Blueberry-Orange Coffee Cake

Blueberry-Orange Coffee Cake

To celebrate the end of the month, and just because it’s just so darned fun, we’re having a potluck breakfast at work.  Up until the last one we had in October, I would stop by the supermarket and buy fruit or other ready-made treat to add to the conference table.  For our second quarter’s gathering, I baked a pumpkin bundt cake that was well received by everyone.   When Nidal, our fearless organizer, rounded up everyone on Wednesday to organize today’s breakfast, he was quick to remind me about last time’s cake.  Darned flattery…

(On the upside, I prodded him for his mother’s falafel recipe secrets so baking a cake at 5am on a Friday might be a small price to pay).

This blueberry-orange coffee cake is a very faithful adaptation of Dorie Greenspan’s blueberry brown sugar plain cake.  What I love about this recipe is that I always have the ingredients to make it on hand: regular flour, brown sugar, baking powder, eggs, and frozen blueberries.  Today it also has flecks of orange zest, just because cinnamon and orange are so darned good together.  And blueberry and citrus?  Ditto.

Quick tip: save the wrapper of the butter stick to grease the glass baking dish.  If you are like me and keep your surplus butter in the freezer, defrost an unwrapped bar for a minute on 60% power in the microwave and the right amount of butter will stick to the wrapper.

Blueberry-Orange Coffee Cake

By Adriana A Published: January 31, 2014

  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 40 mins
  • Ready In: 60 mins

Recipe Adapted from Dorie Greenspan's "Baking: From My Home to Yours"
This "big muffin" is a quick bread recipe leavened with baking powder and whipped egg whites. Fresh or frozen blueberries can be used interchangeably.

Special equipment: stand or hand mixer, 7" x 11" glass baking dish.



  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Generously butter a 7" x 11" glass baking dish. Line a baking sheet with a silicon mat and place the dish over it.

  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and 1/8 teaspoon salt.

  3. Working with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the egg whites with the pinch of salt until they form firm, glossy peaks. If using a stand mixer, transfer the whites to a separate bowl

  4. Fix the mixer with the paddle attachment, if you have one. Put the butter and sugar in the mixer bowl, or in another large bowl if using a hand mixer, and beat on medium speed until creamy. Add the egg yolks and beat 2 more minutes. Reduce the mixer to low and add half the dry ingredients, then all of the milk and then the remainder of the dry ingredients and the orange zest, adding each new batch as soon as the previous batch has been incorporated.

  5. Switch to a large rubber spatula  and lighten the batter by stirring in about one quarter of the stiffly beaten egg whites. Fold in the rest of the whites, working as gently as you can.

  6. Fold in the blueberries, and scrape the batter into the prepared baking dish.

  7. Bake the cake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until it is golden and a thin knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a cooling rack and cool in the pan for about 30 minutes before dusting the top with confectioners' sugar and serving warm.

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Author:Adriana A

Adriana is a financial analyst by day, avid home cook in the evenings, and food blogger and runner in the strange hours between those two. When not in the kitchen concocting meals and stories to pass around, she is out looking for the next great bite (or the ingredients to make it at home), checking what's new at the market, or planning a trip around great food and wine.

3 Responses to “Blueberry-Orange Coffee Cake”

  1. Mary Hirsch
    February 2, 2014 at 12:15 am #

    Thanks for posting this recipe, Adriana. I never made this and didn’t bring Dorie’s baking book to California with me. This looks good and I can get fresh blueberries (which will work out just fine, won’t they). I love to have something sweet like this in the morning. As a treat. I have a feeling this would freeze well so I could divide in fourths. (And, yes, Adriana, I could shovel down 1/4 of this coffee cake over breakfast.) My daughter says I eat like a trucker. I consider that a compliment. Am cooking like crazy while in coastal California. I’m like a crazy woman with all the abundance. You know what goes well with everything I am making in Cali? Srirachi Sea Salt. Trevor is tutoring me. And, bet you didn’t know this. At the SF Food show this January (it’s a huge show) the top of the 5 trends for the year will be/is Srirachi in everything. All kinds of products with that little secret whamo added. Hey, Girl, you were way ahead of time. I hope things are going well for you. I like reading all your posts.

  2. February 8, 2014 at 6:36 am #

    What an awesome recipe! Those flavorist go beautifully together.

  3. March 14, 2014 at 11:29 pm #

    Great recipe!

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