To this day, I wake up early on Christmas morning. I can sleep until 8 or 9 on an average Saturday, but Christmas is different, no matter how late I stayed up the night before. Last year I woke up at 5:45 with no alarm! Because I love my husband I put in my headphones and dozed back off until 8. But the point is, I’m a child.
Growing up, we were a straight-to-the-presents family. At best, we dug into our stocking while my dad built a fire. But breakfast was always a lazy affair, after the presents had been opened and batteries dug out of the back of the drawer. If you needed sustenance midway through, just eat some candy from your stocking.
So as adults (whatever that means) we make an exception for brewing coffee, but breakfast still waits. I know many people who love to do make ahead things, or egg casseroles, or crock pots, but we stick to a leisurely morning cooking things fresh.
Enter: the Christmas morning coffee cake. It’s not hard, just as you’d hope of any recipe for a holiday morning. But do plan to make it the day of: tastes best still warm from the oven, so make this after the kids have dug into their presents.
It’s also a pretty easy recipe: beat, bake, and drizzle! Most of it’s unattended too: you can go play with your presents while it cooks.
One question: what makes something a coffee cake? Is it just that it’s good with coffee? Because we always call it that, but I don’t know if it is technically. But if so, I agree. Perfect with coffee.
Beat together cake mix, eggs, oil, water, vanilla and butter flavoring.
Beat for eight minutes. During that time, mix together sugar, brown sugar and cinnamon.
Layer sugar, batter, sugar, batter, and sugar in a greased and floured bundt pan.
Swirl it together with a knife! Bake for 50-55 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
While it’s baking, make the glaze. Mix powdered sugar, vanilla, milk and butter flavoring. Set aside.
It comes out golden and gorgeous! Let it sit for 10 minutes before flipping out onto a plate.
Flouring is key to help it flip out in one piece.
Generously drizzle glaze over the top.
Serve! Bacon is a must for us on Christmas morning, plus whatever fruit we chose. Pineapple is always a favorite in our house.
Christmas Morning Coffee Cake
- 1 package yellow cake mix
- 4 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 3/4 cup vegetable oil
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tsp butter flavoring*
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 4-5 tsp milk, to achieve texture
- Combine the cake mix, eggs, vegetable oil, water, 1 tsp vanilla and 1 tsp butter flavoring. Beat for 8 minutes on medium-high.
- Preheat the oven to 325°F. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Set aside.
- Grease and flour a bundt pan.
- Sprinkle 1/3 of the sugar mixture on the bottom of the pan, then pour half the batter over it. Layer another 1/3 sugar and the rest of the batter before finishing with the last of the sugar. Swirl with a knife: this distributes the sugar through the cake.
- Bake the cake for 50-55 minutes. It’s done when a toothpick comes out clean. Let the cake cool 10 minutes.
- While it’s cooling, make the glaze: beat the powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla, 1 tsp butter flavoring, and 3 tsp milk. Add more milk until the glaze is spreadable (it usually takes 4 tsp for me).
- After the 10 minutes, flip the cake out of the pan onto a dish, then pour the glaze over top. Serve immediately!
*= This is a bizarre ingredient, but it works. Usually it comes in flake form but in a pinch you can use the powdered version.
Seriously, this cake is JUST. THE. BEST. You won’t want to miss this one! Logan says its one of his favorite things I make. (Recipe came from mom, of course, the source of all the best recipes.)
What are your Christmas morning traditions??
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