Gluten Free Apple Bisquick Coffee Cake

Gluten Free Apple Bisquick Coffee Cake

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone’s favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone's favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

There are a few flour blends that I have in sealed containers on my counter at all times. They are, in order of use:

One. My gum-free gluten free flour blend. I use this blend all. the. time. Every roux I make (every step I take) is made with this simple, 3-ingredient blend of superfine rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca starch.

Two. An all purpose gluten free flour blend. This is often Better Batter, but if I’m feeling industrious enough to build my own blend, I’ll make my “Better Than Cup4Cup Blend.” If someone were even more industrious, they would build that blend and sell it commercially. I would buy it. It’s the best gluten free flour blend.

Three. My D.I.Y. Bisquick-style gluten free pancake mix. Built on the back of my gum-free gluten free flour blend, this is the mix that I use whenever I want to make pancakes or waffles. Sometimes I make little itty bitty pancake bites.

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone's favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

Even if you could the flours used to make the gum-free blend, this blend has only about 6 simple ingredients. In fact, it’s little more than a self-rising-style flour blend, with a bit of salt and a bit of sugar. Since it’s not too salty, and it’s not too sweet, it’s a perfect blank canvas to make, say, this gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake.

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone's favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

The classic on-the-Bisquick-box recipe for this coffee cake, I believe, is made with a somewhat simpler, very cinnamon-heavy topping—and doesn’t have any apples. I’ve tried this recipe every which way by now, and this is my favorite.

If you ask me, you pretty much can’t beat a nubby, sweet crumble topping. And since I already have the Bisquick mix at the ready, I thought I’d give it a try to see if I could use the pancake mix to make my favorite crumble topping like I make for my apple crumble. I’m happy to say that it worked beautifully.

Watch this quick 1-minute how-to video

Just push play ▶️ and watch me make this easy cake. With our homemade Bisquick mix, it couldn’t be easier!

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone's favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

Ingredients and Substitutions

As per usual, I haven’t tried these substitutions. These are just my best-educated guesses. Good luck!

Dairy-Free: In place of unsalted butter in both the topping and cake, try using Spectrum butter-flavored nonhydrogenated vegetable shortening. For the milk, use any nondairy milk you like. You’re best off with something that has some fat and is unsweetened.

Egg-Free: Since there’s only one egg in the cake, you should be able to replace it with a “chia egg” (1 tablespoon ground chia seeds + 1 tablespoon lukewarm water, mixed and allowed to gel).

Bisquick-mix: If you really want to make this cake easier than it already is, I bet you could use the commercially-available Bisquick brand gluten free pancake mix. But I’ve tried that, and it is soooooo gritty and not at all comparable to conventional Bisquick mix. Like, at all.

I know a lot of readers really love Pamela’s gluten free baking mix, which isn’t an all purpose gluten free flour but is a pancake mix. I bet that would work in this recipe. Try it and let us know how it goes!

This gluten free apple Bisquick coffee cake is a riff on the famous velvet crumb cake, made with everyone's favorite crumble topping. Perfect for brunch, or a snack!

Like this recipe?

Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 1 8-inch cake


Crumble Topping
1 cup (140 g) gluten free Bisquick mix

1/2 cup (109 g) packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for sprinkling

1/8 teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons (168 g) unsalted butter, melted and cooled

2 cups (280 g) gluten free Bisquick mix

2 tablespoons (25 g) granulated sugar

1 cup (8 fluid ounces) milk, at room temperature

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled

1 egg (50 g, weighed out of shell) at room temperature, beaten

2 small or 1 large green apple(s), peeled, cored and sliced


  • Preheat your oven to 375°F. Grease and line an 8″ square pan and set it aside.

  • Prepare the crumble topping. In a medium-sized bowl, place the melted butter. Add the Bisquick mix, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt, and mix to combine well. The mixture will be thick. Place the bowl in the refrigerator to chill for about 10 minutes or until firm (or the freezer for about 5 minutes).

  • Make the cake batter. In a large bowl, place the Bisquick mix and 2 tablespoons sugar and whisk to combine. Add the milk, butter, and egg, and mix until just combined. Transfer the cake batter to the prepared pan and smooth into an even layer. Place the apple slices in a single, even layer on top and press gently to adhere. Sprinkle the apple slices lightly with ground cinnamon. Break up the chilled crumble topping with the tines of a fork into irregular pieces. Scatter the pieces evenly on top of the apples, and press gently to adhere.

