You guys, I have been wanting to make this Cranberry Coffee Cake recipe for MONTHS!! I’m quite sure that the produce guy at the grocery store was thrilled when the cranberries came in because I could finally stop hounding him every week. Coffee cake on it’s own excites me – not too sweet, with a delicious glaze and lots of cinnamon – it takes me back to my childhood when I’d spend time at my grandma’s house quite often. Being the good European lady that she was, she had coffee nearly every afternoon, and with it always a small, sweet treat. Oh how she would have loved this recipe! I might be a little biased, but I think it’s the best coffee cake recipe I’ve ever made.
Cranberry Coffee Cake has those delicious holiday flavors that I crave this time of year. A simple coffee cake is filled with fresh, tart cranberries along with the brown sugar and cinnamon swirled throughout. The addition of sour cream makes it incredibly moist and tender. This is a delicious accompaniment to your afternoon coffee or tea.
How to make Cranberry Coffee Cake
The instructions for this coffee cake are pretty straightforward. You definitely want to use a tube pan (affiliate link), not a bundt pan, because you want to the cranberries to end up on top of the cake for that gorgeous finish. An 11-inch rectangular baking dish would also work. You might need to adjust the cooking time but it should work just fine. In a pinch, a bundt pan would work, but you’ll want to layer a little differently, swirling the topping into the cake.
Mix up butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla with an electric mixer. It’s best to have all of the ingredients at room temperature but it’s not a major factor in the success of this cranberry coffee cake recipe. To that add the flour, baking soda and salt and finally stir in some lusciously smooth sour sour cream to make the cake extra moist and delicious.
Grease a tube pan with nonstick cooking spray, then pour in half of the mixture. Top that with some cinnamon and brown sugar and fresh cranberries. Repeat for a second layer so you have that yummy cinnamon sugar and tart cranberries running all through the cake. Bake it for about 40-45 minutes.
Once cooled you’re going to invert it twice. Once onto a wire rack, plate or something light that will hold the width of the cake, then again onto the serving platter you plan to use.
Now comes the fun part – whip up that sweet vanilla glaze and pour it on. We went thick on this one, because more is better, right? But if you prefer a thinner glaze just add a little more milk until you get the consistency you like.
Then slice it up and dig in! Don’t forget the coffee!!
How to Serve Cranberry Coffee Cake
Coffee Cake is perfect for enjoying with a cup of coffee, espresso or tea. Serve it up at a Christmas brunch with some Baked Egg Muffins and Bacon or enjoy it with a dessert spread.
What to Do with Leftovers
This cake should be covered and refrigerated, and will remain fresh that way for 3-4 days. If you are planning on freezing for later, leave off the glaze and make it fresh when you serve it. Wrap the cake tightly with plastic wrap then in a freezer bag or wrap again with foil. Thaw overnight for serving the next day, then add the glaze.
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Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.