Soft, fluffy, and topped with a cream cheese glaze, this Sour Cream Coffee Cake recipe is sweet, tender, and loaded with cinnamon streusel flavor! Bake it ahead of time for weekend brunches, holiday parties, and more!
Why We Love This Sour Cream Coffee Cake
Coffee cake is highly underrated in our opinion, and this sour cream coffee cake is one of our all-time faves! Here are just a few reasons why:
- It comes together with simple, budget-friendly pantry staples.
- Sweet and satisfying, it features a cinnamon streusel filling and a smooth cream cheese glaze.
- You can easily make it ahead of time, and leftovers store well.
- Perfect for every occasion, it’s guaranteed to please any crowd!
Why Is It Called Coffee Cake?
A common misconception is that coffee cake recipes are made with coffee. However, you won’t find any coffee in this or any other coffee cake recipe! The truth is that they got their names because they’re commonly served as breakfast or an afternoon snack alongside a hot cup of coffee.
Ingredients You’ll Need
For this sour cream coffee cake recipe, we’ll need ingredients for the batter, a streusel layer, and the icing. Don’t worry, though! The ingredients are super simple. Here’s everything you’ll need:
- Room Temperature Butter – Used to create a rich flavor and tender texture. Just make sure it’s at room temperature!
- Eggs – Used to provide structure to the cake.
- Sugar – Granulated sugar helps sweeten the batter. Meanwhile, brown sugar forms the streusel, and confectioner’s sugar (also known as powdered sugar) form a sweet, spreadable icing.
- Vanilla Extract – Pure vanilla extract helps enhance the rest of the ingredients. Trust us, it’s worth the splurge! Imitation varieties just won’t taste the same.
- Sour Cream – Our secret to the best coffee cake you’ll ever taste, full-fat sour cream helps thicken the batter, keeping it moist while also adding rich flavor due to the fat content.
- Flour – Regular all-purpose flour forms the base of the cake. We haven’t tested it, but a 1:1 gluten-free flour alternative should work just as well if needed!
- Baking Powder and Baking Soda – These are crucial to help your cake rise!
- Salt – Just a touch enhances the cake’s flavor, making it extra sweet and delicious.
- Cinnamon – Included in the topping for extra warmth.
- Pecans – Technically optional, we love to include chopped pecans in the streusel for a little extra crunch!
- Cream Cheese – This helps thicken the icing, adding a tangy flavor that pairs perfectly with the sweet sugar and warm cinnamon.
- Milk – Used to thin out the icing. For the best flavor, we recommend using full-fat milk. Or, if needed, dairy-free varieties would work as well.
How to Make a Soft, Fluffy Sour Cream Coffee Cake Recipe
This sour cream coffee cake recipe requires several components, but don’t let that intimidate you! It’s actually really easy to make.
- Cream. In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the edges of the bowl as needed. Slowly, add in the vanilla and sour cream, beating until they are just combined.
- Sift. In a second bowl, sift together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt).
- Combine. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing slowly until they are just combined.
- Make the Streusel. Combine the ingredients except for the pecans in a bowl. Use your fingers to pinch them together until a sand-like crumble is formed. Mix in the nuts.
- Bake. Spoon half of the sour cream coffee cake batter into a bundt pan, and spread it out with a knife. Then, sprinkle ½ the streusel on top followed by the rest of the batter. Top with the remaining streusel. Bake until a toothpick or cake tester can be inserted into the center and comes out clean.
- Cool. Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack before transferring it streusel-side up onto a plate.
- Create the Glaze. Whisk the ingredients together until smooth.
- Top the Cake. Drizzle the glaze on top of the cake evenly.
Don’t Overmix. With every step, you’ll want to make sure to combine the ingredients just until they are smooth. Continuing to mix will result in a dense, tough cake, and nobody wants that!
Add the Streusel Carefully. When pouring the streusel into the bundt pan, be careful not to let it touch the edges. This will prevent it from burning and allow for an even streusel center throughout the entire cake.
Adjust the Glaze. You want the icing glaze to be thick enough to stick to the cake but runny enough to spread. Feel free to add a few drops of water or milk to the mixture as needed to thin it out.
Use a Tube Pan. If you don’t have a bundt pan, use a tube pan instead. Just make sure it has a removable bottom!
Cool Completely. Allow plenty of time for your sour cream coffee cake to cool. This will allow it to solidify and prevent it from falling apart once sliced.
Make Ahead and Storage Options
This sour cream coffee cake recipe is great to make ahead of time! Follow the storage options below to keep it fresh.
Room Temperature: Cover the cake well, or transfer it to an airtight container, and keep it on the counter for 1-2 days.
Refrigerator: Store the cake in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.
Freezer: Slice the cake, and wrap each piece well with plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Then, freeze them in a sealable bag or freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. To serve, simply let it thaw in the fridge overnight.
Sour Cream Coffee Cake Common Questions
Feel free to use full-fat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream for a similar taste and texture.
Most commonly, coffee cake is served warm. So, if not serving right away once it is baked, pop it in the microwave for 15-20 seconds to heat it back up! Then, serve it for breakfast, brunch, or dessert! It’s particularly tasty when paired with a savory option like oven baked eggs or a warm drink such as coffee or slow cooker hot chocolate.
If you plan on eating it quickly, this sour cream coffee cake recipe will stay fresh at room temperature for up to 2 days. However, any longer than that, and you’ll want to keep it in the fridge!
More Cake Recipes for Every Occasion
No matter the occasion, cake always hits the spot! Don’t miss out on more of our favorites below to satisfy all your cravings:
- Easy Chocolate Tiramisu Recipe (without Eggs)
- Mocha Oreo Icebox Cake
- Double Chocolate Bundt Cake
- Biscoff Cake
Sour Cream Coffee Cake
For the Sour Cream Coffee Cake:
- 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter (room temp)
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs (room temperature)
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup sour cream (room temperature)
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
For the Streusel:
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar (lightly packed)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 6 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter (diced into small cubes)
- Optional: 1/2 cup chopped pecans
For the Cream Cheese Glaze:
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 2 Tablespoons cream cheese (room temperature)
- 2 Tablespoons milk
For the Sour Cream Coffee Cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350 ° F. Butter and flour a 10-inch bunt pan or tube pan. Set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, add the butter and sugar. Cream for 4-5 minutes or until smooth and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the edges of the bowl in between. Add the vanilla and sour cream, and mix just until combined.
- In a second large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cornstarch, baking soda, and salt. With the mixer on low, slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just combined. Use a spatula to stir again, ensuring the ingredients are well combined and the flour is fully incorporated.
For the Streusel:
- In a large bowl, add the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt, and butter. Pinch together with fingers until the ingredients resemble a sand-like texture. Note: Be patient. This will take a while! Mix in the pecans, if using.
- Spoon ½ the coffee cake batter into the prepared pan, spreading it out evenly with a knife. Sprinkle ½ the streusel mixture on top, making sure it does not reach the edges of the pan. Repeat with the remaining batter and streusel.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a cake tester can be inserted into the center and comes out clean.
- Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes. Carefully transfer the cake, streusel-side up onto a serving plate*
For the Glaze:
- Create the glaze by whisking the powdered sugar, cream cheese, and milk until smooth. Add a few drops of water as needed to thin it out. Drizzle the glaze evenly over the cake.