It took Manchester City less than two minutes to carve out the first chance of this Capital One Cup clash between two Premier League sides.
Attacking midfielder received the ball on the left hand side and surged into some space in the Palace box, he opened his body up and tried to curl a low effort into the bottom corner, but it flew narrowly wide.
Despite that early scare, the Eagles grew into the contest in Manchester and began to ask questions of the home side, seeing several half-chances zip by in quick succession. Yannick Bolasie headed a Wilfried Zaha cross over the bar, then had another chance moments later when he followed up Joe Ledley's blocked shot, but the Palace winger was crowded out.
Bolasie then suffered a nasty clash of heads with City's Pablo Zabaleta, with both having to receive treatment before play could resume, though - thankfully - both were able to continue, complete with bandages.
Minutes after the restart, City took the lead. De Bruyne burst down the left again, but saw his cross blocked behind for a corner by Adrian Mariappa. The set piece was played into a dangerous area and Wilfried Bony got to it first, powering the ball into the back of the net to open the scoring on 21 minutes.
The game slowed down considerably after the opening goal, with chances few and far between. But it was City that hit struck just before half time to double their advantage. Kelechi Iheanacho burst into the box after some neat link-up play with Bony and squared to De Bruyne for an easy tap in at the back post.
Palace's response was almost instant, with Mutch's dangerous low ball being parried by Willy Caballero into Joe Ledley's path, but the Eagles midfielder guided the ball wide from inside the area. Zaha then had a penalty appeal waved away, after he was blocked off trying to get into the City box, so that meant that the score remained 2-0 to City at half time.
Bony wasted a golden opportunity to put City three up early in the second half, skying an effort well over the top from close range after Fernando had set him up.
Mile Jedinak went close to providing some parity, as his looping header left Willy Caballero in no man's land, but Martin Demichelis reacted quickly to prod the effort off the line.
City soon had the ball in the net for a third, with the influential De Bruyne involved again. The Belgian's low cross found Iheanacho in the area allowing the young striker to swivel and lash home from close range with just under an hour played.
Zaha continued to look bright, despite Palace trailing by three, and he looked the most likely to provide some consolation for the Eagles. The winger was found in the box by Bolasie's in-swinging cross, but couldn't get a shot away, so opted to tee up Bamford. But the striker's side-footed strike was blocked from six yards out, letting City off the hook.
With fifteen minutes to go City had a fourth, with this one coming from the spot. Delaney was penalised for a foul in the box and the home side's captain Yaya Toure slotted home, though Hennessey went the right way.
Alan Pardew made several changes late on to try to get something from the game, but Palace continued to struggle in breaking City down. Damien Delaney did grab a late consolation, however, thundering home a header from Bolasie's cross in the 89th minute.
Any hope of a spectacular late goal surge for the Eagles was extinguished in added time, when City countered and Iheanacho played Garcia through on goal to slot home a fifth. The referee blew for full time shortly after the restart.
Palace XI: Hennessey; Mariappa (Ward, 84), Delaney, Dann, Kelly; Jedinak, Ledley, Mutch (Lee, 73); Zaha, Bolasie; Bamford (Gayle, 76).
Subs: McCarthy, Hangeland, Sako, Campbell.
Manchester City FC XI: Caballero; Zabaleta (Sagna, 55), Demichelis. Mangala, Kolarov; De Bruyne (Roberts, 73), Toure, Fernando, Navas; Iheanacho, Bony (Garcia, 83).
Subs: Hart, Otamendi, Kompany, Barker.