V for Veggy

Home / All Recipes / American / Buttermilk Walnut Cake

Buttermilk Walnut Cake

This rustic buttermilk, brown sugar, and walnuts cake is the very definition of an easy everyday cake. It's a simple cake that will become part of your weekly baking routine.
Buttermilk cake, with a caramel walnut topping.

Buttermilk cake, with a caramel walnut topping.

Buttermilk and brown sugar makes for a delightfully soft and tender cake. This coffee cake is covered with chopped walnuts and melted sugar and butter, perfectly complementing the slightly tangy cake and making every bite a joy.

The buttermilk cake itself is not too sweet, and I think that is key to enjoy the contrast from the sweet and nutty topping.

I am using chopped walnuts, but you can always replace them with pecan, almond, or a mix of your favorite nuts, or even pumpkin seeds.

Ingredients for buttermilk walnut cake: unsalted butter, brown sugar, egg, buttermilk, vanilla, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, milk, and walnuts.

Ingredients for buttermilk walnut cake: unsalted butter, brown sugar, egg, buttermilk, vanilla, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, milk, and walnuts.

Ingredients for the buttermilk cake

For the buttermilk cake, we need unsalted butter, brown sugar, egg, buttermilk, vanilla extract, all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt.

Make sure that the butter, egg, and buttermilk are all at room temperature.

If you can’t find buttermilk, you can substitute with 50% yogurt and 50% milk. Since we need 1 cup of buttermilk, you will need a mixture of 12 cup yogurt and 12 cup milk.

Ingredients for the walnut topping

For the topping, we need unsalted butter, brown sugar, milk, salt, and walnuts.

You can also replace the walnuts with pecans or almonds, or even use a mixture of your favorite nuts.

Cake batter: (1) Beat unsalted butter and brown sugar until well mixed, then add egg and mix. (2) Add buttermilk and vanilla, mix well. (3) Sift in all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. (4) Pour batter into a parchment-lined 8-inch square pan.

Cake batter: (1) Beat unsalted butter and brown sugar until well mixed, then add egg and mix. (2) Add buttermilk and vanilla, mix well. (3) Sift in all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Mix well. (4) Pour batter into a parchment-lined 8-inch square pan.

Step-by-step to prepare the cake batter and baking the cake

1. Prepare oven and cake pan

Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit (180 Celsius). Line an 8-inch square cake pan, or a 9-inch round cake pan, with parchment paper.

2. Prepare cake batter

In a mixing bowl, beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add the egg and beat until smooth. Stir in buttermilk and vanilla extract and mix well.

Sift in all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Use the lowest speed setting to mix. Stop once you no longer see flour streaks.

3. Bake the cake

Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until the cake is set and golden brown.

(1) Stir melted butter, brown sugar, milk, and salt, then add chopped walnuts and mix. (2) Remove the cake from the oven after 30 minutes. (3) Pour walnut topping over the cake and gently spread into an even layer across the cake surface.

(1) Stir melted butter, brown sugar, milk, and salt, then add chopped walnuts and mix. (2) Remove the cake from the oven after 30 minutes. (3) Pour walnut topping over the cake and gently spread into an even layer across the cake surface.

Walnut topping and adding it to the cake

Towards the end of the baking time, prepare the walnut topping. Stir melted butter and brown sugar, add milk and salt, and stir until well combined. Add chopped walnuts and mix well.

Pour the walnut topping on the cake and gently spread into an even layer across the cake surface. Bake the cake again for another 10 minutes. Remove the cake from the oven.

Bake the cake with the walnut topping for an additional 10 minutes.

Bake the cake with the walnut topping for an additional 10 minutes.

Cake texture and when to serve

This buttermilk cake is super moist and very tender. You can serve the cake hot as soon as it comes out from the oven. The topping will be slightly runny, and you probably don’t want to remove the cake from the pan while slicing and serving.

Or you can wait several hours and let the cake sit at room temperature until the glaze is completely set. Should you wish, you can gently remove the cake from its pan before cutting and serving.

For a smaller-size serving, I usually cut the cake into 16 squares. If you want to make it into a bigger serving, cut the cake into nine squares.

Once the cake is completely cool, and the topping has set, gently remove the cake from the pan, cut into 16 slices, and serve.

Once the cake is completely cool, and the topping has set, gently remove the cake from the pan, cut into 16 slices, and serve.

Buttermilk Walnut Cake

5.0 from 1 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson

Courses:

Cuisine:

Ingredients:

Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook Time: 45 mins

Total Time: 1 hour

Serves: 16

Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • Buttermilk cake
  • 4 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 150 gram (3/4 cup) brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 cup buttermilk, room temperature (Note 1)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 180 gram (1 1/2 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Walnut topping
  • 3 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 75 gram (~ 6 tablespoon) brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoon milk
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (Note 2)

Instructions

  1. Prep: Preheat oven to 350 Fahrenheit (180 Celsius). Line an 8-inch square cake pan, or a 9-inch round cake pan, with parchment paper.
  2. Cake batter: In a mixing bowl, beat butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add the egg and beat until smooth. Stir in buttermilk and vanilla extract and mix well.
  3. Sift in all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Use the lowest speed setting to mix. Stop once you no longer see flour streaks.
  4. Bake the cake: Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until the cake is set and golden brown.
  5. Prepare walnut topping: Towards the end of the baking time, prepare the walnut topping. Stir melted butter and brown sugar, add milk and salt, and stir until well combined. Add chopped walnuts and mix well.
  6. Add topping: Pour the walnut topping on the cake and gently spread into an even layer across the cake surface.
  7. Bake with topping: Bake the cake again for another 10 minutes.
  8. Cool the cake: Remove the cake from the oven. The topping will be runny at this point. Set the cake aside in its pan until the topping set.
  9. Serve: Gently remove the cake from the cake pan, and cut into 16 serving slices and serve.

Notes

  • (1) Or use 1/2 cup yogurt and 1/2 cup milk.
  • (2) Or use pecans, almonds, a mix of nuts, or even pumpkin seeds.

Comments

  • Becky Becky says:

    It looks so delicious! The texture, the color and the topping, all are stunning. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I will definitely try it soon!

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Rate this recipe: