Skip to content Skip to footer

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

This Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake is the perfect weekend breakfast. A moist, tender cake that is topped with an incredible crumb topping makes it the perfect pairing for a hot cup of coffee.

Coffee cakes are one of my favorite things to bake. I consider them easy even though they dirty a couple of bowls- it is totally worth it! They are acceptable to be served at breakfast, brunch, or for dessert, and they have a delicious crumb topping. Really, that’s the best part of the cake!!

Pin this now to save it for later

Pin It Now

There’s something so comforting about the aroma of warm cinnamon and juicy apples wafting through the kitchen. And when that aroma is followed by a slice of perfectly golden cinnamon apple coffee cake, well, that’s what I would call breakfast bliss. This recipe is your guide to creating this delightful treat – a tender crumb cake studded with sweet apples and topped with a cinnamon sugar crumble. It’s easy enough for a weekend morning yet impressive enough for a brunch gathering.

How to Make Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

Contrary to the name, there is actually no coffee in coffee cake- it’s a cake that is meant to be served with coffee. Here is a brief overview of how this cinnamon apple coffee cake recipe comes together. For the full recipe including all measurements, scroll to the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  1. Make the crumb topping. In a medium bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, flour, salt, and cinnamon. Mix until all ingredients are combined, the mixture should resemble coarse sand. A pastry cutter or two forks work well to incorporate the butter. Set aside.
  2. Combine the wet ingredients. Cream the butter and sugar together in your mixer until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla, and mix to combine.
  3. Mix the dry ingredients. In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and apple pie spice and whisk together.
  4. Combine wet and dry ingredients.  Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture in halves, alternating with the buttermilk, until all ingredients are mixed.
  5. Add the apples. Fold in shredded apples (read my tip for this below) and pour into the prepared pan. Top evenly with crumb mixture.
  6. Bake the coffee cake. Bake for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Make the glaze. Once the cake has cooled, mix powdered sugar and apple cider together until smooth. Drizzle over the cake and serve. Enjoy!

Affiliate Links

9x13 Ceramic Baking Dish9 x 13 Ceramic Baking Dishapple peelerApple PeelerApple Peeler and Corer pyrex mixing bowlsPyrex Mixing Bowlskitchen aid stand mixerKitchen Aid Mixer8-quart, 10-speed mixer

Measuring Flour

Baking might seem straightforward, but it’s actually a pretty delicate science. Each ingredient plays a specific role, and accurate measurements are crucial for achieving the desired texture and rise in your baked goods. Flour, in particular, is a critical player. Getting too much flour will result in a coffee cake that is dense and dry.

While a kitchen scale is the most precise way to measure flour, it’s not always readily available. Follow these steps for measuring flour correctly without a scale.

  1. Fluff Up Your Flour: Gently whisk your flour in the bag or container it’s stored in to break up any clumps and aerate the flour.
  2. Spoon and Level: Use a spoon to scoop flour into a dry measuring cup without packing it down. Fill your measuring cup with spoonfuls until it’s mounded above the rim.
  3. The Knife Swipe: Take a knife with a straight edge (or the flat edge of a spatula) and gently scrape it across the top of the measuring cup to level off the excess flour.

Baking With Apples

Baking with apples can be tricky. They can fall to the bottom, not be evenly distributed, and give off a lot of moisture leaving the cake kind of soggy. So instead of chopped apples, I use grated. I peeled and cored two apples and grated them on the large side of a box grater- a lot like zucchini, then mixed them in at the end. The result is a cake that is full of apple flavor, with even distribution that is perfectly moist. I will definitely be making more recipes using grated apples!

As far as what kind of apples to use in this coffee cake recipe, I use whatever I have on hand. Granny smith apples are a popular choice for baking because they hold their shape well when baked and provide a delightful tartness that cuts through the sweetness of the cake. You can also use a combination of apple varieties for a more complex flavor profile. For example, try pairing a tart Granny Smith with a sweeter Honeycrisp or Fuji. Ultimately, the best apple for your apple coffee cake is the one you enjoy most! Experiment with different varieties to find your perfect flavor combination.

recipe tip

To save time and enjoy this recipe when apples aren’t in season, I love to shred apples and put them into freezer-safe bags to keep on hand. I measure how much is in each bag so I can dump them right into recipes.

Apple Pie Spice

I use apple pie spice in this cake which I found in the bulk section at a local grocery store. It’s a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and lemon peel and I just love it! If you don’t have it, don’t want to make it, and don’t want to buy it- feel free to just use all cinnamon. It will still work great! Apples and cinnamon are made for each other.

Buttermilk Substitute

If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, make this simple substitution.

Measure out 1 cup of milk (whole milk works best). Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice to the milk and stir well. Let the mixture sit for 5-10 minutes. This allows the acid to curdle the milk slightly, mimicking the texture of buttermilk. This option can be used in a 1:1 ratio to replace buttermilk in most recipes.

Coffee Cake Tips and Tricks

  • Use room temperature ingredients: Make sure your butter and eggs are at room temperature. This allows them to cream together more easily, resulting in a lighter and fluffier cake. The butter should be soft enough to dent with your finger, but not soft enough to push all the way through it. Cut your butter into small pieces and leave it on a plate on the counter for 30 minutes or so for it to soften.
  • Make sure your baking powder is fresh. Both baking powder and baking soda should be replaced every six months or so. To check the freshness of your baking powder, mix a little bit with a little with water, it should bubble up right away. If it doesn’t, it is time to get new.
  • Don’t overmix: Once you’ve combined the wet and dry ingredients, resist the urge to overmix. Overmixing can lead to a tough and dense cake. Mix just until everything is incorporated.
  • Get Creative: Feel free to customize your coffee cake! Add a handful of chopped nuts to the crumble topping for extra texture.
apple cinnamon coffee cake 3

Making Ahead and Storing

Another thing I love about coffee cakes is that they taste better 1-2 days after baking so they are the perfect make-ahead treat. The flavors blend together more and it makes it so irresistible! Store the coffee cake, covered, at room temperature for up to three days or in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Freezing Coffee Cake

This is a great recipe to freeze and can be frozen as individual slices or a whole cake. Slice the cooled coffee cake into individual portions or desired serving sizes. This makes it easier to grab a piece whenever you have a craving and avoids having to thaw the entire cake. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and then place in a freezer-safe container or bag. Store in the freezer for up to three months. Allow to come to room temperature before eating.

Other Great Brunch Recipes

  • Blueberry Crumb Muffins
  • Starbucks Pumpkin Scone Copycat
  • Overnight Baked French Toast

You will love this apple cinnamon cake that is great served for breakfast or dessert. It is the perfect use for all the apples that are in season and everyone will love it! If you try it, I’d love to know what you think!

piece of apple cinnamon coffee cake on a plate. Fresh apples sitting in background.

Print

Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake

#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0 .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-full svg * { fill: #343434; }#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0 .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-33 svg * { fill: url(#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-33); }#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0 .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-50 svg * { fill: url(#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-50); }#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0 .wprm-rating-star.wprm-rating-star-66 svg * { fill: url(#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-66); }linearGradient#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-33 stop { stop-color: #343434; }linearGradient#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-50 stop { stop-color: #343434; }linearGradient#wprm-recipe-user-rating-0-66 stop { stop-color: #343434; }

This Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake is the perfect weekend breakfast. A moist, tender cake that is topped with an incredible crumb topping makes it the perfect pairing for a hot cup of coffee.

Course Breakfast, Dessert, SnackKeyword coffee cake

Prep Time 15 minutes Cook Time 1 hour

Ingredients

  • 1 cup butter room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp apple pie spice or cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 cups peeled and shredded apples 2-3 small-medium apples

Crumb Topping Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Glaze Ingredients

  • powdered sugar
  • apple cider

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a 13×9 with parchment paper. Spray with non-stick spray and set aside.
  • Make the crumb first: In a medium bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, flour, salt, and cinnamon. Mix until all ingredients are combined- the mixture should resemble coarse sand. Set aside.
  • Make the cake: In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar together. Add eggs, one at a time until all are incorporated. Stir in vanilla.
  • In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and apple pie spice. Add the dry mixture to the wet mixture in halves, alternating with the buttermilk until all ingredients are mixed. Fold in shredded apples and pour into the prepared pan. Top evenly with crumb mixture.
  • Bake for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Once fully cool, mix powdered sugar and apple cider together until smooth. Drizzle over the cake and serve.
apple cinnamon coffee cake 1

The post Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake appeared first on CenterCutCook.