  • Place the pan in the center of the preheated oven. Bake until the apples are fork-tender, the crumble topping is very lightly golden brown, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with no more than a few moist crumbs attached (about 25 minutes). Allow the cake to cool for at least 10 minutes in the pan before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Slice and serve.


Comments are closed.

  • Jackie
    November 19, 2017 at 8:31 AM

    Hi Nicole- like all your recipes, this one looks delicious! As I’m in the kitchen ready to go, I have to make a last minute substitution for the sugar. Have you ever tried erythritol or stevia? My daughter has cancer and been advised to remove sugar from her diet. I haven’t found any GF recipes anywhere near as good as yours and wonder if you have tried to sub for sugar? I thank you for your bible on gluten free cooking. Don’t know how to bake without your flours! Happy thanksgiving to you and yours?

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 19, 2017 at 8:41 AM

      Hi, Jackie, I haven’t tried substituting sugar in this particular recipe, but I’ve had a fair amount of experience in the past with Swerve brand sugar substitute, and it works great. If your daughter has to avoid sugar, for the time being, I’d stock up on that! They have all different kinds (brown sugar, granulated sugar, even confectioners’ sugar), and it’s a blend of “erythritol, oligosaccharides and natural flavors.” Since erythritol tends to have a strong and unpleasant cooling sensation, the fact that Swerve blends it with other ingredients helps to minimize that. I have no connection to the company (they sell it on Amazon, and even in Walmart, I think), in case you’re wondering. I hope that helps! I wish your daughter a quick recovery and you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving. ❤️

  • Judy Lisella
    November 14, 2017 at 1:15 PM

    Dear Nicole,
    I tried a coule of your recipes that I received from you on my email. They were very good-better than other GF recipes that I have tried. I would like to have one of your recipes for a Christmas present, but I don’t know if you have more than one book, and I want to make sure that I have some of your recent email recipes.
    The cookies were too good:0

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 14, 2017 at 1:43 PM

      Hi, Judy,
      I have 5 cookbooks (you can see a summary of each of them here), but the one I’d recommend for you is the newly revised second edition of my very first cookbook. It’s the second book on that linked page, or you can find it here for purchase (or wherever books are sold). Most of my blog recipes are exclusive to the blog, though. You can’t buy them in a cookbook.

  • Andria
    November 13, 2017 at 3:39 PM

    If I make this the night before will it be good in the morning?

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 13, 2017 at 4:51 PM

      It keeps quite well, covered at room temperature, yes, Andria. But if you use different ingredients or don’t use any xanthan gum as directed in the recipe, then it won’t keep!

  • Becky
    November 12, 2017 at 2:33 PM

    This is delicious! I used pears rather then apples, as i already had them.

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 13, 2017 at 8:22 AM

      Perfect swap, Becky! So glad you enjoyed the cake.

  • Patricia Wilson
    November 12, 2017 at 1:02 PM

    I made the Bisquick Coffee Cake yesterday. I could only find Gluten Free Pancake Mix so added 1/4 tsp. of baking powder to the mix. This was delicious and I would definitely make it again. The apples I had were so big I only needed to cut up one and still had too much for the cake. Thank you for sharing this awesome recipe. Still searching for a GOOD sandwich bread recipe.

  • LUCY
    November 12, 2017 at 11:21 AM

    Thanks for all you do

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 12, 2017 at 11:25 AM

      My pleasure, Lucy. I hope you enjoy the recipe. :)

  • Janet Pilon
    November 11, 2017 at 1:21 PM

    Just made this apple coffeecake. Looks delicious! Am so impressed want to share it with hubby who is away for couple days. Would this freeze well?
    Thanks so much for sharing your recipes!!

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 11, 2017 at 5:51 PM

      I think it would freeze well, yes, Janet. I haven’t tried freezing it, but if you wrap it tightly I think it will do well. So glad you decided to make it. :)

  • Loretta Hanley
    November 10, 2017 at 9:31 PM

    Can you substitute almond or coconut milk for regular milk…?dairy free diet

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 11, 2017 at 5:50 PM

      Please see the section on ingredients and substitutions, Loretta.

  • Rick and Rose Popovic
    November 10, 2017 at 1:10 PM

    I immediately made this upon seeing it this morning as we love crumb style coffee cakes especially with apples, I added walnuts to the topping, though. It is so delicious. It is a keeper

    • Nicole Hunn
      November 10, 2017 at 4:49 PM

      That’s awesome! Talk about instant gratification. Great idea adding walnuts to the topping.

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