Almond Joy Layer Cake

This Almond Joy Layer Cake is made with layers of moist chocolate cake, a delicious flakey coconut filling, almond slivers, coconut frosting and chocolate ganache! It’s the perfect cake for any celebration!

Almond Joy Layer Cake recipe

Almond Joy Layer Cake

Almond Joy Layer Cake

Today is such a big day – there are TWO things to celebrate! First, it’s my mom’s birthday. She’s pretty much one of my favorite people, so celebrating her birth is totally important. Without her I wouldn’t exist and I wouldn’t be who I am. She’s always been a huge influence on me and she’s one of my best friends. I love her to death, so this cake is definitely in part to celebrate another fabulous year of her life.

I am also celebrating my 5 year blogiversary today. Five years ago today I published my first blog post. It’s amazing to look back on the last 5 years to see how much this blog has grown and changed. I’ve learned so much, met so many amazing people, made new friends and made this blog my full time job. I’ve also accumulated an insane amount of cakes stands, written a cookbook and heard from so many readers.

One of the best parts of this blog is hearing from people who have made and loved recipes, as well as those who have followed our fertility journey and relate in some way or are praying for us. You guys are all awesome and inspire me to keep creating and sharing. Thank you for following along! This cake today is also for you!

best Almond Joy Layer CakeAlmond Joy Cake

So let’s talk a bit about this almond joy layer cake. If you like chocolate and coconut, it’s to die for! To start, there’s the moist chocolate cake. So moist, so easy to put together. No creaming or craziness, just mixing some ingredients together. All you need is a couple bowls and a whisk! Bake those babies up and let them cool.

For the filling, we’ve got a super simple mixture of shredded coconut and sweetened condensed milk. The mixture is not only delicious, the texture totally reminds me of the inside of the Almond Joy candy bar. So good! Soft, chewy and moist. Get in my belly! A few almond slivers are sprinkled on top of the coconut filling layers as well.

The whole cake is frosted with a coconut frosting, then covered with chocolate ganache. I often get questions about my frostings and the use of butter/shortening and the amounts of powdered sugar. If you find yourself wanting more information about those things, I wrote this post on frosting consistency that gives some guidance. My frosting is much like a standard decorating buttercream because I like to be able to decorate my cakes. If that’s not your thing, feel free to adjust.

The final cake is totally intoxicating! Every time I opened the container I stored it in, I could smell all the chocolate and coconut. Yum!! The moist chocolate cake, with the chewy coconut and light crunch of the almond slivers is perfection! Almond Joy in cake form and so perfect for a celebration like today!

Almond Joy Layer Cake showing layersDecorated Almond Joy Layer Cake

clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon facebook facebook icon print print icon squares squares icon
upright image of Almond Joy Layer Cake on plate

Almond Joy Layer Cake

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 22 minutes
  • Total Time: 47 minutes
  • Yield: 12-14 Slices 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American


This Almond Joy Layer Cake is made with layers of moist chocolate cake, a delicious flakey coconut filling, almond slivers, coconut frosting and chocolate ganache! It’s the perfect cake for any celebration!




  • 1 3/4 cups (228g) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups (414g) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (85g) cocoa
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (240ml) milk
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (240ml) hot water


  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 3 cups (280g) sweetened shredded coconut
  • 24 tbsp sliced almonds


  • 1 1/4 cup (280g) butter
  • 1 1/4 cups (237g) shortening
  • 10 cups (1150g) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp coconut extract
  • 56 tbsp (90-105ml) water or milk


  • 6 oz (1 cup) semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) heavy whipping cream
  • Almond Joy candy bars, optional


1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and prepare three 8 inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray and parchment paper in the bottom.
2. Add the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt to a large mixer bowl and combine. Set aside.
3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and beat until well combined.
5. Slowly add the hot water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
6. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans and bake for 22-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.
7. Remove cakes from oven and allow to cool for 2-3 minutes, then remove to a cooling rack to finish cooling.
8. To make the coconut filling, add the shredded coconut and sweetened condensed milk to a medium bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.
9. To make the frosting, add the butter and shortening to a large mixer bowl and mix together until well combined.
10. Add half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
11. Add the coconut extract and 4-5 tablespoons of water or milk and mix until smooth.
12. Slowly add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth. Add additional water or milk, as needed.
13. To build the cake, use a large serrated knife to remove the tops of the cake layers so that they’re flat. See my tips on how to level a cake and how to stack a cake.
14. Place the first cake layer on a serving plate or cardboard cake circle then pipe a dam of coconut frosting around the edge of the cake.
15. Add about half of the coconut filling inside of the dam, then spread evenly into an even layer.
16. Sprinkle 1-2 tablespoons of slivered almonds over the top and press into the filling.
17. Add the next cake layer, then top it with another dam of frosting, the remaining coconut filling and more slivered almonds.
18. Add the final cake layer to the top of the cake.
19. Smooth out the frosting on the sides of the cake, creating a thin crumb coat.
20. Add about 1 cup of frosting to the top of the cake and smooth into an even layer.
21. Frost the cake using my tutorial for how to frost a smooth cake. Stop just before using the paper towel, which won’t be necessary with the pattern on the sides of this cake.
22. Use an offset spatula to create the stripes around the cake.
23. Set the cake aside and make the chocolate ganache (see my tips on making chocolate ganache). Put the chocolate chips in a heat proof bowl.
24. Microwave the heavy whipping cream until it just begins to boil, then pour it over the chocolate chips. Allow it to sit for 2-3 minutes, then whisk until smooth.
25. Use a squeeze bottle or a spoon to drizzle the chocolate around the edges of the cake, then fill in the top of the cake and smooth it with an offset spatula. See my tips on making a chocolate drip cake.
26. Allow the ganache to firm a bit, about 10 minutes, then top with remaining frosting, a little more shredded coconut, almond slivers and Almond Joy candy bars.
27. Cover well and refrigerate the cake until ready to serve. Serve at room temperature. Cake is best for 3-4 days.

