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Coffee Pound Cake

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Imagine a traditional vanilla pound cake, but every bite is bursting with the perfect amount of coffee flavor. Then, top that cake with a classic icing also bursting with coffee goodness. That’s this cake. Enjoy!

Slices of loaf shaped coffee flavored pound cake on plate with fork.

Imagine the classic dense pound cake that we all know and love and add coffee. Not in a nearby mug, but actually in the cake.

Now imagine it no more and make one for yourself. This buttery pound cake has that lovely texture sour cream gives baked goods with the kick of coffee mixed in.

Tan coffee flavored pound cake loaf on wire rack with a few thick slices cut.

It is a perfect way to enjoy dessert with a bit of adult sophistication. Or maybe it’s adult comfort if pound cake and coffee are involved.

Either way, I know folks love coffee desserts because of tr he attention the coffee and cream sponge cake gets. The bitter coffee helps to temper the overly sweet nature of some treats.

Making a pound cake

This recipe is based on a pretty classic pound cake. You cream together butter and sugar then add your vanilla, coffee and sour cream.

The key is to make sure your butter is softened and your eggs and sour cream are at room temperature. That allows everything to be easily and completely incorporated.

Ingredients to make coffee flavored pound cake.

This base is what gives your pound cake loaf such great texture later. That tender, moist, slightly dense cake is such a magical experience.

Once your wet ingredients are ready, stir in the flour and baking soda. Don’t overmix it, just stir until it is completely incorporated. Overworking the flour can result in a tougher cake.

Coffee flavored pound cake batter in glass loaf pan ready to bake.

Adding coffee flavoring to your cake

This recipe calls for instant coffee. It is such a great way to add bold coffee flavor without dealing with a lot of extra liquid.

If that gives you pause, I understand. The first few times I used it in recipes it felt strange.

Freshly baked coffee pound cake loaf on wire rack with coffee flavored glaze drizzled over the top.

Now I love it. I’ve even mixed it into both the dough and glaze in my coffee and cream cinnamon rolls.

However, if you don’t have instant coffee there are other options. You can use a really fine espresso powder.

You could also try using some coffee extract, but it would take a fair amount to get a pronounced flavor. My suggestion would be to go ahead and get the instant coffee go on a baking spree!

In addition to the recipes I have already mentioned, you could make coffee and cream brownies. Or whip up a no bake mocha cheesecake.

Close up of slices of pound cake showing their dense moist texture.

Storing your cake

Leftover pound cake can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week. For longer storage, wrap either the whole cake or individual slices in plastic wrap and put in a freezer bag.

Well wrapped cake can be frozen for several months to be enjoyed later. Storing cake in the refrigerator is not recommended.

Tips and Tricks

You can use Greek yogurt in place of the sour cream, if need be, although sour cream does the best job.

This cake will turn out a little dark around the outside, but that’s ok, it’s just from the coffee. However, cooking it low and slow will keep it from burning, so don’t bake at 350 degrees like most cakes. 

If you like the icing, but don’t want to have coffee flavor added to it, simply don’t add the instant coffee and it will be a traditional icing like you serve over cinnamon rolls. 

I baked this in a metal pan and a glass pan. It baked well in both, but took a lot longer in the glass pan. It took about 20 minutes longer. I feel it cooked more evenly in the metal pan. In other words, for the best results, go with a metal pan, although it will turn out yummy in a glass pan as well.

Slices of coffee flavored pound cake on plate ready to eat.

I tested this recipe with both salted and unsalted butter. Both worked great, so I don’t see a reason why you couldn’t use either. 

If you use plain yogurt in place of sour cream, the cake will turn out flatter, if that is something you desire. A flatter cake is easier for things like ice cream cakes and decorating, if that’s something of interest. 

Don’t shortchange the first two mixing steps. Really mix those ingredients well. It makes for a better cake. 

Enjoying your cake

This cake is fabulous on its own, especially with the coffee glaze on top. It would also be fabulous with a dollop of whipped cream or scoop of ice cream.

It is perfect as a dessert or enjoy it at tea time. Heck, enjoy a slice for breakfast if you want!

Love this recipe? Give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ review in the recipe card below!

Yield: 8 Servings

Coffee Pound Cake

Slicing thick slices of coffee flavored pound cake with sweet coffee glaze.

Imagine a traditional vanilla pound cake, but every bite is bursting with the perfect amount of coffee flavor. Then, top that cake with a classic icing also bursting with coffee goodness. That’s this cake.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes

Ingredients

Cake

  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ⅓ cup sour cream
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 Tablespoons instant coffee
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

Glaze

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons whole milk
  • 1 Tablespoon instant coffee

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease a 9x5 loaf pan.
  2. Cream together the butter and sugar for two minutes.
  3. Add the eggs, vanilla, coffee, and sour cream and mix for another two minutes. 
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. 
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and lightly mix with a rubber spatula before switching to the hand mixer and beating until fully combined. 
  6. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and spread even.
  7. Bake for 1 hour or until a butter knife comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake. 
  8. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes before inverting onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
  9. Stir together the glaze ingredients until fully combined. You will still see some spot of undissolved coffee, that’s ok, you want that! 
  10. Drizzle over the top of the cake. Slice, serve, and enjoy!

Notes

  1. You can use Greek yogurt in place of the sour cream, if need be, although sour cream does the best job.
  2. This cake will turn out a little dark around the outside, but that’s ok, it’s just from the coffee. However, cooking it low and slow will keep it from burning, so don’t bake at 350 degrees like most cakes. 
  3. If you like the icing, but don’t want to have coffee flavor added to it, simply don’t add the instant coffee and it will be a traditional icing like you serve over cinnamon rolls. 
  4. I baked this in a metal pan and a glass pan. It baked well in both, but took a lot longer in the glass pan. It took about 20 minutes longer. I feel it cooked more evenly in the metal pan. In other words, for the best results, go with a metal pan, although it will turn out yummy in a glass pan as well.
  5. I tested this recipe with both salted and unsalted butter. Both worked great, so I don’t see a reason why you couldn’t use either. 
  6. If you use plain yogurt in place of sour cream, the cake will turn out flatter, if that is something you desire. A flatter cake is easier for things like ice cream cakes and decorating, if that’s something of interest. 
  7. Don't shortchange the first two mixing steps. Really mix those ingredients well. It makes for a better cake. 

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

8

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 502Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 16gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 160mgSodium: 635mgCarbohydrates: 58gFiber: 1gSugar: 39gProtein: 6g

All nutritional information is estimated and will depend on the exact ingredients you use.

Did you make this recipe?

I'd love to see it! Share a picture on Instagram or Pinterest and tag me @carleecooks to let me know how it went!

Imagine a traditional vanilla pound cake, but every bite is bursting with the perfect amount of coffee flavor. Then, top that cake with a classic icing also bursting with coffee goodness. That’s this cake.

Share with your friends!

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Andrea Nine

Wednesday 15th of September 2021

Such great tips and this looks scrumptious.

Carlee

Wednesday 15th of September 2021

Thank you!

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