Cinnamon Coffee Crumb Cake

There’s something about a slice of cinnamon coffee crumb cake that just feels like home. Moist vanilla cake paired with a rich cinnamon swirl and topped off with an irresistible crumb topping, it’s a recipe that’s close to my heart. And let’s be honest, the crumb topping is the best part, right? I make sure you get some in every single bite.

This cake isn’t just a treat; it’s a tradition. Whether it’s a lazy weekend breakfast or a special holiday gathering, this cinnamon coffee cake has become my go-to. It’s the perfect match for a hot cup of coffee or a cold glass of milk, making any morning feel a bit more special.

The Best Cinnamon Coffee Crumb Cake Recipe

When it comes to crafting the perfect cinnamon coffee crumb cake, it’s all about striking that perfect balance between a moist cake, a rich cinnamon flavor, and, of course, that irresistible crumb topping. My love for this delicious cake runs deep – it’s a recipe that feels like home. The secret to its unforgettable taste lies in a few key elements – the cinnamon crumb topping, the buttery cake batter, and the harmonious melding of flavors that make each bite a delightful experience.

In my journey to create the ultimate coffee cake recipe, I’ve found that the quality of ingredients plays a crucial role. Using real butter and fresh buttermilk not only enhances the moistness of the cake but also adds a subtle tang that elevates the overall flavor profile. For the sugar, a combination of granulated sugar for the cake and brown sugar for the crumb topping works best, giving a lovely depth to the sweetness.

The crumb topping, a star in its own right, requires a mix of brown sugar, cinnamon, and butter. Getting this mix just right ensures that delightful thick crumb that coffee cake aficionados, like me, crave. Not too dense, yet satisfyingly chunky, it’s the part of the cake that everyone fights over.

Mixing the cake batter to the perfect consistency is also key. It shouldn’t be runny like box mix cakes. Instead, aim for a batter that’s thick enough to support the lavish layer of cinnamon crumb topping. A trick I’ve found incredibly helpful is to use an offset spatula for spreading the batter evenly – this makes layering the cinnamon sugar filling and crumb topping much easier and more precise.

For the cinnamon flavor that’s integral to this cake, ground cinnamon is blended both within the cake batter and the streusel topping. The spice’s warm, woody notes are what define this cake’s character, transforming it from a simple coffee cake into a cinnamon-lover’s dream.

Ensuring the cake is baked to perfection is the final step in this recipe’s success. The toothpick test – where a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean – is a reliable indicator. The delightful aroma of cinnamon and sugar filling my kitchen is my cue that a perfectly moist, tender cake with a golden-brown crumb topping awaits.

The Ingredients You’ll Need

When diving into making the cinnamon coffee crumb cake that’s been a highlight of my kitchen experiments, understanding the ingredients is key. The beauty of this cake recipe lies not just in its moist texture and full of cinnamon flavor essence but in the meticulous balance of its components. I’ll guide you through every ingredient necessary for the streusel crumb topping and the batter, ensuring you have all you need to make this recipe standout.

For the crumb topping, which truly sets apart a crumb cake from regular cakes, you’ll be needing a mix of flour, brown sugar and cinnamon, and room-temperature butter. The sugar and cinnamon combination is crucial for that authentic cinnamon crumb taste, while the butter should be just soft enough to blend into the mix, creating those sizable clumps that bake into a delightful, textured topping.

Transitioning to the cake batter, things get even more interesting. Start with the basics – granulated sugar, eggs, and sour cream. The sour cream is my secret to a moist coffee cake that stays delightful long after it’s left the oven. Combine these with cake flour, baking powder, and baking soda to ensure the batter rises perfectly, encapsulating the crumb within. Not forgetting, ground cinnamon is swirled into the batter, imparting that irresistible cinnamon flavor throughout every slice.

Finally, a note on the cake pan: opt for one that can handle the crumb mixture and remaining batter on top without spillage. It’s these layers that create the luxurious profile of the cinnamon crumb cake.

Remember, the bake time and ensuring your toothpick comes out clean are pivotal steps you don’t want to overlook. Each ingredient, from the melted butter for the streusel to the cake flour for the batter, plays a vital role in crafting a delicious cake that’s easy to make and impossible to forget. Paired with a cup of coffee, this cake transforms any ordinary day into a memorable occasion.

