New York Crumb Cake
This easy to make homemade New York crumb cake is a gorgeous, tender, and buttery cake that stays exceptionally moist. On top is a very generous topping of delicious crumbs that meld into the cake and have just a hint of cinnamon flavor. It’s HEAVEN and I guarantee you won’t be able to stop eating it!
I really can’t decide which part of it is better – the insanely soft and tender vanilla-flavored cake or the soft, buttery crumb topping?
Or maybe it’s the fact that the layer of crumbs is equally as high as the cake itself.
Needless to say, this is the PERFECT crumb cake; my family always goes back for seconds and it disappears in an instant. You won’t want to skip this one!
Crumb cake vs coffee cake
Classic crumb cake originated from central Europe, most likely Germany, as a flat cake covered with a sweet crumb topping referred to as streusel (meaning “something scattered”).
So what’s the difference between this and coffee cake?
Crumb size, for one thing!
A classic New York-style crumb cake has much bigger crumbs than coffee cake, making the crumb topping layer just as thick as the cake layer! It’s sweeter and denser than a coffee cake.
It’s perfect for brunch, or to serve for dessert, or (if you’re anything like me) you can sneak leftover bites for breakfast!
This recipe uses a standard 9-inch square metal pan; I use parchment paper to line the pan, which makes it easy to remove the cake from the pan when it’s time to dust with powdered sugar, slice, and serve.
You can double this recipe and bake in a 9×13-inch pan but, increase the baking time to 40 to 45 minutes.
If you use a glass pan instead of a metal pan, the cake may take a little longer to finish baking.
Tips for variations
This is simply irresistible on its own, but if you crave a little extra SOMETHING, or just want to try something different, here are a few ideas:
- Flavors/Mix-ins: Fresh blueberries (gently fold 1 cup into the batter) or mini chocolate chips (fold ½ cup into the batter) would work great!
- Drizzles/glazes: A drizzle of salted caramel sauce or melted white chocolate over the top would be a nice addition, or a cream cheese glaze, as well!
Storing and freezing instructions
This New York crumb cake keeps exceptionally well! Here’s how to keep it fresh:
- Storage: The cake can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- Freezing Instructions: Once completely cool, wrap the cake in plastic wrap, then in foil, and place in a ziplock freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.
More Breakfast-Worthy Cakes!
- Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake
- Overnight Cranberry-Eggnog Coffee Cake
- Blueberry-Peach Coffee Cake
- Blueberry Buckle
- Peach Coffee Cake
- Sour Cream Coffee Cake
If you make this cake and love it, I would so appreciate it if you would take a moment to leave a rating below. Thank you so much! ❤️️
New York Crumb Cake
For the Crumb Topping
- ½ cup (73.33 g) dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup (66.67 g) granulated sugar
- ¾ teaspoon (0.75 teaspoon) ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon (0.13 teaspoon) table salt
- ½ cup (113.5 g) unsalted butter, melted and still warm
- 1½ cups (218.75 g) cake flour
For the Cake
- 1¼ cups (156.25 g) cake flour
- ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) table salt
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces, softened but still cool
- 1 egg
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) buttermilk
- Powdered sugar, for dusting
- Make the Topping: Whisk the sugars, cinnamon, salt, and butter in medium bowl to combine. Add flour and stir with rubber spatula or wooden spoon until mixture resembles thick, cohesive dough; set aside to cool to room temperature, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Make the Cake: Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees F. Spray an 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray and line with parchment paper or aluminum foil; allow excess to overhang edges of dish.
- Using an electric mixer on low speed, mix the flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt to combine. With mixer continuing to run at low speed, add butter one piece at a time; continue beating until mixture resembles moist crumbs, with no visible butter chunks remaining, 1 to 2 minutes. Add egg, yolk, vanilla, and buttermilk; beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute, scraping once if necessary.
- Transfer batter to baking pan; using rubber spatula, spread batter into even layer. Break apart the crumb topping into large pea-sized pieces and spread in even layer over batter, beginning with edges and then working toward center. (Be sure not to push the crumbs into the batter, just sprinkle on top.) Bake until the crumbs are golden and a wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on wire rack at least 30 minutes. Remove cake from pan by lifting parchment overhang. Dust with powdered sugar just before serving. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- Flour: Do not substitute all-purpose flour for the cake flour, as doing so will create a dry, tough cake.
- Buttermilk: You can substitute the same amount of plain yogurt for the buttermilk. Using powdered buttermilk is not recommended; it will create a thinner batter and the crumbs may sink to the bottom.
- Pan: A square metal baking pan is recommended; if you use a glass pan, the cake may take a little longer to finish baking.
- Doubling: This recipe can be doubled and baked in a 9x13-inch pan. Increase the baking time to 40 to 45 minutes.
- Flavors/Mix-ins: Fresh blueberries (gently fold 1 cup into the batter) or mini chocolate chips (fold ½ cup into the batter) would work great!
- Drizzles/glazes: A drizzle of salted caramel sauce or melted white chocolate over the top would be a nice addition, or a cream cheese glaze, as well!
- Storage: The crumb cake can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.
- Freezing Instructions: Once completely cool, wrap the crumb cake in plastic wrap, then in foil, and place in a ziplock freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.
Did you make this recipe?
Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!
[Photography by Dee of One Sarcastic Baker]
I love your recipes! I turned many of your cupcakes into boozy cupcakes and they always turn out delicious, never dry. Your frostings are wonderful as well. I made your New York Style Crumb Cake but put them in large baking cups. Baked for about 30 minutes at 325. Everyone loved them! Thanks for this and all your other recipes. Your are my go to baker! Blessings you to and your family
Your New York Crumb Cake is one of my most requested. It never lets me down. I remember the first time I tried it, I thought for sure the crumb topping was way too much. To my surprise the cake portion rose and the crumb topping was just right! Thank you for a great recipe.
