
  • Divide the batter between the 2 cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes away clean. Allow the cakes to cool completely.
  • Using a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl and a handheld mixer on medium-high speed, beat the butter for 1-1½ minutes until smooth.
  • Lower the mixer speed to medium-low and add the vanilla and cocoa powder. Mix just until combined.
  • Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternate between adding the powdered sugar and the milk. Beat well until the frosting is smooth.
  • Add the sweetened condensed milk, vanilla, and salt to a large mixing bowl. Whisk until smooth.
  • Stir in the coconut flakes until the coconut is completely coated.
  • Carefully remove the cakes from the pans. Use either a cake leveler or a serrated knife to slice the cakes in half horizontally.
  • Place the bottom layer of cake on a round cake board or a serving plate.
  • Use an offset spatula to carefully spread ⅓ of the coconut mixture over the surface of the bottom layer of the cake. Place the second layer of cake on top of the coconut layer and repeat the steps for the remaining layers. (The very top layer of the cake will not have any coconut on it)
  • Lay the top layer of cake on top of the last layer of coconut. Spread a thin layer of frosting on the outside of the cake, smoothing it as you go. Once you have the first layer of frosting, apply a thicker layer of frosting over the sides and top of the cake. Chill the cake in the refrigerator until you are ready to slice and serve.

Jenn’s Notes

Storage:
  • To Store: Store any leftovers covered in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
Tips:
  • You can substitute 3 canisters of premade whipped chocolate frosting for the homemade chocolate frosting.
  • To help the cake to bake level and more evenly, I do suggest using cake bands. Be sure to soak the bands in water before squeezing out the excess water before placing them around the outside of the cake pans.

Nutrition Info

Calories: 919kcal | Carbohydrates: 142g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 26g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 8g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 119mg | Sodium: 813mg | Potassium: 565mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 115g | Vitamin A: 928IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 210mg | Iron: 3mg
Jennifer Fishkind

About Jenn

Jenn is a mom to three beautiful boys, wife to an amazing husband, social influencer and blogger. I love all things easy recipes, easy crafts, all things hacks, traveling EVERYWHERE and feeding my Pinterest addiction!

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Comments

  1. Cake was absolutely delicious! Recipe is truly a keeper. Makes too much frosting though…I will only make 2/3 next time. (Not that my husband minded eating the extra frosting on graham crackers this time. LOL) I am continually trying new cake recipes. Our adult daughter said this is the most exciting new cake we’ve had in quite a while.

    Only change I made was to add about 2 tbsp instant coffee to the hot water. No coffee flavor comes through but I think it makes chocolate cakes taste richer.

  2. 5 stars
    I am going to make this for my sister’s 50th bday party. she loves mounds bars.
    I’ve never tried this, but have you ever baked in 4 pans, instead of slicing? will this work? I can’t see why not, but I may not be thinking this through.

    1. Hi Linda – so glad it was a hit! Sorry you had some difficulty. Let me know where so I can make it more clear in the instructions.

  3. 2 stars
    I baked the cakes tonight and followed instructions. I have never had cakes that baked with 3” circular center that bubbles up and collapsed in the center. Not sure I can recover them for finalizing the cake. Amy ideas on why this happened? Maybe I can make it a3 layer cake instead Sam’s piece together the 3rd layer. Sam’s is suppose to be “and”. Your comment box doesn’t allow to insert cursor at an earlier point to make correction.

    1. I have not tried making this in a 9×13 cake pan yet. I am sure it can be, but I don’t have instructions for doing so.

  4. 5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe, made this cake for the nurses at my chemo,it was gone before I finished. Thank you again