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An Easy Recipe for the Best Homemade Classic Coffee Cake —Perfect for Breakfast or Dessert (Delicious!)

Updated on August 6, 2012
Mini Coffee Cakes.
Mini Coffee Cakes. | Source

"Brittany! Brittany!" came my roommates' panicked cries. I ran to their room, wondering if the shouts heralded a new development in America's Next Top Model British Invasion, or whether another Game of Thrones-based guild had been formed in TERA.

Neither turned out to be the case. Instead, I was asked if I knew how to make coffee cake. I've never actually made it before, but my mom has, and I'm a huge fan of that crumbly good stuff. What would I need to make it? Some eggs, some yogurt probably, a little butter: all things that basically stock our kitchen (and yours too, I'm sure) on a regular basis.

So I set myself to the task of creating an easy coffee cake recipe. I didn't have an 8-inch pan so I used a cupcake tin instead to make these mini cakes. They're just as tasty as the grown-up cake; plus, using the cupcake tin gives you an exact serving measurement for those times when you're hosting a brunch or having friends over for dessert and you need a head—and cake—count.

In my version of the classic coffee cake recipe, I used Greek yogurt, but you can substitute sour cream, buttermilk, or other dairy product. (Just be sure that the ingredient you choose has a thicker consistency to avoid a thin, watery batter.) The yogurt imparts a bit more moisture and fluff (and protein!) to what is classically a somewhat crumbly cake.

Cast your vote for Classic Homemade Coffee Cake
Set the butter in your mixing bowl to soften while you prepare your workspace.
Set the butter in your mixing bowl to soften while you prepare your workspace. | Source

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 22 min
Ready in: 37 min
Yields: 8 mini cakes or 8 slices (if using 8-inch pan)
Rapidly whisk the butter and sugar together; alternatively, beat on high for a couple of minutes.
Rapidly whisk the butter and sugar together; alternatively, beat on high for a couple of minutes. | Source

What You'll Need

  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 3 Tbsp. brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. old fashioned oats, not quick cook
  • 1/2 tsp. canola oil
Batter in the cupcake tin.
Batter in the cupcake tin. | Source
Mix together oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and oil for a crumbly topping.
Mix together oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and oil for a crumbly topping. | Source

Make It

  1. Preheat your oven to 350. Spray a cupcake tin or 8-inch pan with non-stick cooking spray.
  2. Beat softened butter till smooth (if using a mixer, beat on high) for several minutes, then add granulated sugar and beat for a couple more minutes (again, on high).
  3. Add room temperature eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mixture will be slightly grainy but fairly fluffy.
  4. Mix in vanilla.
  5. In another bowl, combine the dry ingredients (except oats, brown sugar, and 1 tsp. of cinnamon). Stir to combine.
  6. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the yogurt to the butter mixture: add 1/3 of the dry, then 1/2 of the yogurt, 1/3 of the dry, the other 1/2 of the yogurt, and the remaining dry. Mix lightly with a wooden spoon. Do not over-mix! The batter will be sticky.
  7. Add the batter to the tin or pan. If you're using a cupcake tin, add batter till each cup is nearly full.
  8. In a small bowl, combine the brown sugar, 1 tsp. of cinnamon, the oats, and the canola oil to make a crumbly topping. Sprinkle the topping over the coffee cake batter.
  9. Bake 20-25 minutes (I baked mine for 22 minutes), until a fork or toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.
Baked cakes cooling off.
Baked cakes cooling off. | Source

Allow the cake to sit for a few minutes before removing from the pan. Serve warm with hot coffee for dunking.

Baby cakes.
Baby cakes. | Source
In a cupcake tower.
In a cupcake tower. | Source


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    • Ninasvoice profile image


      5 years ago from England

      Yum Yum! It's breakfast time here and i wish i had one of these in my hand to eat and a cup of coffee! They looks so delicious. I'm going to have to give these a try. Voted up. Thanks for sharing :-)

    • bamuscarella profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Buffalo, NY

      Thanks for the comments! I think they'd freeze well—it's a simple batter recipe. When you microwave the muffins they don't lose their taste or texture, so I would think that freezing them would be fine.

    • donnah75 profile image

      Donna Hilbrandt 

      6 years ago from Upstate New York

      Looks good. I will be baking today. Maybe I will try this recipe too. I wonder if they freeze well?

    • LaThing profile image


      6 years ago from From a World Within, USA

      Muffins are my favorite, specially the ones that have oatmeals in them. This looks delicious..... Will try it soon. Thanks for sharing with us :)

    • fresh2def05 profile image


      6 years ago from Louisville, Ky

      Wow!This looks delicious. I had to share this.

    • algarveview profile image

      Joana e Bruno 

      6 years ago from Algarve, Portugal

      Hello, Bamuscarella, I don't think I ever heard about these cakes before, but they look delicious and easy and quick to make. It seems a great idea for a different breakfast. Voted up and interesting and sharing! Take care!

    • remaniki profile image

      Rema T V 

      6 years ago from Chennai, India

      Great recipe. Thanks bamuscarella. Looks like a simple preparation, so I want to try it out ASAP. Socially shared for more people to get to know a yummy cake recipe. Cheers, Rema

    • Brett.Tesol profile image

      Brett Caulton 

      6 years ago from Asia

      Great intro lol, instructions and accompanying pictures. I don't think that I have had these before, but they sure look tasty!

      Shared with followers, up, useful and awesome.

    • bamuscarella profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Buffalo, NY

      Let me know how you like it :)

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      6 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Now this sounds and looks wonderful and tasty. Passing this on.

    • bamuscarella profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Buffalo, NY

      Thanks for your comments! This recipe is so easy and versatile. In the future I'd like to make a batch with chocolate or butterscotch chips in the batter, maybe a caramel drizzle, or some walnuts crushed up in the topping.

    • Angela Brummer profile image

      Angela Brummer 

      6 years ago from Lincoln, Nebraska

      Im going to print this off and keep it handy for when I haven't been to grocery store! Looks Yummy!

    • vespawoolf profile image


      6 years ago from Peru, South America

      Your photos have made my mouth water! I love your introductory story, too. This recipe sounds like a keeper.

    • moonlake profile image


      6 years ago from America

      They look delicious. I love muffins of all kinds but I especially like anything that has oats in it. Voted and shared.


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