Icebox Cake is pure magic. See, it starts off with the most unlikely of ingredients — graham crackers — and when you place them into the dish, you wonder, how could this ever become cake? But here’s the secret — when you layer those crackers with a whole lot of other creamy goodness and let them sit in the fridge overnight, they become SO cakelike. Tender and soft with just enough bite, they give you a layered concoction that’s cool and creamy as all get out and you don’t have to bake anything to get it.
Oh, and I should mention, here that concoction is a creamy pineapple-coconut piña colada party. I, for one, can’t think of a better combination.
So here’s the deal:
You’re making a kind of heightened-pudding concoction for the creaminess that’s a combo of cream cheese, instant pudding, coconut milk, powdered sugar, cool whip, and a little rum and coconut extract. It’s creamy and smooth but has some structure too, and the extracts make it feel like a vacation in a spoonful. You’ll take that mixture and layer it with graham crackers and crushed pineapple until your serving dish can take no more.
Oh, there’s shredded coconut too. And while it’s not totally necessary, I like to toast at least half of it, so the coconut that goes on top has a little bit of a toasty crunch. It’s a nice added bonus, but you’ll want to add that after you chill the cake.
Chilling takes four hours at least, but ideally, I like to leave this overnight. That gives the graham crackers ample time to absorb all the moisture they need to to complete their transformation into cake. It’s a tasty magic trick, I tell ya!
Piña Colada Icebox Cake
15m prep time
- 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut, divided
- 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon rum extract
- 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1 (14 oz) can coconut milk, divided
- 1 (3.4 oz) package instant vanilla pudding mix
- 1 (8 oz) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 15 graham crackers
- 1 (20 oz) can crushed pineapple, drained
- Add half of the coconut to a medium pan and heat it over medium-low heat. Stirring constantly, continue cooking until the coconut is evenly toasted, 3-5 minutes. Remove to a bowl and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, powdered sugar, rum extract, and coconut extract with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Gradually mix in 1 cup of the coconut milk. Add pudding mix and continue beating on low speed until smooth. Fold in thawed whipped topping.
- Pour the remaining coconut milk into a shallow bowl or dish. Dip each graham cracker into the liquid, allowing excess to drip off, then arrange in a single layer in the bottom of an 8x11-inch baking dish. (You might need to break some crackers to make them fit.)
- Top with half of the cream cheese mixture, followed by half of the pineapple and the untoasted coconut.
- Repeat layers with another layer of graham crackers, the remaining cream cheese mixture and the remaining pineapple.
- Cover and chill until ready to serve, at least 4 hours. Top with toasted coconut before serving and enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Maria's Kitchen.