This make-ahead coffee cake is infused with orange zest and eggnog, and studded with dried cranberries. A perfect breakfast for holidays and overnight guests!
Did you have big, fancy holiday breakfasts growing up? We never did, and I think it’s because we were either rushing off to my grandma’s on Thanksgiving to see out-of-town family, or were too busy playing with new toys on Christmas morning to care much about breakfast. The last few years however, I’ve wanted to make an extra-special breakfast for Thanksgiving and Christmas. However, since we host Thanksgiving, there always seems to be too much to do in the morning and on Christmas, well, we still want to play with our new toys :)
Enter make-ahead breakfast casseroles! Whether you like French toast, a more savory sausage casserole, or even cheesy hash browns, I’ve embraced the overnight casserole for wonderfully hearty holiday breakfasts that require no work in the morning. I am loving this eggnog coffee cake as an addition to my make-ahead breakfast casserole arsenal.
I can’t even begin to tell you how much I love the texture of this coffee cake. It’s incredibly moist, tender and almost sponge-like, but a little denser. It’s basically the perfect coffee cake. When you throw in the infusion of orange zest, the eggnog and the dried cranberries, it becomes a perfect holiday breakfast. The streusel on top is more sugar than flour, so it is less of a crumb-like streusel and more of a crunchy sugar topping.
This comes together very easily and I just love that you can get it assembled the day before and all that you need to do in the morning is turn on the oven and pop it in! If you’re going to have overnight guests during the holidays, or would just love something festive in the morning, this coffee cake is IT!
Make the Cake: Grease a 9x13-inch baking pan; set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
In a large measuring cup or small bowl, whisk together the eggnog, sour cream and vanilla extract.
In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar with the orange zest. Using your fingers, work the zest into the sugar until all of the sugar is evenly moistened. Add the butter and cream together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the eggnog mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. (The batter will be quite thick.) Using a rubber spatula, stir in the cranberries. Transfer the batter to the prepared baking pan and spread into an even layer.
Make the Streusel: In a small bowl, mix together the sugar, flour and cinnamon. Work the butter into the mixture using your fingertips or a pastry blender until it is completely incorporated, then stir in the chopped pecans. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over batter.
Cover the pan with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 8 hours, up to 24 hours.
When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Remove the pan from the refrigerator while the oven heats. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes.
Make the Glaze: In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar and eggnog until smooth; drizzle over cake. Allow the glaze to set for about 15 minutes, then serve warm or at room temperature. Leftover cake can be stored, covered, at room temperature for up to 4 days.