Italian Cream Cake is one of my all time favorite cakes. The Cake itself is actually southern and has nothing to do with Italy. It’s a light and spongey cake with a moist and tender crumb, thanks to the crushed pineapple. You’ll get small chunks of pecans and sweet shredded coconut in every bite and the flavor combo is unreal.
What is in Italian Cream Cake?
The base of this cake starts with lots of butter and sugar for a rich and tender cake. The sugar helps give the cake a sweet and slightly crispy crust while the whipped egg whites keep the cake super airy and fluffy. I like to add a lot of crushed pineapple so the cake is not only super moist, but also has little bits of soft pineapple to compliment the crunchy pecans and sweet coconut shreds. The cream cheese frosting is a very basic frosting that pairs so well with the cake. The tartness and creaminess of the frosting compliments the sweet and buttery cake so well. I like to add some pineapple juice to the frosting too. This elevates it a little and makes it better than your average cream cheese frosting. Definitely don’t skimp out on the coconut and pecans in the frosting. They put this frosting over the top. It makes it where every bit of this cake gets a little bit of every flavor and texture, and trust me when you tell you, you’ll never have anything like it.
Making the cake
The process for this Italian Cream Cake is pretty straightforward. I do take the extra step of separating the eggs and whipping the whites separately. This leaves you with a very spongey cake. Now, a lot of sponge cakes will lose that extra moisture and can be sort of dry. To make up for that, I add a lot of crushed pineapple to add that extra moisture back into the cake. This gives you a super spongey cake thats also very moist.
I have a few tips for you to ensure you get the best cake. First off, you want to make sure you cream the softened butter and sugar together really well. You want to scrape the bowl and cream them well. After you add the egg yolks and beat a little longer you’ll be left with a pale and fluffy mixture. At this point alternate adding the flour and milk, but don’t over mix otherwise you’ll end up with a gummy textured cake. After you fold in the coconut and pecans you need to very gently fold in the whipped egg whites. Make sure to slowly fold them in so you don’t deflate the batter otherwise you’ll end up with a flat cake.
Italian Cream Cake
Perfectly moist sponge cake with tart pineapple, crunchy pecans, and sweet coconut flakes. Topped with a tangy and sweet cream cheese frosting. This Italian cream cake is absolute perfection.
- Prep Time: 20 M
- Cook Time: 30 M
- Total Time: 50M
- Yield: 20 1x
1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 8 oz can crushed pineapple
1/4 cup softened butter
8 oz cream cheese
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut
Cream the butter and 3/4 cup of the sugar.
Separate the eggs and add the egg yolks and vanilla extract to the butter and sugar. Cream until pale and fluffy.
Mix the baking powder, salt and flour together. Alternate adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk. Mix until combined. Reserve 2 tbsp of the pineapple juice for the frosting and then add the crushed pineapple and mix in. Fold in the coconut and chopped pecans.
In a clean bowl, whip the egg whites until foamy. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar and whip until you get soft peaks. Gently fold the egg whites into the cake batter. Be careful to not deflate the batter.
Pour the batter into a greased 9×13. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 F for 25-30 minutes. You want the cake to be golden brown and a toothpick to come out with soft crumbs. Allow to cool and prepare the frosting.
For the frosting beat the softened butter and cream cheese together. Add the reserved pineapple juice and beat again. Gently mix in the powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in the chopped pecans and shredded coconut.
Frost the cooled cake and enjoy. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days. Enjoy!
See all the notes above for a perfect cake!
Keywords: italian cream cake, sponge cake, coconut cake, pineapple cake, sheet cake, italian sheet cake