Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Crazy Coconut Caper

Have you ever noticed that sometimes things just converge in life? It all started with Jenn's book. I had cupcakes on the brain. (It's a wonderful book, by the way -- you'll love it! Don't miss Lesa Holstine's review!) Then someone recommended adding raw coconut oil to my dog's food. Apparently, it's a natural anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. I bought the coconut oil, and sure enough, my mother started reminiscing about her friend's signature cake. She made coconut cake for every birthday, holiday, and celebration. In the Domestic Diva Mysteries, Natasha has a signature color (oh! that would make a great question in a contest!), but who knew someone might have a signature cake?

By that time, I was itching to try the coconut oil. I dipped a spoon into it and tried just a taste. It reminds me a little bit of an Almond Joy or a Mounds, but it has the texture of Crisco. A little bit of research indicates that raw coconut oil is nothing short of a miracle food curing hair and skin issues, "maintaining cholesterol levels, weight loss, increased immunity, proper digestion and metabolism, relief from kidney problems, heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, HIV and cancer, dental care, and bone strength." WEIGHT LOSS? Bring on the coconut oil!

By now you see where this is going. I had to make crazy coconut cupcakes. To lose weight -- you understand.

Crazy Coconut Cupcakes

1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup raw coconut oil
1/2 cup shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place cupcake liners in the cupcake pan. Note that I wanted to make a small batch. This makes about 11-12 cupcakes. If you need more, double the recipe.

Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, shredded coconut, and salt, and mix with a fork.

Separate the egg. Beat the egg white until it forms gentle peaks, but isn't dry. Set aside.

Beat the egg yolk briefly, slow the mixer and add a the coconut oil. Slowly add some of the flour mixture. Alternate adding the liquids and the rest of the flour mixture.

Gently fold about 1/4 of the mixture into the egg white. Add the rest in two portions, folding each time. Spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about 3/4 full. Bake 18-22 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.

If you're the type who prefers the cake part of cupcakes, top these with a strawberry and you're done. They're delicious without frosting. But if you're the type who thinks nothing can be too sweet -- go for the frosting below!

Crazy Coconut Cupcake Frosting

Interestingly, raw coconut oil does not need to be refrigerated. That made me start thinking about buttercream and how delicate it is in the heat. If you've read The Diva Takes the Cake, you know what I'm talking about! I don't know how well coconut oil frosting will stand up to heat, but here it is --

6 tablespoons raw coconut oil
4-6 tablespoons milk or cream
3 cups powdered sugar

Place the coconut oil in the mixer with 2-3 tablespoons of milk or cream and mix. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time, mixing well. Alternate adding the liquid and the sugar until it reaches a nice frosting consistency. Spread or pipe on the cupcakes. I sprinkled mine with a little bit of Wilton's Sprinkles -- not with murder!

Enjoy losing weight!

Aside from having a crazy coconut cupcake crisis, I'm happy to say that I managed to make a trailer for The Diva Paints the Town. (If it's too small to see clearly here, you can check it out at YouTube.)


Don't forget Jenn's cupcake contest! Sprinkle with Murder is in bookstores near you! If you’d like to win cupcakes from Crumbs Bake Shop, send us an e-mail at or a comment with your idea of the wackiest cupcake ingredients you can think of.

~ Krista


  1. Krista, you've come up with the perfect cupcake. You can't go wrong if you're eating to lose weight. This sounds great and I love coconut. I didn't know about the coconut oil though, that's interesting.

    You're video is cute. Enjoyed the music with it.

  2. Krista - Almond joys and Mounds are among my all-time favorite candies. I never worked with raw coconut oil, but now you have most definitely intrigued me.

    LOVE the book trailer for DIVA PAINTS THE DOWN (another great Domestic Diva read)! Woot! And those cupcakes are real beauties. What a sweet tribute to Jenn's release week.

    Have a great Saturday,

  3. Ooh...nice trailer! I like the "is he stalking you?" part! Chilling!

    And I really appreciate that you're looking out for us here at the Mystery Kitchen with a wonderful weight loss recipe! How *thoughtful*!! Wait...heavy cream in the recipe?? Ah well. I wasn't in the mood to diet anyway. :) Looks delish!

    Mystery Writing is Murder

  4. Wow, cupcakes and a show! What a fun what to start the morning. I love Mounds bars. Will have to try this out. Enjoy! And good question re: signature color. I know it. I know it! ~Avery

  5. Coco-nutty. These sound really good. I love coconut.

  6. Mason, the cupcakes are so full of coconut flavor. Yum. And it makes a small batch, which is nice. I'm glad you like the music on the trailer. That's the hardest part, I think!

    Cleo, you're going to love using raw coconut oil. It does impart a coconut flavor but it can also be used for cooking -- though only over medium heat. I'm so glad you like the trailer!

    Thanks, Elizabeth! Even our cozies have scary elements! Uh, you do realize that the heavy cream is canceled out by the healthy coconut oil. Right? Actually, I suspect the recipe might work with plain old milk instead. Will have to try sometime.

    Avery, I thought about putting chocolate in the frosting and dusting it with coconut. I bet that would really taste like a Mounds bar!

    Thanks, Carol. They are the most coconutty cupcakes I've ever tasted!

    ~ Krista

  7. Coconut oil has just been added to my grocery list! Thanks Krista - I'm excited to try it out and I'm already coming up with recipe ideas! Great trailer!! Thanks for adding it here. What a fun post!


  8. I'm glad you like the trailer, Julie!

    Can you believe all the health benefits of coconut oil? Be sure you buy the raw, unprocessed version. I expect to have the most beautiful hair tomorrow and be at least five pounds lighter. ;)

    ~ Krista

  9. Great recipe, Krista! I feel slimmer already. MJ

  10. LOL, MJ! I'm certain I lost four pounds last night after eating the cupcakes. ; )

    ~ Krista

  11. I've never tried coconut oil, but I'm going to look into it now. Sounds like it's good for me and my dog :)

  12. Janel, my dogs think it's great! I don't give them much. They're now getting a tiny bit in their dinners each night.

    ~ Krista

  13. I love the video, Krista! Went to see Jenn at the Poisoned Pen today. She has library groupies!

  14. They are beautiful... BUT

    More heavy cream than coconut oil in the cakes... well, good luck with your plan

  15. I love cooking with coconut oil-you just have to be careful which one you use-some have a smoky taste. At the Indian markets-they sell it to put a shine in your hair.

  16. Thanks, Lesa. Wish I could have come to play with you and Jenn!

    Dave, I lost four pounds overnight. ; ) Ack! You moved to the Virgin Islands? You are having too much fun! May I recommend some raw coconut oil to counteract some of that wonderful food you're eating?

    Esme, to get the shine, are you supposed to eat it or put it on your hair?

    ~ Krista

  17. I had always heard that coconut was high cholesterol and bad for you. So glad to know that's not true, because I love it but shied away from eating it. Thanks for that and the recipe!

  18. heard about the way coconut oil works wonders on your hair, but losing weight is a new one. And so is adding it to coconut cupcakes! It's a good idea for sure. Just another reason to eat cupcakes!

  19. Recipe = looks amazing!

    Book trailer = I love it! Short, sweet, and cute!

  20. Oh, thank you for this cupcake recipe! I'm going to try it this weekend. I'm sure my younger siblings will enjoy it. I will surely use coconut oil for this. Been using one from It's really good.