Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

Lemon-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

I swear buttermilk is magic. I’ve dwelled on this before. Buttermilk seems to turn everything to gold. Super-moist, super-delicious gold.

Anyway, I needed a simple, summery, breakfasty, cake-like-but-not-dessert-like recipe to make this morning. One of Ben’s friends had crashed here last night, and I thought it only appropriate to treat him to a proper breakfast. In other words, I was craving sugar and carbs. The truth is I’ve been craving sugar and carbs and a cake like this for months. But seriously, who doesn’t crave having a good, seasonal, berry cake recipe in their morning-treat repertoire?

Nobody. And I think I’ve found the recipe that fits the bill. On an old photocopied sheet of paper in my mother’s hand writing, I spotted a note: “Baby Boy’s Favorite.” Oh Baby Boy. Baby Boy is my younger brother, my parents’ favorite child, and one of the most satisfying people to cook for. If it was Baby Boy’s favorite cake, it would soon be mine, too. This cake is delectable! I think you’ll like it, too.

Lemon-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

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Lemon-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

Lemon-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

Buttermilk-Blueberry Breakfast Cake

Ingredients

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest or more — zest from 1 large lemon
  • 7/8 cup* + 1 tablespoon sugar**
  • 1 egg, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups flour (set aside 1/4 cup of this to toss with the blueberries)
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • ½ cup buttermilk***

    * 7/8 cup = 3/4 cup + 2 tablespoons

    ** This 1 tablespoon is for sprinkling on top

    *** To make homemade buttermilk, place 1 tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice in a liquid measuring cup. Fill cup with milk until it reaches the 1-cup line. Let stand for five minutes. Use only 1/2 cup of the prepared mixture for the recipe.

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Cream butter with lemon zest and 7/8 cup of the sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add the egg and vanilla and beat until combined. Meanwhile, toss the blueberries with ¼ cup of flour, then whisk together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt.
  3. Add the flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk. Fold in the blueberries.
  4. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan (or something similar) with butter or coat with non-stick spray. Spread batter into pan. Sprinkle batter with remaining tablespoon of sugar. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes. Check with a toothpick for doneness. If necessary, return pan to oven for a couple of more minutes. (Note: Baking for as long as 10 minutes more might be necessary.) Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.
http://www.alexandracooks.com/2011/06/29/buttermilk-blueberry-breakfast-cake/

Cake with Anthropologie Oven Mitt... fave new kitchen accessory

1632 Comments

  1. I have made this several times, before it was to use up some buttermilk now I buy buttermilk for this bread, it is so addictive and delicious with my morning coffee! Thanks for sharing going to try the cranberry version once cranberries are back at the store :)

    Reply
  2. I love this recipe. LOVE love. In fact, I crave it on a regular basis. This might be because I have it set as the cover photo on my Pinterest board titled “MAKE THIS AGAIN!!!!!”, so I see it on a daily basis. Seriously drool-worthy. And everyone I’ve served it to agrees!

    Reply
  3. Love the freshness of the blueberries in this favorite, delicious, moist coffee cake. This was served at a ladies’ brunch and a real hit! I have also baked this coffee cake to give when making a meal to carry in to shut ins. I buy buttermilk just for this recipe and then freeze the remaining buttermilk in zip lock bags, 1/2 cup per bag for future recipes.

    Reply
      • I’ve never made buttermilk, or had much experience with it before (but I’d definitely prefer to make my own than buy it).
        Is there a difference/preference between using vinegar or lemon juice? I feel like vinegar would make it gross, but I assume there’s no taste of that once baked into yummy cake!
        I also wonder if it couldn’t be made with just 1/2 a tsp. then milk to the 1/2 cup mark…would that not be the same conversion for the right amount needed here? (‘genuinely not sure.) If that’s not the best method, it’s good to hear it can be frozen. I wouldn’t have thought freezing & thawing milk would go well…do you just let it thaw in the fridge?
        I’m obviously still a novice baker, so I’d love your help and advice on these details. This looks soo good, and I have a bunch of blueberries to use up; can’t wait to make this! Thanks for your time & help : )

