Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

filed under: Cakes on September 14, 2019

Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake… the cake to make this fall! A butter pound cake with the most perfect flavor and crumb is topped with a butter pecan glaze! I didn’t think this pound could get any better (it is so good without any frosting) but this glaze absolutely enhances it and takes it to the next level!

Slice of Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

This cake is broken down into two major components. The cream cheese pound cake and the butter pecan glaze. Because there are so few ingredients between the two recipes, it is important to use good quality products! I opted for Challenge Butter and Challenge Cream Cheese to make sure that my cake would be the best tasting pound cake you will ever try!

Challenge Butter and Cream Cheese are both made the old-fashioned way, from the freshest milk and cream from happy cows at family-owned dairies. In fact, Challenge is the only major U.S. dairy product company that controls the whole process when it comes to making its butter, from milking the cows, to transporting milk, to making the butter to packaging and distributing. Talk about quality control! I used the butter in my Caramel Pumpkin Butter Bars as well, and it did not disappoint!

Ingredients for Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

How to Make Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Let’s start with the pound cake itself. I used my Cream Cheese Pound Cake as the base for a couple of reasons. It has been heavily tested and perfected and it tastes amazing. Perfection. People are known to have their eyes roll up in their head when taking the first bite. It’s that good.

I can’t stress enough that this cake needs to be made with room temperature ingredients. This will ensure easier mixing and helps achieve that perfect crumb. Make sure each ingredient is incorporated before moving on to the next! Be gentle with your batter. If you want to remove it from the stand mixer right after adding the flour and mix by hand that is just fine but make sure your flour is doubled sifted and that there are no lumps.

As far as baking temperature and time, that is something you will want to keep a close eye on. If you happen to have any hot spots in your oven you may want to turn the cake halfway through baking. The crust should be golden, not burnt. This means that 325°F is the highest you should go, but the length of baking might be longer. It took me listening to my grandma talk about a “true” pound cake for me to understand that a dark golden crust was the GOAL. I had always believed that the outside should not be dark at all, but this is not the case! There is an amazing flavor is those beautiful crust edges and something that a real pound cake definitely needs.

Batter in a Bundt Pan for Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Prepare Cake Batter

  • Challenge Butter
  • Challenge Cream Cheese
  • Sugar
  • Eggs
  • Vanilla
  • Cake Flour
  • Buttermilk

Prepare a large bundt pan with butter and flour or by spraying with non-stick spray. (My 10-inch bundt pan is 3 inches deep. There should be at least 1 1/2 inches between the height of the batter and the top edge of the pan.)

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add sugar gradually and beat until lighter and fluffier. Add eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition. Add in the vanilla. Add the flour all at once and mix until just combined. Add in buttermilk with mixer on low and mix until just incorporated. Remove bowl from stand mixer and scrape with a rubber spatula to get every last bit of ingredient incorporated. Pour into bundt pan. Bake for 1 hour up to 1 hour and 20 minutes. Check for doneness at 1 hour. A toothpick inserted into the center of the cake should come out with a few crumbs but no wet batter when the cake is done. The crust will be a dark golden brown around the edges and lighter in the center.

Ingredients for Butter Glaze

Prepare Pecan Butter Glaze

I recommend starting the glaze after the cake has baked and been removed from the oven. To make this perfect glaze you will need:

  • Challenge butter
  • sugar
  • vanilla
  • chopped pecans

Start by melting the first 3 ingredients in a saucepan over medium to medium-low heat. Once fully combined and all of the sugar is melted, remove it from the heat.

Cracking the Crust on a Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Using a fork, punch holes into the bottom of the cake.

Pouring Butter Glaze over Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Pour HALF of the glaze over the broken-up cake. Let the cake sit and cool slightly. Set the rest of the glaze (still in the saucepan) back onto the stove on the lowest heat setting.

When you are ready to serve the cake or about 30 minutes later, carefully flip it onto a serving platter.

Add the chopped pecans to the saucepan with the glaze and stir well. Pour the pecan butter glaze over the top of the cake.

Overhead view of Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

Is there anything better than this cake? That beautiful butter pecan glaze soaks into the cake so beautifully!

Slices of Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

How to Serve Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake

This cake is best served warm. The glaze will harden a bit when it is cool or room temperature and while it still tastes delicious, the texture is changed.

If you are making this cake ahead of time and freezing, do not add the pecan butter glaze to the top (only the bottom). Warm cake to room temperature before adding the pecan glaze. Another option is pouring the entire portion of pecan glaze over the top of the cake (instead of half on the bottom and half on top), it will still taste amazing, just look different.

 

Slice of Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake with a Bite Removed

We love how that buttery glaze soaks into the bottom of the cake. It practically melts in your mouth!

Love Pound Cakes? Don’t Miss These:

Chocolate Pound Cake

Pumpkin Pound Cake

Vanilla Pound Cake

Lemon Pound Cake

Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake
Prep Time
20 mins
Cook Time
1 hr 20 mins
Total Time
1 hr 40 mins
 

Seriously one of the best cakes you will ever try... delicate crumb with smooth cream cheese flavor and the most fabulous butter pecan glaze!

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cream Cheese Pound Cake, kentucky butter cake, kentucky butter crunch cake
Servings: 12
Calories: 694 kcal
Author: Amanda Rettke - iambaker.net
Ingredients
POUND CAKE
BUTTER PECAN GLAZE
  • 1/2 cup (113g) Challenge Butter
  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
Instructions
POUND CAKE
  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Prepare a large bundt pan with butter and flour or by spraying with non-stick spray. (My 10-inch bundt pan is 3 inches deep. There should be at least 1 1/2 inches between the height of the batter and the top edge of the pan.)

  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine cream cheese and butter until smooth, about 3 minutes. (Can also use a hand-held mixer.)

  3. Add sugar gradually and beat until lighter and fluffier.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, beating well with each addition.
  5. Add in the vanilla.
  6. Add the flour all at once and mix until just combined.
  7. With the mixer on low, add in buttermilk and mix until just incorporated.

  8. Remove bowl from stand mixer and scrape with a rubber spatula to get every last bit of ingredient incorporated.

  9. Pour into the prepared bundt pan. Bake for 1 hour - 1 hour and 20 minutes. Check for doneness at 1 hour. (A toothpick inserted into the center of the cake should come out with a few crumbs but no wet batter when the cake is done. The crust will be a dark golden brown around the edges and lighter in the center.)

  10. Set cake on a cooling rack (still in the pan) to cool slightly while glaze is prepared.

BUTTER PECAN GLAZE
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat, add the butter, sugar, and vanilla.

  2. Stir with a rubber spatula and allow butter and sugar to melt into a smooth consistency.

  3. Remove from heat.

ASSEMBLING CAKE
  1. Using a fork, poke the warm pound cake and break up the bottom crust. Do this all over the exposed cake. (See pictures above.)

  2. Pour HALF of the butter pecan sauce over the broken cake. Allow to cool to room temperature. (Do not let cake get cold.)*

  3. After about 30 minutes, carefully flip the cake onto a serving platter.

  4. Re-heat the remaining butter glaze and add the chopped pecans. Stir well.

  5. Pour pecan glaze over the top of the cake.

  6. Serve immediately. (Cake is best when served slightly warm.)

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

*This cake is best served warm, but should not be hot when you remove it from the pan or it could break. The butter sauce needs to cool slightly before you flip the cake onto the serving platter. The final butter sauce that has the chopped pecans can be poured over the cake immediately before serving.

Thank you for supporting the brands that support me here at iambaker! I adore working with Challenge products and love how their superior quality enhances everything I bake!

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Comments

  • Sharon says:

    Awesome recipes, love to bake, not as good as yours look, but I try!

  • B Hardin says:

    If it takes 30 min for butter to come to room temperature is that also the time for eggs and milk

  • Mayanka Khetarpal says:

    What is a good substitute for cake flour?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      3 cups flour + 6 tablespoons corn starch. Sift well.

  • Melissa says:

    I noticed in your post for just your cream cheese pound cake you use salted butter. In this recipe it doesn’t say. Did you use salted or unsalted in this recipe? Thanks!

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Both work well in this recipe. 🙂

  • Susan Brown says:

    This sure looks good. Has anyone tried it with gluten free flour? If so, what kind did you use?

  • Chianna says:

    Would you know if this recipe would work in a mini bundt cakes pan?

  • Kathija says:

    Can this cake be eaten without the pecan butter sauce?

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      Of course!

  • Debbie says:

    I have not made this yet, sounds wonderful.
    I have a question For some reason my cakes are still very goodie in the middle or near the top of the cake I have tried baking longer.What should I do?

  • Robi Rau says:

    Just made this and it is delicious! Will definitely make it again.

  • Karen Moore says:

    Can i use regular flour instead of cake flour.

  • Shirley Roberts says:

    Can you tell me the difference between reg flour an cake flour. Also how does the cake rise without baking powder or soda?

  • Lisa Smith says:

    I made the Kentucky Butter Crunch Cake for my family reunion today. My Uncle gave me the highest compliment ever when he said it “tasted like Mama’s” (my Grandmother) she been gone for over 20 years. I miss her baking!

    • Amanda Rettke says:

      That is so wonderful to hear Lisa!!! <3 <3 <3

  • Sue Kershner says:

    Can you freeze this cake. I am concerned about the topping becoming sugary.

  • Iffi says:

    I made it today. Yummiest cake ever!! I regret not putting enough glaze inside the cake.. I think the more you put the more tasty it becomes.. so don’t be afraid to pour most of it inside..

  • Wanda says:

    I am from Kentucky and can’t wait to make this cake. It is similar to some cakes I have made before and I love to bake. It looks delicious! Thank you for the recipe.

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