French Coffee Cake


Chandra Allen

Prep Time

45 Min

Cook Time

30 Min


2 loaves


  • 4 cups flour

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 1/2 lb Tillamook Extra Creamy Unsalted Butter 

  • 1 cup warm milk

  • 3 eggs separated

  • 1 package yeast

  • 1/4 cup warm water (100 degrees for dissolving yeast)

  • 2 tsp cinnamon, mixed with 1 c sugar

  • 1 cup chopped nuts

  • 1 1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar mixed with a little milk for glazing.

  • raisins or dried cranberries (optional)


  1. Sift flour, sugar and salt into a mixing bowl. Stir to combine.

  2. Cut in butter until the size of peas.

  3. Add 1 cup warm milk and well-beaten egg yolks, stirring until soft dough is formed.

  4. Add yeast that has dissolved in warm water for 10 minutes. Beat.

  5. Let your dough stand in a cool place (refrigerator) overnight.

  6. Divide dough into two balls. Roll each out into a 1/4 inch thick rectangle.

  7. Spread with egg whites that have been stiffly beaten.

  8. Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mixture, chopped nuts, raisins or dried cranberries (optional).

  9. Roll up your dough, starting with the long side. Place seam-side down on a greased pan in a warm place until doubled in size.

  10. Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes.

  11. Frost while warm with confectioner’s sugar glaze. You can eat one Christmas morning and freeze one for New Year’s morning!

Chandra Allen

My mom has made this recipe for as long as I can remember. When she was a child, her mother made this coffee cake for Christmas and New Year’s morning every year. Eventually, this became our tradition too. Whenever I saw those tell-tale long lumps under a towel on the counter in mom’s kitchen, I knew there would be deliciousness to come! We always eat one right away and store the other in the freezer for New Year’s Day. Everyone eats it differently. Some eat it whole, some take the layers apart, some butter it, some don’t... but no matter how you eat it, it is so delicious!

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