Cakes, Fall & Thanksgiving

Cinnamon Swirl Pound Cake

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This easy cinnamon pound cake is rich and tender with a delicious cinnamon swirl! It’s topped with cinnamon sugar and a smooth vanilla icing.

Cinnamon Pound Cake Featured Image

Fall is coming! As the days start to cool, I can already smell the warm, comforting aromas of pumpkin spice and cinnamon wafting out of our kitchen. There might not be any large family or neighborhood gatherings for Thanksgiving this year, but at least there’s always dessert. I’ve got pumpkin pies, apple strudel, carrot cake, and orange cranberry scones just waiting to be made!

In preparation for pumpkin spice season and the year of remote learning ahead, I made this buttery cinnamon pound cake. Just one bite makes me feel like curling up with a good book and a pumpkin latte! It’s super easy to make and perfect for the beginning of fall.

Cinnamon Pound Cake Side View

Tips and Tricks for Pound Cake

Room Temperature Ingredients: Baking with room temperature ingredients will help you get the best results out of this recipe! Since room temperature ingredients are warmer than cold ingredients, it’s much easier for them to bind together and incorporate evenly with other ingredients. This prevents over-mixing your batter and produces a smooth and uniformly-textured batter. Additionally, at room temperature, the butter, eggs, and sour cream in this recipe create an emulsion, which traps air. This trapped air expands during baking to create a light and fluffy cinnamon pound cake. To make sure your ingredients are at room temperature, remove them from the fridge about one hour before baking.

Cinnamon Swirl Pound Cake

Course: Dessert, Snacks
Yield

1

loaf
Prep Time

15

minutes
Cook Time

1

hour 
Total Time

1

hour 

35

minutes

This cinnamon pound cake is soft, buttery, and easy to make! It has a sweet cinnamon swirl and is topped with cinnamon sugar and vanilla icing.

Ingredients

  • Cake
  • 1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 3 large eggs, room temperature

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 1/2 cup full-fat sour cream, room temperature*

  • 3 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar

  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon

  • 1 tablespoon milk

  • Topping
  • 4 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar

  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon

  • Icing
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

  • 2-3 tablespoons milk

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Cake
  • Preheat oven to 325°F and grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together. Set aside.
  • Using an electric mixer on high speed, cream the butter and granulated sugar together in a large bowl until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, beat in eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla extract and sour cream. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix just until combined.
  • Add 1 cup of batter to a separate bowl. Stir in brown sugar, cinnamon, and milk.
  • Spoon a very thin layer of plain batter into your prepared loaf pan. Drop alternating spoonfuls of cinnamon and plain batter into the pan. Top with the remaining plain batter and gently smooth the top. Run a knife or a long skewer through the batter a few times to swirl the layers together.
  • Topping
  • Combine brown sugar and cinnamon to make the topping. Sprinkle topping over the batter.
  • Bake for 55 minutes to 1 hour, 10 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out mostly clean with no raw batter.
  • Allow cake to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then remove from the pan and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Icing
  • Whisk the powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla extract together to make the icing. Drizzle over cooled cake.

Notes

  • Make Ahead: Cake can be made 3 days ahead: cover and store at room temperature.
  • Sour Cream: Plain yogurt is the best substitute for sour cream, but you can use milk or heavy cream as well. If you do use milk or heavy cream, your pound cake will have a more light, cake-like texture instead of a dense, tight crumb.

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