Recipe: Cultured Dairy Chocolate Cake

Using kefir, yogurt, or buttermilk in baked goods is not only a great way to use up any excess cultures you have lying around, but also creates a moist, tender crumb. The acidity in these dairy products is what makes this chocolate cake tender and light.


  • 1 cup butter, softened, plus more for the pan
  • 1 1/2 cups Sucanat, or other unrefined sugar
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup kefir, yogurt, or buttermilk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter a 9x13-inch pan and dust with flour. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, cream butter with sweeteners. Stir in eggs, kefir, vanilla, and water. Set aside. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda.
  3. Fold dry ingredients into wet, stirring just to combine. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes or until set.
  4. Cool and serve as is or frost.

At A Glance