A close up shot of a slice of dark chocolate cake on a white plate drizzled with chocolate and topped with chocolate frosting and sprinkles

Buttermilk Chocolate Cake

  • Author: Beyond Frosting


This homemade buttermilk chocolate cake recipe is a moist, fluffy chocolate cake with a dark chocolate buttermilk frosting.


For the cake:

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar (285g)
  • ½ cup vegetable oil (118 ml)
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract (15 ml)
  • ½ cup light sour cream (118 ml)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (280g)
  • ½ cup Dutch processed cocoa powder (55 g)
  • 1 tablespoon espresso powder or finely ground coffee (5g) (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder (7g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (4 g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (5 g)
  • 1 ¼ cup buttermilk (296 ml)

For the frosting:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (226g)
  • ½ cup cocoa powder (55 g)
  • 23 cups powdered sugar (260347 g)
  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk (44 ml)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (10 ml)
  • Chocolate sprinkles for garnish


  1. For the cake: Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the sugar, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla extract. Beat on medium speed until the eggs and oil are well incorporated and the batter is lighter in color.
  3. Next mix in the sour cream and beat until well combined.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Then add half the dry ingredients followed by half of the buttermilk and mix just until the flour starts to incorporate.
  5. Finally add the remaining dry ingredients, mixing on low speed while pouring in the remaining buttermilk and beating until all of the ingredients are well combined.
  6. Use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl and stir the batter from the bottom to the top to ensure it’s well mixed.
  7. Pour the batter into a 9×13-inch pan and bake at 350°F for 26-28 minutes. Test the cake for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done. Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely.
  8. For the frosting: Cut the butter into pieces about 1 tablespoon size. Using the paddle attachment, whip butter for 3-5 minutes, scraping down the bowl occasionally. Beat until butter looks light in color and has more volume.
  9. Next, add the cocoa powder and confectionary sugar, followed by two tablespoons of buttermilk and beat for 60-90 seconds until completely smooth.
  10. Add the remaining buttermilk and vanilla extract and beat until desired consistency, at least 2 minutes.
  11. Spread frosting over cooled cake and then cover with sprinkles. Keep in an airtight container.


  • If you don’t have full fat sour cream, substitute lite sour cream or nonfat Greek yogurt.
  • This recipe can be made into 24 cupcakes. Baked for 14-16 minutes. The frosting recipe will be to be 1.5 times
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