Recipe Image

Cardamom-Crumb Coffee Cake

  • 30 m
  • 1 h 15 m
Marie Simmons
“Cardamom's distinctive floral and spice aroma makes for a delicious and unique coffee cake. A member of the ginger family, it is widely used in the baking of Scandinavia and the dishes of Eastern India. If you prefer to go more traditional, cinnamon also works wonderfully in this cake.”


    • Oatmeal Crumb
    • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
    • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
    • 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, divided
    • ¼ cup white whole-wheat flour, or whole-wheat pastry flour
    • ½ teaspoon ground cardamom, or cinnamon
    • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
    • Cake
    • 2 cups white whole-wheat flour or whole-wheat pastry flour
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom or cinnamon
    • ½ teaspoon baking soda
    • ¼ teaspoon salt
    • 2 large eggs
    • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
    • 1 cup nonfat buttermilk (see Tip)
    • ¼ cup canola oil
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 1 To prepare oatmeal crumb: Combine butter, ½ cup brown sugar, ½ cup oats, ¼ cup flour and ½ teaspoon cardamom (or cinnamon) in a food processor. Process until the mixture is crumbly. Turn out into a bowl and add the remaining ½ cup oats and walnuts. Combine with fingertips or a fork until blended.
  • 2 To prepare cake: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat an 8-inch-square pan with cooking spray.
  • 3 Sift 2 cups flour, baking powder, 1 teaspoon cardamom (or cinnamon), baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Whisk eggs and ½ cup brown sugar in a medium bowl until well blended, gradually whisk in buttermilk, oil and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients in 2 additions, stirring each time to thoroughly blend the ingredients together.
  • 4 Spread half the batter in the prepared pan. Sprinkle half the oatmeal crumb evenly on top. Spoon the remaining batter over the crumbs and gently spread in an even layer. Top with the remaining oatmeal crumb.
  • 5 Bake the coffee cake until browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes. Serve warm.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 4, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day; add about 10 minutes to the baking time.
  • Tip: No buttermilk? You can use buttermilk powder prepared according to package directions. Or make “sour milk”: mix 1 tablespoon lemon juice or vinegar to 1 cup milk.
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