Delicious Sunburst Coffee Cake Recipe for Breakfast

If you’re a coffee lover, then there’s nothing quite like the perfect cup of joe to start your day. But have you ever considered pairing your morning coffee with a delicious slice of sunburst coffee cake? Trust me, it’s a match made in heaven.

This recipe is a classic for a reason. With its flaky pastry, sweet glaze, and tangy lemon zest, it’s no wonder sunburst coffee cake has been a morning staple for generations. Whether you’re entertaining guests or just craving something indulgent and comforting for breakfast, this recipe is sure to satisfy.

And the best part? It’s surprisingly easy to make, even if you’re not an experienced baker. So why not treat yourself and your loved ones to a slice (or two) of homemade sunburst coffee cake? You won’t regret it.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Sunburst Coffee Cake
Sunburst Coffee Cake

If you’re looking for a sweet and delicious treat that will make your taste buds dance, you simply can’t go wrong with the Sunburst Coffee Cake recipe. This recipe is a classic, tried-and-true favorite that has been passed down for generations, and for good reason: it’s simply amazing.

One of the many reasons you’ll love this recipe is its versatility. Whether you’re in the mood for something bright and fruity or warm and nutty, this cake has got you covered. With variations like lemon pecan or maple sunburst, there’s something here to suit everyone’s taste.

Another reason to love this recipe is its easy-to-follow instructions. Despite looking like a complicated dish, it only takes a few simple steps to create a delicious Sunburst Coffee Cake that will have everyone begging for seconds. Plus, with all the substitutions and variations available, there are plenty of opportunities to put your own spin on this classic dessert.

But the real star of the show here is undoubtedly the taste. The combination of buttery cake, crunchy pecans and sweet currant jelly creates a flavor explosion that simply can’t be matched by any other dessert out there. Whether you’re enjoying it as a mid-morning snack, an afternoon treat or an indulgent dessert after dinner, one thing is for sure: your taste buds will thank you.

So if you’re ready to delight your senses with one of the best coffee cake recipes out there, look no further than this Sunburst Coffee Cake recipe. With its delicious flavor and easy preparation, it’s no wonder why this dessert has stood the test of time as one of America’s favorites.

Ingredient List

 Fresh out of the oven and ready to be devoured
Fresh out of the oven and ready to be devoured

List of Ingredients for Sunburst Coffee Cake Recipe

To make this delightful Sunburst Coffee Cake recipe, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 egg
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 2 small Pillsbury Grands! refrigerated biscuits
  • 1/4 cup currant jelly

For the Pecan Sunburst filling:

  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Zest of one lemon

For the Maple Sunburst filling:

  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter

You can also substitute the pecan filling with other fillings such as lemon coconut, pear, blueberry, or chocolate cake. The possibilities are endless!

The Recipe How-To

 A slice of sunshine on a cloudy day
A slice of sunshine on a cloudy day

Below are the steps you need to follow to make your very own Sunburst Coffee Cake.

Step 1: Preheat Oven

First thing’s first, preheat your oven to 375°F. This temperature will ensure that the cake cooks evenly and achieves a golden crust.

Step 2: Combine Pecans, Sugar, and Lemon Peel

In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup of finely chopped pecans, 1/2 cup of sugar, and the zest of one lemon peel. This mixture will serve as the Sunburst fillings.

Step 3: Make the Dough

In a large bowl, combine 4 cups of flour, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1 tsp. of salt, and 1 package of active dry yeast. In a small saucepan, heat up 1 cup of milk until it’s warm but not scalding. Add in 1/2 cup of melted shortening, stir briefly and add into the large bowl with the flour mixture. Finally, throw in an egg and blend everything together until smooth to make the dough.

Step 4: Shape and Fill Your Cake

Grease your 8″ or 9″ inch round cake pan. Then separate your Pillsbury Grands refrigerated biscuits into approximately 8 pieces each. Take one piece at a time and using your palm or a roller, shape each piece into a circular disc that matches the size of your round cake pan. Add these discs by placing one in the center followed by seven more around it in a circular pattern like flower petals.