Please use accurate weight to volume measurements. The weight equivalents to your volume measurements are very inaccurate. 120-125g flour to a cup, 200g sugar and brown sugar to a cup. I have made this several times and use the actual weight of ingredients. Comes out great but I think if I use your weight measurements it will come out extremely dry. Please fix.
I have made this many times. I sometimes add raspberry or blueberry jam on top of the batter before putting the crumble on top. This recipe is one of the best on your site.
Well now this is odd. I made your Mixed Berry Ginger Crumb Cake (tasty) in 2019, but the link I saved now takes me to this recipe, which is completely different. A search for the ginger cake on your site doesn’t produce it. What happened?
Thank you for a delicious cake. I made this and it came out exactly like your picture. I used margarine instead of butter to keep it dairy free. I made my own cake flour and buttermilk (used soy milk and lemon juice). I made the crumbs first and put them in the fridge while I made the cake batter. Everyone loved it.
Great recipe! One of my all time favorites.
I do have an observation though. Under “Pan Basics” you mention using a 9 inch square pan but the recipe directions call for an 8-inch square. I used the 8 inch square pan and it came out fine.
The cake part was delicious. My crumbs were too dry. Never fully pulled together when I mixed the crumb mixture. I was careful to let it completely cool to room temp before putting on the cake. Wondering if there’s a fix for this because I would love to make the cake again!
Kudos to Brown Eyed bakery. Trying one of these very soon. From Nigeria
Hey, going to make this today. Do you have any idea how to keep the crumbs soft like Etanmenns?
This crumb cake was so delicious! I substituted an equal amount of plain yogurt for the buttermilk because I did not have buttermilk at the time. The cake was so moist and the crumbs just perfect. The recipe went to together easily and the cake was enjoyed by all. Thank you so much for such a great recipe.
Sweet fancy Moses, this cake is ridiculously delicious! I was just looking for something easy to put together, something I had all the ingredients for. As I put the crumb topping on top I actually thought it would be too much crumb. I can’t believe I second-guessed you! It is sooo good!
I love this recipe and so many of your other recipes. Would love to make this New York crumb cake recipe into a pumpkin recipe. Do you have any suggestions
Made this exactly as written. It was very good! Cake is moist and tender. Thanks, BEB!
I had high hopes for this recipe, having grown up outside of NYC with a fondness for crumb cake. I followed the recipe to a tee – no substitutions, no omissions – and thought that the crumble seemed a bit on the dry side after I made it. The finished cake itself had a lovely texture, but the crumbs were much too hard. I will try using all brown sugar next time, but wonder if I should try an additional TB or so of butter. Thoughts, anyone?
I’m so upset I didn’t take a picture. The cake was delicious and we ate it in 2 mornings. Here’s what happened. I followed the directions to the letter. As it was baking I noticed the cake part was coming up over the top. So the crumbly part was on the bottom. I never had this happen. The middle wasn’t baked all the way and fell in after I pulled it out. I did let it bake an extra 10 minutes but didn’t want to go further and ruin the outside part. The taste was great but I am so confused as to how this could happen.
It Hass to be an error in this recipe when you make the topping another one and a half cups of flour and you saved and make it so it’s a cohesive dough you can’t sprinkle that over a cake. There is no crumb topping it’s a dough toppingWondering if the one and a half cups of flour should’ve been something else to make it crumble
Hi Sheila, Yes, the topping is a cohesive dough. Per the instructions, you break off pieces and sprinkle them over the cake. I hope that helps to clarify!
This is the first time I have ever made this type of cake before! I only had light brown sugar which I do think messed with the texture of the crumb so I will make sure to not sub that next time. I also forgot to press start on my timer and over baked it by 8 mins or so. It was delish except for my little booboos 😎
I am a crumb cake lover from way back! I loved the crumb cake that was made at a bakery close to the house I grew up in, It has long since closed. I’m always on a quest for a good crumb cake, but a lot of times, they’re just so-so, don’t quite make the grade.
This recipe is really good! It came out of the oven about an hour before I started cooking dinner, and I had to use real restraint to not have a huge hunk. Well, I did have a small taste, and it was delicious!
Thanks for another excellent recipe!
Hi Donna, I’m so glad you enjoyed the cake!
Was wondering if you could use frozen blueberries in this cake and what adjustments would have to be made and also can you make your own cake flour if you don’t have any on hand? Thank you
This is what a crumb cake should look like! Not one of those skimpy topped cakes my grandmother used to make. But different people, different tastes: anyone who bakes or cooks is aware of differing opinions!
Kudos for your recipe!!! The crumb ingredients look similar to what I use, but even more pronounced, so I will definitely give your recipe a test run!
Sounds “crummy” and delicious Michelle, will give it s try. Thank you.
I worked in a deli in Tucson, Arizona in 1978. I was the baker and delivery girl! New York crumb cake was one of our most popular desserts. I would bake in the mornings and deliver sandwiches at lunchtime. I am happy to see your recipe, as I have misplaced mine over the years!
Enjoyed the cake and will make again! Why do you need to use the parchment paper and lift the cake out of the pan instead of just cutting and eating from the pan?
Doubled the recipe and baked in a 13×9 pan. I think there was actually too much crumb (if that is even possible). The top layer of crumb was dry and fell off instead of setting. There was still enough underneath, but something didn’t seem right. I’m going to try it again and instead of doubling the crumble, I’ll do 1.5x. The cake is SPOT ON delicious and has the lightest texture.
This has been my birthday breakfast treat for years. Although I love this cake as is, I was wondering if I can substitute sour cream (low or full fat) for the buttermilk?
Hi Carole, Yes, you could do that!
I have made this recipe several times in the 8″ pan and it has come out great! Today I doubled to make in a 9×13
and my crumbs are sinking and the cake if coming over on top of them. I am wondering if the recipe needs to be tweaked, maybe not as much baking soda or something instead of a straight double.
