Adapted from Cupcake Doctor
1 box white cake mix
1 1/3 cup coconut milk
2 Tbsp oil
2 tsp coconut flavoring
1 recipe of buttercream
1 bag (7oz) sweetened flaked coconut
Preheat oven to 350F. Line 24 cupcake cups with paper liners. Set the pans aside.
Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed. Spoon or scoop 1/3 cup batter into each lined cupcake cup, filling it 3/4th of the way full. Place the pans in the oven.
Bake the cupcakes until they are lightly golden and spring back when lightly pressed with your finger, 16 to 20 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 5 minutes. Place them on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes before frosting.
Assemble: place a heaping tablespoon of buttercream on each cupcake and swirl to spread it out with a short metal spatula or a spoon, taking care to cover the tops completely. Sprinke the tops of the cupcakes with coconut.
1/2 cup butter, room temp
3 cup powdered sugar, sifted
3 to 4 Tbsp milk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until fluffy, 30 seconds. Stop the machine and add the powdered sugar, 3 Tbsp of milk and the vanilla. Blend with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is incorporated. 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 1 minute more. Add up to 1 Tbsp more milk if the buttercream seems too stiff.