Easy Coconut Mochi Cake

Difficulty Easy

A simple, gluten-free, Asian-inspired snack cake that combines the best of 2 worlds: soft, squishy mochi + fragrant, delectable coconut! Coconut Mochi Cake is so good and easy, you’ll be making it again and again!

What is Mochi Cake?

Mochi Cake is an Asian-inspired dessert with Hawaiian roots. Different from North American cakes that are light, fluffy, and made with wheat flour — Mochi Cake is dense, chewy, and made from glutinous rice flour.

The texture of Mochi Cake is stretchy, bouncy, and gloriously squishy — similar to Japanese mochi. The corners bake up chewy and dense — like brownies.

With the irresistible flavor of coconut — Coconut Mochi Cake is especially fragrant and delicious!

All the flavor and lightness of coconut. Plus, the soft squishiness of mochi! And that crackly, sugary, coconut-y crust on top!

Similar to Black Sesame Mochi Cake, Coconut Mochi Cake is whisked in one bowl. But it’s a more petite portion; the batter makes an 8×8 square instead of a party-ready 9×13 pan. Also, it’s slightly more gooey and soft.

Ingredients:

  • Glutinous Rice Flour. Glutinous Rice Flour comes from glutinous (sticky/sweet) rice. It gives mochi cake its characteristically chewy and stretchy texture. Note: regular rice flour is NOT the same!
  • Coconut Milk. Full-fat, canned coconut milk is a pantry staple in my kitchen. It’s ok if the coconut milk separates or solidifies. Dump into the bowl — as is — and whisk to combine.
  • Coconut Extract. Although the coconut extract is optional, it’s highly recommended. The fragrance really shines through with this simple addition.
  • Sweetened Coconut Flakes. The flakes melt to create a crackly, coconut-y crust. So good!
  • Sugar. Adds sweetness.
  • Eggs. It’s a cake after all!
  • Baking Powder. Just enough to give the cake some rise.
  • Oil. Coconut oil is preferred but any kind of neutral-tasting oil works: grapeseed oil, avocado oil, vegetable oil, or canola oil.
ingredients for Coconut Mochi Cake
Ingredients for Coconut Mochi Cake

Instructions:

  1. Whisk ingredients (except coconut flakes) in a large bowl.
  2. Pour into greased, parchment-lined, 8×8 pan.
  3. Evenly sprinkle coconut flakes on top.
  4. Bake until the cake is golden and puffed with firm edges. As it cools, the cake will deflate.
  5. Cut into squares. Enjoy warm or at room temperature!

Watch how to make it:

PRO Tips:

  • Grease the baking pan. Makes the mochi cake easier to remove. The parchment sling makes lifting out of the pan very easy.
  • Cut squares with a serrated knife. The cake will be easier to slice with a serrated knife.
  • Cool cake. The cake is easier to slice when slightly cool. Although Coconut Mochi Cake is delicious warm or room temperature, it will be very sticky if you slice it immediately after removing it from the oven.

FAQ:

How do I store Mochi Cake?

Store Mochi Cake at room temperature, loosely covered for 1-2 days. Or, store in the fridge (tightly sealed) for up to 5 days.

If the cake becomes too hard, reheat in a toaster oven or Air Fryer at 400F for 5 minutes. The top will crisp up and the interior will be soft and squishy once again!

Can I double the recipe?

Yes, this recipe doubles well. Use a 9×13″ pan and double all the ingredients. When the edges are firm and pull away from the pan and the top is golden brown, the cake is done. The cook time will be 50-60 minutes.

Can I freeze this cake?

Yes, mochi cake freezes well. Cut into individual squares and cool completely before freezing. Store in a ziploc bag in the freezer for up to 6 months. To reheat, use a toaster oven or Air Fryer at 400F for 5 min.

How will I be able to tell when the cake is done?

The skewer test won’t work on mochi cakes, as they are sticky and dense. Instead, look at the corners and edges of the cake — if they are firm and pull away slightly from the pan and the cake is puffed in the middle, the cake is done. Make sure to cool before slicing, as it will be very sticky.

Is glutinous rice flour gluten-free?

Yes, glutinous rice flour is gluten-free. The term “glutinous” is a descriptor for rice and refers to the type of rice being used. Sometimes, glutinous rice is also called sticky rice or sweet rice. Although the name sounds like it contains gluten, it does not.

