This lightened-up cinnamon sugar banana coffee cake uses bananas and Greek yogurt to add flavour and moisture to a delicious cake that’s healthy enough to enjoy for breakfast!
There are two types of people in this world: cake people and frosting people. And I am most definitely a cake people. Err… person.
It’s not that I don’t like frosting (okay, I kind of don’t like frosting); I just don’t like it as much as I like cake. This is why I prefer muffins to cupcakes, whipped cream to buttercream, and why I’ll usually leave the frosting hanging out on the plate while I go back for another slice of cake — sweet carby doughiness just makes me weak in the knees.
And the funny thing is that I’ve always been this way — even back in the day when my sweet tooth was a whole heck of a lot more insatiable. I used to boast about how nothing was too sweet for me, and while I wouldn’t necessarily say that frosting is too sweet, it was never my jam. A texture thing, maybe? I’ve never been big on cheesecakes for the same reason.
But things like muffins, cookies, donuts, brownies, and [minimally-frosted] cakes? Yes. Please. Thank you. MORE.
So what’s all that have to do with today’s recipe?
Well, today’s recipe happens to be a particular kind of cake. A coffee cake… which is a cake that you can serve with coffee (or tea) that may or may not actually have coffee in it (this one doesn’t).
Honestly, I have no idea how it differs from a muffin or a quick bread other than the shape of the pan you pour it in, but hey… it’s sweet, it’s doughy, it’s [frosting-less], and it’s eaten with coffee in tow — you’re not going to find me calling it out on naming issues.
You will find me repeatedly standing over my kitchen counter picking away at “slivers, edges, and ugly pieces,” though… all in the name of experimentation, obviously…
So let’s talk deets, shall we?
As with most of my other recipes, I made this one healthier for you guys without sacrificing on taste, and I did that by using two of my favourite ingredients to bake with — bananas and Greek yogurt.
That combo is killer when it comes to lightening up baked goods while still keeping them soft, tender, and flavourful. Seriously killer. But this recipe is a little bit different in that it doesn’t call for adding mashed bananas to the actual dough. Instead, they’re sliced and layered between the batter and sprinkled with a little bit of cinnamon and coconut sugar.
The result is a ridiculously soft cake that tastes like bananas and cinnamon with subtle caramel undertones. The actual banana slices add a nice caramelly feel to the texture, and the cinnamon-sugar streusel topping is just the icing on the cake. You can totally leave it off if you don’t feel like taking the extra step — the cake is still amazing without it — but it definitely adds a nice little boost to the flavour and texture.
Other than that, there’s not much else to say besides bon appetit! I know there’s a few more steps in this recipe than there are in my others, but don’t let that scare you — it couldn’t be easier, and the result is definitely worth the extra 5 minutes.
I’d love to know if you make this recipe! Leave a comment and rating down below to let me know what you think, and subscribe to our mailing list to receive new recipes in your inbox!Print
Cinnamon Sugar Banana Coffee Cake
- Total Time: 40 mins
- Yield: 9 servings 1x
For the crumble topping:
- 1/2 cup (60 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 Tbsp (30 ml) coconut oil, melted
- 3 Tbsp (36 g) coconut palm sugar*
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
For the cake:
- 2 Tbsp (24 g) coconut palm sugar*
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup (60 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup (60 g) whole wheat flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 large egg, lightly beaten
- 1/3 cup (70 g) plain Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup (80 ml) unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/4 cup (80 g) honey**
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 small/medium bananas, thinly sliced (about 200 g)
- Preheat your oven to 325F (163C) and prepare an 8×8 (20x20cm) baking dish by lining it with a sheet of aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving a few inches of overhang on the sides to allow for easy removal. Spray the foil with cooking spray and set aside.
- Prepare topping by combining all the ingredients in a small bowl and mixing well. The texture will be crumbly and dry, so use your hands if you’re having trouble getting it to mix. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the flours, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine the egg, Greek yogurt, almond milk, honey, and vanilla. Stir until fully combined. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and gently stir to combine. Do not over mix.
- Pour half of the batter into your prepared pan, using a spatula to spread it out evenly. It might seem like there’s not enough in there, but it will rise quite a bit when it bakes.