Keywords: almond joy cake, almond joy recipe, layer cake, layer cake recipe, almond cake, almond cake recipe, chocolate coconut cake, coconut cake recipe, coconut frosting,


Almond Joy Layer Cake slice

Almond Joy Layer Cake - layers of moist chocolate cake, flakey coconut filling and almonds, coconut frosting and chocolate ganache!

This post may contain affiliate sales links. Please read my disclosure policy.

Share a Comment

Have a question? Use the form below to submit your question or comment. I love hearing from you and seeing what you made!

Recipe rating

  1. Jeanette Rice

    The cake in general tasted like a 5, but the recipe dictates too much frosting. I had a quart of leftover frosting. Also, the frosting was a bit heavy and weighed the top layer down. 

  2. Kathy Emory

    I haven’t yet made this cake. However, I want you to know that when you go to print the recipe, the 1-1/4 c. shortening and instruction #14 do not appear on the printed recipe.

  3. Janelle

    Hi! I haven’t made this yet I’m making this for my mommas birthday and was wondering if you think a coconut cream cheese frosting would work? Or do you think it would not have enough flavor and ruin the almond joy flavors? Thank you for this beautiful cake!!

  4. Haley

    This chocolate cake recipe is really perfect! The moistest one I have ever made. I made a coconut Swiss buttercream with this instead of the American buttercream as the recipe is written, and it was perfect – and not overwhelmingly sweet. I also used unsweetened coconut flakes in the filling to cut down on some of the sugar that is already in the condensed milk. Would totally make this again.

    1. Lindsay

      It’s a traditional American buttercream, which can seem pretty sweet to some. You could cut down on the sugar, but then you also change the consistency of the frosting. As for the butter taste, did you use some shortening or use all butter? The shortening should cut down the buttery flavor. But really those things are just characteristics of American buttercream. You could try another type of buttercream, like Swiss meringue buttercream.

  5. Jess

    Beautiful and a delicious cake.

    It’s a showstopper, and Almond Joy fans will rejoice. However, I found that in addition to the filling, the American buttercream makes this cake painfully sweet. I substituted a swiss meringue coconut frosting instead and found the overall cake more to my taste (just my preference). Looking forward to trying additional recipes from this site. Nicely done.

    1. Lindsay

      Because of the sweetened condensed milk in the filling, it’s not a bad idea. But I’d definitely serve the cake at room temperature.

  6. Regina

    I’ve made this cake a few times and substituted a coconut buttercream frosting. It’s simpler (I’m new to this) but the dark chocolate cake is perfect. I’m trying cupcakes today….

      1. Lily

        I made this cake for my family and it was the best cake we’ve ever eaten! Thank you so much for this great recipe!

  7. Brenda Jarmusz

    Hi I just saw this recipe and it looks amazing!! I was asked t make one of my almond joy cakes and I ran across your recipe, I think I’m going to try it. I was wondering if in all of the places it calls for milk or water if using coconut milk would work instead, it would make the coconut flavor come more alive I think. Anyway I think I will try both ways. I will let you know my findings. Lol. Thank you so much for your wonderful recipe. Congratulations on your blog Anniversary. B

  8. Cynthia Huard

    Hi Lindsay !
    first, your recipes is soooo good ! i really love the texture of your chocolate cake !! For this one, the only thing is that i had waayy too much frosting left. But i used it for another cake ;). But for the cake itself, very good !
    My question is, do you have any recipe without eggs ??? my daughter has an allergy 🙁

    thank you ! 🙂

  9. Liz Wilson

    I made this cake to take to a church party. It was amazing. Fun to make, beautiful and beyond delicious. The only thing that I would say to those who make this beauty is that next time I will cut the frosting recipe by at least a third, maybe even as much as half. Waaay too much frosting. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Carrie Piscioneri

    I’m not sure if this is your original recipe or not, but if it is a lady in my area submitted it into a competition and won first place making it sound like it was hers…it’s basically word for word of your instructions, she changed the veggie oil to coconut oil.

