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Enjoy fresh summer produce in this easy, old-fashioned blueberry buckle recipe! The moist cake is piled high with cinnamon streusel topping, making it a perfect coffee cake for your next breakfast or brunch buffet, or a vehicle for vanilla ice cream at dessert.

Side shot of a slice of blueberry buckle cake with cinnamon streusel topping
Table of Contents
  1. Moist Blueberry Buckle
  2. What does buckle mean in baking?
  3. Ingredients
  4. How to Make Blueberry Buckle Cake
  5. How to Store Blueberry Buckle
  6. Recipe Variations
  7. Tips for the Best Blueberry Buckle Recipe
  8. Old-Fashioned Blueberry Buckle Recipe

Moist Blueberry Buckle

You’re probably familiar with a fruit crisp or a berry cobbler, but have you ever tried a buckle?! And no — I’m not referring to your belt! This old-fashioned blueberry buckle recipe is a classic cake that works well for both breakfast and dessert! Made from scratch, the buckle has a moist, tender crumb and a rich, buttery, cinnamon streusel topping. Pair a slice with a cup of coffee in the morning, with a glass of iced tea for an afternoon snack, or with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for a late-night treat. It’s truly the best blueberry buckle recipe ever!

What does buckle mean in baking?

Buckle is a member of the cobbler family, and it consists of fruit and cake that are baked together with a streusel topping. It’s essentially a coffee cake with fruit added to the mix! Some folks prefer a buckle in the morning as a breakfast or brunch dish with a mug of hot coffee, while others like a buckle dessert in the evening. How about both?! This is one of those great recipes that you can enjoy at any time of day.

Overhead shot of old fashioned blueberry buckle recipe cut into bars on a wooden cutting board

Why do they call it blueberry buckle?

This old-fashioned treat is called a blueberry buckle because the streusel topping and the berries in this moist fruit cake weigh down the batter as it bakes, causing the top to look “buckled.”

Square shot of classic blueberry buckle cake on a white plate

Ingredients

This is a quick overview of the simple ingredients that you’ll need for a blueberry buckle coffee cake. As always, specific measurements and complete cooking instructions are included in the printable recipe box at the bottom of the post.

  • All-purpose flour: the base of both the cake and the topping.
  • Granulated sugar and light brown sugar: to sweeten the cake and the streusel.
  • Cinnamon and nutmeg: warm spices for the topping.
  • Kosher salt: to enhance the other flavors in the dish and balance out the sweetness.
  • Butter: for moisture and flavor in both the topping and in the cake.
  • Egg: for structure.
  • Vanilla extract and almond extract: to flavor the cake batter. You can omit the almond extract if you don’t have any, but I think that it gives the dish that extra something special!
  • Buttermilk: gives the cake batter a tender crumb, a little bit more rise, and a slight tang. You can substitute with regular milk in this recipe, if necessary. It will still be great!
  • Baking powder: the leavening agent that helps the cake rise.
  • Blueberries: fresh, sweet and juicy in-season berries are always best.

How to Make Blueberry Buckle Cake

This classic blueberry buckle recipe comes together quickly with just a handful of basic ingredients.

  1. Stir together the streusel topping, then refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Mix together the batter, then fold in half of the berries.
  3. Spread the thick batter in a greased or parchment-lined 9-inch square baking dish.
  4. Sprinkle the remaining blueberries on top and press down gently.
  5. Add the streusel crumb topping over all.
  6. Bake the buckle in a 375° F oven for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cinnamon streusel in a bowl
Ingredients for blueberry buckle in a metal mixing bowl
Adding blueberries to a moist blueberry buckle cake
Process shot showing how to make the best blueberry buckle recipe
Overhead shot of moist blueberry buckle in a white baking dish
Square overhead image of classic blueberry buckle cut into squares

How to Store Blueberry Buckle

Package the cake in an airtight container or wrap tightly with plastic wrap. The blueberry buckle will last for 2-3 days at room temperature, about 1 week in the refrigerator, or up to 3 months in the freezer.

Slices of old fashioned blueberry buckle on a wooden cutting board

Recipe Variations

  • I like the slight tang and the moist, tender crumb that you get from buttermilk in the batter; however, whole milk or low-fat milk will work as a substitute in this recipe.
  • You can make blueberry buckle with frozen blueberries, but it’s not my preference. The frozen blueberries tend to bleed and turn the batter an odd greenish-blue color. If using frozen berries, do not thaw them before adding them to the batter.
  • To make a larger blueberry buckle recipe in a 9 x 13-inch dish, double all of the ingredients. Make sure that your pan is nice and deep, because the buckle will rise quite high and you don’t want it to overflow in the oven. You will likely need to increase the total baking time by a few extra minutes to account for the larger cake.
  • Swap out the almond extract and make a lemon blueberry buckle instead. Add about 1-2 teaspoons of freshly-grated lemon zest to the batter.
  • Garnish the streusel topping with thinly-sliced almonds or slivered almonds for some added crunch before baking.
Moist blueberry buckle on a white plate

