A birthday sour cream coffeecake

Sour cream coffeecake

Sour cream coffeecake

Today is my mom’s birthday!

Here’s the makings of her favourite cake for the special occasion. When I went home for the holidays, she kept mentioning to me that she really, really liked coffeecakes. The kind that’s moist but not too dense, and not cloyingly sweet as in dripping with icing and mounds of sugar… more like something that she could have a piece of for breakfast. Or maybe two pieces. Well okay, one piece, because we should strive for moderation. (But it will be a good-sized piece.)

The cake batter is quite thickΒ  but it bakes splendidly and I feel it tastes even better if you leave it, wrapped, until the next day.

Sour Cream Coffeecake

Crumb of sour cream coffeecake

Crumb of sour cream coffeecake

Minimally adapted from KAF’s Our Favorite Sour Cream Coffeecake

Makes one 9.5″ tube or bundt-style pan-sized, or one 9″ x 9″ sized cake.


– 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
– 3/4 cup white granulated sugar
– 2 eggs, room temperature

– 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
– 1 tsp baking powder
– 1 tsp baking soda
– 1/2 tsp salt
– 1 cup sour cream or yogurt*

*Feel free to use low-fat (not nonfat) sour cream or yogurt; if using yogurt, try vanilla or another complementary flavour, if desired. [I’ve used both regular and light sour cream, and both turn out well.]

– scant 1/2 cup brown sugar
– 2 tbsp cocoa powder
– 2 tsp cinnamon
– 2 tsp vanilla
– 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Finishing touch (optional)
– icing (powdered) sugar


Cream together the butter, sugar, and eggs. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture alternately with the sour cream or yogurt, stirring after each addition.

In a separate bowl, combine the ingredients for the topping and set aside.

Lightly butter and flour a regular-sized (9.5″) tube pan or bundt-style pan, or a 9″ x 9″ pan. Spread half the batter in the pan, and sprinkle with half the topping mixture. Repeat with remaining batter and topping.

Bake the coffeecake in a preheated 350Β°F oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the cake tests done – I did this by inserting a toothpick into middle of the cake. The cake is done if the toothpick comes out clean. Cool it for 10 to 15 minutes, then remove it from the pan. (If you’ve baked it in a 9 x 9-inch pan, just serve it right from the pan.) Place the cake right-side-up (topping up) on a plate to serve.

Sour cream coffeecake, lightly dusted with icing sugar

Sour cream coffeecake, lightly dusted with icing sugar

I like to use a sieve and sift icing (powdered) sugar on top of the cake just before serving, which gives it a very pretty look. If you are baking this coffeecake in advance, decorate with the icing sugar the day of, just before you serve it. Otherwise the icing sugar will melt and won’t be visible.

Have a wonderful birthday, Mom! I can’t be with you to celebrate but I hope you have a very special day today. πŸ™‚

Mom and me down by the waterfront

Mom and me down by the waterfront


13 Responses to “A birthday sour cream coffeecake”

  1. Jie Jie Says:

    What a lovely message from our mei mei at Vermont!!

    Thank you so so so much for all from you and the coffee cake.

    I really love it and just lazy to make one by myself.

    Thanks again my sweethear. πŸ˜‰

  2. Tigger Says:

    wondering what kind of cake I will have la … thanks for your message + picture .. so sweet. have a wonderful day.
    p.s. cant wait to come for the maple syrup festival

  3. chau Says:

    you forgot to mention how many cups of flour. i went to the link and it said 2 cups. i used nonfat (forgot your warning so we’ll see how it turns out) πŸ˜›

    • toxobread Says:

      Hi chau: Sorry about that! Yes, there is supposed to be two cups of AP flour in cake component of the recipe. I was fixing some of the bullet formatting and must have forgotten to add that back in.
      Thanks for catching the error,
      p.s. I hope the coffeecake turns out well anyway, even with the nonfat sourcream/yogurt. I’ll keep my fingers crossed. πŸ˜›

  4. toxobread Says:

    Jie Jie: You are very welcome. Don’t worry, just bring the bundt pan when you come and I’ll make another one for you then haha

    Tigger: Hmmm. Well, what would you like? Let me know and I can start preparing ^_^

  5. Rajee Says:

    Thanks for ur beautiful pictures with ur Mom. You can also send my birthday wishes to her too. Glad to surprise her with beautiful cake. You both look so young and sweet. Warm hugs from me.

  6. Jie Jie Says:

    Dear Rajee,

    Thank you so much for your thought and we did have a very good time last night. Dinner at home and had a good work out at YMCA, nice and peace.
    Rec’d a big bundle of beautiful flower from my colleage.

  7. chopchopatoz Says:

    How sweet you are! You both look like sisters. Nice to meet you Toxobread πŸ™‚
    Beside, your baking goods are stunning as always.
    Have a nice day!

  8. toxobread Says:

    Hehe thanks for your encouragement, Van! You are always so nice. Have a nice day to you too. πŸ™‚

  9. Irene Says:

    Yum! I love sour cream in coffee cakes! Yours looks perfect! The photo of you and your mom is lovely.

    • toxobread Says:

      Thanks, Irene! I love adding sour cream in coffeecakes too – it makes them so nice and moist (my idea of a great coffeecake). Great to have you drop by my blog. πŸ™‚

  10. em Says:

    Aww, that’s sweet of you to make your mom’s fav cake! I’m sure she loved it.
    It looks awesome. What is coffee cake, exactly?
    And that picture of you and your mom is so cute! πŸ™‚

  11. toxobread Says:

    Em: Hmm I don’t really know what the proper definition of coffeecake is. I used to think it was a cake that had coffee in it, but guess not heh heh. Maybe more like a cake that you can imagine having with coffee at break time, or breakfast, or ?

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