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Easy Gingerbread Coffee Cake Recipe

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Gingerbread is my favorite holiday flavor. I love gingerbread men cookies and bundt cake but wanted something that would work for breakfast. This Easy Gingerbread Coffee Cake does just that. The moist and delicious cake {that starts with a cake mix} is topped with a buttery cinnamon topping is perfect. In fact, the only thing needed to finish this cake is a sprinkle of powdered sugar. Although this eggnog glaze would also make a great addition.

Do you love gingerbread? Try these Easy Soft Gingerbread Men Cookies Recipe with a Cake Mix!

A square of gingerbread coffee cake on a white plate with a fork.

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Reasons to make this Gingerbread Coffee Cake today!

  • The cake starts with a spice cake mix and so it comes together quickly and without too many ingredients.
  • You can control the spice level by adding more or less of the ginger and cinnamon in the cake batter. If you prefer a gingerbread recipe that is a little more subtle than cut back the amount by 1/4 teaspoon.
  • The recipe makes a 9×13 pan of coffee cake. That is 12 good sized servings! Making this gingerbread breakfast cake perfect for a crowd.
  • Adding the crumb topping gives the cake an amazing texture and rich buttery flavor. Everything’s better with crumb topping!
  • The cake itself is so flavorful and wonderful that you don’t need a glaze. A simple sprinkle of powdered sugar is all it needs.
Two slices of gingerbread crumb cake on white plates ready to serve with two gingerbread houses in the background.

Ingredients Needed

Gingerbread Cake:

  • Spice Cake Mix- The perfect base for a gingerbread cake batter because it already has so many spices inside the mix.
  • Ginger- Adding additional ginger gives the cake an extra special touch.
  • Cinnamon- Cinnamon and ginger are the perfect spice pairing.
  • Vegetable Oil- Added to the cake batter to keep the cake moist.
  • Molasses- The deep color and flavor of molasses gives gingerbread its unmistakable taste and color.
  • Milk- Added instead of water for a richer flavor.
  • Eggs- An ingredient that is used in most baking recipes to keep the cake tender and bind all of the ingredients together.

Crumb Topping:

  • Granulated Sugar- Added for a sweet crumb topping flavor.
  • Brown Sugar- Combined with the granulated sugar, it gives the topping an extra rich sweet flavor.
  • Cinnamon- Added to help make the cake and the topping cohesive.
  • Ginger- The iconic flavor of gingerbread, so adding a bit more to the topping makes it even better.
  • Butter- Binds all of the topping ingredients together and gives it a wonderful buttery flavor.
  • Flour- Used to give the topping body and a soft texture.

How to make Gingerbread Coffee Cake

  1. Combine crumb topping ingredients in a medium bowl and mix until you have a mixture with large crumbs. Note: Don’t overwork the mixture or it will become paste.
  2. Combine all of the gingerbread cake ingredients together in a medium bowl and mix using a hand held mixer {or by hand} and pour the batter into a 9×13 baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. Top the gingerbread cake batter with a thick layer of crumb mixture, being sure to cover the top of the cake in an even layer.
  4. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with only a few crumbs.
  5. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool slightly. Sprinkle it with powdered sugar.
  6. Serve and enjoy!
6 step by step photos for making a delicious and easy gingerbread crumb cake.

Tips

  • Add the ginger and cinnamon to the cake mix and whisk before adding the wet ingredients. This step will ensure that everything is evenly distributed in the Gingerbread Coffee Cake.
  • Don’t overwork the crumb topping ingredients. It is important to mix the ingredients until you have nice crumbs. If you work the topping too much it will turn into paste.
  • Pile the crumb topping on high! This cake has a 50-50 ratio of cake to crumb topping, so don’t be shy and pile that topping on top of gingerbread cake batter.
  • Don’t over bake the holiday coffee cake. It is important that once the toothpick has a few crumbs {but not any raw batter} that you remove it from the oven.
  • If the top of the coffee cake gets too brown, cover it with foil and continue to bake.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What is the best way to serve Gingerbread Coffee Cake?

There are so many ways to serve Gingerbread Coffee Cake. Of course a cup of coffee and a piece of this cake in the morning is always the perfect holiday breakfast. BUT don’t forget that this gingerbread cake can also be served for dessert with a scoop of ice cream.

How do I store gingerbread cake with crumb topping?

The best way to store this gingerbread crumb cake is to cover it tightly at room temperature. It will last for a few days and stay nice and moist. It can also be stored in the refrigerator if you want to get a couple of extra days.

Can I freeze coffee cake?

This coffee cake freezes very well for up to 3 months. Be sure that it is completely cooled before covering tightly with plastic wrap.

Can I add chopped nuts to the crumb topping?

Chopped pecans or walnuts would both be delicious additions to the crumb topping of this cake. They would also add an amazing crunch that is otherwise lacking.

One slice of gingerbread crumb cake with a gingerbread house in the background.

Do you love holiday breakfast ideas? Try theses amazing recipes…

Easy Gingerbread Coffee Cake with Crumb Topping

A spice cake mix is transformed into a Gingerbread Coffee Cake that is perfect for the holiday season!
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 12 squares
Calories: 646kcal
5 from 2 votes
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Ingredients

Gingerbread Cake

  • 1 box spice cake mix {15.25 ounces}
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • cup vegetable oil
  • ½ cup molasses
  • ½ cup milk {I used 2%}
  • 3 eggs

Crumb Topping

  • cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar {packed}
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup butter {melted}
  • 3 cups all purpose flour

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9×13 pan with non-stick spray {set aside}.

Gingerbread Cake

  • Combine the spice cake mix, ground ginger, cinnamon, vegetable oil, molasses, milk and eggs in a medium bowl and mix until everything is combined well. {I used a hand held mixer} Pour batter into prepared 9×13 pan and spread into an even layer.

Crumb Topping

  • In a small bowl combine all of the crumb mixture ingredients.  Work the mixture together into small crumbs using a pastry blender {or fork}.  Don't over work the mixture or you will get a paste and it will change the texture.  Sprinkle the crumbs in an even and thick layer over the top of the gingerbread cake batter. Bake for 35-40 minutes {or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with only a few crumbs but no raw cake batter}.
  • Remove your Gingerbread Coffee Cake from the oven and serve warm or let the cake cool completely and cover. Cake will stay moist for 3 days at room temperature or 4-5 in the refrigerator. It also freezes for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Serving: 1square | Calories: 646kcal | Carbohydrates: 91g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 29g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 83mg | Sodium: 435mg | Potassium: 449mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 55g | Vitamin A: 551IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 115mg | Iron: 5mg
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