- Lay half of the sliced bananas (so, 1 banana) across the top of the batter. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar mixture (not the topping!) over the bananas, and repeat with the remaining batter, bananas, and cinnamon-sugar. Finally, sprinkle the topping on the very top, spreading it out evenly.
- Bake for 25 minutes, until topping begins to turn golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for about 20 minutes before removing and allowing to finish cooling on a cooling rack.
* can also be subbed with brown sugar. ** can also be subbed with agave nectar or maple syrup.
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 25 mins
Keywords: banana coffee cake, cinnamon sugar coffee cake, coffee cake, healthy coffee cake
Looking for more recipes using Greek yogurt? Try one of these!
Greek Yogurt Banana Bread
Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins
Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Pancakes
Blueberry Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins
One Bowl Greek Yogurt Blueberry Banana Bread
This was a HIT, everyone ate it up in an instant. Presentation and taste were both 10/10. I want this everyday. And I appreciate the healthier coffee cake as I can eat it without guilt.
I didn’t have almond milk when I was making it so I subbed water (because I find almond milk tastes like water lol) and it was perfect!
Next time I will try it with the almond milk can’t wait !
Wondering if you have a similar recipe that’s dairy free ? Or can adjust this to be dairy feee ?have a dairy free friend who was jelous 🙂
Left it in the oven an additional 10 min and the top layer of cake still came out raw. I use my oven daily so I don’t think it’s a problem with that.
Stumbled upon this recipe while looking for a healthy version coffee cake recipe. Just made this. It’s wonderfully light and moist. Made a few adjustments using pure maple syrup and honey mix. Added ground pecans to the topping. Also didn’t use the full measure of sugar. It tastes awesome.
This looks so good! Do you think it’d work if I just mix the bananas into the mix like you do with banana bread? I have some frozen ripe bananas I’d love to use for it so slicing them wouldn’t work.
I made this yesterday and my family loved it!! It looked and tasted like a fancy bakery treat! Thanks for sharing and we will definately be making this again. Also love that it’s lightened up a bit.
This coffee cake tasted amazing! Made it for a playgroup and all of the moms and kids gobbled it up and asked for seconds. It was moist and flavorful and the bananas in the center made it unique. Love that it’s healthier than most coffee cakes too!
I should also mention that I doubled the recipe and baked it in a 9×13 pan and ended up baking it for about 8-10 minutes longer.
made this today… excellent. flavorful, soft and tender, just as advertised. doesn’t taste “healthy.” thanks for the recipe!
Amanda @ .running with spoons.
Glad you liked it, Valerie! Thanks for letting me know 🙂
Made this today Amanda. Or last night for that matter. It was absolutely AMAZING. Thank you! I had to make a few substitutions because I didn’t have some of the ingredients, but it had to have been the moistest coffee cake I’ve EVER had! 🙂
Arman @ thebigmansworld
Okay me and mum had this huge discussion about coffee cake. I was trying to tell her it was cake to have WITH coffee and she said it’s a cake with coffee IN it. She as wrong 🙂
Team no frosting 🙂
Amanda @ .running with spoons.
Actually, you’re both right 😛 There are a lot of places where coffee is one of the ingredients (it’s big in Europe), and a lot of places where it’s not (here).
Kezia @ Super Naturally Healthy
Food porn at its best! Love this and I don have a massive sweet tooth but I always would choose cake over sugar cubes – always room for cake. Always.
Your a rock star in the kitchen Amanda! This looks beyond good. And possible easy to tweak to make gluten free.
I want to make a gluten free/grain free version of this ☺️
Dani @ DaniCaliforniaCooks
Looks so moist and delicious! I’ve never tried using coconut sugar before.
Sounds amazing- per usual!! You always come up with the best recipes!
Amanda @ .running with spoons.
Christine@ Apple of My Eye
Sooo0000… GET IN MY MOUTH.
This has to be one of your mouthwatering recipes to date! I’m a huge sucker for coffee cake, especially when it involves lots of crumble on top. This just looks so decadent and I can’t believe you were able to make something healthier look even better than the normal version. Call it magic ;).
And I’m actually on the same page with you when it comes to frosting. It’s just a little too sugary for me and I’d much rather go for an extra slice than eat a mouthful of plain whipped up sugar.