Vegan Coffee Cake Muffins

Created by Laura Wright
5 from 5 votes

My vegan coffee cake muffins feature plenty of buttery-crunchy vegan streusel, warm cinnamon, and a tender cake made with coconut oil, brown sugar, vanilla and some whole wheat flour. This is the perfect indulgent treat to have with a hot coffee.

An overhead shot shows vegan coffee cake muffins arranged in a linen lined bowl with some sedum flowers placed nearby.

Homemade vegan coffee cake muffins are the perfect dairy-free treat to have with your coffee break. If you haven’t had coffee cake muffins before, they typically feature a tender baked cake that’s layered and also topped with a buttery brown sugar and cinnamon streusel. That’s right, there is no coffee in this cake! The name simply refers to an indulgent treat that accompanies a nice cup of coffee. My version features a bit of whole wheat flour for nuttiness and coconut oil to make it tender.

An overhead shot shows a vegan coffee cake muffin split in half on top of a speckled ceramic plate. A wood handled knife is perched in the plate as well as a flower from a sedum plant.
An overhead shot shows measured out ingredients for a batch of muffins. Most ingredients are in small ceramic bowls.
An overhead shot shows a batch of vegan streusel in a ceramic bowl.

I love classic coffee cake so much. My mom makes an amazing one in a tube pan, so the smell of cinnamon baked goods always takes me back to my childhood. Maybe this is why I love cinnamon so much?! I do enjoy the warm spice all year, so a vegan-ized muffin version of this treat felt like the right thing to share. My apple crisp muffins are also a nice choice if you’re in that kinda mood!

Some notes about these muffins:

  • If you are a person that prefers baked goods that aren’t too sweet, I don’t think this is the right recipe for you unfortunately. These muffins are rich and indulgent! For something less sweet, I’d recommend my vegan carrot muffins or my spelt banana bread.
  • Store-bought vegan sour cream is the way here! In my tests Tofutti brand vegan sour cream out-performed every other vegan sour cream brand available, every vegan yogurt, and my homemade vegan sour cream (which did not work at all).
  • I like bigger muffins with domed tops, but if you don’t mind smaller muffins, you could stretch the batter and streusel to make 12 total.
  • You can use all white whole wheat flour in place of the combination of all purpose + whole wheat, and still achieve similar results.
  • The batter will seem almost too stiff once you’re done mixing and trying to get it spread out in the muffin tins. Just be patient with it! It’s going to bake up tender and nice.

Hope you give these a try for your next coffee break! A baked good with hot coffee is one of my favourite simple pleasures. The little things are the big things in life! What muffin should I post next? Maybe we’ll go super healthy and update the classic bran muffin? Let me know in the comments ;)

An overhead shot shows liquid ingredients that were recently added to a flour mixture in a ceramic mixing bowl. A spatula is sticking out of the bowl.
An overhead shot shows a hand using a spoon to portion streusel topping on top of portions of muffin batter.
A head-on shot shows vegan coffee cake muffins cooling on a wire rack.
A 3/4 angle shot shows vegan coffee cake muffins arranged in a linen lined bowl with some sedum flowers placed nearby.

Vegan Coffee Cake Muffins

My vegan coffee cake muffins feature plenty of buttery-crunchy vegan streusel, warm cinnamon, and a tender cake made with coconut oil, brown sugar, vanilla and some whole wheat flour. This is the perfect indulgent treat to have with a hot coffee.
5 from 5 votes
An overhead shot shows vegan coffee cake muffins arranged in a linen lined bowl with some sedum flowers placed nearby.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings 10

Ingredients

Streusel

  • ¾ cup dark brown sugar, packed
  • ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold vegan butter

Muffins

  • 6 tablespoons melted refined coconut oil
  • ¾ cup cane sugar
  • 1 cup store bought vegan sour cream (see notes)
  • cup unsweetened apple sauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground flaxseed
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ¾ cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt

Notes

  • If you prefer baked goods that aren’t too sweet, I don’t think that this is the right recipe for you unfortunately. These muffins are rich and indulgent! For something less sweet, I’d recommend my carrot muffins or my spelt banana bread.
  • Store-bought vegan sour cream is the way here! In my tests Tofutti brand vegan sour cream out-performed every other vegan sour cream brand available, every vegan yogurt, and my homemade vegan sour cream (which did not work at all).
  • I like bigger muffins with domed tops, but if you don’t mind smaller muffins, you could stretch the batter and streusel to make 12 total.
  • You can swap both the all purpose flour + whole wheat flour for 1 ¾ cups white whole wheat flour, and you will get similar results.

