This gluten-free coffee cake recipe was shared with us by my friend Colette Martin, from her cookbook Learning to Bake Allergen-Free. All of Colette’s recipes are free of gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, and nuts, and she has tried just about every substitute you can think of!
For this gluten-free coffee cake recipe, Colette recommends using one of the following gluten-free flour blends: Authentic Foods Multi Blend Gluten Free Flour, Jules Gluten Free All Purpose Flour, Authentic Foods GF Classical Blend (includes xanthan gum), or King Arthur Flour Gluten Free Multi-purpose Flour (includes xanthan gum). If you prefer from scratch, she does offer a few homemade flour blends in Learning to Bake Allergen-Free that can be used cup for cup in this recipe.
The technique used here to create the streusel topping is one that is used frequently in Learning to Bake Allergen-Free for making cookie dough and pie crusts. But, you are here for a gluten-free coffee cake recipe, not pie crust, so lets get back to it.
Did you know that most coffee cakes don’t contain coffee? They get their name because they are intended to be served with coffee, which makes them the perfect treat for breakfast. My favorite part of a gluten-free coffee cake is always the streusel topping—just enough sugar to wake you up.
Special Diet Notes: Gluten-Free Coffee Cake with Streusel Topping
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan, vegetarian, and generally top food allergy-friendly.
- 2 cups gluten-free flour blend (see note above)
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum (leave out if your flour blend contains xanthan gum)
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) Earth Balance Natural Shortening, softened (see tip)
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 3 teaspoons Ener-G Egg Replacer mixed with 4 tablespoons warm water (equal to 2 eggs)
- ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 cup coconut milk beverage (can sub hemp milk or your favorite non-dairy milk alternative)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅔ cup gluten-free oat flour
- ¾ cup light brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons Earth Balance Natural Shortening, cold
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 9-inch square baking dish with cooking oil.
- Mix together the flour, xanthan gum (if needed), baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set it aside.
- Cream together the shortening and granulated sugar in a large bowl, with a mixer on medium speed, for about 5 minutes, until a textured paste forms. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl as needed.
- Add the egg replacer mixture, applesauce, coconut milk, and vanilla to the creamed sugar. Blend with a mixer on medium-low speed for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Gradually add the flour mixture and blend on medium speed, about 2 minutes.
- Pour the batter into the baking dish, spreading it to the sides of the pan.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the oat flour and brown sugar, using a pastry cutter or pastry fork.
- Cut the shortening into tablespoon-sized pieces. Use the pastry cutter to work the shortening into the flour.
- Crumble the streusel topping over the batter.
- Bake at 350°F for 32 to 36 minutes.
Can I sub coconut oil for the shortening?
That will most likely work, but remember to make sure all of your ingredients are brought to room temperature before adding them to the batter. If you mix the coconut oil and then add cold milk beverage, the coconut oil will bead up. You can use it melted or softened when making the streusel. It will be more moist if melted, but you can still top it in clumps.
I made this this morning and it was delicious, but a little soggy in the middle. I used Bob’s GF all purpose flour, so off the bat I may have set myself up and since it contains xanthum gum in the mix, I did not add more. But I wonder if I should? Plus I used 2 regular eggs & subbed coconut oil for the fats. What should I do be sure it gets nice & fluffy instead of a bit gooey in the middle? OH and the other issue is that I baked it in a bundt pan. I’m hoping to perfect recipe bc I signed up to make a gluten-free/dairy-free/nut-free coffee cake in a bundt pan for a wedding reception Saturday! It’s just an allergy-free option, not the main event, but I still want it to be as perfect as possible! I suppose I should go hunt down all the ingredients exactly as described but I was hoping not to have to run around town. Do tell me straight up what you think I should do though! I super appreciate the recipe AND your quick reply the other morning!!!
I know Colette, the creator of this recipe, and she isn’t a fan of Bob’s Red Mill blends, so this could be part of the issue. That said, I think you can perfect it! I would hesitate to add more gum if your mix already has it. This can make the cake gummy once it cools. In looking at her recipe, I notice that she says it is a 2 egg equivalent, but 2 tablespoons of liquid is less than 1 egg. 1 large (standard) egg equals about 3 tablespoons of liquid. So I would use the 2 eggs, but reduce the applesauce a little – possibly to 1/3 cup. The applesauce adds weight, density, and moisture that can cause the cake to be too heavy and not bake through. I think that one change might do it.
Alisa–big THANK YOU for helping me think through how to make this recipe work w/ my ingredients! Turned out to be a really GOOD gluten-free/dairy-free/nut-free option at the wedding this morning!!! I did as you said and reduced the applesauce and added 1/2 tsp baking soda. I also realized that bc I was baking in a bundt pan, all the coconut oil i’d used for the streusel topping may have been too much since I put that in the bottom (to be the top when it turned out) so I reduced the coconut oil for the topping by almost half, & added a Tbsp cinnamon bc I love cinnamon. The cake was nice and fluffy, fully baked through, came out of the bundt pan easily. I fed a few bites to my grandbaby and had the rest of that slice. By the time I left half of that cake was gone–so several people must have been looking for an allergy-free option. Really I would do this again since it went so well! Thanks again for sharing the recipe AND helping me figure it out!!!
So happy it worked out well for you and so many others, too!
I love those coffee cake crumbles on top!
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Gorgeous coffee cake! Thanks so much for sharing, Alisa. 🙂 I love that Collette’s recipes are this terrific, but free of so much that many of us can’t tolerate.