Make the crumb cake was very good but seems dry, I used a metal pan instead of a glass dish, I cooked it for 55 minutes at same 325. Should I have used glass instead of metal
I have made this recipe several times. I have never had trouble with sinking crumbs. If you don’t melt the butter all the way, then mix the dough and put it in the fridge, you can crumble the crumbs almost like sand. Then they are less likely to sink.
After moving out of California, I can no longer get Entenmann’s. I tried this recipe and was absolutely amazed. I first thought the streusel instructions were strange as it was not what I was used to making. This tastes so much like Entenmann’s I couldn’t believe it! Absolutely delish! I’ve made it twice now. Thank you for the recipe.
I was very careful to let my crumbs cool for a full 15 minutes before placing them on the top of the cake batter. My crumbs still sank to the bottom of the cake. I haven’t cut it yet, so I’m not sure how it will taste, but it doesn’t look anything like the pictures above.
The cake cut nicely and tastes delicious. I just wish it looked better.
Question. Are these crumbs soft like Entenmenns? Or are they hard? I have been trying without success to make crumbs that are soft like aforementioned. Anyone know if this recipe has soft crumbs?
Hi Beth, They’re not super soft but not hard and crunchy either… they sort of fall into the middle. For softer crumbs, perhaps try using all brown sugar instead of the combination of granulated and brown. Enjoy! :)
Absolutely delicious as written, except for making my own cake flour as another reviewer nicely provided. I did make a double recipe of crumbs the day before to do some informal “taste testing” hahaha…. so the remaing ones were nice and chilled on bake day. Thanks again for a great recipe!
Bland? Seriously? If you followed the recipe there is no way this could be bland. Crumb topping too dry? Seriously? Did you add the butter? For the cake part, I use full fat buttermilk (Walmart…full fat is hard to find). We love it!
Please say if these crumbs on top are soft or crunchy. I am looking for soft crumbs, like Entemments,
Hi Beth, They are soft!
Read the reviews before baking this. I had no issues whatsoever with the topping melting into the cake. I actually popped my topping into the fridge for about 10 minutes just to make sure it wasn’t warm at all. I have already eaten like 3 pieces It is delicious!!!
All of your recipes are my go to! I love you! But I have a silly question. The crumble. How did you get it to look so pretty? I misread the ‘large pea size’ part of the recipe and ended up crumbling the crumble into itty bitty pieces. Still looked fine but not as pretty as yours. So I guess my question is how do you do the crumble so perfectly?
Hi Joy, I honestly don’t do anything special! I just pinch off pieces of crumb and then scatter them on the cake. I’m sorry that’s not very helpful :(
I have made this cake twice and got raves each time.
OK so i didnt have one ingredients so I prepared making the other stuff I have at home I didnt have the egg so I already made the crumble topping nd the cake mix I just needed the egg so I after I made the cake part I left in the side and the cake mix double in size is it OK double in size meaning it got you puffier when I left and also is it OK if I cook it on the stove because where I am my country not alot of people own a oven so I want to try in the pan …skillet what ever u call it. So about the dough that double in size just want to will it affect my cooking do I have to worry
Hmmm I mean I think the baking soda probably activated, but I wouldn’t have guessed it could double in size! I’m not sure what will happen when you bake it.
hoping the cook will tell me what happened that my crumb sunk to the bottom while baking.
The key to it not sinking is to be sure you allow the crumb mixture to cool completely to room temperature before proceeding with the recipe, and then gently sprinkling the crumb on top of the batter, and not pushing it down at all.
Hello, I just made this today. It’s still not the crumb cake that we used to buy at the bakery that I’ve been searching for. That crumb cake had a higher cake and was on the dry side. This cake was very thin and very yellow. The flavor was very good. But I’ll keep searching. I’m
My crumbs were crunchy…the coffee cake I remember growing up in NY always had soft crumbs….what am i doing wrong?
The cake was amazing and unbelievably simple (I am.new to baking). I had to use all purpose flour…cant find cake flour where i live…and I substituted regular plain yogurt for buttermilk. The cake was great. Just really crunchy crumbs…yet not over cooked…help?
Hi Ananda, The crunchy crumbs could have definitely been from using the all-purpose flour vs cake. If you do try it again with the cake, let me know if that remedies it!
I love the texture of the crumb topping!! It is unique and oh so tasty! Nicely done.
I made this cake today. I also made homemade apple pie filling.
After putting the cake batter in I carefully added the pie filling over the top of the batter, then added the crumb over the pie filling. Results an excellent apple crumb cake!
Made this cake today for my family it turned out so good!
I made homemade apple pie filling and put that on top of the cake batter, then added the crumb topping. Every recipe I have tried from this site is awesome!!!!!
Hello! I have tried this recipe a few times and every time, my crumbs sink into the cake and the cake envelops the topping. I have been checking my oven temp with a thermometer & have tried cooling the crumbs before dropping them onto the batter, breaking them up smaller and dropping them on 10 min into baking. I have been following the recipe to a T and measuring & mixing carefully and have quality pans. This seems to be a common problem based on comments for this recipe on different blogs and I have not been able to find an answer. Is this something you have any thoughts on? Why does a crumb topping sink? Thank you SO much!!
Hi Elisabeth, I haven’t had an issue with my crumbs sinking in this recipe, but you want to ensure they are not too big (seems like you have), that the mixture is not warm, and that you are NOT AT ALL pushing them into the batter. They should just be scattered over the top.
Thanks so much for your reply Michelle! :)
Unfortunately I’m still not sure why this happens! They are cooled, small and gently dropped and not pushed at all. Thank you anyway! I appreciate your response so much! :)
As always you have reached my expectations with yet another one of your recipes! I love every recipe I have ever tried from you!
My husband is a New Yorker who moved himself to California and I have made so many of your recipes from that region. When he tastes it he always says, ” Just like a Home!” That is a huge compliment to me and you!
This cake is so light and delicious! It is now a staple! Along with your Black and Whites!
Aww thank you so much for the kind words, and for taking the time to leave a review, I appreciate it so much!