Tips for the Best Blueberry Buckle Recipe

  • Line the baking dish with an overhang of parchment paper and grease well if you’d like to be able to lift the entire cake out of the pan before slicing (as shown here). Otherwise, just grease the pan well and cut out slices directly from the dish.
  • Add half of the berries to the batter, and reserve the other half for the top. This way you have sweet, juicy berries in every bite, and you can see the beautiful fruit as the topping buckles.
  • If you’re worried that the berries in your batter will sink, you can toss that first cup of blueberries with about 1-2 teaspoons of flour before stirring them in. I don’t think this is necessary, though. The berries don’t sink much in the thick batter!
  • Since the batter is very thick, I find that it’s easiest to spread it in an even layer in the pan if you moisten your hands or spatula with a little bit of water first.
  • The total baking time will vary depending on your individual oven, as well as the type of baking dish that you’re using. For instance, metal pans or a cast iron skillet will bake the cake faster than a glass or ceramic dish (shown here). As a result, it’s best to check the cake after about 35 minutes, and pull it out when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • If you’re offering the cake for dessert, serve a warm slice with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream for the ultimate treat!
Side shot of a slice of blueberry buckle with a bite taken out of it

More Blueberry Recipes to Try

Here are some more recipes to make with a bounty of fresh blueberries this season:

Square side shot of a slice of blueberry buckle

Old-Fashioned Blueberry Buckle

5 from 1 vote
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour
Servings 9 – 12 slices
Calories 272 kcal
Enjoy fresh summer produce in this easy, old-fashioned blueberry buckle recipe! You'll love the cinnamon streusel topping!

Ingredients
  

FOR THE TOPPING:

FOR THE BATTER:

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375° F. Grease a 9-inch square baking dish; set aside.

PREPARE THE TOPPING:

  • In a medium bowl, use a fork or your fingers to combine flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Add melted butter and combine until crumbly. Refrigerate until ready to use.

PREPARE THE BATTER:

  • In a large bowl, cream together sugar and butter. Add the egg, vanilla extract and almond extract; mix well. Add the buttermilk; mix to combine.
  • In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the sugar mixture; mix just until combined (do not over-mix). Fold in 1 cup of the blueberries.
  • Transfer batter to the prepared pan. Sprinkle remaining 1 cup of blueberries on top; press down gently. Add the crumb topping over all.

BAKE THE BUCKLE:

  • Bake the buckle in the 375° F oven for 35-45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Notes

  • Line the baking dish with an overhang of parchment paper and grease well if you’d like to be able to lift the entire cake out of the pan before slicing (as shown here). Otherwise, just grease the pan well and cut out slices directly from the dish.
  • Add half of the berries to the batter, and reserve the other half for the top. This way you have sweet, juicy berries in every bite, and you can see the beautiful fruit as the topping buckles.
  • If you’re worried that the berries in your batter will sink, you can toss that first cup of blueberries with about 1-2 teaspoons of flour before stirring them in. I don’t think this is necessary, though. The berries don’t sink much in the thick batter!
  • Since the batter is very thick, I find that it’s easiest to spread it in an even layer in the pan if you moisten your hands or spatula with a little bit of water first.
  • The total baking time will vary depending on your individual oven, as well as the type of baking dish that you’re using. For instance, metal pans or a cast iron skillet will bake the cake faster than a glass or ceramic dish (shown here). As a result, it’s best to check the cake after about 35 minutes, and pull it out when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • If you’re offering the cake for dessert, serve a warm slice with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream for the ultimate treat!

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice (1/12 of the cake)Calories: 272kcalCarbohydrates: 46gProtein: 4gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 35mgSodium: 183mgPotassium: 142mgFiber: 1gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 286IUVitamin C: 2mgCalcium: 55mgIron: 1mg
Keyword: Blueberry Buckle
Course: Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Blair Lonergan
blair

Hey, I’m Blair!

Welcome to my farmhouse kitchen in the foothills of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Inspired by local traditions and seasonal fare, you’ll find plenty of easy, comforting recipes that bring your family together around the table. It’s down-home, country-style cooking!

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Comments

  1. Kristy from Southern In Law says:

    What a beautiful cake! I really need to make a buckle cake soon as I haven’t made one in so long!

    1. Blair says:

      Thanks, Kristy! I hope that you get to enjoy one soon! 🙂

  2. Darlene Schilling says:

    Thanks for this recipe.I had a recipe for. One but it got lost in our house firer

    1. Blair says:

      Oh, good! I’m so glad that you can enjoy it again! xoxo

  3. carla says:

    Love this!
    I would like to repost it on my blog.
    http://www.motownsavvy.com

    Please contact me, and give me photo credits. I will redirect to your site!

    1. Blair says:

      Hi, Carla! You can feel free to share the link and a photo, but please don’t repost the entire recipe on your site. So glad you like it! 🙂

  4. Beth Donovan says:

    5 stars
    I just pulled his out of the oven. Couldn’t wait for it to cool down before we dug in. Delicious!

    1. Blair Lonergan says:

      Oh, yay! I’m so glad that you enjoyed it, Beth!