My Favorite Sour Cream Coffee Cake

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This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

This recipe is sponsored by McCormick Spices.

Between my three-and-a-half years of college, three summer internships in between, traveling and playing out with our band on the weekends, and apartment-hopping with friends for years after college — I feel like I lived with a record number of roommates during my twenties.  But one of those roommates was an extra-special kindred spirit:

My friend, Natalie.

She and I lived together during my final semester at our tiny Midwestern college, where I was wrapping up a degree in classical vocal performance (yes, opera) and she was studying the world of non-profit management.  And while our worlds looked very different during the days, there was one thing we both looked forward to in the evenings — cooking together.  And specifically — cooking together for friends.

Both of us were just learning how to cook at the time, and our repertoires were pretty limited.  But the good news about learning how to cook in college is that there were always plenty of hungry and willing taste-testers nearby, our other roommates being two of them.  I was the expert in the house on how to make egg drop soup and pasta galore (which we loved to toss on the ceiling back then to see if it was done ?).  And Nat was the expert on casseroles and desserts and all things “comfort food” (for which she credited her small-town Kansas roots).  We had so much fun together that year experimenting and feeding our friends all of our hits (and definitely a few “misses”).  But without a doubt, my most delicious take-away from that year was learning Natalie’s recipe for how to make the most amazing sour cream coffee cake.

Oh my goodness, you guys.  This coffee cake.

This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

Many of you already experienced how life-changing this coffee cake can be, since this was actually one of the very first recipes I shared on the blog back in 2010.  But when I made it again recently, I realized how far down it was now buried in the recipe archives and that too few of you seemed to know it existed.  So for a bit of a #ThrowbackThursday post, I thought I would bring it back to the front page of the blog again to share with you.

Because if you love some good ol’ fashioned coffee cake, I’m telling you, this recipe is the absolute best.

And it also happens to be incredibly easy.  (<– Trust me, if we could make it back in those days, anyone can make it.)  ?

Just mix up a simple sour cream cake batter…

This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

…and then whisk together a simple cinnamon-sugar topping.  (I used McCormick Ground Cinnamon, which has been doing good work in my kitchen this holiday season.  I’ve already gone through two bottles!  ?)
This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

Then you just layer half of the cake batter in a baking dish, sprinkle on half of the cinnamon-sugar mixture, repeat with the remaining cake batter, repeat with the cinnamon-sugar…and then bake to delicious perfection.

(Pro tip on the batter-spreading though: Since the batter is fairly sticky, it can be a little difficult to spread.  So I recommend adding it to the pan in small clumps, then spreading it around with a rubber spatula until smooth and even.  And if the batter is sticking to your rubber spatula too much, just spray it with some cooking spray!)

This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

Then, if you’re really feeling indulgent, you probably should go ahead and drizzle on a quick and easy glaze.   I mean, you definitely should.
This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

Then, this gorgeous coffee cake will be ready to serve and enjoy.  (And yes, that yummy line of cinnamon sugar baked into the middle of the cake is the best.)

This Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is easy to make, perfectly soft and moist, and filled with the BEST cinnamon-y sweet flavors. It's the perfect sweet treat for breakfast, brunch, or dessert. | gimmesomeoven.com

Seriously, I’ve made this coffee cake recipe dozens and dozens of times since college, and it never gets old.  And it’s always a crowd favorite.

And I love that every time I make it, I’ll always think of Natalie.  Thanks for the good memories and good recipe, sweet friend!

Print

Sour Cream Coffee Cake

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 15 servings 1x

Description

This is my all-time favorite sour cream coffee cake. It’s decadent, and so delicious.


Scale

Ingredients

Coffee Cake Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (12 ounce) reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon McCormick Vanilla Extract, homemade or store-bought

Cinnamon-Sugar Topping Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 teaspoonMcCormick Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)

Optional Glaze:

  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 12 teaspoons milk

Instructions

To Make The Coffee Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.  Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray, set aside.  Prepare the cinnamon-sugar topping (see below), set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar on medium-high speed for 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the vanilla and add the eggs to the mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  Add half of the dry ingredients mixture to the butter mixture, and mix on medium-low speed until just combined.  Add in half of the sour cream, and mix until combined.  Repeat with the remaining half of the dry ingredients mixture, followed by the remaining sour cream.
  4. Pour half of the batter into the prepared baking pan, and spread it around so that it covers the bottom of the pan in an even layer.  Sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar topping evenly on top. Spread the remainder of the batter on top in an even layer (<– although note that the batter will be sticky and difficult to spread, so I recommend adding with a spoon in little clumps, and then use a rubber spatula to help spread it out in an even layer).  Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon-sugar topping evenly on top.
  5. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.  Remove from the oven, then drizzle with the glaze if desired (see below).
  6. Serve warm.  Or let the cake cool to room temperature, then cover and keep for up to 3 days.

To Make The Cinnamon-Sugar Topping:

  1. Whisk all ingredients together in a small mixing bowl until combined.

To Make The Glaze:

  1. Whisk powdered sugar and milk together until smooth.  Add more milk if you’d like to thin out the glaze, or more powdered sugar if you’d like to thicken it.

Notes

Recipe from my friend Natalie.

This post was sponsored by McCormick Spices, maker of the yummy ground cinnamon used in this recipe.  Thank you for continuing to support the brands I love who help make this site possible!  