The topping was extremely dry. I used unbromated flour but reduced the flour accordingly and it was still like powder.. The flavor was typical of crumb cake, but as another reviewer stated, it was very bland. There wasn’t much salt in the recipe; I think next time, I will double the salt in the cake and maybe double the cinnamon in the topping or add a pinch of nutmeg. Thanks for posting the recipe; it is a good basic one overall. I just need to tweak it for my family.
I baked this today and loved the taste! However, I did have difficulty slicing it up as beautifully as you did without making a crumbly mess. Is it possible to bake this in a 9-inch round springform pan?
You could make this in a 9-inch springform, I don’t think that would be an issue.
Turned out well, soft texture and nice crumb but agree that quantity of crumb was too much. I only used about 2/3 to achieve the same proportions as in the picture.
this recipe is very easy to do and the results are amazing. very authentic if not even better than many bakeries. i used a 8×11 pan and it still turned out perfect. totally obsessed and will be making again. also made the cookie cake from this blog on the same day and it was delicious as well.
My crumb topping came out very crunchy. Any idea why?
Hi Jamie, I would make sure your oven isn’t running hot and that you didn’t overbake it. Outside of those, when mixing the crumbs together, you want to ensure that the melted butter gets fully incorporated and that there are no dry pockets. I hope that helps!
I’ll keep that in mind for the next time. Thank you, Michelle! The flavor and texture of this cake was so amazing btw!
I first made this when it was featured in CI. They even had an article accompanying it which showed photos of various outcomes if your cake didn’t turn out just right and the reason for each outcome. Unfortunately, I scanned the recipe and tossed the magazine. It most definitely says the recipe can be doubled for a 9×13. I made it 2 days ago for book club and some of the crumbs sunk in and others remained on top. Still tasted delicious. Other times I have made it, it turned out perfectly. I am also a big fan of”East Coast” crumb cake and this recipe is so good.
Followed the recipe to the T with cake flour and all. This crumb cake was DELICIOUS. Thank you so much for a great recipe with a nice thick topping. Served it for Mother’s Day. 6 of us each had a slice and a half which was more than enough even though we wanted more.
Absolutely stunning! Beautiful photos and cool recipe!
My SO says this cake is now in his top five favorites. It is very easy to make and turns out great. I added some fresh blueberries to the batter. I’m making another one for work this week. Thanks!
I have been searching for a very long time for a delicious crumb cake recipe and I am going to try this one either today or tomorrow for mothers day. I have tried several recipes where the cake part didn’t taste very good or the crumb was not flavorful so I’m hoping this is the one, any recipe I have made of yours has not let me down yet! I especially love the ultimate chocolate cupcakes yum.
So glad I found your site and Facebook… Just love all the recipes and ideas… Keep it up.
My husband is much more of a cake person than I am, but I think I could go for this one!
Now THIS is a crumb cake! Soft, buttery, and I love the generous crumb topping!
I hate this coffee cake because I can’t stop eating it!!! Not sure if this is the same recipe you posted a year or so ago but it is fantastic and turned out amazing every time I made it.
This is a delicious recipe! It’s perfectly sweetened and moist. Sososo good with a cup of coffee and that topping is off the charts good!
Love everything you post!
I’ve made this cake for years too always with perfect results!!!!
Can you come up with s chocolate version?
Chocolate cake and wonderful chocolate crumbs? I’ve tried with mixed results!
Ooooh CHOCOLATE! I’ve never thought of that, but now I’m going to experiment!
I make this recipe all the time and it’s perfect!!!! Everyone always comments on how delicious it is. I’m making it again today to bring to school for teacher’s appreciate day.
I made this cake with all purpose flour and it came out delicious. My boyfriend loves crumb cake, and I thought he would eat it all at one sitting! It did not come out dry or tough. I also never buy buttermilk, I just squeeze a little lemon or add a little white vinegar to milk and let it sit for a few minutes. I did it for this recipe as well. I also did not do the parchment paper thing, I just sprayed the pan and baked as directed. I pieces from the pan and it came out with no problem. I enjoyed the cake part, but my boyfriend said the crumbs were the best part! Very nice recipe, thanks for sharing :)
Hi! I noticed that you said yogurt can be substituted for the buttermilk. Would I also be able to substitute a non-dairy sour cream instead? Thanks!
Hi Paulette, I have not tried to use sour cream, and I’ve never used a non-dairy substitute for any baking, so I couldn’t say for sure how well it would work in this particular recipe.
To much crumb topping with a bland. Taste like lightly sweetened flour.
Made this twice, it was perfect. I added blueberries. This will be my go to recipe for coffee crumb.
I made this crumb cake and it was phenomenal…..totally my new addiction. I have made others but none can compare. I was so happy to find this recipe and it is a keeper! Thank you for the recipe!
Made this today baked for loted time. The cake was very dense and almost tasted raw. Did not come out like a cake should…light and soft. Topping was good but cake fell short of what I was expecting. Maybe it needed more liquid but followed it exactly.
does it have to be dusted right before serving or can i do it earlier in the day or the night before?
Hi Jose, You can dust it earlier, but just know that when you cover something that has a powdered sugar dusting on it, the powdered sugar will tend to melt, so you’ll likely need to dust it again before serving anyway, especially if you do it the night before.
For those looking for a solution to the topping sinking into the cake I made a crumb cake for my wife and in the recipe it said to mix some of the crumb with cake batter to prevent topping from falling in just cannot remember where I got recipe from
Michelle, the sinking crumbs have nothing to do with the temp. when placed on the cake batter. I could see in the baking process how the cake batter came up around the crumb almost like a buckle recipe. We liked it when it first came out of the oven but unless we heated it up after that, it was dense and just not as yummy as photographed look. I would go back to your friends at the test kitchen and ask about the density/physics that go into the baking process (they’re good at that type of trouble shooting). Interestingly enough, when compared to other similar recipes out there, they often say don’t use cake flour because it will make the bottom layer tough as I’ve described mine to
Love your blog and your recipes. Want to try this one but I am little worried about the flour. In Italy we find only 0 or 00
Hi Melania, I’m not sure what 0 and 00 is in reference to, but cake flour has a lower protein content, which makes for lighter baked goods. I hope that helps a bit!