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease 10 cups of a standard muffin tin or apply paper muffin liners.
  • Make the streusel. In a medium bowl, combine the dark brown sugar, all purpose flour, cinnamon, and salt. Cut the cold vegan butter into bits and add it to the bowl. Mix everything together and then, using your hands, pinch and rub the butter into the flour and sugar. Once you have a clumpy, coarse, wet sand-like texture, place the bowl in the fridge.
  • Start on the muffins. In a medium bowl, combine the coconut oil, cane sugar, vegan sour cream, apple sauce, vanilla, apple cider vinegar, and ground flaxseed. Vigorously whisk to combine and to “activate” the flax. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir/fold with a spatula to combine, being careful not to over mix. The batter will seem almost too stiff!
  • Retrieve the streusel from the fridge. Portion half of the muffin batter into the 10 greased muffin cups and flatten it down a bit. Top with half of the streusel, pressing it in a bit. Add the remaining half of the batter to the muffin cups, spreading it out as best you can. Top with the remaining streusel, pressing it into the top.
  • Bake the muffins for 25-28 minutes, or until the tops are slightly domed, deep golden brown, and a cake tester inserted into the center of a muffin emerges clean. Cool muffins thoroughly before enjoying.
An overhead shot shows a vegan coffee cake muffin split in half on top of a speckled ceramic plate. A wood handled knife is perched in the plate as well as a flower from a sedum plant.
25/08/2023
Posted in: autumn, dessert, nut free, snack, spring, summer, sweet, vegan, winter

10 comments

Recipe Rating




  • Jacob

    5 stars
    Hi,

    The muffins were good but the streusel did not come out how I hope, after a min of mixing it basically became a dough. What could I have done wrong?

  • amy

    5 stars
    thank you for this recipe!!! I’m obsessed with the wholesale vegan coffee cake muffins that you can find in the bakery @ goodness me, but after moving, my closest location is several hours away. I have never bothered to make them myself but now I have a reliable recipe! these are so good. I followed the listed measurements with no issues! the tops were a perfect, bakery-worthy size at 10 servings.

    I subbed light brown sugar because it was all I had on hand. it works, and gave a nice crunch to the topping, but for the reference of anybody else reading, next time I’ll definitely make sure to use dark as written for the depth of flavour (and for *aesthetics*)

    anyway – these are amazing, you nailed it again, thank you for sharing!

  • Caitlin

    5 stars
    These are SO delicious — like a little cake treat. Buttery and light and just sweet enough. Honestly the best version of coffee cake I’ve probably had. I made the mistake of only making 8 muffins, as I didn’t portion out my batter that well and it didn’t look like what I had would make 10 good-sized muffins. But I should have trusted the process — my muffins overflowed a bit and the tops spread out too much, oops. I will obey the recipe next time, maybe by dividing my batter into 2 bowls so that I can do better than just eyeballing/guessing what half of the mixture into 10 muffin liners should look like! Maybe a note in the recipe about roughly how much one should fill each cup would be helpful?

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Caitlin!
      Thanks for your comment and for leaving a review! I will update the recipe with measurements for filling the muffin tins next time I make them! Love this idea :)
      -L

  • Kim H

    The flavor of these muffins is great – lots of butter, sugar and cinnamon. Yum! The structure was a miss for me. The tops were very flat and the crumb was so delicate that the muffin fell apart easily unlike the muffins in the photos which have a much more dense crumb that you can actually slice through. I’ll try again, but I’m not totally sure what went wrong as I did not deviate from the recipe. Really tasty, though! Husband and teen were both happy to eat them :)

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Kim,
      I’m so sorry that there were structure issues. Did you do the 10 muffins or stretch it to 12? I’m also curious which vegan butter you used, as the topping was super sturdy/almost too hard in some of my tests. I’m also a bit concerned about the true temperature of my oven after reading this. Again, so sorry about this and will look into what may have happened here a bit further.
      -L

      • Kim H

        Hi Laura,

        I made 10 muffins. And I used Earth Balance unsalted sticks for the vegan butter (my go-to). Family is more than happy to give this one another go if you have any further suggestions!

  • Jenna

    Is there a sub for flax egg? I hate the taste of flax which is rough as a vegan baker

    • Laura Wright

      Hi Jenna,
      I find that ground chia seeds have a milder taste and perform the same as ground flax! If chia is not an option for you either, I would look to a powdered egg replacer such as Bob’s Red Mill or Ener-G.
      -L

  • Elizabeth

    I can’t wait to try these! I love all of your muffin and loaf recipes. I just made the blueberry muffin loaf recipe from your cookbook recently and wow, that streusel was SO good. I’d love to see a classic, hearty bran muffin recipe next!