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Italian Cream Cake!!!


Italian Cream Cake is a southern-style cake is bursting with pecan, coconut, and almond flavors. It’s frosted with a cream cheese frosting and beautifully decorated to make one impressive and ridiculously tasty dessert!

By popular request! After a slew of emails asking for an Italian cream cake, I’ve finally created my own recipe that I’m excited to share with you today.

Italian cream cakes are known for having a soft cake crumb loaded with pecans and coconut. I wanted mine to be plush and perfectly dense (but with a crumb closer to vanilla cake than pound cake), sturdy enough to handle three layers and keep chopped pecans suspended in the batter, yet still able to melt in your mouth. Tricky, right? Right.

It took a lot of attempts to nail this one down, and ultimately, I ended up using a modified version of my Chantilly cake. I nixed the brown sugar so that the almond flavor could shine, used the reverse creaming method for a beautiful, soft crumb, and topped everything off with a THICK layer of cream cheese frosting, with only a few small tweaks from my well-loved recipe. You’re going to love it, even if it’s not really Italian (more on that below!).


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups sweetened shredded coconut, divided
  • 6 egg whites beaten to stiff peaks

For the frosting

  • 1/4 cup butter softened
  • 8 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
  • 1 pound powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans

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  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Grease and flour 3 8-inch cake pans. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, cream the butter and shortening until smooth. Add the sugar and beat well.
  4. Add the egg yolks and mix well.
  5. Sift the flour and add into the sugar and butter mixture one-third at a time, alternating with the milk.
  6. Stir in the vanilla, 1 cup of coconut and the pecans.
  7. Fold in the egg whites carefully until no pockets remain.
  8. Divide evenly between the three prepared pans.
  9. Bake 25 minutes and turn out to a wire rack to cool completely
  10. While the cakes bake, sprinkle one cup of coconut on a baking sheet and toast it in the oven alongside your cakes until brown and nutty, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir it every couple of
  11. minutes to make sure it doesn’t burn. Then set aside to cool

For the frosting:

  1. Cream the butter and cream cheese until well mixed. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until well combined.
  2. Spread between layers of cake and on top and sides.
  3. Use your hands to press the toasted coconut all around the sides.
  4. Sprinkle pecans over the top.
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