Step 5: Fill Your Cake with Nutty Mixture

Press the pecan mixture down onto the center layer so that it is level within its space.

Step 6: Cover and Rest

Cover your pan with either plastic wrap or a kitchen towel and let the dough rise until double in size (approximately 30 minutes).

Step 7: Bake Your Cake

Bake your Sunburst Coffeecake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Let it cool down to room temperature.

Step 8: Serve as Desired

With the cake being freshly baked and aromatic, it is now ready to be served. You can drizzle currant jelly or whipped cream, or simply enjoy it as is.

Substitutions and Variations

 The perfect pairing for a morning cup of coffee
The perfect pairing for a morning cup of coffee

There are plenty of substitutions and variations to this mouthwatering sunburst coffee cake recipe that can make it even more tempting. Here, I outline some ingredients swaps you can use to create new flavors, textures, and presentations.

For a citrusy twist, try using orange zest instead of lemon zest for the Lemon Pecan Sunburst Coffee Cake. The orange flavor will give the cake a bright and sweet aroma that pairs well with the pecans.

Alternatively, go for Maple Sunburst Coffee Cake by swapping out the currant jelly with maple syrup in the pecan mixture. This substitution adds richness and depth to the pecan filling.

If you crave something more chocolatey, drizzle melted chocolate over the Pecan Sunburst Coffee Cake. This twist will satisfy your chocolate cravings while still keeping the integrity of the recipe.

Another variation you could try is making Mini Sunburst Coffeecakes. Instead of baking one large round cake, divide the batter into muffin tins to make individual bites for serving your guests.

For those who adore coconut flavor, add shredded coconut to the batter or sprinkle it on top of the sunburst coffee cake for an extra layered texture.

Lastly, you can also experiment with different types of nuts. Swap pecans with chopped walnuts or almonds for a new nutty dimension.

Remember, there are endless possibilities when it comes to recipe variations, so don’t be afraid to try your own favorite substitutions and let your taste buds guide you!

Serving and Pairing

 Get ready to indulge in a deliciously sweet treat
Get ready to indulge in a deliciously sweet treat

Once the sunburst coffee cake has been baked and cooled, it is time for the fun part – serving and pairing! This delightful cake goes perfectly alongside a hot cup of coffee or tea for an indulgent breakfast or mid-day snack. The sweet aroma of pecans, lemon zest, and currant jelly will waft through your kitchen as this golden brown cake bakes in the oven.

For a decadent pairing option, try topping your sunburst coffee cake with a dollop of whipped cream or a drizzle of warm caramel sauce. This will elevate the flavors and add an extra layer of richness to this already delicious dessert.

Alternatively, you can serve this coffee cake with a side of fresh berries or sliced fruit to balance out the sweetness. The tangy flavor of fresh berries is particularly complementary to the bright lemon notes in the cake.

If you are looking for a brunch-worthy spread, serve your sunburst coffee cake alongside other breakfast favorites like bacon, eggs, and hash browns. This will give your guests savory options to balance out the sweet richness of the coffee cake.

Overall, there are plenty of ways to serve and pair this delicious sunburst coffee cake. Whether you prefer it on its own or paired with another decadent treat or savory meal, this recipe is sure to please the palate of anyone who tries it.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Layers upon layers of goodness
Layers upon layers of goodness

Don’t let the fear of losing freshness hold you back from savoring the flavors of the Sunburst Coffee cake recipe. When stored and reheated correctly, this coffee cake is just as delicious as when it was freshly baked.


If you are planning ahead or want to enjoy this delightful cake on a busy morning, the make-ahead option is for you. Once baked, allow the coffee cake to cool down completely. Cover tightly with foil or plastic wrap and keep it chilled in the refrigerator. You can either store the whole cake or slice them into individual pieces for easy-to-grab portions.


