Tuesday 6 October 2015

GF Oatmeal Apple Coffee Cake with Crunchy Cinnamon Streusel {Without Any Flour!}

Guys, I am so excited about this coffee cake. How is there no flour in this? Look at it, people. I really had no idea oats alone could do this. I am amazed that sometimes it really is that simple to make a recipe gluten free. In fact, I'm eating a piece for my breakfast right now as I type, and I just keep shaking my head disbelief and muttering things like, "unbelievable" to myself. Now, as I finish the last crunchy crumb, I gaze out the window in satisfied content, pondering the newfound wonder of simple oats.

I don't know, maybe you guys don't get this dramatic about coffee cake. I think I have a problem with just being dramatic in general. In fact, I know I do. Samuel has to remind me every day that my life is not, in fact, a movie.


But what am I supposed to think when we are eating dinner by candlelight and the radio just happens to be playing a soft, slow, classical violin solo. What does he expect me to do when it's reaching for one last, lonely high note just as he puts down his fork at exactly the right time and says, "Thank you for dinner, honey."
Naturally I will reach out and touch his arm until the last of the sunset dips below the trees. Then, as the violin fades out , I have no choice but to say "you're welcome" as dramatically as possible.

"This isn't a movie," Samuel says, yanking his arm away.

I shake my head, blinking hard as I snap out of it, "Are you sure? It really just seemed like it..." I say.

But you can still trust me, I am not just being dramatic when I say this coffee cake is the portal to a crunchy cinnamon paradise of apple heaven. Okay, I am being dramatic, but it's also true! Plus it's whole grain and fruit in it, so basically it's healthy. Right?

I have to give the credit for the idea of this recipe to my mother-in-law. She wanted to bake something that I could eat that would be gluten free, so she asked me if you can just replace flour with oats in a coffee cake.

"Um... I don't know. I mean I usually grind them up in a food processor or something to make flour, but, it might work, I think. Maybe. I mean, I'm really not sure. I guess it could work. But. Well. I don't know. It could be crumbly. I just don't know. I mean..."

"Okay, well I'm going to try it."

That's the kind of boldness you need when you're inventing new recipes.

That coffee cake turned out so delicious that I emailed her when we got to Germany and asked her for the recipe. Turns out she didn't have the recipe, so she said to just replace the flour with oats in a regular coffee cake recipe and then put sliced apples on top.

As I mixed up the batter, I got nervous. I started sweating and glancing around nervously. The oats were just swimming around in the liquid of the batter. This couldn't be right. I gulped loudly.

"Not a movie!" came a voice from the next room.

 There really was no reason to fret though. The oats absorb the moisture, just like they would if you were making oatmeal. Pretty neat. Enjoy.


    • Oatmeal Apple Coffee Cake

      1/3 cup white sugar 
    • 1/3 cup brown sugar
      1 large egg
      1/2 cup vegetable oil
      1/3 cup milk
      1 teaspoon vanilla
      2 cups quick cooking oats* (use GF if needed)
      1 teaspoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon salt 
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
      1/3 cup yogurt (I used plain)
    • 1 or 2 apples

    • Topping:
    • 1/2 cup rolled oats* (use GF if needed)
    • 1/2 cup white sugar
    • 1/4 cup brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon corn starch
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 3 tablespoons butter

    • Icing:
    • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
    • 2 teaspoons milk
    • 1 tablespoon butter

    • Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line a bread pan with greased parchment. I think my pan is 11x3.5" or something weird like that. Any size would be fine though. You just might have to adjust the baking time a little.
    • Combine the sugars, egg, oil, milk, and vanilla. 
    • Mix the oats, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon together and add to the egg mixture and mix well. Stir in the yogurt. 
    • Pour into the prepared pan. 
    • Peel and slice the apples and lay them flat on top of the batter in the pan. It doesn't matter how many you use, just cover the surface. 
    • Combine all the topping ingredients and mix until well combined. I find using my fingers works best. Sprinkle the topping over the apples. 
    • Bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. 
    • For the icing, combine the powdered sugar and butter and then add the milk. Drizzle on top of the cake after it has slightly cooled.

*I like to use quick oats in the cake and rolled oats for the topping. It will work if you switch it up and use all quick or all rolled though. I just thought it might be a little more tender on the inside with the quick oats and that the topping would be a little chunkier with the rolled, but I really think it will work either way.


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  1. Thank you!! I wonder what I could replace yogurt with? I can't have it because of histamine intolerance. This is great, thanks!

    1. You could use sour cream or you could try just adding a little more liquid.

  2. Yowza!! Delicious! I think I might cut down on the sugar next time (was a bit sweet) but this one is a keeper!!

  3. This looks delicious! I can't eat dairy, can you suggest a replacement for the yogurt? I think vegan yogurt is disgusting, so I don't know what else to use.

  4. I transform it into a vegan coffee cake .... I have made it a couple of times now and always wanted to get back to you and thank you for this great vegan-friendly recipe! is a mayor hit and a keeper!

    I couldn't do it sooner because I live in china and for some reason your blog is block here!

    love your blog!

  5. how great! i love me some good desserts. moreover, i even attemted to film a tutorial on how to bake it! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tNrgpTY1bQA you can watch it if you want to

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