So, gather your ingredients, preheat your oven, and let’s embark on this baking adventure together.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Baking the Cake

Starting with the cinnamon coffee crumb cake recipe, one of the best coffee cake recipes I’ve discovered, I’m excited to guide you through making this most delicious cake. The allure of this cake lies in its moist interior, rich with cinnamon flavor, and its thick crumb topping that takes the whole experience to another level.

First, ensure all your ingredients are at room temperature. Creaming together butter and sugar forms the base of our cake batter. This process is crucial for achieving that light and fluffy texture we all love. I’ll add an egg and some vanilla extract for that extra depth of flavor.

Next, it’s time to whisk together our dry ingredients: cake flour, baking powder, and a pinch of baking soda. Alternating between the dry ingredients and sour cream, I gradually add them to the butter mixture. The sour cream is my secret weapon here; it keeps the cake incredibly moist and adds a subtle tang that balances the sweetness.

For the iconic cinnamon swirl, I mix ground cinnamon with granulated sugar. This mixture gets layered in the middle of the batter and swirled lightly with a knife. It introduces a beautiful cinnamon flavor throughout the cake, making each bite a delightful experience.

The crumb topping is what sets this cinnamon crumb cake apart. Mixing brown sugar, a touch more cinnamon, flour, and melted butter together creates a coarse, streusel-like topping. Spread this generously over the top of the cake batter. This crumb mixture will bake into a delightful, slightly crunchy layer that contrasts beautifully with the moist cake beneath.

Before it all goes into the oven, I give you a crucial tip: don’t overwork the batter. Overmixing can lead to a denser cake, which we want to avoid. Pour the remaining batter on top of the crumb layer carefully, and if it looks a bit messy, remember that the magic happens in the oven.

I set my oven to 350°F (175°C) and place the cake pan in the center rack. It’s important to bake the cake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean—indicating it’s perfectly cooked through. Bake time varies, but it generally lands around 45-50 minutes for a beautifully golden top and a cake full of cinnamon flavor that rewards your patience splendidly.

How to Make the Irresistible Crumb Topping

One of the highlights of any cinnamon coffee crumb cake is unquestionably the crumb topping. This mixture of sugar, butter, and cinnamon not only adds a rich flavor but also provides a delightful textural contrast to the moist cake beneath. I’ll guide you through the process of creating what many consider the best part of the cake.

Firstly, you’ll need brown sugar, ground cinnamon, and all-purpose flour. These ingredients form the basis of your crumb mixture. The brown sugar adds a deep, caramel-like sweetness while the cinnamon layers in that warm, spicy flavor we all crave. The flour helps to create the crumbly texture that characterizes a top-notch crumb topping.

To begin, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Melted butter is the next key player. It acts as a binding agent for the dry ingredients, aiding in the formation of those deliciously thick crumbs. I find that using melted butter, as opposed to softened butter, helps achieve that quintessential streusel crumb topping texture. Once you’ve added the butter, use a fork or your fingers to mix everything together until you have a crumbly mixture. It should clump together when squeezed but easily crumble apart.

After your crumb topping is ready, it’s time to sprinkle it over the cake batter. Ensure that you cover the entire top of the cake evenly. This will ensure every slice has a generous amount of that irresistible topping.

As you bake the cake, the crumb topping melds slightly with the batter, creating a cinnamon streusel that’s both Moist and Crunchy. This dance of textures and flavors is what sets a cinnamon crumb cake apart from regular cakes. It’s the crumb topping that transforms a simple coffee cake into an unforgettable breakfast, brunch, or dessert delight.

Remember, for the crumb mixture to truly shine, it’s crucial to keep the ingredients, especially the butter, at room temperature. This ensures they blend smoothly and evenly, preventing any lumps in your topping.

Serving Suggestions for Your Cinnamon Coffee Crumb Cake

When I bake my favorite cinnamon coffee crumb cake, the irresistible aroma fills my kitchen, hinting at the delightful experience to come. But it’s not just about the baking; it’s also about how I serve this delicious cake that makes all the difference. Whether you’re enjoying a slice as a cozy breakfast treat or sharing it with friends over a cup of coffee, I’ve got some serving suggestions that’ll elevate your cinnamon coffee crumb cake experience to new heights.

Firstly, Presentation is Key. A simple, yet elegant, way to serve your crumb cake is on a vintage cake stand. This not only adds an aesthetic appeal but also makes serving more accessible and inviting. Dusting an extra pinch of cinnamon sugar on top right before serving adds a lovely sparkle and a hint of sweetness.

Pair With a Beverage. Naturally, a cup of coffee complements the flavors of the cake beautifully, especially if it’s a rich, bold brew that contrasts with the sweetness of the cake. For those who prefer tea, a spiced chai or a cinnamon tea can mirror the cake’s spicy undertones, creating a harmonious blend of flavors. And for a refreshing twist, an iced latte can cut through the richness of the crumb topping perfectly.

Serve With a Side. To turn your cinnamon coffee crumb cake into a more decadent treat, consider serving it with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side. The creaminess of these sides balances the dense crumb topping and moist cake beautifully. For a fruitier touch, a side of fresh berries can add a refreshing contrast to the warm spices.

Make It a Meal. If I’m serving this cake as part of a brunch spread, I like to pair it with savory options. A crispy bacon slice or a savory egg quiche can balance the sweetness of the cake, offering a delightful sweet-and-savory combo. This way, the cinnamon coffee crumb cake becomes a versatile element in a full-fledged meal.

Can I Substitute Cinnamon in the Coffee Crumb Cake for Chocolate in the Easy Chocolate Cake Recipe?

Yes, you can substitute cinnamon in the coffee crumb cake for chocolate in the easy chocolate cake recipe. The flavor profile will change, but it can still work. Just be mindful of the measurements and adjust accordingly for the best results with the easy chocolate cake recipe.


Crafting the perfect cinnamon coffee crumb cake is an art that combines the rich flavors of cinnamon and coffee with a moist, tender crumb. By following the tips I’ve shared, you’re well on your way to creating a dessert that’s as delightful to look at as it is to eat. Remember, the secret lies in the details: room temperature ingredients, the right creaming technique, and that irresistible crumb topping. Whether you’re serving it up as a sophisticated treat on a vintage cake stand or pairing it with your morning coffee, this cake promises to be a crowd-pleaser. So go ahead, bake with confidence and get ready to bask in the compliments that are sure to come your way. After all, there’s nothing quite like the joy of sharing a slice of homemade cake, especially one as special as this.

Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is coffee cake?

Coffee cake is a buttery cake that pairs perfectly with coffee, despite not containing coffee itself. It strikes a balance between the lightness of a regular cake and the denseness of a pound cake. Its modest sweetness is designed to complement a cup of coffee beautifully.

Why is it called coffee cake if there’s no coffee in it?

The term “coffee cake” refers to the tradition of enjoying this type of cake alongside coffee. The name originates from its purpose as a complementary treat for coffee time, rather than its ingredients.

What makes your cinnamon coffee crumb cake special?

My recipe for cinnamon coffee crumb cake stands out due to its incredibly soft texture and rich flavor, achieved with a special addition of cream cheese instead of using only butter. Furthermore, it’s topped with an easy-to-make streusel and requires just 30 minutes of prep time.

Can I use something other than buttermilk?

Yes, you can substitute buttermilk with a homemade buttermilk alternative if you don’t have it on hand. Regular whole milk could work but won’t provide the same level of moisture or flavor as buttermilk does.

What types of toppings can I add to enhance the coffee cake?

To elevate your cinnamon coffee crumb cake, consider serving it with whipped cream, vanilla ice cream, or fresh berries for extra sweetness and decadence. Pairing the cake with savory dishes like bacon or egg quiche can also create delightful sweet-and-savory meal options.

How do I achieve the perfect texture for the cinnamon coffee crumb cake?

For the ideal texture, ensure all ingredients are at room temperature and cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. The addition of sour cream will help keep the cake moist. Avoid overmixing the batter to maintain the cake’s tender crumb.

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