Malibu Sunset Cake

One of the best cocktails in cake form! 

Okay, well, one of the best in my opinion. This Malibu Sunset Cake features coconut rum along with all the cocktail garnishes - pineapple, orange, and cherries! The cake drip looks like a splash of grenadine thrown in for good measure. 😉 

There's a Thomas Edison quote that goes something like this - "Opportunity is missed by most people, because it shows up in overalls and looks like work."

Here’s the thing I didn't realize until recently though….I don’t mind work! But my tendency is to avoid *new* or *difficult* work! The new things, the hard things, the unfamiliar things, the things I’m trying for the first time feeling nervous because I’ve never done them before.

Anyway, that was the hurdle I had to jump to make this Malibu Sunset cake - I partnered with  Miss Jones Baking Company for a giveaway and used their mixes and frosting for the first time. While working with new ingredients can be challenging, their supplies produced a fantastic cake! 

Miss Jones Baking Company’s products are all-organic, verified non-GMO, contain no trans fats, are vegan friendly, and best of all – they’re  designed to taste homemade! Recipe for this Malibu Sunset Cake is below - happy baking! 

"What if I want to make the cake layers from scratch?" 
  • Absolutely; do it! I'm all about scratch recipes because nothing beats them for taste!
  • I've modified my favorite Vanilla Cake recipe for similar cakes before; replace 1/2 cup of the buttermilk with coconut rum and follow the rest of the instructions below! 
  • You can use your favorite frosting recipe or my favorite Cream Cheese Buttercream recipe for the frosting! 

(Disclosure: As an Amazon associate I may earn from qualifying purchases, and my posts often contain affiliate links. If you click a link and make a purchase, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you!) 

Malibu Sunset cake pinterest pin

Malibu Sunset Cake

Make this gorgeously delicious Malibu Sunset Cake, featuring Malibu rum, ombre frosting, and a cocktail glass and cake drip topper!
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Decorating time25 minutes
Total Time1 hour 20 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Coconut Rum Cake, Coconut Rum Cake recipe, Malibu Sunset Cake, Malibu Sunset Coconut Cake
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 320kcal
Author: Sarah H



Malibu Sunset Cake layers

  • 2 boxes Miss Jones ‘Ultimate Vanilla’ Cake mix
  • 6 eggs
  • ½ cup milk
  • ½ cup Malibu Coconut Rum
  • 1 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 2 drops pink gel food color 8 drops yellow liquid (or 2 drops yellow gel) food color
  • 5-6 Maraschino cherries, chopped (optional; add between cake layers)
  • 3-4 Pineapple slices, chopped (optional; add between cake layers)

Malibu Sunset Frosting

Drip & Decorations

  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 small drop drop red gel food coloring
  • 1 small drop yellow gel food coloring
  • Small piping bag & tips – this set has been my favorite for 3+ years now!
  • 9-10 maraschino cherries I used cherries with stems
  • 1 can pineapple slices
  • 2-3 orange slices sliced to the center
  • Cocktail glass of your choice


Malibu Sunset Cake layers

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Line three 8-inch cake pans with parchment rounds, and /or grease with non-stick or baker’s floured cooking spray.
  • Combine cake mix, eggs, milk, coconut rum, and butter, and beat with a whisk until just combined, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Divide evenly between three bowls to color your cake layers (I found a kitchen scale helpful for this part).
  • Color one layer with one large drop pink gel food color, the next with a smaller drop of gel food color plus 4 drops yellow liquid or 1 drop yellow gel food color, and the last with 4 drops yellow liquid or 1 drop yellow gel food color (to make a pink, orange, and yellow layer).
  • Bake cakes in the center of the oven for 29-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting. (This is a great time to prep your frosting!)

Malibu Sunset Frosting

  • Divide your frosting into 1 larger and 3 smaller parts – I used about 2/3 of one container to fill and crumb-coat my cake, and colored the rest of the frosting and used it to cover the cake. (To be honest, if I were doing the cake over I’d probably use 3 containers of frosting; apparently I use more frosting than most!)
  • Divide the remainder of your frosting into 3 parts, and color one pink, one orange (pink+yellow) and one yellow.
  • Once your cakes are cool, level them (if needed). This can be done with a cake leveler or a large serrated knife and a ruler. Place a smear of frosting on your cake circle (to keep the cake from sliding while you decorate it) and center your first cake layer in the center of the circle. Spread the layer with frosting and add the next layer on top. Repeat the process with your remaining cake layers.
  • Now you're ready to crumb-coat . If you're unfamiliar with crumb-coating, it's just what it sounds like – spreading a thin layer of frosting over the entire outside of the cake to keep crumbs out of your final layer.
  • Once your crumb coat has set (this takes about 5-10 minutes in the fridge), add frosting in three layers – I put the pink at the base, orange in the middle, and yellow on top. I used an offset spatula to spread the frosting and a large cake scraper to smooth. Once your cake is covered, place it into the fridge to set the frosting.

Cake drip

  • Place heavy cream and white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on 50% power in 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring in between. Add gel color and stir until smooth.
  • When your ganache has cooled to a moderate temperature – it should feel slightly warm and still be fairly liquid – transfer it to a piping bag or squeeze bottle. Squeeze about ¼ cup of the ganache into the cocktail glass, and then quickly invert the glass over the cake, pressing the glass into the cake at an angle (see video above for an extra guide on this step). Slowly drizzle ganache away from the glass, letting it fall down the edge of the cake to create drips.
  • Add maraschino cherries, pineapple chunks, and orange slices to the top of your cake! I skewered the pineapple and cherries with cocktail sticks, and added orange slice spirals to the back of the cake behind the glass. Pipe a few frosting swirls around the decorations as well - if you have any frosting left!
  • Annnd you’re done! Step back and admire your cake!!



Please note nutrition information is an estimate and may not be exactly accurate.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 320kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 21g

Did you make this Malibu Sunset Cake?

Please send me an email and let me know how it went – or make my day and find me on Pinterest or on Instagram and tag @IntensiveCakeUnit in your photo!

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5 thoughts on “Malibu Sunset Cake

    1. I was about to insert a link to their site, but the mixes you’d need for this recipe are out of stock! :/ Sad. It looks like you could get them through some third-party Amazon sellers at this link –

      But – that said – I’ve ALSO done recipes similar to this one with other cake mixes before! I’m thinking it’s likely you could sub in your favorite white or yellow cake mix and frosting and probably get away with it just fine 😉 Happy baking!

  1. I love this cake! Thanks so much for posting it! I made it today and wish I could show you, you are such an inspiration!

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