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Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake

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This gluten free and vegan coffee cake recipe will be the star of your next brunch! Dense and moist with a generous crumb topping and plenty of cinnamon.

Perfect Gluten Free Coffee Cake

Around here, Sundays are usually dedicated to cooking, eating, or shopping for things to cook and eat. I had already planned on getting my hands dirty in the kitchen today, but when Twitter informed me that it was National Coffee Cake Day, things got serious.

Dense and moist with a generous crumb topping and loads of cinnamon flavor, this coffee cake needs to be on the table at brunch.

Side note: be sure to have a fresh pot of coffee ready for when the cake comes out of the oven.

Clark and I looked and looked and looked for a good coffee cake recipe online, planning to selfishly make one for ourselves and not the blog, but none of them impressed us and our precious weekend time was ticking away.

So we went off a recipe that my mom had given me for the coffee cake that I loved to eat while I was growing up, and made some tweaks here and there. Hours later, our entire apartment still smells like cinnamon, coffee, and baking [aka: heaven]. And naturally, the coffee cake found it’s way to the blog.

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

The steps are fairly simple and when all is said and done, the whole cake comes together and is cooling on the counter in about 30 minutes time. Quick, easy, and delicious? You can’t beat that.

The only difficult part of the process is waiting for the cake to bake. Just ask Clark.

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

The batter is going to be pretty thick and sticky and that’s what you’re looking for. Thick batter = dense and cakey coffee cake.

The best part? After mixing it up, that ooey, gooey, cinnamoney goodness is all over your fingers. Act accordingly.

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

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Perfect Gluten Free Coffee Cake

4 from 2 reviews

Dense and moist with a generous crumb topping and loads of cinnamon flavor, this coffee cake needs to be on the table at brunch.

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 15 mins
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 3
  • Category: Breakfast

Ingredients

Cake

  • 1 cup Wholesome Chow gluten-free flour**
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. melted coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp. raw agave or honey
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Topping

  • 1/2 cup oat flour
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut butter [or solid coconut oil]
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • dash of nutmeg
  • dash of salt

Drizzle Glaze

  • 2 Tbsp. melted coconut oil
  • 3 Tbsp. powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°.
  2. In a small bowl, add coconut milk and apple cider vinegar and stir to combine. Set the mixture aside and allow it to curdle. [It’s not as disgusting as it sounds, promise.] If desired, you can swap this out for 1/2 cup of buttermilk.
  3. Melt coconut oil until liquid, but not hot. In a small bowl, combine syrup and agave or honey and mix well.
  4. Combine coconut milk mixture, coconut oil, syrup/agave mixture and stir to combine.
  5. Lightly coat 3 – 3 1/2″ tart pans or an 8″ x 4″ baking dish and set aside. I like using the small tart pans because it keeps the cake more moist and looks cute as a single serving!
  6. In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients and mix well using a fork.
  7. Add the liquid ingredients and stir until a thick batter forms.

Topping

  1. In a medium bowl, combine oat flour, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and mix together. Add cold the coconut butter into the bowl and use your hands to mix it together. This part takes some finesse – keep smooshing and crumbling, smooshing and crumbling until the texture is right. The butter should be dispersed throughout with big chunks, little chunks, and some leftover granules.

Assembly

  1. Portion the batter into the tart pans and use the back of a spoon or your hands to spread it out.
  2. Layer the crumble topping over the cake, dividing evenly between the 3 pans.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes. Use a fork or toothpick to test the center. If it comes out batter-free, the cake is done!

Drizzle Glaze

  1. Melt coconut oil over the stovetop and add powdered sugar. Mix to combine, then use a spoon to drizzle over the cakes.

Notes

** I use Wholesome Chow GF flour because I think it is the absolute best. It also already includes xanthan gum. If you are using a GF flour that does not include xanthan, add 1/2 teaspoon to your dry ingredients.

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

Perfect Gluten Free and Vegan Coffee Cake – The Fitchen

47 Comments
  • Kathy
    February 21, 2017

    This looks delicious! Can you please tell me how many servings this makes and can it be cooked in 1 dish (and any changes needed if it can).
    Thanks!!

    • Kathy
      February 21, 2017

      Ha! I re-read the recipe and found the answers! :)

  • Lisa
    December 13, 2016

    This looks delicious! Can’t wait to try it. Do you think it would work to make it, freeze it, and then defrost for Christmas morning? We are traveling with food allergies, so it would be easiest to make this ahead of time in our safe kitchen. Thank you!

