Growing up, whenever it was someone’s birthday it was a rule that they picked what dinner and cake they wanted. So not to stop that tradition, when my brothers birthday rolled around I asked what kind of cake he would like me to make. His response was a simple ‘something with cream cheese frosting…and maybe coffee?’. Yes, coffee addiction runs in family.
I have always loved baking. It gives me joy to bring together simple ingredients to create something delicious. In the last 12 months I have found my passion increase as I started to think more creatively about the cakes I could make, such as these & these. So even though I had never made a coffee cake before, I was excited to give it a try as it sounded amazing!
It has also been brought to my attention that Liddells, who specialise in Lactose Free dairy products make a cream cheese – this is a major game changer for me.
I was ready and eager to turn my brothers request into cake!
So the first thing I did was to Google ‘coffee cake’ with zero success. Apparently coffee cake mostly refers to a cake you eat with coffee, usually with a strong cinnamon flavour. Basically what I had always referred to as a ‘tea cake’. When I finally did find some recipes containing coffee they were either too complex, contained sour cream or were some other variation that was just not what I wanted. Why was it so hard to find a simple coffee flavoured cake recipe?
When I was on the verge of giving up, I found this recipe and I knew that it was going to be as close as I was going to get to the style of cake I was after. I decided to keep the name of this particular cake as firstly, I think it sounds way more delicious and secondly, to avoid any confusion – this is a cake that tastes like coffee, you are very welcome to eat it with a cup of coffee but it is not a requirement! So with this recipe as my inspiration, yet again I found myself in the kitchen experimenting to create this easy (and delicious) Cappuccino Cake.
I felt it was important to get the right amount of coffee flavour through the cake however I wanted to avoid that bitter taste, so I found the Nespresso shot was perfect. You could certainly just make a strong coffee using instant depending on your tastes.
As usual I have used all lactose free ingredients within this recipe to cater to my allergy however if you don’t have that restriction, go ahead and use the real stuff!
Cup of coffee or not, this cake is a delicious and now that I have an easy recipe, I can have my caffeine hit in cake form. Perfect! Oh, and my brother was very happy with his Cappuccino Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting, so I say it was a success!
- 2 cups self raising flour
- 1 cup brown sugar
- ½ cup dairy-free spread*
- 2 eggs ,room temperature
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 espresso shot
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 125 grams cream cheese**
- 1 heaped tbsp dairy-free spread
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 2 ½ cups icing mixture
In a large mixing bowl, using an electric beater, combine dairy-free spread and brown sugar.
- Add in eggs and vanilla and continue to beat until combined.
- Slowly beat in sifted flour, ½ cup at a time.
- In a ½ cup measuring cup, add cooled espresso shot and fill the rest of the way up with milk so you have ½ cup total of liquid.
- Slowly mix in liquid to cake mixture until completely combined.
Prepare 2 round cake pans by greasing with dairy-free spread and coating in flour as this cake may stick.
Place an even amount of mixture into both tins and place in a preheated 180C oven for 25 minutes or until a skewer when inserted comes out clean. Turn out onto wire racks and let cool completely.
With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese, dairy-free spread and vanilla.
- Slowly add in sifted icing mixture, ensuring it is completely mixed in each time before adding more.
- Once combined, using a knife, place a layer of frosting on the first cake before placing the second on top and covering with the remaining icing.
- Finish your Cappuccino Cake with a light dusting of cocoa powder.
*I use Nuttelex Lite to replace butter in most of my recipes as it is vegan and gives a 'buttery' flavour without being greasy. As this is an Australian product, the closest US alternative I believe is Earth Balance. Otherwise any dairy-free spread will work.
* I used Liddells lactose-free cream cheese which only comes in a spreadable form. You can use regular cream cheese if you do not need the frosting to be lactose-free. If you use brick cream cheese and regular butter, you may need to add a tablespoon or 2 of milk to get the required consistency of the frosting. If you need this cake to be completely dairy-free there are a few vegan alternatives available and they will work perfectly as a substitute to the recipe as written.
Tip! Place cakes upside down to give you a flat surface on top.