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286 comments on “My Favorite Sour Cream Coffee Cake”

1 3 4 5
  1. 5 stars
    Made this for my family this evening on a whim. While I used whole wheat flour it was absolutely amazing! Everyone loved it!

  2. 5 stars
    I’m not a cake person but made this for my family. It was a hit. Made it a second time and again rave reviews with colleagues as well. Absolutely loved it.

  3. 5 stars
    Looks amazing. I added raisins in the middle and almonds in the topping mix.

  4. 5 stars
    I have been experimenting with coffee cake recipes as I need to take several coffee cakes to an important social event brunch.. I tried this one and fell in love with it. I made it exactly as written, but I did make one change. I love streusel topping so I DOUBLED the topping mix. Yummmmm !!!! My coffee cake turned out so moist and with a lot of topping! I served it warm….a big hit with my taste-testing group! This is my new go-to coffee cake recipe!

  5. 5 stars
    Was absolutely fantastic

  6. 5 stars
    SOOOO GOOD!! Perfect moist center with a nice crumbly top. Also very easy to make! Thankyou for this recipe, it’s definitely kids and boyfriend approved :)

  7. Made this today and it turned out great! Perfect to take to a friend’s place for a late night get-together!

  8. This is a terrific recipe. We enjoyed it so much on Christmas morning. It worked well with Pamela’s GF Baking Mix and we ran out of sour cream, so substituted some yogurt to make up the difference. Foolproof recipe—thank you!

  9. Holy Moly! This is the best coffee cake I’ve ever had let alone made myself! The recipe is perfect and easy to follow. Don’t be daunted by the steps! Also I always have all the ingredients on hand!

  10. I have made this recipe 8 times in the last 3 months.. love it. But you call out 1 cup sugar at the top list of ingredients but only 1/4 cup in the body text. What about the other 3/4 cup sugar. It could be me but i read it several times.. help?

  11. This was a delicious coffee cake. I halved the recipe since I a was only preparing it for two people. I made it exactly as called, and it was just perfect. Not too sweet, very moist. The cinnamon sugar on top develops a great crunch too. I will be making this delicious easy recipe again!

  12. Wonderfull cake!
    I wish upload my cake picture!
    Thanks alot Natalie.

  13. Hi,
    I made this tonight and even after 1 hour of cooking didn’t seem entirely baked, extremely moist.
    Is this normal?
    Could you please give me the exact measurements of your baking pan ( the bottom) to give me an idea, maybe I used a pan too small.
    Thank you!
    Ingrid

    • Hi again,
      What I meant is that the cake is wet and sticky in the middle.
      Does this recipe really calls for 1 1/2 cup of sour cream?
      Thanks again,
      Ingrid

  14. I made this coffee cake and it was delicious. I bake all the time for me this is a 5 star recipe.

    Cynthia

  15. I haven’t made it yet, but I just have to tell you that you made my day!
    I was on Amazon Pantry and searched for “gluten-free,” when a coffee cake mix popped up. Wow, something I haven’t had in ages. I was crushed when it turned out that the first ingredient was “wheat.” No biggie since I’m not much of a mix person, much preferring to bake from scratch. And this recipe seems so easy and sounds wonderful. I’m actually looking forward to getting up early tomorrow, despite being a night owl, and slowly waking up to the delightful smell of this baking in the oven.
    The biggest shame is that being here in NY in these harrowing times, the only person I can share this with is my husband, but I figure I can freeze what we don’t eat for another morning.
    Thanks Ali. I hope you are safe and well.
    I can’t wait to make this.
    (For your gluten-free fans, I use King Arthur gluten-free all-purpose flour and everything I make, from muffins to pie crusts, comes out just the way I remember when I could eat wheat. My grandmother, who taught me how to bake more than half a century ago, gave King Arthur the thumbs-up back then, and it never disappoints).
    Being of a certain age, as my grandmother’s generation would say, when I saw the little 2x and 3x symbols, I thought it was like ⌘+ and would make the text of the recipe bigger LOL – It’s certainly a wonderful little app if you’re baking for a crowd, something I look forward to being able to do.

  16. That is a great cake. Moist and so tasty.

  17. Thanks so much for the great recipe! We all loved it!

  18. Terrific, best recipe for a simple coffee cake. I added 1/2 teaspoon vanilla to the topping. 35 minutes was spot on.

  19. This is the first coffee cake I have made and it turned out so good!!!! I used dark brown sugar and doubled the toppings because that is my favorite part :) So mine turned out much darker looking on top. I did not do the drizzle. I highly recommend this recipe.

  20. The best cake I have ever baked!!! Thank you

  21. Proclaimed to be the best coffee cake ever by my 96 year old mother. And she’s had a lot! Put in an 8×8 pan and baked an additional 10 minutes. Really excellent. Thank you.

  22. It’s in the oven now. Would bake again just for the smells.

  23. So enjoyed this recipe, I would make it again. I did sift my flour but not sure if that matter but this cake was so light and airy! I choose not to use nuts nor the glaze -did not matter. It was so yummy! A keeper for sure.

  24. You will not feel more popular than when you’re the one who brings this cake to a gathering! I make it just as written and it comes out moist and flavorful each time. Warm from the oven or cooled, you can’t go wrong serving this cake!

  25. Can I replace the all purpose flour with cake flour? If so, need any adjustments in the flour amount?

  26. Wow! Thank you! I always needed to write on my website something like that. Can I include a portion of your post to my blog?