        Reply
        • Hi Krystal! So sorry for the delay here! OK, I prefer vinegar mostly out of laziness, but don’t worry at all about flavor being affected by the vinegar — it is totally undetectable in the finished product. If you want to make just a 1/2 cup of buttermilk, use 2 teaspoons vinegar (1 1/2 teaspoons is half of 1 tablespoon, but I think it’s best to round up to ensure that it actually works) and 1/2 cup milk. And I have never frozen buttermilk, but I think there are powdered buttermilks that you can store in the freezer. If anyone in the comment thread is still paying attention, I would love your input here :)

          Hope that helps! Let me know if there is anything else. And good luck!

          Reply
  4. I am going to make this with my son. He loves making blueberry anything. We are getting away from processed foods completely so he will be happy to have this instead of the package blueberry muffins. I do have a question. I would also like to make this for my neighbor but he is a diabetic. Could I use the stevia cup for cup in this receipe?? Or do you have a suggestion for substituting the sugar? Thanks for your help and for sharing! :)

    Reply
  5. Made it this morning! I doubled the recipe and used frozen blueberries. Taking many of the reviews into account, I did not thaw the blueberries. I took them out of the freezer just before being ready to use and tossed with flour. As I was measuring out 4 cups of blueberries (doubled) – it seemed too much. So I reduced to 3 cups. Next time, I would use 2 cups for a doubled recipe. It was hard folding in the blueberries because the batter was so thick, and the batter was starting to streak purple. The batter was not quite doughy, but likened to a pancake batter left to set on the counter. I didn’t have lemons, so I used 1 tsp. of Watkins Lemon extract. Because of the baking time comments, I increased the temperature and baked it at 375 convection, and it was baked through in 45 minutes. It was reallllllly good. I likened it to a Tim Horton’s Blueberry Muffin. I should not have doubled this though….. way too rich for my waistline. I will definitely make it again though, when I’m craving blueberry muffins!

    Reply
    • Thank you fo all of these great, tip! Lots of people ask about doubling, and you’ve given some great thoughts…thank you! And folding in the blueberries definitely is tricky business. I find, however, that even when the batter turns blue, it still tastes good :) Like the idea of increasing the temperature too. Have a happy happy Fourth!

      Reply
  6. Alexandra! This recipe is outstanding! My husband had three and a half helpings! He said it was finally a recipe to keep that was found via Pinterest. Thanks for sharing it with the world!

    Reply
  7. we had unexpected company spend the night. I am making this as an emergency breakfast with some bacon or sausage. I hope it will work since I do not have fresh blueberries, only frozen. Although, they were frozen from fresh, so maybe that will be in my favor.

    Reply
  8. Hi! This breakfast cake looks so good! I was able to get fresh blueberries for an awesome price…yay me :) and I’m looking for some ways to use them. I was wondering… if I made the breakfast cake could I freeze them? What about the muffins you shared the link to? We have a big family vacation coming up and I would like to make them ahead of time to take along. Thanks!!

    Reply
    • Hi Kris, I have never frozen this cake, but several commenters have with great success. I would say make sure you wrap it really well in plastic wrap (once it has completely cooled) and then stick it in a ziplock bag. Thaw it at room temperature. I think the cake freezes better than muffins, though again, I’ve never tried either — freezing muffins might be more labor intensive — wrapping each, etc, then tucking them all in ziplock bags. Now that I say this, I did freeze muffins awhile back, and they actually thawed really nicely. Nothing of course is as good as freshly baked, but the freezer does come in handy in times like family gatherings. Hope that helps!

      Reply
  9. This was fantastic!!! I didn’t have any lemon juice so I used lemon extract and it turned out great. I used white wheat flour and kefir as a buttermilk substitute. It was so moist and delicious. Thank you! Also, I only used 1 1/2 cups of blueberries because it seemed like enough…but my blueberries were really big.

