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Paleo Coffee Cake (AIP, Vegan)

4.14 from 162 votes

What’s Inside: Just because you’re eating clean doesn’t mean you have to forego your favorite desserts. This Paleo Coffee Cake is AIP-friendly, vegan, and features the signature nutty, cinnamon cake bottom and crumbly, crunchy topping everyone loves about coffee cake.

Paleo Coffee Cake (AIP, Vegan) via Food by Mars

Have Your Paleo Coffee Cake and Eat It, Too

My love for coffee cake runs SO deep… as in I loved it before I even tried coffee. (Did anyone else love those Drakes Coffee Cakes as a kid?) Well, I had quite the craving for it recently, so here we go!

I was mildly nervous because, with AIP cake recipes, it can be rough without the eggs. However, the mix of Tigernut and Cassava flours really do not disappoint! And I so wanted to try an egg-free version, so that makes this a vegan coffee cake, too.


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It took only two tries to perfect this recipe. And WOW, am I stoked with the outcome. You will absolutely love the moist cake bottom and crumbly, slightly crunch topping.

And for once, this was sweet enough (but not overly so, because homie don’t play that!) for my sweet-toothed hubby. He’s as obsessed with this Paleo coffee cake as I am!

Paleo Coffee Cake (AIP, Vegan) via Food by Mars

Paleo Coffee Cake Pairs Perfectly with Your Favorite Cold Weather Drink

Since I’m laying off coffee these days (looking out for those adrenals, especially during pregnancy), I decided to serve it with some Sip Herbals (use code FOODBYMARS for 10% off), which is an AIP-compliant coffee replacement. But you can serve this Paleo coffee cake with any cold-weather drink you prefer, like legit coffee, tea, or perhaps one of my mushroom lattes.

The bitter and earthy taste from the Sip Herbals was lovely with the cinnamon spice of this killer gluten-free coffee cake. I will definitely try it with some white tea next time I have a slice.

Tip: Try this delicious, AIP-compliant coffee alternative (that actually tastes amazing) with your coffee cake! (use code FOODBYMARS for 10% off)

You Just Can’t Beat That Crumb Topping

I’m a sucker for desserts with crumb toppings. Not only is it easier than more intricate toppings like a lattice pie top, but there’s something so homey and comforting about it. The maple syrup and solid coconut oil make for a sticky topping when raw, but it comes out soft with a little crunch on the exterior after it’s baked. It just stays put right on top of your coffee cake.

Plus, I have a new trick, y’all. Instead of dusting powdered sugar on top (which I never have on hand), I just sprinkled cassava flour for the sheer look of it. And trust me, you won’t even taste it at all. It just looks extra pretty this way!

So, who’s making some Paleo coffee cake for their next tea date?

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How To Make the Best Paleo Coffee Cake

Paleo Coffee Cake (AIP, Vegan) via Food by Mars
AIP coffee cake via Food by Mars

Paleo Coffee Cake

4.14 from 162 votes
Nutty, sweet and packed full of cinnamon, this Paleo coffee cake is crazy good. Make this coffee cake for breakfast, brunch, or even dessert!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Resting Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Yield: 6


Dry Ingredients:

Wet Ingredients:

Crumb topping:


  • Preheat the oven to 325°F and grease a square baking dish or a large loaf pan. (I used a 6×8.) Set aside.
  • Add the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and give it a whisk to get out any clumps.
  • Separately, to another bowl, mix coconut oil, applesauce, vinegar, and vanilla.
  • Add wet mixture into the dry and mix well into a dough. Pour milk in as you are mixing.
  • Spread the batter into your prepared cake tin evenly with a spatula. Set aside.
  • Make the topping: In a small bowl by hand (this way you don’t over-do it), whisk together all ingredients into a crumbly mixture with a fork or small whisk to get bigger crumbles.
  • Sprinkle the crumb mixture over the top of the cake batter with your hands, leaving the crumbs intact as you can.
  • Bake for 25 minutes, allow to cool and then serve! Optionally sprinkle your cake with sifted cassava flour (very lightly!!) for the look of powdered sugar.
  • Store in a closed container for a few days on the countertop or refrigerate if you want it to last longer (though it won’t be as moist).


  • If you want to use a liquid sweetener in the cake instead of coconut sugar, simply add the same amount to the wet ingredients and omit the 2 Tbsp of milk.
  • I haven’t tried a different topping, this one is my tried-and-true, but if you don’t have coconut flour, you can probably feel good about just replacing it with more tigernut flour!
Diet: American, British
Keywords: AIP cake, coffee cake, gluten free coffee cake, paleo coffee cake, vegan coffee cake
Course: Dessert, Snack
Paleo Coffee Cake (AIP, Vegan) via Food by Mars
-Alison Marras
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.

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  1. The cake was just as crumbly as the topping. 🙁 It probably needs gelatin to help hold it together as do most AIP baking recipes.

