Everyone seems to love pound cake. When there is a secret player of cinnamon streusel, the love only deepens. You will know this cake is perfect long before you bake it. How? Just taste the batter. In Step 4, author Tish Boyle of The Cake Book has you beat sugar and butter for an extended time then add eggs and beat until super fluffy. The batter is graced with orange zest. This cake is perfect for Sunday brunch desserts for spring weekends. It is easily made, but does require over an hour baking time. So plan ahead and don’t leave out that streusel.

If you want, double the streusel and make two layers. You can double down in blackjack and with this sensational cake, too.

Cinnamon Swirl Buttermilk Pound Cake

Yield: 12 servings


For the cinnamon streusel swirl:

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

For the buttermilk pound cake:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup cake flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1 cup buttermilk


1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease the inside of a 10-inch Bundt pan. Dust the pan with flour.

Make the cinnamon swirl:

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt, breaking up any large lumps of brown sugar. Add the melted butter and stir until blended and crumbly.

Make the pound cake:

3. Sift together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cardamom into a medium bowl. Whisk to combine, and set aside!

4. In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment beat the butter at medium speed until very creamy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the sugar and beat at medium-high speed until well blended and light, about 4 minutes. At medium speed, add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition and scrapping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. Beat in the vanilla extract and orange zest. At low speed, add the dry ingredients in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk in two additions and mixing just until combined.

5. Scrape half of the batter into the prepared pan and smooth it into an even layer. Sprinkle the streusel mixture evenly over the batter. Scrape the remaining batter on top and smooth it into an even layer.

6. Bake the cake for 65 to 75 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool the cake in the pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes.

7. Invert the cake onto the rack and cool completely.

8. If you desire dust the cake lightly with confectioners’ sugar right before serving.


Source: The Cake Book by Tish Boyle [Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2006]

Photo Information [Top]: Canon T2i, EFS 60mm Macro Lens, F/4 for1/30th second at ISO‑250

Photo Information [Bottom]: Canon T2i, EFS 60mm Macro Lens, F/4 for1/30th second at ISO‑800