Coffee Cake

I had an event at my house this weekend.  With more than four other people.

This probably happens only a few times at my house during the year.  It gets me all fired up to clean, clean, clean.  And apparently now, to also bake, bake, bake.

I needed a fail-safe, easy recipe to impress my guests.  I went to one of my go-to favorite places, The Pioneer Woman.  When I saw this coffee cake recipe, I knew I had to try it.  (And it didn’t hurt that the recipe was even labeled as easy.)

The Recipe:

The Best Coffee Cake Ever, adapted from Ree Drummond at The Pioneer Woman


1-1/2 sticks butter, softened

2 c scant sugar

3 c flour, sifted

4 t baking powder

1 t salt

1-1/4 c whole milk

1/4 t cream of tartar

3 whole egg whites, beaten until stiff


1-1/2 sticks butter, softened

3/4 c flour

1-1/2 c brown sugar

2 T cinnamon

3/4 c pecans, diced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Beat egg whites with cream of tartar and set aside.

Cream butter and sugar.  Add flour mixture and milk alternately until combined.  Don’t overbeat.  Mix in about 1/3 of the egg white mixture to loosen batter.  Fold in the rest of the egg whites with a rubber spatula.  Spread in a well-greased 9 x 13 (or larger) baking pan.  A cake pan with high sides would be best.

In a separate bowl, combine topping ingredients with a pastry cutter until crumbly.  Sprinkle all over the top.

Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until no longer jiggly.  Serve warm.

{Printable Recipe}

The Results:

Let’s just start with scant.  I had to look that one up, as I wasn’t sure if it meant measurement or a type of sugar.  Sure enough it is a measurement term meaning “just less than.”  That was my original guess, but I’m not too into going with my guesses nowadays. 

Once I was sure of all the terms, I started baking away.  And when I say baking away, I mean I dirtied more dishes than I’ve ever dirtied before.  I separated, whisked, sifted, mixed, and sprinkled until I was a sweaty mess.  (It probably didn’t help that I decided to make the coffee cake the morning of the event – which was scheduled for 11.  I was really trying to go with that whole ‘serve warm’ thing.  Not the most stress-free way to bake something, let me tell you.)

Plus, this whole easy thing, I think, is relative.  It wasn’t that it was hard, per se, but it was just complicated with lots of little steps.  Lots of parts that all needed to mixed or made independently of one another. 

But, if I do say so myself, it was well worth it.

(BTW, the camera was still hiding in the camping gear while I was making it, so only finished product pictures again.)

I had to crop it like this, because at this point, it was mostly gone.

I got a lot of great feedback from my guests.

(Maybe because as soon as they walked in the door, I handed them a plate, told them I made it, and pretty much begged them to tell me it was delicious.  I’m needy like that.  At least I can admit it.)

Just look how that topping just melted into the cake...

As you can see, it looked just as good as it tasted.  Woo-hoo!

My dreams have (finally) come true.


13 thoughts on “Coffee Cake

  1. As one of the guests on Sunday, I can personally attest to how delicious the coffee cake was! No begging for “props” needed! I will be testing out this recipe myself very soon!!!


  2. This looks so good! I’ve been searching for the perfect coffee cake for years, but my issue is that they almost always turn out way too dry. Was this a pretty moist cake?


  3. Hi Courtney,
    What a great coffee cake to serve with morning coffee on the week end. Hope you are going to have a wonderful week end and thanks for sharing with Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen


  4. You should be so proud of yourself! This coffee cake looks just delicious! Coffee cake is one of my favorite sweet treats. I’ll have to give this a try! Would you mind putting a link to OTMM in your post, thanks!
    What a wonderful offering you have brought to ON THE MENU MONDAY… everyone loves coffee cake! Thanks for joining in!


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