Coffee And Walnut Cake With Coffee Buttercream

Do you love your morning dose of coffee or just prefer the flavour? This rustic cake is sure to please you. I’m not a person who is bent on getting a perfectly iced cake with beautiful swirls or rosettes every time. The reason I love this cake is because it is rustic and home style. The taste does all the talking. It’s okay if your swirls or rosettes don’t come out perfect. Sometimes, IMPERFECT is PERFECT! 😀

I make this cake quite often as this cake is loved by my family and my friends. No doubt, this is my favourite too! I don’t drink coffee often but this cake is just, that special. 🙂


This cake is inspired  by Nigella Lawson’s recipe.

Ingredients: (Serves 10 people)
For Sponge:
  • Soft unsalted butter- 225 grams
  • Brown sugar (I use Demerara sugar but you can also use muscovado sugar)- 1 cup
  • Caster sugar- 3/4 cup
  • Eggs- 4
  • Plain/All- purpose flour- 2 cups; (sifted)
  • Milk- 1 cup
  • Baking powder- 2 teaspoons
  • Espresso powder- 4 tablespoons
  • Walnuts- 30 grams; chopped plus 8 walnut halves to decorate
For Coffee Buttercream:
  • Soft unsalted butter- 220 grams
  • Icing sugar- 280 grams
  • Instant espresso powder- 2 tablespoons; (Note– If you like coffee punches while you’re eating, you can add the powder directly. If you like a more subtle evenly distributed coffee flavour, you can dissolve it in 1 teaspoon of hot water)
  • Coffee essence- 1 teaspoon (Note– You can also add the coffee liquid that you use in filter coffee)
  • Salt- 1 pinch
For Sponge:

Preheat the oven to 180°C. Butter two cake tins and line the base of each with parchment paper.

Beat the butter until soft and light. To it, add the brown sugar and beat till the mixture is well combined. Add the white sugar and beat till the mixture becomes light and creamy.

Coffee cake1

Beat in the egg one by one making sure you completely incorporate each egg into the batter before adding the next. Add the sifted flour and fold it gently. Add milk and fold the mixture. Sift the espresso and baking powder together and fold the mixture. Add chopped walnuts and mix.  Divide the mixture between the two 20 cm lined cake tins and bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a skewer comes out clean when pricked in the centre. If the cake tends to catch a bit which ideally shouldn’t, cover the top with aluminium foil and return to the oven.

Coffee cake2

Cool the cakes in their tins for 5 minutes and then turn onto a wire rack, peel off the parchment paper and cool for 20 minutes or until completely cooled down. Trim the crispy bottom edges of the cakes, if any.


For Coffee Buttercream:
  1. Beat the butter until creamy. (I prefer to use a hand held electric beater, but if you wish you can do it by hand. It will just take a very long time.)
  2. Add icing sugar to it and beat until thick, pale, creamy and holds the peak.
  3. Dissolve the instant espresso powder in 1 tablespoon boiling water if you wish and combine to make a paste. If not, directly add the espresso powder for a more robust flavour and fold with a spatula.
  4. Add the coffee essence along with a pinch of salt and fold the mixture gently. Chill in fridge for half an hour or till 5 minutes before use.

Coffee buttercream

To assemble:

Slightly beat the buttercream to make it smooth before smearing. Place one sponge upside down (side which was touching the base of your cake tin should be on the top) on your cake stand. Spread half of the buttercream mixture and then on it, place the second sponge. Cover the top with the remaining icing, pipe some swirls or rosettes if you like and decorate with walnut halves.

Take a lovely slice of this double layered coffee cake and indulge in it. Eat it as it is or with vanilla ice cream. Happy Baking. 🙂



2 thoughts on “Coffee And Walnut Cake With Coffee Buttercream

    1. When you keep mixing, the sugar melts upto 70-75%. If you see in the picture where walnuts are added, the texture of the batter is completely different from the initial stage (It is more smooth). A few crystals which may still remain, melt while baking. Brown sugar is added mainly for depth in flavour!


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