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A slice of sourdough coffee cake on a plate.

Sourdough Coffee Cake Recipe

This sourdough coffee cake has a perfectly sweetened ribbon of cinnamon sugar between layers of moist vanilla cake. It's topped with a nutty, pecan crumble that get's better with every bite!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Servings: 9
Calories: 603kcal
Author: Amy Duska


Crumble Topping

  • 4 tablespoons (56 g) butter (melted)
  • ½ cup (110 g) light brown sugar
  • ½ cup (60 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup (120 g) chopped pecans (optional)

Cinnamon Sugar Filling

  • cup (73 g) light brown sugar
  • cup (40 g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Sourdough Coffee Cake Batter

  • 8 tablespoons (113 g) butter (softened)
  • ½ cup (110 g) light brown sugar
  • ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons (10 g) vanilla extract
  • ½ cup (115 g) sour cream
  • ½ cup (125 g) sourdough starter discard
  • 1 cup (240 g) buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon (5 g) fine sea salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups (240 g) all-purpose flour


Crumble Topping

  • Melt the butter in a bowl and stir in the light brown sugar and cinnamon until smooth. Add the flour and pecans and stir again until the mixture comes together into a big clumpy mass. Set it aside and let it cool.

Cinnamon Sugar Filling

  • Stir the cinnamon, flour and light brown sugar together in a small bowl and set aside.

Sourdough Coffee Cake Batter

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Lightly grease an 9" x 9" metal baking pan with butter or cooking spray.
  • In a large mixing bowl, use a spatula to cream the butter, light brown sugar and granulated sugar until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla extract, sour cream, sourdough starter, milk, salt and baking powder to the bowl and stir until combined. Add the flour and mix until ingredients are fully incorporated.
  • Pour half of the cake batter into the greased baking dish. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture evenly across the surface of the batter. Carefully pour the remaining batter over the cinnamon sugar mixture to cover. Use an offset spatula to gently spread the batter evenly. Break up the crumble topping with your fingers and sprinkle evenly over the top.
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.


  • Use the scoop and level technique to measure your flour if you do not have a kitchen scale. To do this, use a spoon to fluff up the flour in the bag. Use a spoon to scoop the flour into a measuring cup until it is heaped on top. Take a butterknife and level off the top. This should give you the most accurate measurement for flour.
  • Leftovers can be stored at room temperature in a container for up to 2 days or refrigerated for up to a week.
  • To freeze leftovers, let the cake cool completely and wrap individual squares with plastic wrap. Place the wrapped squares in a freezer-safe container for up to 3 months.
  • To reheat the coffee cake, let thaw first. Warm in the microwave in 15 second increments. Alternatively, you can place a piece on a parchment lined baking sheet and warm in the oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes or until heated through.


Serving: 1square | Calories: 603kcal | Carbohydrates: 80g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 91mg | Sodium: 457mg | Potassium: 294mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 45g | Vitamin A: 657IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 143mg | Iron: 3mg