My Grandma’s Coffee Cake Recipe


​My grandma’s coffee cake recipe is an excellent family recipe that creates a tender cake that’s lovely for special occasions or for every day eating. It makes a deliciously moist cake that’s tender and it’s one of our favorite recipes. We trust it will become one of yours too. 

slices of coffee cake
slices of coffee cake

What is Coffee Cake?

Homemade coffee cake is made with cake batter and is topped with cinnamon streusel making it a tender cake that’s a family favorite around here.

sliced grandmas coffee cake
sliced grandmas coffee cake

It’s a family tradition to enjoy grandma’s recipe for holidays such as Easter and Mother’s day. But you could enjoy it anytime of year because it’s so good.

What is Streusel?

If you’re making your coffee cake with a streusel filling, you’ll just want to know that streusel topping is the portion that everyone wants.


Cinnamon streusel is made with a butter mixture combined with sugar, flour, and cinnamon. 

It can be used as a layer within your coffee cake as well as placed on top for a crunchy and sweet finish. Streusel topping is what makes you want to go back for another slice.

Or if you’re like my kids, you’ll want to pick it off the top rather than eating the whole cake. 

Streusel ingredients are straightforward pantry staples, but when they’re mixed together they make quite the deliciously flavored addition to your coffee cake or to grandma’s pumpkin spice coffee cake. 

And if this is your first time making streusel, you’ll not want to throw out the remaining streusel.

Instead, just add it to your cake because it’s going to be your all time favorite portion to eat. 

When to Serve Coffee Cake

There is no right or wrong time to serve coffee cake. And coffee cake works great for special occasions as well as for a Sunday brunch like Mother’s day or Easter. Or it can be enjoyed everyday with a cup of coffee. 

To elevate it and make it more fancy, consider the serving plate that you’re using. Use an extra fancy plate to make it even more elegant. 

coffee cake with slice out
coffee cake with slice out

My Grandma’s Coffee Cake Recipe

Grandma’s coffee cake is an absolute best coffee cake recipe. It’s an easy recipe and it has superior flavor that’s one you’ll keep coming back for. It goes great with your favorite cup of coffee and it stores well too. 

Yields: 12 servings


2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup white sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 egg

3/4 cup milk

1/2 cup butter, softened

Streusel Ingredients

3 tablespoons butter 

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/2 cup all purpose flour

2 tsp ground cinnamon

Frosting Ingredients

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 tablespoon milk

Process Photos:

my grandmas coffee cake
my grandmas coffee cake wet ingredients
grandmas coffee cake ingredients
grandmas coffee cake ingredients
grandmas coffee cake streusel
grandmas coffee cake streusel
my grandmas coffee cake batter
my grandmas coffee cake batter
adding the streusel to my grandmas coffee cake batter
adding the streusel to my grandmas coffee cake batter
adding icing to my grandmas coffee cake
adding icing to my grandmas coffee cake


Following are the step by step instructions for the batter portion as well as the cinnamon streusel portion of this wonderful cake. 

Preheat oven to 350F degrees. 

Using the large bowl, mix together dry ingredients of baking powder, salt, sugar and flour. Combine flour and set aside the flour mixture. 

In another bowl, using a stand mixer and a paddle attachment, add as soft stick of butter. Cream butter with 3/4 cup sugar, vanilla, and egg.

Add the dry ingredients to the mixing bowl with the wet ingredients. Add milk and mix at a medium speed until well combined. 

Spray the inside of a 9×9 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray. Pour mixture into the prepared pan in an even layer.  

Prepare the streusel by using the paddle attachment in your stand mixer or a pastry blender. Mix the streusel ingredients until a nice, crumbly mixture forms. 

Sprinkle the streusel on top of the cake batter. 

Bake at 350F degrees for 45-50 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. 

Allow the cake to cool. 

Mix the confectioners’ sugar and milk to create a fine icing. Drizzle the icing on top of the cake. 

Serve and enjoy. 

icing on coffee cake
icing on coffee cake

Ingredient Substitutes

There are some ingredient substitutes that you might like to use for this recipe. Here are some ideas. 

Cake flour. Cake flour will work fine as a substitute for all purpose flour in this recipe. Feel free to use it as a one to one substitute if that’s what you have on hand, or if that’s your preference. The difference is cake flour has extra ingredients that makes sure your cake rises

Gluten free four. If your dietary restrictions require gluten free eating, maybe you’d like to use your favorite one to one all purpose gluten free flour to make this recipe. 

Unsalted butter. Unsalted butter can be used in place of regular butter to help cut out the salt for those who need it for dietary restrictions. The ingredient amounts for butter remain the same.

Vanilla extract. Vanilla extract is another substitute that can be used instead of plain vanilla. Some might say that it’s a secret ingredient for any good recipe. 

What is a Bundt Pan?

Sometimes a bundt cake pan is used to bake coffee cake. A 10-inch tube pan is a popular style of pan.

Of course using a round pan doesn’t make the cake taste any different than if it’s baked in a rectangular pan. It simply changes the visual appearance. 

If you want to make grandma’s cinnamon coffee cake or your sour cream coffee cake in a bundt pan, that’s totally fine.

Just remember to spray the pan with non-stick spray first or rub the bottom and sides of the pan with cooking oil before adding the batter.

This will help to keep the cake from sticking to the pan after it’s been baked. 

If you want to try using a bundt pan, but you don’t want to go to the expense of buying one, try shopping at your local resale shop for them.

They can often be found for a fraction of the cost and sometimes are even like brand new. 

slice out of coffee cake
slice out of coffee cake

How to Store Coffee Cake

Grandmas coffee cake recipe can be stored at room temperature, in the refrigerator, or in the freezer depending on the length of time you intend to store it. Regardless of the storage method you choose, your coffee cake should be placed in an airtight container to all it to maintain its moisture. 

If you’re planning to eat your cake in just a few hours after it’s baked, you’ll want to store it on a wire rack to let the cake cool. 

When storing just a slice or two, we recommend wrapping them in plastic wrap before transferring them to the airtight container in the refrigerator or freezer. 

And when you’ve packaged it so well for storage that you pull out an 11-month-old cake that tastes fresh, you’ve achieved success. 

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Sarah is known for her extra fancy yeast breads, melt in your mouth pies, and everything salads. She has won awards as a home cook, and is passionate about helping others feel smarter in the kitchen. Sarah is the cooking genius of the sister duo.

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