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For the chocolate cake lovers, Homemade Buttermilk Chocolate Cake is a delicious sheet cake and the easiest cake to make with perfectly fluffy chocolate buttermilk frosting.

 Chocolate Cake

Homemade Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake is simple with basic ingredients that you probably already have on hand. Both light and rich, this chocolate cake is slightly thicker than a Texas Sheet Cake that’s made in a sheet pan. This cake is made in a 9×13-inch cake pan. If you prefer, you can always make it in 8-inch square layers or 8-inch round layers. I do prefer this or this brand cake pan because the edge is straight instead of slanted.

Hot Milk Cake is another delicious chocolate cake. If you need gluten-free, try this Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake.

What does buttermilk do in baking?

Buttermilk adds a pleasant tang to cakes, bread, biscuits, and other baked products while adding very little fat. As well, this acidic ingredient helps tenderize gluten making baked goods more tender. And, it helps leaven baked items.

I keep buttermilk on hand for homemade biscuits. In my opinion, buttermilk biscuits are the best.

What can I use if I don’t have buttermilk?

Furthermore, if you don’t make buttermilk biscuits or bake a lot, you may want to purchase powdered buttermilk. It’s easy to use and has a long shelf life. (I recommend keeping it refrigerated.)

As well, there are a few other methods for making buttermilk. Pick which one is best for you, based on what you have on hand.

  • 1 cup buttermilk = 1 Tablespoon white vinegar + enough milk to measure 1 cup
  • 1 cup buttermilk = 1 Tablespoon lemon juice + enough milk to measure 1 cup
  • Or, 1 cup buttermilk = 1 cup plain yogurt
  • Lastly, 1 cup buttermilk = 1 and 3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar + 1 cup of milk
 Chocolate Cake

Additionally, buttermilk makes the best pound cake. I’ve shared several pound cakes made with buttermilk, click title for the recipe.

  1. Oreo Buttermilk Pound Cake
  2. Real Fruit Strawberry Buttermilk Pound Cake
  3. Melt in your Mouth Strawberry Buttermilk Pound Cake
  4. Keto Flourless Chocolate Cake

While you’re here, check out these chocolate cake recipes

Do I need to refrigerate this cake?

Personally, this cake doesn’t last long enough at my house to refrigerate. However, cakes with frosting that is made with butter or cream cheese should be refrigerated.

Can I freeze this Homemade Buttermilk Chocolate Cake?

Yes! Wait until the cake and icing are completely cooled. Then, you can either freeze the entire cake or slice into portions and freeze.

Please keep in mind that nutritional information is a rough estimate and can vary based on products used.

Chocolate Cake

Homemade Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

Chocolate lovers go crazy over the rich, chocolate flavor and tender crumb of this cake. The big bonus is it's easy to make and takes just minutes to mix together. Chocolate is always a hit and this cake is always a crowd-pleaser at potlucks and parties.
Author: Paula
4.98 from 36 votes
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 16 servings
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  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup real butter salted or unsalted, your preference
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder like this brand
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract I use this
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour my fav brand
  • ¼ teaspoon salt


  • 1 cup real butter
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • cup buttermilk
  • 4 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup pecans chopped, optional



  • Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9X13-inch pan.
  • Cut butter into pieces and combine the 1 cup butter, 1/3 cup cocoa, and 1 cup water in a small saucepan and heat over low heat. Stir constantly until butter is melted.
  • Remove the mixture from the heat. Using an electric hand or stand mixer, beat buttermilk, eggs, baking soda, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Gradually add melted butter mixture, beating until mixed.
  • In a medium bowl, combine sugar, flour, and salt. Add to buttermilk mixture and beat until blended. Pour batter into prepared pan.
  • Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until set in the middle.


  • Combine butter, cocoa, and buttermilk in a medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar, vanilla, and pecans (if adding).
  • Pour the frosting over cake while the cake is still warm. Allow the frosting to cool and set a bit before slicing.


Calories: 522kcal | Carbohydrates: 70g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 16g | Cholesterol: 89mg | Sodium: 333mg | Potassium: 111mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 55g | Vitamin A: 768IU | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
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    1. Yes, you can. Baking time will be 20 to 24 minutes. That’s the standard baking time for 9inch layers, I find chocolate bakes faster so start watching it at 20 minutes.

  1. 5 stars
    I made this buttermilk chocolate cake and omg!! I think it’s the best chocolate cake I’ve ever made! My fiancé was also very impressed! Thank you for this recipe. I’m so glad that I stumbled upon this one. Brilliant!!

  2. Great ideas; as some I didn’t know! Thanks for your wonderful ideas, recipes and sharing all these with us!

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Your email address will not be published. Have you tried this recipe? Consider giving it 5 stars!