Also known simply as ‘German Butter Cake‘, this is a classic treat that you can easily make at home. German Butter Sheet Cake (Butterkuchen) will surely win you over — great for snack, dessert or breakfast. Give it a try!
This might not be as ubiquitous as pretzels, but still, I have yet to see a bakery (at least in Frankfurt), that do not have this butter cake.
This cake is more like a bread, a yeasted bread to be exact, but they call it ‘cake’ here in Germany. Doesn’t really matter to me, it’s still DELICIOUS!
Oh btw, I have been making this cake without a stand mixer. Yep, kneading the dough manually. 🙂
Since I left my stand mixer in Stockholm, I refuse to buy another one here in Frankfurt. (I have to say, it’s actually not that difficult…?)
HOW TO MAKE GERMAN BUTTER CAKE (BUTTERKUCHEN)
CAN I USE A DIFFERENT SIZE OF BAKING PAN FOR THIS BUTTER CAKE?
Yes. You can even use a round baking pan if you prefer.
But traditionally, they really just bake it on a tray. That’s what makes it special in a way – a no fuss cake.
You don’t even need a rolling pin, if you don’t have one.
You can just stretch the dough to fit the size of the tray, and then use your hands to make it even. Trust me, I have done that too.
I’M ALLERGIC TO NUTS, CAN I SKIP THE ALMONDS IN THIS SHEET CAKE RECIPE?
Absolutely. I see them without almonds in bakeries as well.
I prefer to make the one with almonds, because I like the crunch in every bite. 🙂
CAN I USE A TOPPING WITH LESS SUGAR FOR THIS BUTTER CAKE?
If I am not mistaken, traditionally, they only use butter for the topping.
They put these bits of butter in the holes and then just sprinkle sugar (or streusel) on top. You can do that if you think the mixture is too sweet for you.
WHAT GOES WITH GERMAN BUTTER CAKE?
Coffee, hands down. If you’re not a coffee drinker, tea will be good as well.
Personally, I don’t pair it with any sweet beverage because this sheet cake is already sweet on its own (but that is just me).
Try it with your favorite drink, you never know, you might like it! 🙂
FOR OTHER GERMAN RECIPES, CHECK OUT 10+ German Food Recipes You Must Try
OR IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR MORE CAKE IDEAS, YOU CAN CHECK OUT MY CAKES COLLECTION PAGE!
German Butter Sheet Cake (Butterkuchen)
For the dough:
- 2 & 1/4 tsp active dry yeast
- 1 cup milk, warm
- 3 & 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 3 tbsp sugar
- 3 tbsp butter, unsalted and softened
- 1 large egg, room temperature and beaten
For the topping:
- 1 & 1/4 stick butter, unsalted and softened
- 6 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 cup almonds, blanched and sliced
- In a bowl, combine ½ cup warm milk with yeast. Mix. Set aside until foamy.
- In a large bowl, combine flour, salt and sugar. Mix to combine. (If you are using a stand mixer, combine these in the mixer bowl)
- Once yeast mixture is ready, add to the dry ingredients. Add remaining ½ cup of milk and butter. Mix to combine.
- Add egg. Mix until a dough is formed.
- Knead until dough becomes smooth.
- Place dough in an oiled bowl. Cover with clean kitchen towel and set aside until size has doubled. (Normally takes at least an hour).
- Once dough has doubled in size, take it out of the bowl and by using a rolling pin, roll the dough into the baking sheet’s size. (I use a baking tray that’s 33 cm x 40 cm.)
- Prick the dough with a fork randomly.
- Cover with clean kitchen towel and set aside for 30 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F).
- When the dough is almost ready, start preparing the topping.
- Combine butter, sugar and cinnamon powder in a bowl. Use a hand mixer to mix.
- Once the dough is ready, use your fingers to make dents on the dough.
- Spread the cinnamon-butter mixture on the dough, making sure that the holes have the mixture in them.
- Sprinkle sliced almonds on top of the dough evenly.
- Place in the middle of the oven for 18 to 20 minutes.
- Once cool enough to cut, slice the cake into 16 portions.
- Serve. Sprinkle with more sliced almonds, if desired.
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