    • thefitchen
      December 19, 2016

      Hi Lisa – I haven’t ever tried freezing it, but I would assume that would be just fine! Good job thinking ahead. ;)

  • Sra Lu
    October 11, 2016

    Wow just made it and was so delicious!!! Thanks you so much, next time i would like to make these in donut form, how much do you think the cooking time should be?

    • thefitchen
      October 12, 2016

      So glad you liked the coffee cake! Donuts are an awesome idea –– I would start out with 8-10 minutes and check them frequently with a toothpick.

  • Kimball
    March 17, 2016

    Excellent recipe – too many times I take one from a blog and it doesn’t deliver – this delivers! Looked exactly the same – I used my own blend of flour and it was still fabulous. Thank you for giving me a great recipe when I want a treat – my only side note is that with my flour blend it took almost triple the time to cook – just an FYI. Great job. I look forward to more.

  • Nan
    April 8, 2015

    I wondered about adding xanthan gum too….and when I looked at the GF flour mix your recipe uses, it already has xanthan gum in it, so I’d recommend if you are using a GF flour mix that does not have xanthan gum, you should add some. typically 1/2 to 1 tsp per cup of GF flour. For a coffee cake, I’d go with the lower amount.

    • thefitchen
      April 9, 2015

      Hi Nan –

      Thanks for bringing that up… that’s a good tip. I’ll add it to the notes for this recipe so that others are aware. That’s one of the things I like about the mix that I used, it’s already included! :)

  • Steve
    February 27, 2015

    I am a dad with a daughter who just discovered a gluten intolerance. in addition, my son has Eosinophilic Esophagitis and we’ve been avoiding eggs and dairy for years. Finding recipes for vegan/gluten free has become a new challenge!

    I just stumbled on this recipe this morning and decided to go for it. Kids are still sleeping (snow day here today), and when they wake, I hope they enjoy this special treat. Its in the oven now! Thanks for sharing your thoughts and ideas!

  • abbie
    February 7, 2015

    Sorry, I didn’t read through all of the comments, how many does this serve? Looks divine! Trying tomorrow.

  • Natalie
    February 2, 2015

    I would love to know what blend of gf flour you used? It sounds like you didn’t use oat flour in the cake itself, right? It looks amazing!

    • thefitchen
      February 2, 2015

      Natalie –

      Correct, the oat flour is for the topping. I used Wholesome Chow’s All Purpose Baking Mix and I swear by the stuff. I just order it off Amazon and keep it stocked. So far, it’s the best I’ve found!

      • Natalie
        February 4, 2015

        Great to know! Thank you!

  • gen
    February 22, 2014

    This looks great! I’ll be making it tonight. Don’t know if you know this but usually 1 teaspoon of xanthum gum per cup of oat flour will keep any cake or muffin from going crumbly. Just make sure to mix it evenly with the dry ingredients first.

    • thefitchen
      February 24, 2014

      Thanks for the tip! Will have to try that next time we’re baking. :D

  • Jackie
    January 19, 2014

    Any substitute for the sugar? Trying to stay away for now… thanks!

    • thefitchen
      January 19, 2014

      I haven’t tried to substitute, but if I were to try it, I would weigh the amount of brown sugar and sub in an equal weight of maple syrup or honey. Let me know how it works!

  • Sandy
    January 11, 2014

    Hi! Wondering if using 1 cup oat flour vs half and half of oat and brown rice will change the outcome?

    • thefitchen
      January 15, 2014

      We’ve never tried it using only oat, but it should turn out just fine! If the batter looks more dry than what’s shown in the photos, add a hint more coconut milk. Report back with your results!

  • GiGi Eats Celebrities
    December 23, 2013

    LOL! I look like Clark when I am hungry! ;)

    • thefitchen
      December 26, 2013

      The stuff can never come out of the oven fast enough!

  • Laura@ Fit Running Mama
    December 18, 2013

    Was going to make this for a brunch on sunday
    Can I use almond milk instead of coconut milk– will it have the same effect or do you need canned coconut milk for this recipe and if so full fat or light?? Thanks!

    • thefitchen
      December 19, 2013

      Almond milk works just fine, I know from experience! This recipe uses the carton type of coconut milk – the kind you might pour in with cereal.

