Mango Cake with Coconut Topping

I recently posted a terrific and marvelous and delicious and life-changing baked bean recipe that we made up for the Fourth of July.   Today I am featuring another recipe that I made when family was visiting earlier in the month.

Last summer we traveled to Iowa to spend the Fourth with my sister and her family and Mom.   While perusing through my sister’s cookbooks, I cam across this one:

She had recently found it on a bargain rack at a local book store.  I looked through it and decided I needed it, too.   As is often the case with me and cookbooks, I bought it and it sat in a pile for over a year.  I decided to revisit it during our holiday and was glad I did.   This cake is delicious and even though I didn’t have all of the called for ingredients and I decreased the sugar a bit, I will make this cake again!

Mango Cake with Coconut Topping

Based on Lisa Lemke’s Mango Squares with Coconut Topping

This is reminiscent of an heirloom oatmeal cake with a crunchy sugary topping.


  • 12 oz. frozen mango, thawed and drained
  • 2 1/4 sticks butter, room tempterature
  • 1 1/4 c. sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 c. milk
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • 3 c. flour
  • 4 t. baking powder
  • 1/2 t. salt

For topping:

  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. light corn syrup
  • 2/3 c. milk
  • 1 c. unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 5 T. butter


  1. If you are using frozen mango, thaw it on paper towels. While the fruit is thawing, preheat the oven to 350°F.With an electric mixer, whip the butter and sugar in a bowl until soft and smooth. Add one egg at a time, while whisking.   Add milk and vanilla.
  2. In a separate mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Mix into the batter until just combined.   Remove from the mixer and fold in the mango.
  3. Line a 10-by-16-inch baking pan with high edges with parchment paper and spread the batter evenly in the pan. Bake in the lower third of the oven for about 40 minutes or until the cake is baked through.
  4. Meanwhile, combine all the ingredients for the coconut topping in a sauce pan and cook on low heat for a few minutes while stirring.  Make sure the sugar is dissolved.
  5. Remove the cake from the oven and pour the coconut topping on top. Increase the oven temperature to 400°F, set the cake in the lower third of the oven, and bake for an additional 15 minutes or until the coconut topping has turned golden brown.
  6. Let the cake cool and then cut it into squares.

While we were eating this, I could tell my mom was already modifying the recipe in her head.   I also was thinking how good this cake would be with peaches (or cherries or apples)…

I also made a lemony-horseradish potato salad from Lemke’s book for the cookout.  It included capers and Yukon gold potatoes with lemon zest and horseradish.  I enjoyed it but it was an acquired taste for some of our guests.

Some might find a bit of Lemke’s flavors a bit unusual but I can’t wait to make more recipes.  I will say that her instructions, at times, need a bit of finessing.  It is definitely a good summer cookbook with lots of menus for party ideas.  If you can find it in the bargain rack, lash on to it.


I am in a mango state of mind recently, so stay tuned for another tropical recipe!


I am linking up with August’s Foodies Reads.


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