Welcome to our delightful Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake Recipe! Coffee cake is a beloved treat enjoyed by many, especially for its warm, comforting flavours that perfectly complement a steaming cup of coffee. Whether you’re hosting a brunch, looking for a delectable afternoon snack, or simply want to satisfy your sweet tooth, this coffee cake is sure to be a hit.
Does Coffee Cake Have Coffee in It?
Before we dive into the recipe, it’s worth noting that coffee cake doesn’t typically contain coffee as an ingredient. Rather, coffee cake was devised as a scrumptious companion to a strong cup of coffee, fusing the slightly bitter richness of the coffee with the creamy-sweet mouthfeel of the cake. It’s the ultimate pairing for those who love the taste of coffee and cake equally! And, because the cake doesn’t contain caffeine, you can be sure that having a slice close to bedtime won’t affect your sleep.
The beauty of a good coffee cake lies in its simplicity and versatility. With a tender, moist crumb and a delectable streusel topping, this cake is a crowd-pleaser that can be enjoyed on various occasions. Its delicious blend of flavours and textures makes it equally suitable for a relaxed family gathering or an elegant afternoon tea.
In this recipe, we’ll guide you through the process of creating your own scrumptious coffee cake from scratch. We’ll cover everything from preparing the cake batter to creating an irresistible streusel topping. So, roll up your sleeves, ready your spatulas and mixing bowls, and let’s get started on this delightful culinary adventure!
For the Cake Batter:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the Filling:
- 1 cup dark brown sugar or light brown sugar, packed
- 1 ½ tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa
For the Streusel Topping:
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes
- ½ cup chopped nuts (such as walnuts or pecans) – optional but adds a lovely crunch
Preheat your oven to 175°C (350°F / Gas Mark 5). Lightly grease a 9x9 inch (23x23 cm) square baking pan or a 9-inch round cake pan with butter or non-stick cooking spray.
In a medium-sized bowl, mix the streusel topping ingredients. Begin by combining the flour, light brown sugar, and cinnamon, and then add the chilled cubes of butter. Work the butter cubes into the dry mixture using a fork or your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Optionally, add chopped nuts to the mixture at this stage, making sure that they’re well incorporated into the mix before moving on.
In a separate bowl, make the cake filling by mixing the brown sugar, cinnamon, and cocoa powder.
To make the cake batter, in a medium-sized mixing bowl, sift together the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the softened unsalted butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Using an electric mixer at medium speed works best for this step. This process adds air to the batter, contributing to the cake’s tender texture.
Add the eggs one at a time to the butter-sugar mixture, beating well after each addition. Then mix in the pure vanilla extract, which enhances the cake’s overall flavour profile. Finally, work your flour mixture into the batter until well incorporated.
By now, your cake batter will be very thick. To counter this, add the sour cream into the mixture in stages until you have a lighter consistency. If your batter is still too thick, you can add a splash of milk at this stage and it will quickly soften up.
Pour half of the cake batter into your pan, using a spatula to spread out evenly to the edges. Then sprinkle the filling over the cake batter. Pour the other half of the cake batter on top of the filling layer, using your spatula again to spread it out. Finally, sprinkle the streusel topping over the second layer of cake batter. Press down with the back of a spoon to adhere the streusel crumbs to the batter. As the cake bakes, the streusel will meld with the batter, creating a delightful contrast of textures.
Bake in the oven for 45-50 minutes, or until a cocktail stick inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. By now, the edges of the cake should be a lovely golden-brown colour and your kitchen smelling of sweet cinnamon!
Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack until warm. Then boil up a pot of your favourite coffee, pair it with large slice of cake, and enjoy the fruit of your labours! Transfer any uneaten cake to a plastic container to prevent it from drying out.
And there you have it: a beautiful cinnamon streusel-topped coffee cake, sure to delight on any occasion. We love this recipe for its combination of rich flavours and textures. And because the layers of cake batter, filling, and streusel topping are all assembled before going in the oven, there's no need to decorate your cake after it bakes. Simply remove from the oven, allow to cool, and enjoy!
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