Low-fat Coffee Cake with Coffee Icing

I love coffee. That’s one of the first things I do in the morning (after the diaper change and the milk bottle run): I make myself a great espresso.  And I usually succumb to a second cup before the morning is gone. And then maybe one last cup at lunch.

I love the smell and the taste, and its therapeutic virtue: banishing migraines. Caffeine really has been proven to work in making your head stop throbbing. And when you have two children under the age of four that wake you up at 1 am, 4 am, then 7 am, and drive you sort-of-nuts during the day, coffee becomes a necessity.

coffee cake

And what better way to savor a cup-a-joe than to dip a piece of frosted cake into it. This coffee coffeecake has no butter. It isn’t fat-free, but it’s half the calories of a normal coffee cake.

The coffee icing isn’t necessary but I find it adds a little crunch once it hardens and makes the flavor denser. Plus, it looks pretty draping around its spongy pedestal.

CoffeeCake Batter

180 g low-fat sour cream

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ tsp salt

½ tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla extract

½ cup sugar

2 eggs, separated

1 tbsp of instant coffee powder

¼ cup 2% milk, warmed

¼ cup mini chocolate chips (optional)

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F or 180 C, and coat a small Bundt or loaf pan with baking spray.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the egg whites with the salt and ¼ cup of sugar until white and frothy (we’re not looking for stiff peaks—we’re just looking to air out the batter). Transfer the mixture to another bowl and set aside.
  3. Whisk the egg yolk, the rest of the sugar (1/4 cup), and the vanilla extract until mixture whitens. Add the sour cream, the baking powder, and the flour.
  4. Dilute the instant coffee in the warm milk, then whip it into the batter. Fold in the frothy egg whites and the chocolate chips.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  6. Cool the cake completely before icing.


Coffee Icing

½ cup icing sugar

20 ml strongly brewed espresso

  1. Whisk the hot coffee into the sugar until smooth.
  2. Pour over cooled cake.


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