  • Isabel Marant Sneakers
    October 17, 2013

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this article and also the
    rest of the website is also very good.

  • Amanda
    August 24, 2013

    Hi,

    This is absolutely delicious! I was wondering if you have a healthier substitute for the brown sugar? Would maple syrup work? I am dying to make this!

    • thefitchen
      August 24, 2013

      Hmmm… this isn’t an easy substitute! Maple syrup would likely make the batter too runny. Sucanat might be a better substitute and it does have a healthier nutritional profile. Whatever you use, it definitely needs to be a solid! Let us know how it works out. :)

  • Olivia
    July 29, 2013

    Do you think it would still work if I substituted Bob’s Red Mill GF All Purpose Baking Flour instead of oat/brown rice flour?

    Thanks! :)

    • thefitchen
      July 30, 2013

      That would work just fine! Great question :) Enjoy!

  • Tricia
    July 22, 2013

    Wondering if I could use something beside coconut oil, coconut milk, and coconut butter???

    • thefitchen
      July 22, 2013

      Great question! You could substitute olive oil for coconut oil; almond, oat, hemp, or regular milk for coconut milk; and regular butter for coconut butter. Though these ingredients are what keep the recipe “dairy-free”. If that isn’t a problem for you then give it a try! It should come out just fine :).

  • Karen
    July 5, 2013

    Hi! So I surfed the world over looking for a coffee cake for breakfast. I finally settle on yours… find the darned print button… and then? Your entire post wants to print. Any chance you’ll make the print button actually print the recipe? Sure, page 7 has your hunk all on his own page…. but ummm, I really just needed the recipe on one page. I’m going to try doubling this recipe for my family (ie, my own hunk and the kids) and see how it goes! It may need some tweaks though… but, Thanks for posting it!

    • thefitchen
      July 7, 2013

      Sorry about that…we’re working on upgrading to a more printer-friendly format!

      • Karen
        July 12, 2013

        That would be great cause even with my odd changes, this recipe rocks! I totally messed with everything (flours, sugars, coconutty stuff..) and it was still great! All enjoyed it and it worked fine doubled. Thanks for posting it :) I actually made another one at the same time, and this one won hands-down. Thought you should know ;) lol

  • eve
    June 22, 2013

    This looks amazing, I haven’t had coffee cake for years ! What kind of oats did you use to make the flour? Instant, rolled, or old fashion?
    Thanks

    • thefitchen
      June 22, 2013

      We use gluten-free rolled oats. Hope you love it, it’s delicious!

      • eve
        June 22, 2013

        Obsessed! I literally just took my first bite and had to tell you how satisfied I am, this recipe is delicious! I made the flour from scratch as well and everything came out perfect! This is tge first gluten free recipe I have ever tried. Thank you so much for making this easy for me and others converting to gluten free.

        • thefitchen
          June 23, 2013

          Wow, Eve! Thank you for the super-nice feedback. We’re so glad that you enjoyed it and had so much success with you first gluten-free recipe. Stay tuned for lots more!

  • Cristina
    May 30, 2013

    Holy Yum, Batman! I was a little hesitant to make this recipe, because it doesn’t have any flax or Chia in it, I thought maybe something was forgotten when the recipe was written, but I followed it as written, adding extra cinnamon and some vanilla, and it was delish!

    • thefitchen
      June 2, 2013

      So glad you liked it and it turned out delicious! Thanks for the feedback!

  • Jamie
    May 15, 2013

    I just tried your recipe, it smells delicious but the consistency of both the batter and topping was a little runny. I tried adding more oatmeal flour to the topping and even added whole oats but it sank instead of staying on top. I bet it will taste divine though!

    • thefitchen
      May 16, 2013

      Hmm… that doesn’t sound right at all! Wonder what the problem was. How was the final result? Sorry there were difficulties. :( We’ve made it several times and it’s turned out perfect!

      • Jamie
        May 16, 2013

        It tasted delicious! I used 1/2 cup Arrowhead Oatmeal flour and 1/2 cup of Arrowhead brown rice flour, maybe I’ll futz around with the amounts and see of the consistency gets better. I’m not sure what happened with the “topping”. My apartment usually gets pretty hot, so that might also have contributed to it. I’ll keep working on it, it tastes too good! Thanks!

  • Kelsey
    April 7, 2013

    Delish!

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