A soft, tender, easy-to-make coffee cake, heavy on the crumbs!
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour, for coating the pan
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
- 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 10 Tablespoons (1 and 1/4 stick) unsalted butter, firm and cold
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Generously spray a 9-inch springform pan* with cooking spray or grease with butter. Sprinkle the bottom of the pan with 1 Tablespoon of flour and tap out the excess.
- Whisk the flour, sugar, and salt together in a large mixing bowl until combined. Cut in the butter in very small pieces using a pastry blender or mix with a fork until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Place 1 cup of the butter/flour mixture in the refrigerator until ready to use in step 4.
- Using a handheld or stand mixer with a paddle attachment, mix the baking powder and baking soda into the remaining flour mixture. Add the room temperature buttermilk, egg, and vanilla and beat on medium speed until smooth. The batter is very thick. Spoon the batter into the prepared springform pan, smoothing the top.
- Add the brown sugar and cinnamon to the reserved flour mixture. Toss with a fork until well blended. Sprinkle the crumbs over the batter, pressingly lightly so they stick.
- Bake the cake until the center is firm and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45-55 minutes. Baking time varies, so begin checking at 45 minutes and don’t be alarmed if your cake takes longer. Mine usually takes the full 55 minutes.
- Cool cake for 10 minutes before removing the sides of the springform pan. For neat slices and best flavor, cool cake completely at room temperature before serving.
- Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Cake tastes best on day 1 or day 2. The cake may be made 1 day in advance. Store covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. Cake can be frozen up to 2 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
- Buttermilk: Buttermilk is required for this recipe. You can make your own DIY version of buttermilk if needed. To do so, simply add 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of white vinegar or fresh lemon juice to a liquid measuring cup and enough whole or 2% milk to reach 3/4 cup. Allow mixture to sit for 5 minutes, then use in the recipe. Lower fat or nondairy milks work in a pinch, but the cake won’t taste as rich and moist.
- Update: Crumbs are likely to sink to the bottom of the cake if your butter is not firm enough, therefore making a crumb too soft to stay put on top. You can try using frozen butter and cutting that into the mixture with your pastry blender.
- Pan: Don’t have a springform pan? Use a 9-inch (not 8-inch) square baking dish.
- Adapted from Cooks Illustrated The New Best Recipe.
Keywords: coffee cake, crumb coffee cake