Growing up there was a store that made a coffee cake that had a stiff cream filling. Your cake looks like the one I remember, but I have never found one with the same filling. Any thoughts on how to make that kind of filling? Thanks.
Hi Ellen, Do you have a link or any example you can send over for reference? Sounds delish!
Unfortunately, I have no pictures, just memories of stiff whip cream that holds up to the weight of the top half of the cake. Pretty vague I’m sorry to say. Of well, you brought back memories. Thanks.
Ellen, sounds like it may be a pastry cream with stabilized whipped cream folded in. Most likely 2 parts pastry cream to 1 part stabilized whipped cream.
I’ve been meaning to make this for some time and finally did. I followed recipe exactly except the cooking time was a little longer. No sinking crumbs like other posts. The result was a delicious cake, much like Entemans cake which I can only find back east. Thank you! PS love your site… Especially Friday things.
I know this is an old thread butI had to comment. Thank you so much for the recipe! My husband says it is his favorite by far!
I tried this last week. Followed the recipe exactly. A suggestion I would give is to reduce the amount of cake flour in the topping. It is way too much, and makes it really dry. The topping turned out hard, but with lesser cake flour, it will definitely be fine. Other than that, the cake was HEAVEN! It tasted amazing!! Thank you for the delicious recipe! :)
I just made this because it looked delish! Except… I’ve been baking mine for over an hour now, and it’s still liquid. I even turned the temp up.
I have used this recipe now for a couple of weeks to make for a local coffee shop that I bake for. I double the recipe and make it in a 13 x 9 pan which works well! What I do is make the crumble topping first, put it in the fridge to cool, and work on getting the batter prepared. I find it easiest to just put the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla all in one liquid measuring cup and just pour that into the dry/butter mixture. When I take the crumb mixture out of the fridge, depending on how long it’s been sitting in there, it can be a bit hard, but it breaks up super easy when you use your hands. I tend to put more crumb topping around the edges of the pan than in the middle as I’ve noticed that as the cake bakes, the edges cinch up and the cake is exposed in the corners. I’ve also baked this at both 325 and 350 and it turns out ok either way. For me, it takes 45-50 minutes depending on the temp, and I tend to rotate my pan halfway through as my oven has hot and cold spots. Thanks for a great recipe — the customers in our local coffee shop love it!
This is one of my favorite go-to recipes. It is so easy and works every time. A lovely adaption is to mix the batter with combined lightly stewed apple pieces , a sprinkling of cinnamon and brown sugar. I pop this into cupcake papers and top it with the prepared crumb. Any left over crumb i also put into the oven for a sneaky snack ;-) after baking I drizzle some melted white chocolate over the top. It’s always very popular. Yum!
Can you bake in a heart shaped ceramic baking dish? what changes in time,temp.? Please advise,want to make for valentine’s Day!!
Hi Sloane, You would need to know what volume your heart-shaped pan is, to make sure you wouldn’t need to scale the recipe up or down. I would keep the temperature the same, but the time might be different, depending on the size of your pan.
Thank you so much for this recipe!
The cake was sooo delicious. I don’t know why the topping sinks into the cake sometimes – mine did not, thank goodness.
I suggest to add more sugar to the cake, though. This is my opinion only; my mom said it’s perfect.
Thank you once more!
In defense of an amazing New York crumb cake…
First…the directions do say to cool the crumb topping. You don’t roll the topping into peas, just break it up into small pieces.
The topping is supposed to be much thicker than the cake and it will sink into the cake. The cake doesn’t rise much and the whole thing is quite dense and buttery. You have to take your time with the ingredients…it’s a process to get the cake.
I mix in the butter by hand. I gave 15 out for Christmas 3 years in a row. I think many people are stuck in the ‘cake’ mentality. This isn’t a crumb cake by cake standards. This is more of a pastry in NYC and it’s amazing. This recipe comes out perfect every time.
The 9×13 works but the cake is thicker and I don’t like that. Follow the steps. Don’t cut corners. Don’t judge it by previous standards.
OMG What a delicious cake!!!! I had made 3 differents recipes of similar cakes, because I was trying to imitate a cake I tried at a upscale bakery. And this recipe was perfect! I added a layer of red delicious apple in between the bAtter and the topping, and it was soooooo close to what I was trying to imitate. thank you so much for this recipe!
I made this the other week and it was so good I’m making it again!! I didn’t let the crumbs sit long enough to cool so they sank, but I am weird and thought that made the whole thing even more delicious. I found a different recipe on another website that I tried before I found this and it did not turn out anywhere near as good as yours did!
I made this Saturday night for Sunday church. It is delicious! In my oven it took 40 minutes for any browning, but next time I will probable take out a few minutes earlier. Making those little balls for the topping was a little time consuming, but well worth the time. I had it wrapped then realized I had not dusted with powdered sugar. Still delish. Will make again. :)
I LOVE this recipe. I have made it several times and now its one of my families favorites. I modified slightly for better results; I added a little more buttermilk and doubled the crumb topping. Absolutely delicious!
Thannnnnnnkkkkk you for posting this recipe! I had tried another recipe for crumb cake that just came out horrible. This one was great! I did yogurt sub for the buttermilk. I only had all-purpose flour, so I subbed it for cake flour with this subbing guideline: per cup of flour needed, replace two tablespoons of all-purpose flour with two tablespoons of cornstarch. The last 1/4 cup of flour for the cake I replaced with vanilla pudding powder. I didn’t have any trouble with sinking crumbs. The only thing is that the crumbs were a bit crispy and the bottom of the cake too browned at 35 min, so next time I would check after 30 min. Thanks for the recipe! Will use over and over.
I made this recipe for my MOPS meeting and was a little dissapointed. The topping was a little dry. I think I might try this one again but use more butter and less flour. I made up a glaze of butter, powdered sugar, whipping cream and vanilla for the top and it was a great addition.
Thank you for the recipe! I have baked this cake quite a few times now and it is always a hit! I have been seeing a couple of comments on her about the topping sinking. I have personally never had this kind of problem. I do put a 1/4c less of flour and bake it in a shallow disposable foil pan. Maybe that helps a bit.
I have always loved store bought crumb cakes, but this looks even better! I’m making it for Father’s Day. I know my family will love it! I added some almond flavoring – we are totally almond obsessed. Thanks for the great recipe!
This is a great coffee/crumb cake. Looked great on,one – decided to try it and yum!!!
Great cake and topping – now all I need is a latte.
I THOUGHT I recognized this crumb cake! As a reader of CI/ATK I tore this out a few weeks ago and made it. I doubled it as suggested and baked it in a 9×13 pan. A lover of crumb cake, ok–almost all sweets, this is the closest to my memory growing up in NY. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Every one of yours I’ve tried has been a winner.
I found this blog pretty recently…made the crumb cake for a meeting, and it was so good I made it again a few days later. Wow, so yummy! The cake is so tender and there’s plenty of crumb topping. Seriously, I think I could eat the whole cake by myself (which is why I won’t make it unless I can give some away!). I typically adjust recipes, but this is one that is lovely just the way it is. Looking forward to trying other recipes from this site!
I just came across your blog on thursday and got totally inspired! Made three of your recipes the next day. Followed this exactly, except for used nutri blend (half white half whole wheat) flour instead of cake because that’s all I had. It turned out great!! Sooo much crumbs and I love that, it was more crumb than cake which made the actually cake more like a base :) also the cake was nice and dense, would definitely make again!
I followed the recipe to a T – and it is indeed wonderful. I was surprised as to how hard it was to find a good coffee/crumb cake – but am so glad I stumbled upon this one. Thank you! Thinks I would consider doing in the future just for fun: fold in a couple chocolate chips or a cinnamon/butter mixture into the batter prior to baking. Also, I found that using my hands to make the crumbles was the easiest way. I wish there were a more automated way to do this should I need to make a number of cakes at once.
Wow-tastes as good as it looks. The cake is very tender-almost the texture of a velvet pillow. I had no trouble with the crumbs sinking but I did chill the topping while I mixed the batter.
Got a phone call and was distracted so I put all the butter in at once with no problem. Also used the light brown sugar-fine.
Just a tip in case anyone hasn’t seen the powdered buttermilk. It’s a great thing to have as it’s very shelf stable and lasts much longer than the real stuff.
Am thinking a layer of raspberry or cherry pie filling would be amazing. Thanks!
hi! i’ve made so many of your recipes and they’ve all come out so goood! quick question about this one tho .. first, could i use light and dark brown sugar interchangeably? and in regards to the buttermilk, can i follow the suggestion on your faq page and use regular milk and lemon juice? does it matter what type of milk (fat free, whole, etc) that i use? sorry for all the questions, thanks for your help in advance!
Hi Tina, You could use either brown sugar and yes, you can use the buttermilk substitution tip. I would use any type of milk except for skim. Enjoy!
I was wondering if i would be able to add a thin layer of preserves, perhaps in the middle of the batter, then add the remainder of the batter followed by the crumb topping? Would i need to add a bit of baking powder or baking soda? Thank you. Ga’ma Jan. I L O V E your recipes and comments. Thanks for sharing.
I think you would be able to do that without a problem, or altering the recipe.
Hi, I’m planning to make this cake this Sunday and was wondering if I can use an 8-inch casserole dish or do I have to use a baking pan? Thanks!!!
This recipe is one of the better recipes out there, especially when it comes to the crumb size.
One of the best New York-Style Crumb Cakes my family has been enjoying for years comes from Crumb Cake Creations! They’re actually a New Jersey based bakery which ships throughout the US. I’ve yet to find a crumb cake with larger crumbs than these. Plus, they have a ton of varieties aside from the typical crumb cake you’d expect. Carrot, blueberry jam, red velvet, and pumpkin are just a few of the ones I’ve seen. My favorite happens to be Pumpkin Crumb Cake.
Check them out in time for Easter – you wont be disappointed.
Finally made this today. It’s been on my list for a few years now. So so yum!!!
can this be done with apples?! like an apple crumble cake? let me know please! also.. if i cant find cake flour.. what do i do?!
Hi Shanice, I am actually working this week on a fruit version! Stay tuned, I will update by the end of the week if it worked! As for the cake flour, you can find a substitution here: https://www.browneyedbaker.com/baking-faq/
I made this for the first time and it was soooooo good!!!! I told my husband to cover the cake and put it away and found him eating it non stop like there’s no tomorrow! :):) he said it was so good he almost finished it. Thank you for the recipe.
I just made this cake and it is too good!!!! I followed the
Instructions to a tee and I had no problems
It’s easy and quick to make too
This cake is so nice I will have to bake it again when I feel like baking
I made this the other weekend and LOVED it. Completely delicious and it was hard not to eat the crumb before I baked it! :D Thank you for the wonderful recipe!
I just made this – sort of. I used regular flour because I didn’t feel like running to the store. I also put in both eggs whole since I didn’t know what else to do with the second egg white and the batter was a little dry because I used plain greek yogurt instead of buttermilk. It was what I had on hand. So I guess I didn’t REALLY make it, but used it as a base and it is quite yummy although we did begin consumption less than 3 minutes out of the oven. : ) The crumbs are dry, but did not sink. The cake is moist. We like it!
i was just wondering whats the difference between cake flour and normal flour because i’ve never seen cake flour in the store close to me and also will this recipe make a dry cake? by the way i tried your chocolate chip cookie and brownie recipe they were a BIG HIT I’m a fan! :D
Hi Molly, Cake flour is finer than all-purpose flour. It is stocked in pretty much every grocery store in the U.S. (not sure where you are located) – popular brands are Softasilk and Swan’s Down. If you can’t locate it you can make a substitution with all-purpose flour and cornstarch – the directions are on this FAQ page: https://www.browneyedbaker.com/baking-faq/
I’m so happy I found your site today!!:-) I baked this crumb cake today and it came out amazing! Tomorrow I’m baking the Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Peanut Butter Icing! Can’t wait to bake many many more from your site!:-) I love it!