  2. Hi! My topping came out pretty wet and my dough was like a pasty like . Any suggestions why topping came out so wet? Also when you say coconut oil (solid) what does that mean?

    • Hi! I’m not sure, might have been an error or something else as baking can be finicky, perhaps less liquid next time. Use solid coconut oil as in not melted.

  3. My cake didn’t look nothing like picture. I followed the recipe and the batter was like a dough. Mine didn’t taste good. I was really looking forward to having a treat. I’m in my 3rd week of AIP elimination.

    • Sorry to hear that! Perhaps checking expiration dates of all your products, and also sometimes different flour brands perform differently. I tend to use Otto’s cassava flour.

  4. I can’t believe how good this was. Every AIP dessert I’ve tried has been meh. Only complaint was it was a little crumbly. Did I do something wrong or is there anything to fix this?

    • It’s a favorite of mine as well! It might be a flour thing (different brands or measurements can change it), I’d just add a little more liquid or oil (eyeball it).

  5. This is my favorite aip dessert I’ve tried so far. All the others have been fails. I’ve made this 3 times and it’s perfect. Really tastes like coffee cake. Perfect texture. It is delicious.

  6. This recipe was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! My husband is having to do the elimination diet and so I have been trying to find easy(ish) recipes that are also good, and this one was a win. My husband had been getting a little restless and wanting to quit because he couldn’t find anything that really satisfied his sweet tooth, but after making this just 20 minutes ago, half of the pan is gone!  He’s already requested that I make another pan for him to have throughout the week too, ha! Thank you for such a great recipe that makes us feel guilt free and like we are actually putting good things in our bodies when we eat it! We will definitely look for other recipes of yours to try! 

    • YAY! I’m so happy to hear this, Nicole. You’re so welcome – glad you guys enjoyed it. xx

  7. thank you for this recipe! i am absolutely addicted to desserts and i started AIP a today- i knew i’d need something sweet after dinner. i even gave it to my parents who aren’t on AIP and they loved it! i topped mine with coconut yoghurt (sugar and dairy free) and it turned out great. i did. have to add much more than. 2tbsp of milk to make the batter non crumbly (till it became a rough paste). and i added about 50ml of room temperature water. 

    • I LOVE this recipe! My hubby and I make a double batch of this on the weekend and enjoy for the first few days of the week!
      I also add in 1/2 serving of collagen per serving each time I make this. It is so delish and ups the protein!! Thank you!!

    • Hi Shanna! The ingredients are all linked, Amazon is usually the most affordable or Thrive Market.

  8. I’m so impressed with the creative tweaks you used to make this decadent indulgence available to people who are eating clean and following vegan, paleo and aip regimens. Even more impressive that it only took two tries for you guys to be in love with it! It’s tricky converting beloved indulgences into diet regimens like those – but so awesome for EVERYONE to be able to enjoy coffee cake! Well done!!

  9. I recently brought a bag of tigernut flour for my gluten free recipes and have a bit to spare. I haven’t combined cassava with tigernut flour so this will be a new and exciting challenge for me.

  10. Hello, This looks really delicious! I am wondering if you have any ideas for substituting the coconut in the topping. I think I can figure out how to replace it with other things in the wet and dry ingredients, but I’m not sure how to replace it with the topping. Thanks!

  11. I do not have Tigernut Flour. Would I be able to just sub for more Cassava Flour? May make it more dense, but wanted to get your thoughts on this if you have insights to the difference it would make in how this turns out. Thank you!

    • I don’t think it will behave the same, maybe more dense and gummy. If you’re doing nuts/seeds, a nut or seed flour could work but I’m not sure about anything else!

  12. I just made this and was wondering if the batter was supposed to be so dry and crumbly while the mix for the topping came out to be way more wet like a paste? Am I doing something wrong? Is it okay I added more oil and apple sauce to the cake mix/batter to made it more like a wet batter/paste? 

  13. This is so good, I think it’s better than regular coffee cake. Making this again today! 🙂

    • I designed the recipe to specifically exclude eggs, so I haven’t tried, however, you could replace the applesauce with 1 egg to test that out! Hope that helps.

  14. Hey really want to try this! looks so good! Do you think it would work with chickpea flour and maybe some millet flour?

  15. I have mine in the oven now, can’t wait to try it with a cup of tea tonight.  I am wondering if it would also work with some finely chopped apple between the layers.

  16. Wow!  I made this last night using Ceylon cinnamon (cooled it on the counter through the night with only a tea towel) and served it as an afternoon treat for guests after lunch today and it was fantastically delicious!  Thank you so much for sharing this recipe….I really love cakes too and dearly miss them being on the AIP…but not anymore! 🙂

    • Aww!! yay! Absolutely love hearing that, you are so welcome – I’m pretty obsessed with this cake myself.

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