    Reply
  10. I found this recipe yesterday morning and wanted to make it right away. It was FABULOUS! I had quite a few people to feed so, I tripled the recipe and baked it in two, 9×13 pans. It worked beautifully. I didn’t have any fresh blueberries on hand, but thanks to a sale at our local grocery store, I had loads of fresh, northwest, sweet cherries. After pitting them, I substituted them for the blueberries and they were amazing. Thank you for sharing. YUM! YUM! YUM!

    Reply
  11. I noticed you baked your cake in a glass pan, did you decrease the temp by 25 degrees because of that? My cake is in the over right now and I’m baking it at 350 in a glass 11×7 pan. Just a little worried because I usually decrease the temperature and I didn’t this time. It smells yummy!

    Reply
    • Hi Louise,

      I didn’t decrease the temperature. Is this something you typically do with glass? I would love to know. I know material matters, and usually I use metal pans, but for whatever reason, I always use glass with this one. Hope it turned out well!

      Reply
  12. This was great, accidentally used 1 cup of sugar, but thankfully it wasn’t to sweet. Also, used frozen blueberries, used reg 13 x 9 cake pan and baked for about 40 mins. Amazing!!

    Reply
  13. In the oven now. I used berries that I froze last week from the local farmers market. I did add a little more buttermilk than what the recipe called for since it was so thick. Blueberries did not turn batter blue. I let them thaw and did coat with flour, as directed. Sure does smell good. Baking in my cast iron skillet!

    Reply
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  15. I made this and thought it lacked the sweetness I desired in a breakfast cake. The only adjustment I would make would be adding more sugar. My husband thought so too. I made a double batch and I thought the ratio of sugar to flour seemed out of proportion. After we tasted it, I ended up making a glaze for it to sweeten it up. After that, we liked it much better.

    Reply
  16. I made this and LOVED IT, so did my family! Thanks for sharing the recipe. My question is – I have fresh strawberries that I need to use up. Could this recipe go well with strawberries? Thank you! :)

    Reply
    • Mandy, many people have used various fruits in this cake, so definitely use the strawberries! Blueberries seem to be the renowned favorite, but really, all fruits are good here.

      Reply
  17. I had no lemons for lemon zest so I substituted a 1/2 tsp of lemon juice. I’m addicted to all things sweet so I made a streusal topping. I used frozen blueberries as well but thawed first and just drained them. The cake is absolutely amazing!

    Reply
  18. Second time making this and hoping it turns out as I am a better book than baker. We loved it the first time. Questions about method: when you are adding the alternate buttermilk /flour mixture ingredients, are you mixing it all by hand or machine? (I have a handheld mixer) the dough seems to get thick/tough, almost cookie dough like so I am wondering if I did it right. Thank you for this recipe.

    Reply
    • Hi Amy,

      I mix everything by hand with this recipe. The batter definitely gets a little thick, but it shouldnt be as thick as cookie dough. You might be measuring your flour a little differently than I do, which might be causing you to add a bit more — try using scant cups of flour next time. Hope that helps!

      Ali

      Reply
  19. I host brunch for various friends and family members one to two times a month. I have made this coffee cake six times now. I love it! It is my “go to” coffee cake recipe. Thanks for sharing! Side note, sometimes I use a few drops of lemon essential oil- gives it a great lemon flavor!

    Reply
  20. I would like to make this for a morning meeting. Do you think I could make ahead and put it in the fridge and just cook it in the morning? Wasn’t sure how the raw batter would hold up overnight in the fridge. Anyone tried this yet?

    Reply
    • Absolutely! I do this all the time. Just store the batter in your greased baking pan. You might need to bake the cake 10 or so minutes longer, but otherwise, this is a great way to prepare the cake ahead of time. Good luck with it!

      Reply

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