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How to Make Coffee Cake from Scratch

Want to know how to make moist and flavorful coffee cake from scratch? You have found the right place. Baking is my job and passion at night. I am a first-grade teacher during the day. Currently, we are on winter break. Three days in and I have the urge to bake something delicious to go along with my morning coffee. I knew coffee cake would be the perfect addition to the start of my day.

Coffee cake is a traditional dessert for breakfast, brunch, or afternoon coffee. Coffee cake is typically sweet, with a streusel or crumble topping, and is often eaten with coffee. Fruit-filled coffee cake is often eaten as a dessert. The addition of fruit makes it more like a cake than a bread. The addition of fruit sometimes changes the texture of the dough. This is a blog about coffee cake.

For a very long time, I thought that coffee was the main ingredient for coffee cake. However, coffee is not an ingredient for streusel coffee cake recipes. The cake is called coffee cake because it is the perfect cake to have along with your cup of coffee. There are some recipes that include ground coffee or brewed espresso in the recipe. My recipe is one that does include coffee. This will not take away from the cake but will enhance the flavor and moistness of the streusel.

Coffee cakes have a tender and moist crumb. Traditionally they have some type of streusel or crumble on top of the cake that is also evenly distributed within the middle of the batter. The cake is similar to a moist vanilla cake. The streusel is what makes this cake something special. It usually includes brown sugar or granulated sugar, cinnamon, and your choice of nuts. Usually, pecans or walnuts are paired best with this cake. That in itself sounds like it will make most anything tastes amazing!

For this recipe, I like to start with the star of the show, the streusel. My streusel will also include melted butter and espresso. The melted butter will incorporate some fat into the streusel, and this will prevent it from being overly dry. The espresso will add some depth of flavor. The consistency will be thick. But, let me just say that this cinnamon-sugar streusel smells amazing while preparing it. You will be tempted to try it before putting it on the cake. Try your best to save all of that goodness for the cake.

I will prepare the cake batter after the cinnamon-sugar streusel is prepared. As previously mentioned, this cake batter is thicker-than most cake batter. The reason for this is the additional egg yolk and the usage of sour cream instead of milk. Give a little more effort to spreading your thick batter even across the cake pan. The cake will bake lovely and provides a moist crumb. The cake alone is not very sweet. The added cinnamon-sugar streusel adds the perfect balance of sweetness.

This cake smells so inviting while baking. Your home will smell like the best bakery in town! While its baking, the cake should rise high and the streusel will begin to sink into little pockets of the cake. This cake is so flavorful and tasty. The crumb of the cake is moist and the streusel adds a delicate sweetness. View the ingredients and instructions below. Give the recipe a try and I am sure you will enjoy it!

Cake Ingredients

½ cup butter (1 stick)

½ cup brown sugar

½ cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 egg yolk

1 cup sour cream

2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

¾ teaspoon baking soda

¾ teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Streusel Ingredients

¾ cup of Brown Sugar

3 tablespoons of all purpose flour

1 tablespoon of ground cinnamon

4 tablespoons of melted butter

1 ½ teaspoons of brewed coffee

½ cup Chopped pecans (optional)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Prepare an 8x11x2 rectangular pan by lining the bottom with parchment paper and spraying the sides with non-stick baking spray.

Whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, and espresso. Then combine flour, cinnamon and pecans. That’s it! Set this mixture to the side while you prepare the cake batter.

Sift together your dry ingredients in a separate bowl, including flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Cream together butter and sugar until it is light and fluffy. Add eggs to the butter mixture one at a time and mix until fully incorporated. Add in vanilla extract. Alternate flour mixture and sour cream into the butter mixture. Flour, sour cream, flour, sour cream on low speed. Your batter may be slightly thicker than you expected, but that’s ok.

Pour the batter into your prepared cake pan. Spread the cinnamon-sugar streusel mixture across the cake batter evenly.

Now your oven should be at the right temperature for baking.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Remove from the pan while the cake is still warm. Cool completely before serving.

You have successfully made coffee cake from scratch. Enjoy with your favorite cup of coffee!

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