German Chocolate Layer Cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting

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  • Author: Laura
  • Prep Time: 60 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
  • Yield: 12 1x


Looking for a delicious chocolate layer cake? You have to try this decadent German Chocolate Layer Cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting. This is so much more than just a chocolate cake. One bite and you will think you are in heaven.



  • 4 ounces semi-sweet baking chocolate
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 1 cup 2 % milk
  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Coconut-Pecan Frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 cups evaporated milk
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 ½ cups coconut flakes
  • 2 cups pecans, chopped



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt chocolate with the water in a small saucepan over medium-low heat until just melted.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Pour in the melted chocolate and mix together.
  4. Next, mix in the eggs, vanilla and milk until well combined.
  5. Add the flour, baking soda and salt to the mixing bowl and stir or mix into the batter until just combined.
  6. Spray 3 8-inch cake pans with non-stick cooking spray. For extra coverage, line the bottom of the pans with an 8 inch circle of parchment paper.
  7. Pour batter evenly between the three pans and then bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothipick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Cool and make frosting.
  9. After frosting has cooled, assemble the cake:
    1. Put the first layer rounded side down on a cake plate, topping with 1/3 of the frosting.
    2. Add the second layer also rounded side down, repeating with another layer of the frosting.
    3. Add the 3rd layer, rounded side up. Top with remaining frosting. Do not frost the sides.
    4. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour prior to serving to make the cake easier to slice. Save any leftovers covered in the refrigerator.

Coconut-Pecan Frosting

  1. Melt butter and then add in granulated sugar, brown sugar, evaporated milk and vanilla. Whisk until well combined.
  2. Mix in egg yolks.
  3. Cook over medium heat, frequently stirring, until mixture thickens and is bubbly. This should be 10-12 minutes.
  4. Add in coconut and pecans and stir to combine.
  5. Remove from stovetop and cool for at least 30 minutes, stirring now and then.


Makes 12 servings.

  • Category: dessert
  • Method: oven
  • Cuisine: German

Keywords: chocolate layer cake