More Gluten-Free Dessert Inspiration:

stacked pieces of coconut mochi cake

Coconut Mochi Cake

The Subversive Table | Lis Lam
Soft, squishy mochi. Fragrant coconut. Coconut Mochi Cake is the simple snack cake you'll be making again and again!
4.92 from 12 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Cooling Time 10 minutes
Course Dessert, Snack
Cuisine Asian, Fusion Food
Servings 16 square pieces
Calories

Equipment

  • 8×8" square baking pan

Ingredients
  

Dry Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cup/150g glutinous rice flour (also called sweet rice flour, sticky rice flour, or Mochiko flour)
  • 3/4 cup/150g sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Wet ingredients:

  • 2 eggs (large)
  • 1 400ml/13.5oz can coconut milk (full fat, not the boxed kind)
  • 1/4 cup/75ml oil (coconut oil, vegetable oil, or grapeseed oil)
  • 1 tsp coconut extract (optional but highly recommended)

Topping:

  • 1/2 cup sweetened coconut flakes

Instructions
 

  • Prep oven and cake pan. Preheat oven to 350F/175C. Brush oil (any neutral kind works but if you have it, coconut oil is preferred) onto the bottom and sides of a 8×8" square pan. Line with parchment paper, for easy removal, if desired. (The parchment paper is not necessary but makes lifting out of the pan easier.)
  • Whisk cake batter. In a large bowl, add dry ingredients: glutinous rice flour, sugar, baking powder, salt. Whisk to combine. Add wet ingredients directly on top: eggs, coconut milk, oil, coconut extract. Whisk well, making sure there are no lumps. The bat
    coconut mochi cake batter in bowl with whisk
  • Add coconut flakes. Pour into greased, parchment-lined 8×8 pan. Evenly sprinkle coconut flakes on top.
    raw batter for coconut mochi cake in square pan
  • Bake. Slide carefully in oven and bake until cake is golden and puffed with firm edges, about 45 minutes. The coconut flakes will form a crackly, golden-brown crust on top. Cool at room temperature, in pan, for 10 minutes. The cake will deflate slightly as it cools.
  • Serve. Carefully loosen the edges with a butter knife. Then lift the parchment paper sling and transfer cake to a cutting board. Cut into squares with a serrated knife. Enjoy warm or at room temperature. (The cake is easier to cut when cool.)
    coconut mochi cake on parchment paper
  • *Note: the skewer test won't work on mochi cakes, as they are sticky and dense. Instead, look at the corners and edges of the cake — if they are firm and pull away slightly from the pan and the cake is puffed in the middle, the cake is done. Make sure to cool before slicing, as it will be very sticky.

Video

Notes

*Coconut Mochi Cake can be easily doubled and baked in a 9×13″ pan.  The cook time will be 60 minutes.  
**After the first day, store Coconut Mochi Cake in an air-tight container. Mochi cake keeps at room temperature for 2-3 days, in the fridge for up to a week, and in the freezer for a month. But the texture will be very, very different.
***To keep that soft, squishy texture, a common practice in Asian cooking is to pan fry hardened mochi before eating. If your mochi cake has hardened too much, reheat by pan frying or placing in the microwave, toaster oven, or Air Fryer.
****To double the recipe, double the ingredients (except the coconut extract — use 1 1/2 tsp) and bake in a 9×13″pan.  The baking time will be slightly longer at 60 minutes. The coconut on top will also be darker.    
Keyword Cake, Coconut, Mochi
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
All Recipes, Asian, Dessert, Dinner with Friends, Game Day Food, Potluck, Snacks

6 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    YUMMY!! This is so much fun to eat (i cant stop). I took a cue from other comments & used melted butter instead of oil as well. Scrumptious- cant wait to make this again!

  2. 5 stars
    SO SO SO delicious!! I substituted melted butter for the coconut oil and baked it 10 minutes longer. I could eat the entire pan!! Soft, buttery, and best of all, full of coconut flavor!

  3. 5 stars
    I substituted melted butter for the coconut oil and baked 10 minutes longer. It was absolutely AMAZING!!! It will be made again and again!!

  4. 5 stars
    This is a great recipe. I love that it makes an 8×8 pan, and only needs coconut milk unlike so many other mochi recipes. In the summer I make this, cut it into squares, and put it in the freezer. Then I just pull one out and let it warm up for a few minutes to enjoy and cold, squishy, sweet treat. Thank you for sharing this!

  5. 5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe, it was perfect! Coconut-crunchy outside and chewy-gooey inside. I didn’t have coconut extract so I used a splash of vanilla extract instead and it worked great. I’m currently trying to stop myself from devouring the whole cake in one go…

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