Lazy Daisy Cake

When I first mentioned on my Facebook page that I was making Lazy Daisy cake, I got all kinds of folks telling me how many wonderful memories this cake holds for them.  It’s one of those old-timey recipes that brought back childhood memories for a lot of people…many of the messages I got referred to grandma’s kitchen.  My own grandma made some wonderful treats in her kitchen that are are near and dear to my heart, but Lazy Daisy cake actually wasn’t one of them.  No, I made this delicious concoction of a hot milk cake topped with sweet broiled coconut filling because it reminded me of a friend I have right this minute.

From the first moment I met my friend Angie – back when our now college age kids were little kids – I’ve felt like I’ve known her all my life.  She’s one of those friends who can finish your sentence for you because she knows what you are thinking.  She’s one of those friends who brings you a lip gloss with a ribbon tied around it after you admire the one she is wearing.

She’s one of those friends who is so dear to you that you forgive her for refusing to give you her super-secret recipe for her utterly irresistible brownies. She’s one of those friends who will take your kid and her kid to a Green Day concert at Madison Square Garden, thereby saving you from having to go to a Green Day concert ever in your life.  (Sorry Green Day fans.  I’m more of a James Taylor kind of girl.).

And, she’s one of those friends who grows daisies in her back yard and then leaves bouquets of them on your doorstep because she knows they are your favorite flower…or even better, drops by your house with a bouquet of them in her hand after you have both had a long long long day at work .

She’s done that for me so many times that I have more of her vases in my cabinet than I have my own.  (I promise I am going to return them, Angie!)

And for that reason, when I decided to make my own version of the old-time Lazy Daisy Cake, it immediately reminded me of Angie.  Maybe it was the daisies, maybe it was because this cake is sweet and sassy…or maybe it was a combination of both. For those of you whose grandmas didn’t make it for you, this cake is a combination of a simple yellow cake base made from eggs, sugar, flour, butter, hot milk and a few other things, baked up and topped with a “frosting” that is a combination of butter, milk, brown sugar and coconut, all mixed together, spread on top of the cake and broiled for a few minutes until it is just slightly brown and caramelized.  It sounds so simple, but it is wildly, additively good.

So the next time one of your sweet friends drops by with flowers that she is bringing you just because she knows you love them, give some of the love back by baking her (or him!) some Lazy Daisy cake. Sweets for the sweet!


Lazy Daisy Cake
Serves: Serves 6-8
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 eggs, beaten to blend
  • 1 cup sugar
For Frosting
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
  1. Preheat the oven to 350, and grease an 8 inch square baking dish.
  2. Whisk together the flour and the baking powder.
  3. Combine 1 cup milk, 1 tablespoon butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla in a small saucepan and heat to almost boiling. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Beat the eggs and sugar in mixer until it is thick, about 2 minutes. Stir in the flour mixture until it is just smooth. Add the hot milk mixture and stir until well-combined.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish and bake for 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Cool on a rack for 10 minutes while you make the frosting.
  6. Stir the melted butter, brown sugar, ¼ cup milk and coconut together. Spread over the warm cake, making sure you cover it all the way to the edges.
  7. Place under the broiler until golden, watching it the entire time so it doesn't get too dark, about 2 minutes or so.
  8. Remove and cool, and then cut into squares and enjoy with a friend!


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  1. Julie S. says

    Oh I love this cake from my childhood, but it was my mom that made it, not a grandma. I made it just a couple of weeks ago. We have always used a recipe that was on the Bisquick box back in the day. Since we’re in TX and have plenty of pecans, some chopped ones always go in the topping.

  2. says

    Honestly..I’ve never even HEARD of this type of cake! What is up with THAT?! Anyways, I love all things coconutty so this sounds pretty delectable to me!

    • Kate says

      Hi Terry – I haven’t made it without the coconut but a reader above makes it with nuts, so I bet you could try that. The coconut gives it texture and flavor, but I think a similar amount of chopped nuts would do the same.

  3. Sandy K says

    This brings back so many memories. My mom made this cake and it was my Uncle Al’s favorite. For some reason he called it upholstered cake. We always had to save him a big piece. Sweet memories.

    • Kate says

      Upholstered cake – I love it! I’m going to have to look that up. I’m so glad it brought back sweet memories for you. :)

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