★★★★★

Lemon Crumb Coffee Cake Recipe

Lemon Crumb Coffee Cake brings magic to the breakfast table with every bite. This sweet lemon cake has it all: lemon cheesecake filling, crumbly streusel topping and a lemon glaze. It doesn’t get more lemony than this!

A little zesty lemon is just what you need to start your day. Skip the line and give me a Copycat Starbucks Lemon Loaf at home–or give these classic Lemon Poppy Seed Muffins a try.

Slice of lemon crumb coffee cake on a plate with mug of coffee.

Why this Recipe is Best

Whether you eat it for breakfast, dessert or your afternoon coffee break, this Lemon Crumb Cake hits it out of the ballpark!

  • The lemon breakfast cake layer is thick without being heavy.
  • Lemon cheesecake is baked right on top of the coffee cake layer.
  • You’ll love the combination of tangy lemon with buttery brown sugar streusel.
  • Lemon glaze makes this Lemon Crumb Cake sweet enough to serve for dessert.

With simple ingredients, and easy assembly, this impressive breakfast cake is perfect for guests too!

Ingredient Notes

Ingredients needed to make lemon crumb coffee cake.

Making today’s recipe is simple enough with ingredients you may already have in your pantry. Be sure to scroll down all the way to the recipe card for a complete list with exact measurements.

  • Lemon zest and juice. Remove the zest from the lemon before juicing to get the most out of your citrus. Use our guide on how to zest a lemon for best practices.
  • Cream cheese. Use plain full fat cream cheese for richest, creamiest taste. Don’t forget to let it soften on the counter for a few minutes first.
  • Light brown sugar. With less molasses than its dark brown counter parts, light brown sugar complements the bright lemon flavor instead of dominating it.
  • Milk. You can use any milk you have on hand in both the cake and the glaze–skim, whole and fat free all work well.

Easy Instructions

Step by step photos showing how to make lemon streusel coffee cake.

First, make the cake.

Mix together the ingredients in a stand mixer. Beat until fluffy. Pour into a greased spring form cake pan.

Now, make the cheesecake filling.

Beat together sugar, cream cheese, egg and lemon zest. Pour over the cake layer.

Add the streusel topping.

Combine the streusel ingredients in a separate bowl. Sprinkle over the cheesecake layer of the cake.

Bake and chill.

Bake the Lemon Crumb Cake for 40 minutes. Let it cool, then release it from the spring form pan.

Transfer the cake to the refrigerator to chill for about 3 hours.

Pour on lemon glaze.

Whisk together the ingredients for the icing. Drizzle over the chilled lemon crumb cake before serving.

Lemon coffee cake on parchment paper lined plate.

Tips and Tricks

  • The cheesecake layer should still look slightly soft when this comes out of the oven. It will firm up as it chills in the fridge.
  • Grease and flour your pan well before adding the cake batter. Or use my Homemade Cake Release for amazing results!
  • Be careful not to let the cheesecake layer touch the sides of the spring form pan when pouring it over the cake. Pour slowly and use an off set spatula to direct the flow of the cream cheese mixture to prevent it from touching.
  • Store leftovers tightly covered in the refrigerator. Enjoy Lemon Crumb Cake within 3 days for best taste!
  • Use a classic vanilla icing instead of lemon flavored if you prefer.
Slice of coffee cake on a stack of white plates.

Recipe FAQs

Help! I have too much streusel! What did I do wrong?

You didn’t do anything wrong. This recipe makes a LOT of streusel topping because, well, I can’t get enough!
Feel free to cut the streusel ingredients in half for a more reserved approach to the crumb topping.

Can I use lime instead of lemon?

I love the idea of making a lime crumb cake with this recipe! You should be able to sub lime for the lemon ingredients 1:1.

What can I use if I don’t have a spring form pan?

You can make this in a square 8 or 9 inch baking dish. I recommend only adding half the streusel if making it in a square dish.

Can I freeze Lemon Crumb Cake?

Yes, this crumb cake holds up beautifully in the freezer. Even after thawing, the streusel crumb has a perfect texture.
You can freeze the cake in individual slices or wrap the whole cake in freezer bags to store. Thaw in the fridge before eating.

More Breakfast Recipes

Yield: 8 servings

Lemon Crumb Coffee Cake

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

Lemon Crumb Coffee Cake brings magic to the breakfast table with every bite. This sweet lemon cake has it all: lemon cheesecake filling, crumbly streusel topping and a lemon glaze. It doesn't get more lemony than this!

Ingredients

For the cake:

  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 Tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup milk

For the filling:

  • 1 package (8 ounce) cream cheese, softened
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 lemon, zested

For the streusel:

  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour

For the glaze:

  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon milk

Instructions

  1. For the cake, grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt on low until combined. Beat in softened butter until crumbly. Add in eggs, vanilla extract, lemon juice and milk. Beat for about 3-4 minutes until light and fluffy. Pour into prepared pan.
  3. For the filling, beat cream cheese with sugar, egg and lemon zest for about 4-5 minutes. Pour over cake layer, being careful to not let it touch the sides of the pan.
  4. In a small bowl, combine streusel ingredients with a fork. Sprinkle over top of cake. Bake in a 325 degree oven for about 40-45 minutes. Cool completely in pan. When cooled, release from springform pan.
  5. Refrigerate cake for 3 hours to allow cheesecake filling to set up.
  6. Whisk together the glaze ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cake. Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • The cheesecake layer should still look slightly soft when this comes out of the oven. It will firm up as it chills in the fridge.
  • Grease and flour your pan well before adding the cake batter. Or use my Homemade Cake Release for amazing results!
  • Be careful not to let the cheesecake layer touch the sides of the spring form pan when pouring it over the cake. Pour slowly and use an off set spatula to direct the flow of the cream cheese mixture to prevent it from touching.
  • Can also be made in a 9-inch square baking dish.
  • Prefer less streusel? Just cut it in half!
  • Store leftovers tightly covered in the refrigerator. Enjoy Lemon Crumb Cake within 3 days for best taste!
  • Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    8

