Chocolate Buttermilk Cake

"A One Bowl Wonder"

chocolate buttermilk cake

This chocolate buttermilk cake is one of those easy cake recipes that apparently everyone knew about but me. My friend Michelle made this cake for my 30th birthday. (The Coffee Brownies is one of Michelle's recipes also!) I asked her for the recipe and I think she thought I was crazy. It was as familiar to Midwesterner as ice tea. It's also called a chocolate sheet cake, Texas sheet cake - and heaven knows what else.

The only deviation I take is adding a hint of anise. And if this scares you - DON'T ADD IT. Anise is a popular spice used in many Italian dessert recipes . I think anise adds some depth to chocolate. And too, don't tell my kids because they absolutely hate anise....but little do they know (hee hee hee).

This chocolate buttermilk cake really does need the frosting. You could skip it, but I'd advise not to. And yes, this is a very rich chocolate cake!

There are a couple of workarounds (like if you don't have buttermilk) and a few substitutions. So check out the section below.

Thank you for stopping by - and really, do try this cake. I make it about 3-4 times a year!

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Chocolate Buttermilk Cake

YIELD: 1 Sheet Cake


* 2 cups of flour

* 2 cups of sugar

* 1 teaspoon baking soda

* 1/8 teaspoon of anise (totally optional!)

* 1 cup of butter (2 sticks) - see substitutions below.

* 4 Tbsp of cocoa

* 1/2 cup of buttermilk (if you are out see - below)

* 2 eggs

* 1 teaspoon vanilla

* 1 cup water

Frosting Ingredients

* 4 Tbsp cocoa

* 1/4 cup of buttermilk

* 1 stick of butter

* Approx 1 pound of powdered sugar


* Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

* Place flour, baking soda, anise, and sugar in a mixing bowl.

* Boil water, cocoa and butter. (I zap it in the microwave).

* Pour the boiled cocoa and butter over the flour, sugar and baking soda.

* Add buttermilk, eggs and vanilla.

* Mix with a spoon. Don't beat!

* Pour into a greased sheet cake pan.

* Bake for 20 mins. Yep really - only 20 minutes.

Frosting Procedure

* Boil cocoa, buttermilk and butter on a burner.

* Beat in sugar. Eyeball the amount.

* Spread this fairly quickly on the cooled cake.

* I think from baking to cooling, and frosting - set aside about

Where's the nuts?

Since this photo was taken when I made this for my daughter's 17th birthday I honored her request for "no nuts". UGH! If you're not dealing with nut-haters THEN ADD THEM TO THE FROSTING! They are awesome! .

Can I use margarine?

This is hard for me to say "yes" to. I hate margarine! I think I've only bought it twice in my 49 years of living. BUT - yes, it tastes just fine with margarine....OK, the cake part tastes fine with margarine. I'd stick to butter for the frosting though.

What if I don't have buttermilk?

You can use milk and add a teaspoon of white vinegar to the 1/2 cup milk that is called for in the cake batter. And then you could add 1/2 teaspoon to the milk for the frosting. It's a workaround. Not the greatest - but it works.

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