Bake on Saturday, Dessert, Recipes

Martha Stewart’s Yellow Buttermilk Cake

Light, tender, and flavorful, this yellow buttermilk cake recipe from Martha Stewart is the only one you’ll ever need.

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Ok, Reader, I know my blog posts have been more sporadic than usual for the last…month.  I’m hoping that will change soon, but for now please bear with me.  I’ve been stocking up things to share so I can hopefully get back into the groove of posting at least every Saturday.  (I’m pretending this is a Saturday post.  I just ran out of time yesterday/may have chosen to watch The Great British Bake Off in my free hours instead.)

I made this cake a few weeks ago and am so in love with the recipe.  I’ve been a cake-from-scratch convert for the past, oh, six years, but have never had much luck with yellow cakes until this recipe.  They always seemed a bit too dry, or too blah.  Even the ones from my favorite vintage Betty Crocker cookbook.

But this Yellow Buttermilk Cake, Reader, is a great cake.  Martha Stewart (or perhaps one of her minions) really hit the nail on the head with this one.  It’s so tender, but not enough that you can’t stack it in layers, it’s light, it’s flavorful, and it’s straightforward.  I know, the photos aren’t great, but I misjudged the time when putting the cake together and then BOOM it was dark out, and I had to bring the cake to a birthday celebration.  Oops.

If the pictures don’t look fantastic, please trust me when I say that this is the best yellow cake I have ever made, and is way up there on my list of best yellow cakes ever eaten.  You will not be able to eat a yellow cake from a box after this.

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Yellow Buttermilk Cake

makes 3 – 9″ round layers

very, very slightly adapted from Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes (first edition)


  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup + 2 T butter (Martha says use unsalted, I used salted and thought it was fantastic)
  • 2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs + 3 egg yolks
  • 2 cups buttermilk (if you don’t have buttermilk, mix a scant 2 cups milk with a big splash of vinegar)
  • 1 T vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350°F.  Grease and flour 3 – 9″ round cake pans.  I like the kind with a bottom that pops out.

Sift together flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt, and set aside.  Prepare “buttermilk” by adding vinegar to regular milk, if necessary.

In a large bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.  Add whole eggs then egg yolks, one at a time, beating each until it is fully incorporated.  Add vanilla extract to milk.

Add flour mixture to the creamed butter sugar and eggs in three batches, alternating with milk mixture.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as necessary.

Divide evenly into the three pans and bake for 30-35 minutes, rotating pans as necessary.  When done, the cakes should be golden brown and a cake tester or toothpick inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean.

Posted to Totally Talented Tuesday!


3 thoughts on “Martha Stewart’s Yellow Buttermilk Cake”

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