Sunday, January 5, 2014

Sour Cream Coffee Cake, Two Versions (Light or Not!)

Happy FREEZING Sunday morning from Middle Grove, NY. After days of sub-zero temperatures, we're hovering around 10 degrees F as morning greets us today, but it is supposed to warm to a balmy 30 before the next storm hits us this afternoon with freezing rain and later, more snow. This is January in the great Northeast!!!

On my Facebook page yesterday, I posted a photo of a sour cream coffee cake I made for a wedding brunch today, for a good friend's lovely daughter and son-in-law. That photo (where the recipe was quadrupled for a crowd!) elicited a lot of interest, so today I am posting the recipe (NOT quadrupled!). Originally, this recipe came from Cooking Light Magazine, though for years I have unlightened (sp?) it by using whole eggs and full-fat sour cream because I make it for a hotel and I believe hotel guests like a bit of indulgence! However, the original, lighter version is really good, so I am bringing you the recipe for the full-fat version but with light ingredients in parentheses. Note that the original, linked below under the title of the recipe, includes chopped walnuts which I have not included (allergy concerns for hotel guests). You can bake this light or not, include walnuts or not. I've even stuffed it with cheesecake and blueberries! Go ahead… Make it your way!

Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine
Single recipe - 8x8 square pan, sprayed with vegetable spray and lined with parchment if you have it
Double recipe - 13x9 pan, also sprayed and lined (or can be baked in a larger bundt pan sprayed with vegetable spray)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F

Ingredients for single recipe:

1/4 cup butter at room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature ( or 2 egg whites)
1 cup sour cream (or one cup low-fat sour cream)
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup light brown sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Glaze - 1 cup confectioners sugar/water


In large mixer bowl, beat butter with granulated sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until well incorporated. Add sour ream and vanilla extract, mix well. Add flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix well on low speed until completely incorporated.

Put half of the batter into prepared pan, spreading to completely cover bottom. Sprinkle with half of brown sugar/cinnamon mixture. Top with the rest of the batter and using a butter knife, swirl batter as if you were making a marble cake. Top with remaining brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.

Bake until cake tests done, when tester or toothpick comes out clean and top bounces back when lightly pressed. It is very important that you know your oven and test accordingly:
8x8 pan - test at 25 minutes, may take 30-35 minutes depending on your oven
13x9 pan - test at 30 minutes, may take 30-40 minutes depending on your oven


Mix confectioners sugar with a tiny bit of water at a time, in a small bowl with a fork, until it's like a thick white glue. Add more water, a drop at a time, until it looks like Elmer's glue! Drizzle over coffee cake with a fork.


  1. Love this coffee cake. I think I will make this in sunny HI and have the "kids" over for breakfast -- you know they will always show up if I cook them a meal, especially breakfast! Stay warm.


    1. Sue, you couldn't pick a better time to head to Hawaii! Leave this polar vortex in the dust! I'll keep posting so check back. If you have any Hawaiian recipes you want to share while you're in Oahu, send them my way and I'll post them on the blog! I'll miss you, my friend (but hopefully be a guest at your breakfast table NEXT January!)…

  2. Jeannie, my mother used to bake this coffee cake all the time and she would put it in a bundt pan.

  3. This is the coffee cake mom made for holiday breakfast ! She used too also use a bunt pan ! So moist .