Classic Coffee Cake

This might just be the best coffee cake you have ever tasted. Super easy, this recipe results in a moist cake with lots of cinnamon sugary crumble.

A small plate with a slice of fresh baked cake.

I am very serious when I say this might be the best coffee cake recipe ever. It truly is that good. The cake is super moist with so much sweet cinnamon crumble in ever single fork full.

This can be enjoyed this any time of the day. I have had it as a sweet dessert after lunch or dinner. It is great as an evening treat while watching something on the TV. I especially love a slice of this coffee cake for breakfast with a warm cup of coffee.

A slice of cake on a plate.

This coffee cake is very easy to make and uses ingredients I regularly have in my kitchen. Sour cream is used as once of the wet ingredients in this recipe and, over the years, I have come to use it in many different baked cakes, loaves and muffins. Sour cream helps keep the cake nice and moist.

A bowl of white sugar, eggs, sour cream, oil and vanilla.

Make the Cake Batter First

The first step to making the best coffee cake is to beat the wet ingredients together. Use an electric mixer to combine the white sugar and wet ingredients until smooth and creamy.Beating the flour into the wet ingredients with an electric mixer.

Then, beat in the flour, salt and baking powder. Start the mixer on low so the flour does not go flying out of the bowl.
A bowl of cake batter being mixed with an electric mixer.

Once the flour is incorporated into the wet mixture, you can slowly increase to a medium speed. Beat until the batter is smooth and there are no more lumps of flour.

A glass bowl with butter, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon.

The Crumble Topping is the Best Part!

I have baked this coffee cake so many times, and it feels like each time, I increase the amount of ingredients for the crumble. It’s funny that I call this part of the cake the crumble topping, because it is not just used as a topping for the cake. Half of this crumble mixture is spread as a middle layer between the cake batter. This way, pretty much every single bite of the coffee cake has that sweet cinnamon goodness.

Using a fork to make the brown sugar crumble topping.

Make the crumble in a separate bowl from the batter. Use a fork to press the brown sugar, flour and cinnamon into the softened butter. Keep pressing the fork into the mixture until a coarse crumble forms.

A greased rectangular baking pan with bowls of mixed batter and crumble.

Grease a 13×9 rectangular baking pan. I use metal non stick pan, but glass or stoneware baking dishes will work as well. Just be aware that baking times will vary depending on the type of dish/pan used.

Spreading the layers of batter and crumble in the baking dish.

The Cake is All About the Layers

This coffee cake has four layers: cake, crumble, cake, and then crumble again.

Spread half of the cake batter evenly across the baking pan and then sprinkle some of the crumble on top of the batter. Repeat by spreading the rest of the batter to make another layer. Finally sprinkle the remaining crumble on top.

Running a knife through the raw cake batter in a baking dish.

Use a knife or spatula to cut into the batter and make some streaks. This marbling effect will cause the crumble to mix a little more into the cake.

Baked coffee cake fresh out of the oven.

How Long to Bake Coffee Cake?

Bake the cake in a 350F preheated oven for about 35 minutes. The cake should rise and turn a golden brown along the edges and top. To test doneness of the cake, stick a toothpick in the centre of the cake and if it comes out clean, then it is finished baking and ready to come out of the oven.

A slice of cake on a plate in front of a warm cup of coffee.

Let the cake cool on a wire rack before slicing and serving. This is called a coffee cake, so it is ideal served alongside a warm cup of coffee or even tea.

Fresh baked coffee cake in a rectangular pan next to a slice served on a small plate.

Other Great Baking Recipes

Classic Coffee Cake

A close up picture of a slice of cake.
5 from 1 vote
A super easy recipe for the best coffee cake. Made with sour cream, this cake is moist and delicious with a cinnamon sugar crumble.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 15


Cake Batter

  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 2/3 cups flour
  • 3 tsp baking power
  • 1 tsp salt

Crumble Topping

  • 1/3 cup butter , softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 3 tsp cinnamon


  • Preheat oven to 350F.
  • Using an electric mixer, beat the oil, sour cream, eggs, vanilla and white sugar until smooth and creamy.
  • Beat in the 2 2/3 cup flour, baking powder and salt into the wet mixture until well combined.
  • In a separate bowl, add the ingredients for the crumble topping and use a fork to combine. The mixture should be crumbly.
  • Pour half of the batter in a greased 13x9 baking dish and spread evenly. Sprinkle half of the crumble topping over the batter. Spread the remaining batter evenly across the bottom layer and top with remaining crumble.
  • Use a knife (or spatula) to cut some of the crumble throughout by streaking the knife through the batter.
  • Bake in the oven for 35 minutes or until a toothpick, stuck in the centre to test, comes out clean.
  • Rest on a wire rack to cool.


Per serving:

Calories: 410kcalCarbohydrates: 57gProtein: 4gFat: 19gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 41mgSodium: 301mgFiber: 1gSugar: 35g

Nutrition Disclaimer



A small plate with a slice of fresh baked cake.

Did you try this recipe?

Leave a comment and let me know how it turned out. Or, take a picture to share on Instagram and tag me @theblackpeppercorn.

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1 comment

  • Thanks for much the recipe! I made it and it was delicious. That said, next time I’d make 50% more cake next time. The batter was quite thick (could be because we picked up a sour cream with higher than normal fat content) and so the batter was a bit hard to spread and so the second layer was a challenge. Even so we all enjoyed it.

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