Moist, tender, and deliciously spiced, this Vegan Coffee Cake with Cinnamon Streusel is a wonderful dessert, breakfast, or afternoon snack with coffee.
Eggless and dairy-free coffee cake…yes, please!
This recipe uses applesauce which serves as the perfect egg replacer. It helps bind the cake and keeps it moist and tender.
We are using non-dairy milk and apple cider vinegar to make a dairy-free buttermilk.
The cake comes together by combining three different elements: vanilla cake batter, cinnamon sugar filling, and cinnamon streusel.
Surprisingly, there is no coffee in this recipe despite the name.
For best results, serve warm and with a cup of coffee!
This coffee cake is made up of three different components- a very simple vanilla cake base, cinnamon sugar filling, and a four-ingredient buttery cinnamon-spiced crumble topping.
- All-Purpose Flour: The base of our cake batter.
- Brown Sugar: I used a mix of brown sugar and white sugar for the cake batter but the streusel and filling rely heavily on the rich, caramel flavor of brown sugar. It's not to be missed!
- Applesauce: This keeps our cake moist without adding extra flavor.
- Non-Dairy Milk: I went with oat milk but you can use almond, soy, or your favorite plant-based milk alternatives.
- Vanilla Extract: The flavor of the cake is vanilla so this is a must!
- Cinnamon: It's a coffee cake! So, of course, expect lots of tasty cinnamon flavor!
Does coffee cake contain coffee?
Coffee cake actually does not contain any coffee. It is a sweet vanilla cake filled with a layer of cinnamon sugar and topped with cinnamon streusel. It gets its name because it pairs well with coffee.
It's the perfect treat for an afternoon snack, weekend breakfast, or holiday gathering.
This is the best vegan coffee cake and it happens to be very simple to make. You'll need a few different size bowls, a whisk, and a spatula to make the components of this recipe.
You could also make these into muffins, cake donuts, or even a loaf. Keep in mind that the baking time will differ for each of those options.
How to Make This Recipe
This easy vegan coffee cake recipe is fluffy and moist, with a layer of cinnamon sugar in the middle, a cinnamon streusel on top, and finished off with a drizzle of vanilla glaze.
It’s made with simple pantry staple ingredients and is incredibly delicious when served with coffee. The perfect weekend breakfast!
Preheat the oven to 350F and grease an 8×8 pan or line with parchment paper. Lining with parchment paper with be helpful in order to simply lift the cake out of the pan.
Make the cake batter by whisking together the all-purpose flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl.
In a separate bowl whisk together the vegetable oil, applesauce, plant milk, and apple cider vinegar.
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until combined. Avoid overmixing.
Make the cinnamon sugar filling by whisking together the brown sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon in a small dish. Set aside.
Make the streusel topping by whisking together brown sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon in a medium-sized bowl to make the crumb topping.
Use a fork or clean hands to crumble the vegan butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles a crumble.
Pour half of the coffee cake batter into the greased 8×8 pan.
Sprinkle the cake batter with the cinnamon sugar filling.
Pour in the remaining half of the batter on top of the cinnamon sugar filling. Then, evenly coat the top with the streusel.
Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool slightly before removing it from the pan.
Remove the cake from the pan and continue to cool on a wire rack. This cake is best served warm but you want to make sure the cake cools so the crumb structure doesn't get crushed when slicing.
Make the glaze: Whisk together the powdered sugar, plant milk, and vanilla extract. Drizzle over the cake and slice it into 9 pieces.
Tips & Tricks
Avoid over-measuring the flour. To properly measure the flour, you’ll want to avoid scooping the flour out of the container or bag with your measuring cup.
Fluff the flour with a fork and then spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level it off with a knife. Avoid packing the flour into the cup and don’t bang the cup on the counter. This will make the flour settle and you’ll end up with too much flour which could result in a dense crumb cake.
Avoid over-mixing the batter: Mix until just combined and no raw flour is visible. Lumps are fine. Over mixing the batter can result in a chewy, dense cake.
Substitutions & Additions
All-Purpose Flour: If you're gluten-free, you can try a 1:1 gluten-free flour or oat flour. I haven't tested this myself but believe it should work.
Brown Sugar: If you prefer, you can substitute brown sugar with coconut sugar.
Applesauce: This can be replaced with pumpkin purée or puréed banana. Keep in mind that both of those options will change the overall flavor but should still be delicious. You could also try unsweetened vegan yogurt for a more neutral flavor option.
Plant Milk: I use unsweetened oat milk for this recipe but you could use soy milk, almond milk, cashew milk, or your favorite plant-based milk option.
Add-ins: Raspberries or blueberries would be wonderful additions as well as chocolate chips, walnuts, or pecans.
Storage: Store leftover coffee cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days or in the fridge for up to 6 days.
Reheating: This coffee cake is best served warm. I highly recommend reheating leftovers in the microwave or oven before serving.
Freeze: Allow to cool and store in a freezer-safe container for up to 2 months.
Frequently Asked Questions
Coffee cake contains no actual coffee but it is wonderful when served with coffee.
I haven't personally tried it but believe a gluten-free all-purpose flour would work.
Yes, you can! Layer the batter, filling, and streusel the same as the directions below but into a muffin pan instead and bake for about 15-25 minutes.
More Cinnamon Dessert Recipes:
If You Make This Recipe:
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Vegan Coffee Cake with Cinnamon Streusel
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour properly measured
- ½ cup Brown Sugar
- ½ cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
- ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- ½ cup Vegetable Oil
- ¾ cup Applesauce unsweetened
- ¾ cup Plant Milk unsweetened
- 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 tablespoons Vanilla Extract
Cinnamon Sugar Filling
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
- 2 tablespoons All Purpose Flour
- 2 teaspoons Cinnamon
- ½ cup Brown Sugar
- ¾ cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 tablespoon Cinnamon
- ⅓ cup Vegan Butter cold
- ½ cup Powdered Sugar
- 2-3 teaspoons Plant Milk unsweetened
- Splash of Vanilla Extract
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease an 8x8 pan.
- Make the cake batter: Whisk together the all-purpose flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Set aside.
- Whisk together the vegetable oil, applesauce, plant milk, and apple cider vinegar in a medium sized bowl.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir with a spatula until combined. Avoid overmixing.
- Make the cinnamon sugar filling: Whisk together the brown sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon in a small dish. Set aside.
- Make the streusel topping: Whisk together brown sugar, all-purpose flour, and cinnamon in a medium-sized bowl. Use a fork or clean hands to crumble the vegan butter into the dry ingreidents until it resembles a crumble.
- Pour half of the cake batter into the greased 8x8 pan. Sprinkle the cake batter with the cinnamon sugar filling. Pour in the remaining half of the batter on top of the cinnamon sugar filling. Then, evenly coat the top with the streusel.
- Bake for 45-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool.
- Remove the cake from the pan and continue to cool on a wire rack. This cake is best served warm but you want to make sure the cake cools so the crumb structure doesn’t get crushed when slicing.
- Make the glaze: Whisk together the powdered sugar, plant milk, and vanilla extract. Drizzle over the cake and slice into 9 pieces.
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