Proper storage increases the shelf life and flavor quality of your cake. For short-term storage, keep the coffee cake at room temperature in an airtight container or a covered plate for up to 2-3 days.

For long-term storage, place in an airtight container or wrap tightly with plastic wrap and foil to prevent freezer burn. Store for up to 3 months.


The best way to reheat a slice of Sunburst Coffee Cake is to place it in the microwave oven for 10-15 seconds until warm. You can also take a slice or two out of your frozen stash and defrost overnight in the refrigerator before microwaving or heating in the oven for a few minutes.

For an even fresher taste, heat up your sliced coffee cake in a preheated oven at 350°F (177°C) for about 5-10 minutes or until desired temperature is reached.

With these tips and tricks, you can keep enjoying the sunburst coffee cake recipe days after baking without sacrificing any of its delightful flavors.

Tips for Perfect Results

 One slice just won't be enough
One slice just won’t be enough

To ensure that your sunburst coffee cake turns out perfect every time, consider the following tips:

1. Use room temperature ingredients: room temperature ingredients combine more easily and produce a better texture.

2. Properly measure your ingredients: use measuring cups and spoons to make sure you’re adding the correct amount of each ingredient.

3. Activate the yeast correctly: make sure the water is between 105-110 F before adding yeast, too hot or too cold can affect how the dough rises.

4. Knead the dough correctly: knead until smooth for around 10-12 minutes before allowing it to rise.

5. Allow enough rising time: follow the recipe carefully and allow enough rising time for optimal texture and flavor.

6. Glaze at the right time: wait for the cake to cool slightly before glazing, but not completely cool as it may not absorb the glaze well.

7. Experiment with toppings: try different variations such as pear, maple pecan, lemon coconut, chocolate or blueberry for unique flavors.

8. Serve warm: sunburst coffee cake is best served warm as it will enhance its delicious flavors and aromas.

Following these tips will surely lead to a delightful sunburst coffee cake that everyone will enjoy!

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the Sunburst Coffee Cake recipe is a perfect addition to your collection of recipes. With its unique combination of flavors and textures, this cake recipe is sure to impress anyone who tries it. Whether you’re making it for breakfast, brunch, or dessert, the Sunburst Coffee Cake will be a hit.

With its simple ingredients and easy-to-follow steps, this recipe is perfect for bakers of all levels. You can even customize it to make it your own by trying different substitutions and variations. And with its make-ahead and storing tips, you can also enjoy this delicious cake for days to come.

So don’t wait any longer and give the Sunburst Coffee Cake recipe a try! I’m sure that once you do, it will quickly become one of your favorite coffee cake recipes. Your taste buds will thank you for experiencing the burst of flavors in every bite.

Sunburst Coffee Cake

Sunburst Coffee Cake Recipe

Posted in reply to a recipe request. The recipe I found did not include baking instructions. All times are a guess.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 1 cake
Calories 2088.2 kcal


  • 1 package active dry yeast (2-1/4 tsp)
  • 2 2/3 cups flour
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon, zest of
  • 1/4 cup currant jelly


  • Combine yeat and 1 cup flour in a large bowl.
  • Heat the milk, shortening, suagr and salt until warm, stirring to melt the shortening.
  • Add to yeast/flour mix with egg and lemon zest.
  • Beat for 1/2 minute on low speed, scraping sides of bowl constantly.
  • Beat for 3 minutes on high speed.
  • Mix in by hand enough of the remaining flour to make a moderately stiff dough.
  • Turn out onto lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Place on a greased surface.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 695gCalories: 2088.2kcalCarbohydrates: 323.9gProtein: 48.9gFat: 65.7gSaturated Fat: 18.6gCholesterol: 234.3mgSodium: 2510.7mgFiber: 11.4gSugar: 44.4g
Keyword < 60 Mins, Breads, Healthy
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Recommended Recipes Just For You