Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Frosting

It’s strawberry rhubarb season! To celebrate, I’m making strawberry rhubarb cupcakes with coconut frosting!

Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Milk Frosting

How to make strawberry rhubarb cupcakes with coconut frosting

That means I am making all the strawberry rhubarb things, including crisps, crumbles and now… cupcakes.  And I’ll admit, I’ve never really been a big cupcake person, but THESE. 

They kind of changed my mind about the world of cupcakes because they’re light, fluffy, not too sweet, and super tender. 

The cakes themselves make me think of summer, then the pieces of juicy strawberries and tart rhubarb take it to the next summer level. 

And cupcakes are the perfect portion-controlled dessert that everyone absolutely loves at the end of a grilled meat and pasta salad-filled meal.

Gosh, now all I want is grilled food, pasta salad and a cupcake.

Fresh cut strawberries and rhubarb in a glass bowl.
Fresh strawberries and rhubarb in cupcake batter.
Overhead shot of Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcake batter prior to being cooked in a muffin pan.
Overhead shot of cooked Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes in a muffin tin.
Finished Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Milk Frosting.

Have your made frosting out of coconut milk?

Also, full disclosure: These cupcakes are perfectly delicious with no frosting at all.

But then, once I start digging into the frosting (literally, digging into it with a spoon), I realize why I didn’t leave the cupcakes un-frosted (besides, wouldn’t that just be a muffin?). 

And it’s because it’s DYNAMITE. 

It’s very non-traditional in that it’s made with full fat canned coconut milk.  No cream, no milk, no butter.  Just the fatty top from a can of chilled coconut milk, powdered sugar and pure vanilla extract, whipped together until super fluffy. 

YUM.  And don’t forget the coconut chip sprinkles that go on top. 

That part is non-negotiable.

Side shot of Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Milk Frosting on a white plate.
Overhead shot of three Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Milk Frosting on a white and pink plate.

Is there anything more perfect for a summer barbecue?

Didn’t think so.


Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Frosting

Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes with Coconut Milk Frosting on a plate.

Light vanilla cupcakes with strawberries and rhubarb topped with sweet coconut milk frosting.

  • Author: Julie Andrews
  • Prep Time: 30 min
  • Cook Time: 25 min
  • Total Time: 55 min
  • Yield: 12 cupcakes 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegetarian



Coconut Milk Frosting:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 (14-ounce) can full fat coconut milk, chilled
  • ½ tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Strawberry Rhubarb Cupcakes:

  • 1 ½ cups cake flour*
  • ½ tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon coarse salt
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 cup diced rhubarb
  • 1 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • ½ cup unsweetened coconut flakes or chips


  1. Be sure the coconut milk is chilled. If not, place it in the refrigerator at least 4 hours. Right before making the frosting, place the stand mixer bowl in to the refrigerator for at least 10 minutes (to chill).
  2. Open the can of frosting and spoon the fatty top into the chilled stand mixer bowl. Save the coconut liquid for another use. Run the stand mixer on high until coconut is fluffy. While continuing to mix, slowly add powdered sugar, then vanilla extract. Whip until stiff peaks form. Place in the refrigerator to keep chilled until ready to frost. 
  3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup cupcake tin with cupcake liners. Set aside.
  4. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together cake flour, baking powder and salt.
  5. In another medium mixing bowl, beat melted butter, oil and granulated sugar with a hand mixer on medium high speed, until fluffy. Beat in one egg at a time, then vanilla extract, until incorporated.
  6. While beating on low speed, alternate adding 1/3 of the dry ingredient mixture and 1/3 of the milk to the butter mixture, ending with milk, until just incorporated.
  7. In the empty bowl (that was used to mix dry ingredients), combine rhubarb, strawberries and corn starch and toss to combine. Fold mixture into the cupcake batter. Use a cooke scoop or measuring cup to fill the cupcake liners almost all of the way. Bake 18-22 minutes, until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let slightly cool, then remove from the cupcake tin and set on a wire rack to completely cool.
  8. Use a piping bag or Ziploc bag fitted with a tip to pipe frosting onto cupcakes.  Sprinkle with coconut flakes or chips.


Substitution Tip: All-purpose flour can be substituted. It’s best to sift it first, if possible.


  • Serving Size: 1 cupcake
  • Calories: 335
  • Sugar: 21
  • Sodium: 271
  • Fat: 20
  • Saturated Fat: 12
  • Unsaturated Fat: 8
  • Trans Fat: 0
  • Carbohydrates: 36
  • Fiber: 1
  • Protein: 3
  • Cholesterol: 41

Keywords: spring, summer, easy, healthy, ideas, best, party, potluck

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