    Serving Size:

    1 slice

    Amount Per Serving: Calories: 577Total Fat: 24gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 127mgSodium: 195mgCarbohydrates: 84gFiber: 1gSugar: 50gProtein: 8g

    *Nutrition facts are an estimate and not guaranteed to be accurate. Please see a registered dietitian for special diet advice.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

    A tangy cheesecake filling takes Lemon Crumb Cake to incredible heights! Put on a pot of coffee and cut yourself a slice. Morning just got better.

    About Aimee

    Aimee is a dessert lover (specifically rice krispie treats), workout enthusiast, self-taught foodie, and recipe creator.

    Learn more about Aimee.

    Affiliate Disclosure:**There may be affiliate links in this post! By clicking on them, or purchasing recommended items I may receive a small compensation. However, I only recommend products I love! Thank you for supporting Shugary Sweets! See my disclosure policy for more info**

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    Posted on May 31, 2022

    Comments & Reviews

    1. Aimee, I made this cake last night for our first day of school, following the recipe as written,  and it turned out exactly like yours… It reminded me of a bakery style crumb cake and, in my opinion, was far better tasting! The amount of crumb topping was spot on and that cream cheese layer really made the cake:) Making it in the springform pan was a perfect idea because it corralled the topping and the cake was so pretty when I released the outer ring. Thanks for the recipe!

    2. I made this today however I also think the streusel topping ingredients are not correct. That seemed like way too much flour and the crumble seemed very dry and didn’t really stick together in clumps.
      1 and a half cups of flour just sounded like too much but I trusted the recipe and did it anyway, but I think I made the wrong choice. Even taking the cake out of the oven just now the topping looks too dry and like it will just fall off and there was also far to much of it, I ended up not using about 1/3 of it. I think you should make this again yourself and check the quantities for the topping.

    3. Hi, I baked it today but the cake base came out very dense (the flavor is amazing).
      the only thing that i did different is bake it for 50 min (the cake was just not ready in 40 min)
      What did I do wrong? 🙁

      1. It is a breakfast cake, so it will be more dense than a regular dessert cake. Otherwise I’m not sure why you had problems. Maybe use an oven thermometer to make sure your oven is accurate (I had this problem with a previous oven).

    4. I made this cake over the weekend and it was absolutely amazing. However, I had an issue with the streusel topping as well. I feel like it should have had a full cup less flour. I followed the instructions to the letter, but had way too much topping and it didn’t look anything like the picture. The taste was amazing, especially after refrigerating overnight, but the topping was overwhelming (it was almost the same size layer as the actual cake) and extremely messy.

      I love your website and will continue to try your recipes!! Thanks for sharing!

    5. How the heck do you get the cake out of the pan.  Should I have used a springform cake pan? If I tilt it on its side all the crumb topping will fall off.

      1. I put a plate over the top and gently flip it out, THen immediately put another plate on that and flip it back. The top plate never moves and the crumbs stay in place. And yeah, hindsight…a springform would work great too 🙂

    6. I found this cake yesterday and went grocery shopping to make sure I had all the ingredients. It’s in the oven now, but had way too much crumble topping to fit over the batter and filling for a 9 inch pan. Is the 1 1/2 cups flour the right measurement. Everything else went according to the directions. Thanks.

      1. It is all correct, I should check and see how tall the sides of my cake pan are…

    7. Just loving that gooey drip! This lemon crumb cake looks really beautiful! Best breakfast ever. 

    8. It snowed here today. SNOW! Gah! This lemon crumb cake would sure cheer me up. I wish I had a slice right now. 

      1. Snow? OMG, just no! Yeah, I would need this cake and a pot of coffee for cheering up too 🙂

    9. This cake is so dreamy! I am loving everything lemon as of late and this crumbly cake is no exception. Swooning over the massive crumbs! 

    10. Holy smokes!! This is such a delicious looking cake. I love that you used glaze AND crumb. The best!

    11. This is TOTALLY okay to eat for breakfast. I think it might be required! Love the lemon idea. And I ADORE that wooden cake plate!!

    12. I need to make this for my Mom for Mother’s Day.  She will go crazy for the lemon flavor.  Thanks so much for the link love.

    13. I have the same weakness when it comes to coffee cakes…I just can’t say no.  And that leads to me eating at least half the pan!  Love the lemon cheesecake filling and glaze on top of the lemon cake…lemon overload sounds amazing!!!

    14. I’m having a dinner party next week and had decided to make a chocolate cake for dessert.  But this lemon crumb cake is making me rethink that dessert decision.  

      1. I would decide depending on the dinner! This would be perfect after a heavy meal with a cup of coffee. 🙂

    15. This cake sounds divine – I am ALL about lemon everything right now. I can’t get enough!

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