  11. AFord64

    this cake looks amazing!! I am going to try it this weekend! I like to bake my cakes in the larger pyrex glass pans. I suppose I wont need as much frosting then? also, what would happen if I used buttermilk instead of regular milk ? curious~~

    1. Lindsay

      I have never baked a cake in that type of pan, so I’m not sure. I haven’t tried buttermilk in this particular cake, but it might be ok.

  12. Meka Dempsey

    Hello! I realized after I bought it that the recipes says shredded coconut. I bought fresh sweetened grated coconut.. would that still work? Thank you!

  13. Chris

    Hi Lindsay, this looks sooo good and I can’t wait to try it. I’ve been able to do this with some of your recipes but i was wondering, is it ok to just divide the cake batter into 2- 8″ pans and have only one layer of coconut filling? Thanks!!

  14. Candice Ray

    HI there. Made this cake today and it is AMAZING. I would like to mention that the recipe says slivered almonds, but from your pictures it looks like you used sliced almonds. I purchased the slivered and then decided not to use them as I thought that would be too crunchy in the middle. I think the sliced would be nice. This is a wonderful combination and my family was very happy.

  15. Penny Kiefer

    I couldn’t find the video so I made the cake the old fashion way – from the printed recipe. 🙂  It was delicious!  My question is — how do you cut it?!  I left the cake in the refrigerator over night, took it to Potluck at church and let it sit out about 2 hours to come to room temperature.  When I tried to cut it it was so moist and it was hard to cut through the coconut which pulled the cake down.  Of course the ladies just kept nibbling on the crumbs so no one cared but it is such a beautiful cake I wanted it to be just as beautiful sliced.   The little bit that was left I returned to the refrigerator and cut a piece later for my granddaughter.  It cut fine.  Suggestions?

    1. Lindsay

      Yea, that’s tough. The shredded coconut does make it difficult. I’m not sure that there’s really a way to avoid that. It doesn’t necessarily create the prettiest slices, but it is delicious. 🙂 I tend to enjoy cake more at room temperature, but if you found it sliced best for you when chilled, you could certainly cut it that way in the future. Glad you enjoyed it!

      1. Penny Kiefer

        Thanks Lindsay!  Glad to at least know it wasn’t just me or my cake. 🙂  Your right no one cared — they ate it and loved it!  I do agree – it’s better at room temperature.

  16. Tammy

    Hubby will be gone this Saturday to work on his truck at my dad’s and I was thinking, “I should bake something.”……this clinches it! I can’t see how this wouldn’t be good!!!!

  17. Aunt J

    Happy five years of bringing inspiration, encouragement and mostly FUN to all of us. Loving the videos, the photos, the videos, the recipes, the videos, the instructions and the videos. Always out of the park.

  18. Yash Goyal

    This is such an awesome looking cake, I can’ t tell you how much I excited to try it as soon as possible. I will definitely make it today for my dinner. Thanks for such a nice post. Waiting for your future posts. Keep Sharing.

  19. Suzy-q

    Oh, boy! Another beautiful cake! Wonderful flavors of chocolate and coconut–can’t be beat! Thanks
    for sharing. Happy anniversary. Wishing you the best.

  20. Cupcake Queen

    I will definitely be baking this cake for my mom! Awesome post, but what icing/frosting smoother do you use? I have one that is plastic, but it is hard to use… Thanks! Wishing your mom a happy birthday, and congrats on your 5 years of working so hard on your posts (and cakes)! I can’t imagine how much butter, sugar, eggs, and cups of flour you must have used in your delicious sweet treats in the past few years! Great job and thank you!

    1. Lindsay

      I use this one. It’s very lightweight and easy to use. Thanks so much for the congrats – it’s definitely crazy to think about the amounts of ingredients I’ve gone through! 🙂

      1. Kate D

        What are your thoughts on using almond extract instead of vanilla in the cake? Is there enough other almond flavor coming through without it when the cake is assembled as a whole?

      2. Lindsay

        There’s almond flavor in the frosting, but otherwise I wouldn’t say there’s a ton of almond flavor. You could certainly add some to the cake if you wanted to taste it more.

  21. Jayne Sansom

    I actually had to look up what you meant by a dam of frosting. (I thought – she’s misspelled a word) 🙂 I’ve been baking for a while now and had never heard that expression. BRILLANT! 🙂 Thank you for teaching this old dog a new trick. The cake looks amazing and I can’t wait to try this recipe and the new way (for me) to frost a cake!

    1. Elena

      Hi Lindsay! I have 2 – 13x9x2 inches baking pans. How  do you think I should adjust the recipe? Any ideas? May be double the ingredients?  Thank you in advance! 

      1. Lindsay

        Are you wanting to make two full sized 9×13 cakes? This recipe would make one, so you want to double it to make two.

About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12