Cherry Almond Cake
Packed with cherries and topped with a layer of crunchy almonds, this Cherry Almond Cake makes for one heck of a dessert…or breakfast!
What makes a cake acceptable for breakfast? Some cakes are meant for dessert while other cakes are meant for breakfast. So what are the rules there? Don’t get me wrong – I love cake! I will gladly eat a slice of cake no matter the time of the day. But there are some cakes that are better for breakfast and some cakes that are better for dessert – so what are the rules?
One of my all-time favorite cakes – coffee cake – is meant to be a breakfast cake. But why? There’s no actual coffee in coffee cake, so what makes coffee cake socially acceptable for breakfast? Is it the cinnamon crumbles? Is it the lack of frosting?
Fast forward 12 hours. Now we’re into dessert time. I absolutely love this Chocolate Chocolate Cake. Moist chocolatey cake topped with creamy chocolate buttercream. Add some chocolate curls on top, and you’ve got a cake that’s sure to be requested again and again….and again! Is it ok to eat a slice of that chocolate cake for breakfast? I mean I’m not gonna stop you, but chocolate cake is generally seen as dessert instead of breakfast.
Cherry Almond Cake
Enter this Cherry Almond Cake. I have no idea whether to serve this cake as a breakfast cake or a dessert cake. I initially intended for this to be dessert, but Laura took one bite and pointed out that it reminded her of breakfast food. She’s kinda right. This cake would be fantastic for breakfast. Is it the lack of frosting? Is it the cherries? Ah, forget the rules! Eat a slice of this cake whenever you want a slice of this cake!!
This Cherry Almond Cake is a simple, easy recipe. It does have a unique twist in that it uses ¾ of a cup of almonds that get ground up and mixed into the cake batter. That plus the sliced almonds on top plus the tiny little bit of almond extract (that stuff is potent!) all combine for a noticeable almond flavor in this cake. Add in the cherries, and you’ve got one heck of a dessert…or breakfast!
One of my favorite things about this Cherry Almond Cake is the crunchy topping that gets sprinkled on top of the cake before it goes in the oven. The cake itself is tasty, but that crunchy topping? Yum! And that topping is quite simple, too – just a combination of sliced almonds, coarse sugar (like turbinado) and a bit of water. (The water is there to help the sugar stick to the sliced almonds.) Once it gets baked, that topping is crunchy, sugar-y and delicious. Enjoy!
Did you bake this Cherry Almond Cake at home? Leave a comment, or snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog) – I’d love to see your version!
Cherry Almond Cake
- ¾ cup almonds chopped
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp almond extract
- 2½ cups pitted cherries fresh or frozen and thawed
- ½ cup sliced almonds
- ½ Tbsp water
- 3 Tbsp coarse sugar i.e. turbinado or sparkling sugar
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Line an 8”x8” square pan with parchment paper and then spray with nonstick baking spray; set pan aside. (Tip: Use extra parchment paper so that it rises above edges of the pan. This will make it easier to remove the cake after baking.)
- Using a food processor or mini chopper, add chopped almonds; pulse until finely ground.
- Transfer ground almonds into a mixing bowl and add flour, baking powder and salt; stir until well combined.
- Using a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (~3-4 minutes on medium speed).
- Add eggs one at a time, mixing after each addition.
- Add vanilla extract and almond extract; mix until well combined.
- Add flour mixture (from above) in two additions, mixing after each addition until well combined.
- Transfer batter into prepared pan. Spread cherries evenly on top of batter.
- Using a small mixing bowl, add sliced almonds, water and coarse sugar. (Note: Granulated sugar can be used here, but I like the additional crunch that comes from coarser sugars like turbinado or sparkling.) Spread mixture evenly around edge of the cake.
- Bake for 10 minutes and then tent the top of the pan with foil. Continue baking for 50-55 more minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out mostly clean. (Note: The purpose of tenting the pan with foil is to prevent the sugared almonds on top from burning. I recommend removing the foil for the last 10 minutes of baking time, but pay close attention that the sugared almonds don’t burn!)
- Let cake cool in pan for 20 minutes and then transfer cake to a wire rack until completely cool.
Looking for more desserts with almonds? Check out these other favorites, too:
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cant wait to make this soon for me can i use vegan butter i never had cherry almond cake before perfect for my after office snacks love your recipes as always brightens up my day everyday after work
I haven’t personally used vegan butter in this recipe, Ramya – but I suspect it would work just fine! Let me know what you think if you get a chance to try this one!
Oooh love that combination of cherries and almonds together! This coffee cake looks so moist and delicious! I could see my kids inhaling this for breakfast 🙂
Cherries and almonds go so well together. 🙂 This cake is pretty fantastic…even if Laura and I couldn’t agree on the best time of the day to eat it!
I’m all for eating cake for breakfast! And you’re right, some are just more perfect for breakfast than others. Love cherries and almonds together. They make a great combination.
Haha – I hear ya, Kathy! Cake for breakfast sounds like a great way to start the day. I can’t do cake with frosting…but a cake like this one? Or a coffee cake? Sign me up! Either way, the cherries and almonds in this one combine for a great flavor. And those crunchy, sugared almonds on top? Holy cow….
This is just gorgeous! I’d definitely have it for breakfast.
I’m with ya, Mimi – this is breakfast along with a nice strong cup of coffee! 🙂
If rice is acceptable for breakfast in my home country then any cake for me is acceptable during breakfast specially that cherry almond cake of yours, they look fab
Ah – you make a great point, Raymund! I like that comment about rice. 🙂 Thanks so much for the kind words – this cake truly is fantastic. The sugared almonds on top are good enough to eat by themselves!
I could TOTALLY have this for breakfast (with a big cup or two of coffee, of course)! Cherries and almonds are such a fantastic combination. I can’t wait to see some fresh cherries in the grocery store. This cake looks like a must make!!
I hear ya on the cake + coffee for breakfast, Dawn – that sounds like a pretty great start to the day. 🙂 This cake definitely deserves a spot on your list once those cherries show up! (P.S. You can use frozen cherries, too…just sayin’.)
yum i love cherries. this cake would be fabulous any time of day or night:)
Thanks so much, Sherry! I also love cherries…both to eat as well as to bake with. 🙂
I don’t know what happened to cherries this season, but…well – basically, there have not been fresh cherries this year here in Nova Scotia. Literally I saw them three times, first two times the price was reasonable but it was the beginning of cherry season, so we wanted to wait a bit more. And the next time they showed up, the price was ridiculous (Like 10$ for lb.) Luckily, frozen cherries are always available, so I might be able to try this cake. Almonds and cherries make a perfect combination!
No cherries? Well that’s sad! I know they can be really expensive unless you buy them in season. ($10/pound is insane!!) Frozen cherries work just as well for this cake, Ben – just make sure to thaw ’em and drain ’em. Should still be a delicious treat for breakfast…and dessert! 🙂
David, this is one of the most lovely cakes that I have seen lately. The cherries, the almonds, the crunchy topping!!! It just doesn’t get any better than that. And I would eat this cake any time of the day. Thanks so much for sharing.
Why thank you very much, Kristy! I do love the cherry + almond combo, and the crunchy sugared almonds on top really take it to a whole new level. I need to make another one of these soon!!
The texture of this cake is drool worthy, David! And you can’t go wrong with the combination of cherries and almonds.
Cherries and almonds pair so well together – and when they land in a cake that can be eaten for breakfast? Sign me up! Haha. Thanks, Marissa!