This Classic Crumb Cake recipe is reminiscent of the types of coffee cakes I used to grow up back East. These coffee cakes, don't include a coffee flavor, they actually get their name because they were sold in local coffee and donut shops and would be enjoyed with a hot cup of coffee.
They are typically comprised of a soft and fluffy cake, with a center of cinnamon sugar and nuts and topped with a crunchy, chewy crumb topping.
This is one of my favorites Sunday Brunch Recipes because guests go nuts for it! You can also bake it a day ahead and reheat it before guests arrive. It also freezes beautifully. If you enjoy this recipe you may also enjoy my Blueberry Crumb Cake Recipe or my Raspberry Almond Brunch Cake.
How-To Make a Classic Crumb Cake Recipe
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STEP#1: Beat Butter and Sugar
The secret to this cake's fluffy texture is using room temperature butter, eggs, and sour cream. This will help the ingredients blend together better. Especially, the butter and the eggs.
Combining butter and eggs is a bit like creating an emulsion. Butter and eggs really don't want to combine when cold, but will do so willingly when at room temperature! Just place your sticks of butter on your countertop before going to bed and they will be at the perfect temperature when you awake.
How to Heat Up Eggs for Baking?
The easiest way to warm up a cold egg is to place it in a Pyrex pitcher of warm water for at least 5-8 minutes. I like to use a Pyrex Pitcher because the eggs are easily submerged on all sides.
STEP#2: Grease a Non-Stick Cheesecake Pan
This cake can definitely be made in a 9"-cake pan, but I really love the height you get in a removable bottom cheesecake pan. Cheesecake pans are higher than cake pans, and that extra room will allow for a beautifully, high slice of cake.
STEP#3: Mix up the Cinnamon Pecan Filling
Next to the crumb topping, the best thing about this cake is the cinnamon nut filling! It may look like a lot of filling, but it will bake into the cake while in the oven, so when it's done you'll have just the right amount of sweet cinnamon center with buttery pecans.
STEP#4: Add the Second Layer of Batter
This batter is thick and sticky, so the best way to add the second layer is by placing small dollops of batter around the cake. Then connect the dollops gently by spreading them together with an offset or icing spatula.
STEP#5: Make the Crumb Topping
In my opinion, the best crumb toppings are sweet and crunchy with a little bit of chewiness. This crumb topping gets its chewiness from the use of brown sugar and butter and not too much flour.
I also like to add a bit of baking powder to my crumb topping as well, because it forces the topping to puff up and in doing so it creates a softer crumb. Not only does it look pretty once the cake is baked, but the extra softness creates a wonderful texture to the cake too!
Be sure to distribute the crumb topping equally, keeping in mind it will puff up and expand in the oven. That way you'll be assured the crumb topping will cover the cake completely.
STEP#6: Dust with Powdered Sugar
Allow the cake to cool slightly and then dust it with powdered sugar. The nooks and crannies in the crumb topping create a beautiful surface to hold the sugar in place.
MORE GREAT BRUNCH RECIPES!
- Flakey Blueberry Scones
- Easy Herby Egg Bake
- Mexican Scramble with Hashbrown Waffles
- Lemon Ricotta Pancakes with Raspberry Sauce
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FOR THE CAKE:
- ½ cup (120 g) of salted butter
- 1 cup (200 g) sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) vanilla extract
- 2 ⅓ (280 g) cups flour
- 2 tsp (10 ml) baking powder
- ½ tsp (.5 ml) baking soda
- 1 tsp (5 ml) salt
- 1 ⅓ cup (320 ml) sour cream
FOR THE FILLING:
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) cinnamon
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) sugar
- 1 cup (150 g) chopped pecans
- ½ cup (60 g) of flour
- ¼ tsp (1.25ml) Baking Powder
- 2 tbsp (15 ml)sugar
- 2 tbsp (15 ml) brown sugar
- ¼ tsp (.75) cinnamon
- 5 tbsp (75 ml) melted butter
- ½ cup (75 g) of chopped pecans
- Powdered sugar for garnish
- Preheat oven to 350F/176C.
- Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time until combined. Add vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Add to the butter mixture in thirds, alternately with the sour cream.
- Spray a 9" spring form with baking spray, turn out half of the batter into pan. Combine cinnamon and sugar together. Sprinkle cinnamon sugar on top of batter, top with 1 cup of chopped pecans. Then spoon over remaining batter and with a spatula carefully cover the first layer cover with remaining batter.
FOR CRUMB TOPPING:
- Combine flour, sugars, cinnamon and butter, mix with a fork until crumbs form. Add nuts. Sprinkle on top of batter.
- Bake at 350F/176C for 1 hour or until a tooth pick comes out clean. Allow to cool. Unmold from pan, dust top with powdered sugar, and place on a cake stand.
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Wusthof Classic 7-piece Slim Knife Block Set (Acacia)
Wilton Icing Spatula, 13-Inch, Angled Cake Spatula
John Boos Block RA03 Maple Wood Edge Grain Reversible Cutting Board, 24 Inches x 18 Inches x 2.25 Inches
Bodum Chambord French Press Coffee Maker, 1 Liter, 34 Ounce, Chrome
Hiware 9 Inch Non-stick Cheesecake Pan Springform Pan with Removable Bottom/Leakproof Cake Pan Bakeware - Black
KitchenAid KP26M1XBZ 6 Qt. Professional 600 Series Bowl-Lift Stand Mixer - Black Storm
Nutrition Information:Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 291Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 83mgCarbohydrates: 33gFiber: 1gSugar: 19gProtein: 4g