German Chocolate Cake with Coconut Custard Filling

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Recipe Courtesy of

Servings: 1 (9-inch) cake
Prep Time: 2 hours 25 min
Cook Time: 30 to 40 min
Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients Add to grocery list

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup whole buttermilk
1 (4-ounce) bar German’s sweet baking chocolate, melted and cooled
Coconut-Pecan Filling, recipe follows
Chocolate Ganache Frosting, recipe follows
Garnish: pecan halves, chocolate curls

Creamy Coconut Pecan Filling:
1½ cups heavy whipping cream
1½ cups sugar
5 egg yolks
6 tablespoons butter
2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1½ cups chopped toasted pecans

Chocolate Ganache Frosting:
1 cup heavy whipping cream, boiling
2 (4-ounce) bars German’s sweet baking chocolate, chopped
¼ cup butter, softened
1½ tablespoons light corn syrup





Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Spray 3 (9-inch) cake pans with nonstick cooking spray with flour. 

In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium-high speed with an electric mixer until fluffy.  Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add sour cream and vanilla, beating until combined. 

In a medium bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. Gradually add to butter mixture, alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Add melted chocolate, beating until combined.

Spoon batter evenly into prepared pans, and bake for 18 to 22 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes.  Remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks. 

Spread two-thirds of Coconut-Pecan Filling evenly in between cake layers. Place cake in freezer for at least 1 hour. Spread Chocolate Ganache Frosting evenly over top and sides of cake. Spread remaining one-third Coconut-Pecan Filling evenly over top of cake. Arrange pecan halves around top and bottom of cake, if desired.  Garnish with chocolate curls, if desired. Store cake in refrigerator. 

Creamy Coconut Pecan Filling:

In a medium saucepan, combine cream, sugar, and egg yolks. Cook over medium-low heat, until sugar is dissolved and mixture coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, and add butter, coconut, and pecans, stirring until butter is melted. Let stand until mixture reaches room temperature. 

Yields: 5 cups

Chocolate Ganache Frosting:

In a medium bowl, combine chopped chocolate, butter, and corn syrup. Pour boiling cream over chocolate mixture.  Let stand for 1 minute. Stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth. Chill for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until frosting is a spreadable consistency. 

Yields: 1 ½ cups

Show: Paula's Best Dishes Episode: Taste of Class
          Watch Paula on Food Network

Publication: Paula Deen Christmas 2009, pg. 48

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Reader Comments:


your magazine and shows are a big hit in our home. ''GOD'' BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY.. .

By Betty Taylor on April 05, 2014


This is a great cake, we seen you making it on your show with Liza Minnelli, my husband liked it and ask for it for his birthday, it made a great hit. Thank you so much I love watching your show and have learned a lot from watching you. Karen Wiles

By karen wiles on March 06, 2013


Paula Deen, my favorite Food Network Program in my home!...I love and enjoy your awesome beautiful-charming personality & presentation on TV!...It is none stop for me!...When Paula & son is on TV, I'm glued to my TV, from start to the end of your program!...Keep up the good work & your new-lovely self along with your family!...Thank you for sharing your outstanding recipes, The Desserts from the South!...I jus joined Pinterest & there's no end to it!...Here in Hawaii, we say, "mahalo (thank you) and aloha (love)...Gwendolyn Wallace!

By Gwendolyn Wallace on February 18, 2013


All I can say Ms YUMM!!!!

By sanda munford on August 12, 2012


Just made this cake and while I can't comment on the flavor just yet, I can say it is one of the most beautiful cakes I've ever made. The batter was delicious as well as the frosting and filling so I can't imagine the taste will disappoint at all. While assembling, I couldn't help but notice how moist the cake is. Can't wait for the birthday celebration to try it!

By Tiffany on August 07, 2012


Not only the best German Chocolate Cake I ever made...this was the best CAKE I ever made.

By Karen on June 01, 2012


I made this cake for my son on his 30th birthday. German Chocolate cake is his favorite. He said it was very rich and yummy! Thank you Paula for helping me make his 30th birthday special. :o)

By Georgia Lokey on February 18, 2012


Those pecan pie pockets. It just came on her show. I know she uses the frozen pastry dough in the grocers freezer. I imagine the filling is the same as her pecan pie.

By Anonymous on January 16, 2012


I love you and your show. I love to cook. I am handicapped and watching your show and cooking makes me happy. Anyway just wanted to say I love you and your show.

By lisa novak on January 11, 2012


Paula once had a recipe that was Pecan fried pies..Does anyone have this recipe? I cant seem to find it NO WHERES!

By Kimberly on January 10, 2012


I have actually made this cake several times. I got the recipe out of your 2009 Christmas Issue. I love, LOVE, LoVe this version of German Chocolate Cake!!!! It is way better than the recipe on the box of German Chocolate, and easier to make (at least in my opinion). I get plenty of requests from family and friends to make this. Thanks for sharing your recipes!! grin

By Camille Hopper on January 10, 2012


So very YUMMY!!

By Darlene Bell on January 10, 2012

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