This recipe for Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake is superbly moist on the inside and perfectly crunchy on top. Serve it warm with fresh blueberries tossed on it, cream drizzled over, or for an unexpected surprise, thin out sour cream with milk and pour over.
I’ve made many coffee cake recipes in my time, and may I present my all time favorite. Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake is one easy recipe that’s all the things you want in a baked treat. Nice fruity blueberry flavor with sour cream for moisture and tang. A hint of lemon inside. The topping is a contrasting crunch with the perfect amount of cinnamon.
The coffee cake is delicious served plain and even at room temperature. But heat it up and serve with either thinned sour cream (shown here) or heavy cream poured over and it doesn’t get any better.
What makes a cake a “coffee cake”?
Coffee cake is characterized by a few differences than a regular cake. Coffee cake is not frosted, though sometimes drizzled with icing; coffee cake is almost always topped with a crumb or streusel-type topping. And coffee cake will contain cinnamon in the recipe. Often coffee cake is filled with fruit or nuts, or both. Some have a swirl of streusel in them, like my Cinnamon Walnut Coffee Cake.
Ingredients in Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake-
Blueberries- In this recipe, you may easily use fresh or frozen blueberries. In the photos you see here, I’ve used Trader Joe’s frozen wild blueberries. Wild blueberries are much smaller than regular blueberries and if you can find them, they’re wonderful in this recipe with huge blueberry flavor. I’ve made it many times with large, fresh blueberries as well with delicious success, too.
Sour cream- The sour cream adds tang to offset the sweetness in the cake as well as incredible moisture.
Lemon zest- Lemon zest is optional if you don’t have fresh lemons but they brighten up all the flavors in the coffee cake and the times I add it I can tell the difference.
Streusel topping- The topping for this coffee cake is delicious with just the right amount of cinnamon and you’ll love the crunchy, caramel flavor created by the flour, butter, and sugar combination. This recipe makes a lot of topping which is a little bit heavy for the center of the cake. Whenever I use all the streusel, the center will invariably sink just a little (as shown in the photos). I don’t mind it at all but if it bothers you, you can leave out about 3/4 of a cup of the topping or don’t sprinkle as much in the center.
How to enjoy coffee cake-
I think coffee cake tastes out of this world when served warm with just the right amount of heavy cream or thinned sour cream poured over the top. Served with a good cup of coffee, tea, or nice cold milk, it’s the perfect end to a nice brunch or for a post dinner treat. The cake is delicious at room temperature too, and if it’s left out on the counter, my family is constantly cutting off bite-sized bits to enjoy just as it sits. Either way, you’ll be amazed at how perfectly moist the cake is.
How to store leftover coffee cake-
Any leftover coffee cake should be stored, loosely covered, in the refrigerator due to sour cream in the recipe. To serve leftovers, or if you make it ahead of time and refrigerate before serving, bring to room temperature or reheat to serve to guests. It’s really good for up to three days after baking when refrigerated until needed.
Can you freeze coffee cake?
Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake can be stored in the freezer if wrapped very well in a double layer of plastic and especially if you can get it air-tight. Freeze up to one month.
Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake
Crumb Streusel Topping
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 dash salt
- 7 tbsp unsalted butter melted
Sour Cream Blueberry Coffee Cake
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 ¼ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest optional
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup blueberries fresh or frozen, unthawed if frozen
- 1 cup sour cream
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 10 tablespoons butter unsalted, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
Optional thinned sour cream for pouring over the top
- ½ cup sour cream
- ¼ cup cold milk
- Make the topping
- In a medium bowl, stir the flour, sugar, brown sugar, one teaspoon ground cinnamon, and salt until well blended. Add the melted butter and mix with a fork, stirring until the butter is absorbed and the dry ingredients are uniformly moistened. Set aside.
- Make The Cake
- Preheat oven to 350°F, placing rack in center. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. You may use a regular 9-inch round or square pan if you don't have a springform pan.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, lemon zest, and salt.
- In a small bowl, toss the blueberries with 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture until the berries are coated; set aside. In another small bowl, whisk together the sour cream and vanilla extract.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, or with an electric mixer, beat together the butter and granulated sugar a medium speed until light and fluffy, for about 4 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl halfway through. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. On low speed, add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating it with the sour cream in two additions. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the blueberries (If you mix with the mixer, some of the berries break down, which is still okay). The cake batter will be very thick; scrape it into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula.
- Sprinkle all of the crumb topping evenly over the batter. Break down really large clumps, but you want some to remain.
- Bake the cake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 45 to 50 minutes. It really does need to be clean, or the center will collapse. Place the cake in the pan on a wire rack to cool:
- If baked in springform pan, cool on rack 20 minutes. Then unlatch springform and cool almost completely before serving.
- If baked in regular baking pan, cool completely and cut cake, serving from the pan.
- To serve, cut and plate portions. Heat each piece for about 15-20 seconds (if not still a little warm from oven) in the microwave, or you may reheat the entire cake in a 200°F oven for about 20 minutes. Pour or drizzle heavy cream or thinned sour cream, if using, and add additional fresh blueberries and serve. This makes a very pretty presentation and it's delicious.
- Store leftover coffee cake, loosley covered, in the fridge. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Optional topping ideas
- The cake is wonderful served at room temperature or heated. Top with whipping cream poured over the top just before serving with additional fresh blueberries. See next step if you'd like to try thinned sour cream.
Making the optional thinned sour cream for pouring on top
- Simply use a whisk, pouring the cold milk over the sour cream, whisking until smooth. Add more milk if you want the sour cream even more pourable.
- Crumb topping- The crumb topping seems like a lot when you top the coffee cake but it bakes into the cake perfectly. You can certainly use less if you don't like a lot of streusel on your cake or to prevent the center from falling slightly from the weight of the streusel.
- Testing for doneness- Don't test the cake too early or the center may start to sink as it continues to bake. I usually test at 45 minutes (if you're not sure if your oven runs hot you could test at 43 minute) and if it seems mostly dry, I still bake for an additional 3 or 4 minutes. Some of the crumb topping will be on your toothpick so touch the toothpick with your finger to see if wet batter is on it too. It's not as hard to get right as I'm making it sound. And if it sinks a little in the center, it'll still taste lovely.
- Blueberries used in the recipe- In the photos for this recipe, I used Trader Joe's frozen wild blueberries. I like the wild blueberries because they're quite small so you get more blueberries spread throughout but I've made it many times with large, fresh blueberries and we still love that.
Recipe adapted from The Cake Book by Tish Boyle.