I just made this and it is delicious. My brother said it was the best crumb cake he ever ate in his life, I agree.
The recipe was easy to follow and the results are fabulous.
Made this last night. Yes, it was amazing! Everyone loved it! Everything we make form Brown Eyed Baker is a favorite! Thanks
This is awesome! Baked this n it turned out real good! Thank you!
Looks like it would just melt in your month.
Hi Michelle! Your cake looks amazing! Just a question from an amateur baker like me, do we need to sieve the cake flour? And if we do, do we do it prior to weighing or after weighing? Hope you can answer this question of mine! :)
Hi Joli, No need to sift the flour (or pass it through a sieve). You can just mix it as directed.
I just made this for Sunday breakfast. Absolutely AMAZING.
Hi Michelle! I love your site!
I’ve had this bookmarked nearly forever now and finally was craving the Crumb! I made it last night. It’s delicious, only, my crumbs sort of sank down into the middle of the cake as it baked. Any idea what went wrong or how to prevent that? I see the recipe refers to some pics on how to do it but they didn’t make it to your post. Thanks for the recipes!
Hi Jen, My guess is that most likely the crumb mixture wasn’t cooled enough when you topped the cake. You could even pop it in the fridge if you find it isn’t cooling down fast enough.
This is about the 10th comment that people are mentioning that their crumb topping sank to the bottom including mine. In this response you say that the crumb mixture wasn’t cooled enough when she topped the cake. Why would the crumb mixture be hot?? Can you please figure out what is causing this problem?
Umm janero last I heard if you melt butter by microwaving, the butter will be hot!!! the crumbs should be hot for a while since you add in the butter. So just make the crumbs and push it to the side and go do something else while it cools down back to room temp.
This Janero person needs to chill. OUT. He/she is ruining my enjoyment of reading the comments. If he’s got a problem with how you run your blog, go on to someone else’s and figure out how to make it. Geez, dude, she’s just a blogger, she’s not God and she certainly can’t solve all of the problems of crumb cake land! Sorry for ranting, but, he’s being rude.
I made this cake this morning. Turned out great with the crumb topping. I think next time I just might add a little more cinnamon (I’m a cinnamon fanatic). The topping was a tad dry but if it was moister it probably wouldn’t have been as nice as a topping. Everything I’ve made off this blog is excellent – keep up the good work Michelle! I look forward to checking your site weekly and daily if I can.
I just wanted to tell you that I am laying in bed drooling at this cake. I can’t wait to get to the store and make it tomorrow! (by the way I’m pregnant so it may explain why I am looking at cakes at 11:00 at night in bed lol)
I have made this once already and it was great! I was given a suggestion to try to add sour cream for the 2nd go round – how would I need to alter the recipe?
Hi Mary, Well, the buttermilk sort of plays the role of the wet ingredient in this recipe, but I’m not sure you could do a 1:1 swap there. Any particular reason why you’d want to add sour cream to the recipe?
I made this cake and my topping sunk to the bottom? Any idea of what i could have done wrong? the cake is still delicious just upside down. :)
Hi Michelle, I’m wondering if you didn’t let the topping cool before putting it on top? I think if the butter was still too warm, it could have caused it to sink.
Michelle, as you can see someone else had the same problem with this recipe as I did, and they used an 8″ sq pan. What do you mean when you say that she didn’t let the topping cool before putting it on top?? This is not mentioned in your recipe above AT ALL. Your recipe above states in step 4 to
“4. Transfer batter to baking pan; using rubber spatula, spread batter into even layer. Following photos below, break apart crumb topping into large pea-sized pieces and spread in even layer over batter, beginning with edges and then working toward center. Bake until crumbs are golden and wooden skewer inserted into center of cake comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes”
This is obviously the problem with this recipe. You probably need to cook the cake first, then add the crumbs, then cook for a few minutes to set the crumbs. Is this how it was supposed to be done?
No, the cake is not supposed to be baked and then topped with the crumbs; the crumbs are put on, and the whole thing is baked together.
Then why did you respond to Michelle above, with “I’m wondering if you didn’t let the topping cool before putting it on top?”
because when you mix the topping together you are supposed to let it cool to room temp then form into balls.
i tried out this recipe and although the cake just got out of the oven, i already tried it.;)
im not sure if it is supposed to be that moist(?) but i really like it that way. :)
i made this crumb cake and i was fantastic, better than the kind you buy at the store. thank you!
Hi! I cant wait to try this recipe!! But i was wondering if it could be done in a bundt pan? If so would any changes need to be made?
Hi Ashley, I would not recommend making this in a Bundt pan – it is not nearly enough batter for a Bundt, and it would bake up much differently.
My dad grew up in Philadelphia and has fond memories of a similar crumb cake from a local bakery. So for his birthday yesterday, I knew I had to at least attempt this cake for him. Though it took trips to 4 different stores to find cake flour, (who knew cake flour was so difficult to locate???) it made for a successful cake. I actually baked it on Saturday and delivered it after it had cooled, and by dinnertime yesterday (Sunday), it was over half gone between just my dad and mom. And my peanut was able to help make the crumbs- an added bonus! Thanks for a wonderful recipe. :o)
Happy belated birthday to your dad! (My mom’s birthday was today!) I’m so happy to hear he enjoyed this recipe for his special day!
Just FYI for future baking that calls for cake flour….
You can make your own cake flour!
For every cup of all purpose flour, add 2 tablespoons cornstarch. Just sift the two ingredients togetogether and then measure required amount for the recipe!
Oh no…I was on a roll with recipes from this site until this one. I followed this recipe precisely but my crumbs were horribly dry. The flavor of the cake was good but it could’ve been a lot moister too. I don’t know what I did wrong but I will try this recipe again.
