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. Set aside 1 cup of the butter/flour mixture.
- Mix the baking powder and baking soda into the remaining flour mixture. Add the room temperature buttermilk, egg, and vanilla – you may want to do this with a mixer. The batter is very, very thick. Vigorously mix everything together until the batter is smooth, fluffy, and resembles frosting – about 2 full minutes. 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 – 50-58 minutes. Mine took 55 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then remove the sides of the springform pan and allow cake to cool completely before serving (about 2 hours).
- 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.
- 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.
- Buttermilk: See note in the post about buttermilk substitution.
- Egg: See note in the post about bring egg to room temperature quickly.
- Pan: Don’t have a springform pan? Use a 9x9x2 (not 8-inch) square baking dish.
- Adapted from Cooks Illustrated The New Best Recipe.
Keywords: coffee cake, crumb coffee cake