The Best Ever Paleo Coffee Cake Recipe

April 11, 2020

The Best Ever Paleo Coffee Cake Recipe made with all gluten-free and dairy-free ingredients. A healthier version of the classic coffee cake with a delicious crumb topping with no refined sugar or grains.

The Best Ever Paleo Coffee Cake Recipe made with all gluten-free and dairy-free ingredients. A healthier version of the classic coffee cake with a delicious crumb topping with no refined sugar or grains.

My family and I were in a coffee shop a few weeks ago and my mom and Jord were eyeing the most delicious coffee cake they had. Then my mom and Jord turn to me and go “Rach – can you make a healthier one for us please?!”

That is usually how a lot of my recipes come about. Requests from either my family, friends, readers and my own cravings.

This coffee cake exceeded any expectations and it is gluten-free, paleo and no refined sugar. Yet it still tastes so delicious.

The coffee cake has a super fluffy and moist cake base then the top has this dreamy crumb cake topping. It is the perfect recipe to enjoy with your breakfast, have it has a snack or even dessert. Warm it up if you prefer and even pair it with a little ice cream or coconut yogurt – OMG so good!

The best part about this recipe? You don’t need many ingredients to whip it up!

Let’s run through the ingredients needed:

  • Liquid coconut oil – you can also melt solid coconut oil and let it cool a bit.
  • Coconut sugar – the main form of sugar here. You can also use a maple sugar too. Not a syrup but the grainy kind – I love using maple sugar same way I do coconut sugar.
  • Pasture-raised eggs – I haven’t tried this with flax eggs yet. Not sure if it’ll work as well since it is with almond flour. But if you try it, let me know!
  • Unsweetened applesauce – helps keep the cake extra moist and a little natural sweetness. You can use mashed banana too
  • Almond flour or almond meal – I don’t usually say these are interchangeable but in this recipe, you can use either one.
  • Tapioca flour – you can also use arrowroot flour if you prefer.
  • Cinnamon – so key in this recipe!

A few of my other favorite crumb cake-like recipes from the blog: The Dreamiest Vegan Banana Bread Crumb Cake (gluten-free)Paleo Blueberry Crumb Cake Muffins (gluten-free + dairy-free) + Chocolate Crumb Banana Bread Bars (vegan)

healthy coffeecakepaleo coffee caker


The Best Ever Paleo Coffee Cake Recipe

The Best Ever Paleo Coffee Cake Recipe made with all gluten-free and dairy-free ingredients. A healthier version of the classic coffee cake with a delicious crumb topping with no refined sugar or grains.

  • Author: Rachel
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 9 pieces 1x




  • 1/3 cup liquid coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 pasture-raised eggs
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce (or use mashed banana)
  • 2 cups almond flour or almond meal
  • 1/2 cup tapioca flour (or arrowroot flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon

Crumb toppings:

  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons almond flour
  • 2 tablespoons liquid coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons coconut sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8×8 baking dish and/or line with parchment paper
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together oil, sugar, eggs and applesauce until smooth
  3. Mix in the almond flour or meal, tapioca flour, baking powder and cinnamon until smooth and well combined
  4. Add to baking dish then begin making crumb topping
  5. Mix together crumb topping ingredients in small bowl until crumbly
  6. Sprinkle on top of batter then bake in oven for about 30-35 minutes, or until you stick a toothpick in an it comes out clean
  7. Slice and enjoy!


*Store in airtight container for 5 days or freezer for longer

**I haven’t tested subs here so please feel free to sub as you wish! I cannot guarantee how it will turn out but if you have success please comment below. It helps everyone on the blog so much!!

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56 Responses

      1. I noticed that when I replace applesauce with banana the cake had a banana flavour to it, so I guess that’s something to be aware when making the replacement

  1. I made this recipe today and OMG!!! Totally amazing. I love chocolate in my coffee cake so I added a handful of chocolate chips in the batter and I also added chopped walnuts in the topping because I love nuts. This is definitely a keeper!! My only problem, is that is took 45 minutes instead of 25 and I have a new oven. I’m curious if anyone else found this as well.

  2. I replaced coconut oil with canola, and coconut sugar with regular sugar (that’s all I had) – but this is delicious! Had to cook for an extra 10 minutes (35 total). It’s not super sweet, but the consistency is soft and the crumbly topping is great!

