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Candy Cane Coffee Cake

Dotted with dried apricots and maraschino cherries, this tender coffee cake has a festive flavor and look. I love to serve it at Christmastime for my family, fellow teachers and students. It makes a welcome holiday gift, too. -Linda Hollingsworth, Quitman, Mississippi
  • Total Time
    Prep: 35 min. + rising Bake: 20 min.
  • Makes
    3 loaves (12 slices each)


  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce each) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 2 cups warm sour cream (110° to 115°)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, divided
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 5-3/4 to 6-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 cups finely chopped dried apricots
  • 1-1/2 cups finely chopped maraschino cherries
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • Additional cherries, halved


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Beat in the sour cream, 4 tablespoons butter, sugar, eggs, salt and 2 cups flour; beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide into thirds. Roll each portion into a 14x7-in. rectangle on a greased baking sheet.
  • Combine apricots and cherries; spoon down the center of each rectangle. On each long side, cut 3/4-in.-wide strips about 2 in. into center. Starting at one end, fold alternating strips at an angle across filling. Pinch ends to seal. Curve top.
  • Bake at 375° for 18-20 minutes or until golden brown. Melt remaining butter; brush over warm coffee cakes. Combine confectioners' sugar and cold water until smooth; drizzle over the tops. Garnish with additional cherries.
Nutrition Facts
1 each: 182 calories, 5g fat (3g saturated fat), 26mg cholesterol, 170mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate (13g sugars, 1g fiber), 3g protein.
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  • DonnaJLuna
    Nov 1, 2020

    I make this bread every year for Christmas gifts for coworkers, friends and even the mailman. It is a favorite! Years ago I substituted apricot jam for the dried apricots as a filling with maraschino cherries. It made all the difference. I also sprinkle some green sugar on the top before wrapping these up for an extra festive looking gift.

  • kulmer
    Dec 23, 2013

    Delicious! Would highly recommend. Was very easy to make and, since it makes 3, it's a great gift to give away during the holidays. I didn't bake it quite as long as the recipe recommends to prevent it from getting too brown and hardening on top. I'd also recommend drizzling the icing on after the cakes cool a bit.

  • marteldann
    Dec 13, 2012

    I have made these for Christmas brunch for years. I do add chopped dates and golden raisins to the filling just to make it a little more tasty and less dry.

  • julie-locke1
    Dec 21, 2010

    We make this every year with Christmas brunch. It is wonderful!

  • connieludwig
    Sep 13, 2009

    No comment left

  • eve
    Dec 12, 2006

    No comment left