BLOG // // 14.5.2021

The Best Coffee Cake

Ever wondered how to make the best, moistest coffee cake that will surprise everyone? Look no further. We have this covered. Follow the recipe to successful coffee crumb cake with mocha ribbon and other ways how to use leftover coffee.

Want to make the moistest coffee cake for your cafe or your own indulgence?

So, I've always wanted to make that special, real coffee taste/smell cake that is really made with lots of good quality coffee, is moist, also crunchy, pleasant and real crowd-pleaser and stays moist for long. And I think, all the essentials are down to this quite simple recipe.

!Prerequisite: good quality espresso or cold brew concentrate and high quality instant coffee!

coffee crumb cake with coffee glaze

so what you will need:

Coffee Crumb Topping: 

  • 160 g all-purpose flour 
  • 80 g light brown sugar  
  • 3-4 teaspoons high quality instant coffee granules 
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom 
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 100 g butter, room temperature 

Method: mix together the dry ingredients with soft butter, rub with your fingers until you get wet crumbs. Set aside.

Mocha Ribbon: 

(this is a great to add more flavor and texture to your cake; it is added on the first half of the cake batter: to make mocha cake, add chocolate, if you want more fruity, add raspberries)

  • 60 g milk or dark chocolate
  • 40 g unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 60 ml strong espresso or Cold Brew concentrate
  • 50-60 g biscuits lady fingers or other/freeze dried raspberries/roasted walnuts or hazelnuts

Want to know how to make Cold Brew? Check this article out.

Method: in a saucepan, mix together espresso or cold brew, chocolate, butter, cinnamon and brown sugar, heat and mix until butter and chocolate melts.  Let it cool a bit and then crumb the lady fingers (if using) or mix in nuts. Set aside.

coffee crumbs and coffee ribbon, Paulig Cold Brew

Coffee cake batter: 

  • 455 g all-purpose flour 
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
  • 170 g  sour cream 
  • 113 g Cold brew concentrate or espresso 
  • 1-2 tablespoon instant coffee granules
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 170 g butter,  melted
  • 57 g neutral oil
  • 180 g packed light brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs 


Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. In another bowl, beat one egg at a time with sugar well, until doubled, pour in melted butter and oil, vanilla extract, espresso, instant coffee and sour cream and mix really well until homogenous.  Pour one part of dry ingredients into wet mixture, mix slowly, then pour the dry mixture in two parts and mix slowly. Do not overmix.

Pour  half of the cake batter into rectangular or big spring form, pour the coffee ribbon over, spread evenly, then pour the remaining cake batter and sprinkle the crumbs over. 
Bake in a 175 C preheated oven for 40 minutes.

coffee cake batter


  • 5-8 tbs powdered sugar
  • 100 ml leftover coffee or cold brew
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream

Method: mix all together in a saucepan, brig to a boil, then lower the hear and boil till it becomes syrupy and reduces by half. Let it cool and once the cake is cool as well, drizzle it all over. 

(You can make more of the syrup and enjoy it over ice cream, joghurt, stone fruits. Keep it in the fridge).
The cake will keep for 3 days, tightly covered and stored at room temperature.

This recipe was created after many research and practice in real life (thanks to almighty internet, James Hoffman, Claire Saffitz, Christina Tosi, Serious Eats and many more for helping to compile the recipe).

James Hoffmann also has a great recipe for a coffee cake - check it out below!


moist, dense, coffe-y cake


You can swap this coffee butter to regular butter and use in cake batters or frostings or on toast.


200 g butter (softened)

100 g coffee (AP, V60 OR COLD BREW)

Method: in a small saucepan, mix the coffee and butter and heat on low, just until it melts and becomes homogenous. Let it sit warmly for 30-1 hour. Then pour it into container and either use it in your frosting/cake batter or put it in the fridge for later use on your morning brioche or toast (it's divine).

And here it is, enjoy with no regrets :)


Cold coffee uses in the kitchen


your brownies - add couple of tablespoons - coffee enhances the chocolate flavors!


cake - plain vanilla, box cake, red velvet or spices autumn cake.

muffins - replace a portion of a liquid with coffee for your chocolate chip muffins, cinnamon swirl muffins or any other.

breakfast bake/french toast pudding - add some coffee to the custard mixture to soak the bread in!

DRIZZLE that COFFEE SYRUP over pound cakes or whip it real good - the rule is to add coffee slowly to buttercream or cream cheese frosting or just whipped cream for fruits or pavlova!

TRY pineapple and coffee together as it is or in a cake (pineapple upside down cake with coffee)!


Coffee jelly

Tiramisu of course

caffeinated yoghurt

coffee vinaigrette

salad sauce or gravy


coffee ice cubes

Ice Cream

best coffee cake, how to use coffee syrup, how to use leftover coffee