  3. Sooo good, extra moist!! My husband even loves it! Had to bake it for more like 45 mins but came out perfect.

  4. I used 1 banana and pumpkin purée because I didn’t have apple sauce and it turned out amazing! It’s not too sweet either which I absolutely love.

  5. This cake made my whole house smell so yummy. I used the mashed banana instead of apple sauce and it was great. I too had to cook it for 35 minutes, like the other comments.

  6. Is it possible to use wet almond pulp in this and compensate for the additional liquid by modifying something else?

  7. Unfortunately my cake part turned out so gooey. Like an extremely gooey brownie. Loved the flavor just wasn’t the texture I wanted.
    Two things I did different to probably cause this:
    1. Subbed 2 egg for 2 (plus a little more) flax egg. I’ve heard flax egg is not 1 to 1 sub so maybe it was too much liquid
    2. Doubled the crumb recipe – maybe that much crumb hindered the cake cooking properly?

    Loved the idea of this so will try again!

    1. Try covering it with foil next time. That happened when I made her banana bread, but covering it helped tremendously.

      1. This is the first Coffee Cake recipe that I have ever read that does not contain coffee.. However I will try, it but will pass the recipe on to family & friends after renaming it. Thank you, Lilian.

  8. I absolutely love this recipe!! It’s so versatile that I can enjoy a slice for breakfast, snack, or dessert. I do have a question though regarding your recommendation on freezing the cake. How long do your baked goods stay “good” in the freezer for? Additionally, how do you suggest to thaw your recipes? Hoping you could answer, thank you 🙂

  9. This cake was amazing!!! It took 45 minutes and I used mashed banana instead of applesauce but it turned out perfect. Thanks Rachel! 🙂

  10. Hi Rachel! I was wondering if I could substitute the applesauce or mashed banana with nut milk? On another note, this recipe is amazing!!

    1. surprisingly traditional coffee cake does not have coffee in it 😉 it is made to be enjoyed with coffee. feel free to add some ground coffee if you’d like.

    2. “So American coffee cake is a traditional sweet pound cake layered with a brown sugar, cinnamon, and pecan-laced streusel. The reason this beauty is called coffee cake is because it’s the perfect complement to a cup of coffee or a foamy latte — not because it has coffee in it!” When you google does “coffee cake have coffee in it?”.

  11. I substituted brown rice flour for the almond. Instead of 2 TSP of cinnamon, I used 1 TSP of cinnamon and 1/2 tsp of ginger + 1/2 tsp nutmeg. I used 1 C pumpkin puree + 1/2 C applesauce–I thought my mix was too dry-probably because of the rice flour in lieu of the almond flour. For the topping I subbed Earth Balance Soy Free buttery vegan spread for the coconut oil. This recipe made my house smell amazing and it taste great. When I make it again I will add 1/2 tsp salt and use 1/2 C maple syrup instead of the coconut sugar and leave our the applesauce. Thanks recipe inspiration!

  12. This turned out so delicious! I love that the crumble topping mixture measurements leave you with so much topping because that’s always my favorite part in a coffee cake. These freeze so well and I usually pop one in with my lunches and by the time lunch comes around it has thawed perfectly. These satisfy my sweet cravings and keep me satisfied! Do yourself a favor and make them!

  13. Amazing coffee cake! My husband didn’t believe it was paleo it’s so tasty. I made it exactly as described but in a 9″ cake pan. Cooked in 35 min. 12 hours later, we’ve already eaten 1/2 of it. Thanks for another AMAZING recipe!

  14. My husband says this is the best “fake” cake he has ever had. It really was delicious. No substitutions with applesauce and arrowroot. I sent the recipe to my mother who doesn’t eat gluten and she used white sugar and said it was delicious too.

  15. I made this tonight and followed the recipe perfectly! It made our house smell amazing and tasted even better than it smelled! The texture was a little like pumpkin pie so maybe I needed to bake a little longer… but we LOVED it regardless. Deff going to make again.

  16. Love this recipe! It’s a great change when I don’t have ripe bananas to bake with. Recently I doubled this recipe and made 24 muffins (baked around 18 minutes) and they were delicious! Like them even better the next day – they stay so moist!

  17. I’m so confused by these reviews because my cake is pure mush and it isn’t that great. I even left it in the over for 45 minutes, what did I do wrong?

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