Sour Cream Coffee Cake

This coffee cake is a slight variation on a recipe that’s been in my husband’s family for four generations. It makes a beautifully delicious breakfast, especially for company or special occasions. If the cake seems a little stale the next day, simply cut a slice and pop it in the microwave for several seconds. It’ll be as fresh, soft and scrumptious as when it first came out of the oven. (Many thanks to my mom for the tip.) Low sodium never tasted SO GOOD!!

Yields one 10-inch cake.

Serves 16.

SODIUM CONTENT: 19 mg per serving


1/2 c. unsalted butter, softened
1 c. sugar
2 eggs
2 t. pure vanilla extract
2 t. Ener-G sodium-free baking soda (available online at
1 1/2 t. Featherweight sodium-free baking powder (sold at Whole Foods markets and available online at
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. sour cream

1 c. chopped walnuts
1/4 c. powdered sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 T. ground cinnamon
6 T. unsalted butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10-inch springfrom pan; set aside.

In a small bowl, mix the dry ingredients for the topping – DO NOT ADD THE MELTED BUTTER! Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, assemble the cake batter. Cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Stir in the extracts, then the baking soda and baking powder. Gradually stir in the flour, alternating with the sour cream. Stir just until everything is incorporated – do NOT overmix. Batter will be very thick.

Spread batter in prepared pan, then spoon topping evenly over top. Pour the butter over the topping. Place pan on middle rack in oven and bake 1 hour. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool. Carefully run knife or spatula around inside edge of pan before gently removing springform side. Serve warm or cool.

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12 Responses to Sour Cream Coffee Cake

  1. Stacey says:

    I have just discovered your website and it is like finding gold! My husband has CHF and is only 44 years old. He has recently been placed on a low sodium diet and honestly you never notice how much sodium is in food until you look. Anyway, this recipe looks awesome only problem I don’t know the sodium content per serving. Could you please let me know? I am dying to try this for him. Thanks and keep up the great work!

  2. Christy says:

    Hey Stacey! WELCOME! So sorry to hear about your husband, but so glad you like the site. Makes it all worthwhile. Some of the older recipes (such as this coffee cake) were posted before I started adding the sodium info. I will calculate it now and make the addition — Please, in future, whenever you find one missing the sodium content, give a shout! I need to update them all, but there are simply too many recipes and not enough hours in the day for me to go clicking down the list. Anyway – hope you enjoy the cake, it’s one of my very favorites. Best wishes, Christy

  3. Stacey says:

    Wow Christy that was fast! Thank you! I am actually baking your sweet potato pie as I type. A dry run for Thanksgiving. I will let you know how my husband likes it.

  4. William Kilgore says:

    I just love your blog. I am a younger guy in my 30’s who was just diagnose with maliganant hypertension, and i have used so many of your recipes for my low sodium diet. You brought delicious food back into my life. Thank you and keep it coming!!

    • Christy says:

      Hey William! So nice to get your comment and thank YOU for taking the time to write! I’m thrilled to have helped you so much and hope to continue. Wishing you all the best!

  5. JoEllen Lynch says:

    Wow this cake was a big hit with my dad. He just loves it! Dad has CHF and baked goods are something that he really misses. I’m not a good cook but this was so easy!! Thanks so much I’ll be making this often for him.

  6. Lynnette Evans says:

    Just a question on baking powder. If you ONLY use baking powder in this recipe and leave out the soda how much do you recommend using? Thank you!

    • Christy says:

      Hi Lynette!

      Baking soda is 4 times more powerful than baking powder – and in this case the baking soda for this recipe is also doubled (bc the sodium free baking soda is less strong) so pretend it’s just normal baking soda for the swap – meaning 1 t. baking soda.

      1 t. x 4 = 4 teaspoons.

      So to make this coffee cake using only baking powder you will need to add 4 additional teaspoons baking powder, for a total of 5.5 teaspoons baking powder.

      Hope that helps!

      Best wishes,
      Christy 🙂

  7. Lynnette Evans says:

    That helps tremendously! Thank you for taking the time to reply. I’ll let you know how it turns out. Thanks again.

    • Christy says:

      My pleasure, Lynette! Please let me know how it goes. I hate using that Ener-G baking soda (and don’t bother buying it anymore) so very helpful to hear if the baking powder does the trick!

      Have a great day (and weekend, too!)
      Christy 🙂

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