Oh no! I’m sorry you didn’t have a great result, but I hope you’ll give it another try! It’s definitely a favorite!
Tykisha is not alone in her failure on this recipe. I am an avid home baker and I followed this recipe word for word and doubled it and baked it in a 13 x 9 pan and it did not come out as pictured AT ALL. I even put an oven thermometer in to ensure the temperature was accurate. The first time I baked it the crumb topping completely collapsed and sank into the cake while cooking and ended up on the bottom of the cake and completely absorbed into the cake. The 2nd time I cooked it without adding the crumb topping and cooked the cake until it was almost 15 minutes done, then I added the crumb topping to cook for the last 15 minutes…..still the same result!! It was a crumb cake without any cake…ONLY CRUMB!! Something is seriously wrong with this recipe!!
Janero, Not all recipes can be doubled or halved with success. This may be one of those recipes. I have not attempted to double it, so that may be the issue. I’ve made this countless times and have never had an issue with the crumb.
Thank you for your response. I do realize that not all recipes can be doubled, however, then why do you state this in your recipe above “This recipe can be easily doubled and baked in a 13 by 9-inch baking dish. If doubling, increase the baking time to about 45 minutes”
Your recipe clearly states that it can be doubled. Have you tried doubling it and baking it with success??
There is usually nothing wrong with the recipes from ATK/Cook’s Country/Cook’s Illustrated. They research and test their recipes thoroughly. ;)
When mixing the wet and dry ingredienrs, I almost stopped the mixer too early. It says to mix until light and fluffy. If I didn’t let it mix that extra 30 seconds, the batter would have been much thinner, which may be why some are finding their crumb topping sinking into the batter. Alsi, the crumb topping has to be completely cool or the butter won’t be absorbed fully by the flour. If both these steps are done with patience, the crumbs should hold their form and the batter should hold the weight of the topping.
absolutely loved it :] thanks so much
Maria – You’re welcome! I love this cake!
This was soooo good! I have an obsession with crumb cake and have like 15 recipes in my box for various ones but this one is by far the best! Of course I couldn’t wait the 30 minutes until it cooled. Thanks for the great recipe!
I am baking this cake now, with about 5 minutes to go. Oddly, my crumbs have sunk. Can’t imagine what I did wrong. :(
This happened to many people. Apparently, no one including Michelle, has any idea how to fix it.
I just made this an hour ago and I can’t believe how delicious it is! It’s moist, flavorful, and scrumptious!! Thank you so much for posting this recipe. This is the first thing I’ve ever made from your site and I plan to bake so much more!! I was definitely surprised by how easy it was to make! My family is loving it. :)
I’m so glad you and your family enjoyed this! I *LOVE* this cake!!
I’ve actually never tried crumb cake. All the more reason to make it. Yum!
Cook’s Illustrated always has fantastic recipes! Thanks for sharing!
I made this recipe exactly as it says and I’m confused – my crumbs were swallowed by the cake! how did that happen? Does anyone know what went wrong?
You are not alone Lindsay, several other people, including myself had the same problem with this recipe.
I made this as soon as I saw it in my cooks illustrated cookbook and its delicious!! my topping sank through though, and I think its because it took me too long making the balls. The next time I made it I let the topping cool to room temp and then I formed them into balls and set them aside. then I proceeded making the dough and then sprinkled on the topping. No sinking!! hope this helps =]
Thanks Chelle! Considering how yummy it was even with a dry topping, I can’t wait to try it again with cake flour!
Thanks for this recipe, it looks great, and the presentation tips are helpful too!
Michelle, I just went back and re-read the recipe and saw the commentary prior to the actual recipe, noting that AP flour will cause the cake to be dry and dense. I have edited this entry so that it now includes that paragraph. I hope you try it again! :)
No… I didn’t have any…. but I did back off on the all purpose flour when I thought it was getting too dry looking…..
I guess I’ve learned that it really does make a difference!
No worries, the cake disappeared anyway! :)
I double checked and yes, that is the correct amount of flour. Did you use cake flour?
Is that the correct amount of flour for the topping? My topping turned out way too dry…..
The cake batter turned out fine, but I too found it a little dry. I just added in a little more melted butter.
I used cake flour and used the metric measurements.
That was the only change I made and the cake really did turn out well, so no complaints at all.
Thanks for sharing!
I recently watched the ATK episode that featured this recipe and wanted to make it too. Your’s looks tastier than theirs!
Oh, I love this recipe. I’ve made it a number of times. I have several recipes for this sort of crumb cake, and the CI one is definitely my favorite.
Wow that looks INSANELY delicious!!!
Seeing this is perfect timing for me! Tonight, my husband asked that my next baked goods creation be a plain coffee cake (I had bookmarked a blueberry one). Now, I don’t even have to go research. We just need to finish off all the brownies, bread and cake we already have :)
it looks amazing! i’m going to have to make this for hubby very soon. i’ve got it saved! can’t wait to try it!
oh you got to make it! i bought the cooks illustrated test kitchen magazine just because of this coffee cake!! it looks just like the picture they had , great job!
This looks really tasty!!! Bookmarked!
This looks wonderful! It’s been on my must-make list as well, so I’ll definitely have to try it after your review!
Bookmarked it so I can make it later, looks wonderful!
oh wow, that looks delicious!
Good to know. I’ve had by eye on this recipe since it was published.
yikes, the crumb melted on top while baking and was one covering and then sunk to the bottom? the crumb was too warm with the butter being melted first. maybe i shouldl’ve refrigerated the crumb after mixing it? taste good but so disappointed with the topping.
Hi Foley, Did you allow the crumb mixture to cool completely to room temperature after mixing it together, before proceeding with the recipe?
It even looks better than Entenmanns!
Oh my gosh, that looks awesome! Love the photos!
yum! I love crumb cake. I have a great Martha recipe that I use and love, but will have to give this one a try next time. Looks delicious :)