When I was a kid, my mom would make the same things over and over for dinner. I know there wasn’t a lot of money to throw around on fancy ingredients. And my dad was a beef and potatoes kind of fellow. But Mom came up with some pretty wacky food combinations. Hot dogs in Ragu over white rice anyone? And, as I recall, there was a good deal of hamburger and the occasional Spam meal.

Frankly, now that I am the head chef Chez Bumblebee I can empathize with her frustration cooking seven nights a week for a crowd with widely varied ideas about what constitutes a good meal.

But where my mom became truly inspired was in cooking desserts. We had big glass jars in the kitchen that Mom kept filled with cookies and sweet bars. There was always at least one cake, and often two, made from scratch. I don’t believe the sun ever went down on a day when I didn’t have a delicious homemade treat.

One of my favorite cakes was a fabulously rich Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Cake. We just called it Yum Yum Cake.

I loved the cake so much that before I went off to college I copied down the recipe—along with several of my other favorite cake recipes—on notebook paper. This yellowed notebook page is still in my recipe binder and now I regularly make this cake for my own family.

If you’ve never made a cake from scratch, this is a perfect one to try. Once you get the hang of baking cakes you’ll never want to buy store-bought again.

Cake Ingredients

1 cup sugar 1/2 cup butter (1 stick) 2 cups flour 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 egg 3/4 cup buttermilk 1 cup miniature marshmallows 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Cream together sugar and butter with a mixer. Mix flour, baking powder, soda and salt in a bowl. Add egg, vanilla and buttermilk to the sugar and butter mixture. Gradually add the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Fold in marshmallows and chocolate chips by hand.

Spread batter into a well buttered 9″ x 13″ x 2″ baking pan. (I use a glass one.) The batter will be extremely thick.

Cook in a pre-heated 350 degree oven for 40 to 45 minutes or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Cool for about 10 to 15 minutes before topping.

Topping Ingredients

1 cup sugar 1/3 can evaporated milk 1/2 cup butter (1 stick) 6 ounces chocolate chips

Bring sugar, milk and butter to a boil. Remove from heat, add chips and stir until melted.

Bon appetit!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.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


  • Yum, looks good. Looks like a cake I could make!

  • gina says:

    BB – this looks fabulous! I can’t wait to try it.

    My mom was the same way as far as having the same stuff over and over, but she didn’t make these great cakes like your mom. I feel abused!

  • Meems says:

    Looks simple enough. I like simple when it comes to baking. I’ll have to give this one a try. Thank you for sharing a family yummy.
    Meems @HoeandShovel

  • meems says:

    Robin, Do you mind if I snag the photo too to put with the recipe I just copied and pasted?

  • Marci says:

    Robin, I don’t know if this is a goofy question, but do you put the ‘topping’ on while it is still hot?
    Thanks, Marci

    Put the topping on after it has cooled a bit. Otherwise it all disappears into the cake!


  • Katie says:

    I’m starving and that looks delicious! I will be trying your family recipe – thanks so much for sharing

  • TC says:

    That looks so good!

    When I was little, I used to watch mom and dad drink buttermilk. I could never figure out how they could stomach it. And still can’t. It’s hard to believe anyone can drink what is basically clabbered milk.

  • This does look good. Does it have to be real buttermilk, or can you use milk soured with vinegar or lemon juice? Also, what do you do with the 2/3 can of evap milk left over?

    Hi Kathy,

    Actually, I usually use soured milk–even skim milk. And for this cake I didn’t have evaporated milk at all and used just a bit of 1/2 and 1/2. Whatever…


  • Cindy says:

    Great timing, I have to bring a dessert to my next WOW meeting and this sounds just the thing!

  • Kateri says:

    Okay, I really have to make this today!

  • Haley says:

    Looks truly yummy, will have to give it a try. Your home sounded alot like my home growing up, I think we ate so many chicken wings growing up because they were cheap that now I cant stand to eat them.

  • I’d like a cup of coffee with that please. 🙂

  • Nan says:

    This sounds terrific, and I want to make it soon. Would you believe I’ve never made a cake from a box? I’ve never understood why anyone does – it’s just so easy to make one from scratch, and you know what you are putting in there!

  • I can’t wait to try this recipe.
    It just looks like one of those cakes you could eat all by yourself…You know the kind…You sit in front of the TV with the pan and a fork (when no is looking of course!).

  • David says:

    I am so gonna try this out in the next day or so. Yumm. I should send you the buttermilk vanilla ice-cream recipe I came up with this summer. They might be perfect together.

  • Chassity says:

    Robin, I made your cake this weekend and my husband and I loved it! I’ve posted a pic of my cake, along with the recipe and a link to your website. If this is not okay, please let me know, but I wanted to make sure people knew who the recipe belonged to. Thanks, Chassity

    Hi Chassity,

    Thanks for your note! I’m so glad you liked the cake. I went through a spell when I was making it about once/week. But after adding about 3 lbs, I had to stop that!

    I’m glad to be introduced to your blog. I’ve added you to my RSS and will be stopping by!


  • Eliza says:

    My husband’s birthday was last week and since I wasn’t feeling well I still owe him a chocolate chip cake. Your recipe is perfect! I’ll be making this sometime this weekend or next week at the latest for him. I’ll let you know what he thinks.

  • Nice looking photos – should taste great!

    I sent the recipe to my wife – hope she will cook it today.

    Benard Lawrencia

  • I’ve had my Chocolate Touch because it came out. I employed to have a Razr. I’ve been looking around at the filesystem on Bitpim and just began putting flash wallpapers on it. I’ve also checked to see how EnV Touch themes appear on it. I’d like to commence attempting to make themes and wallpapers in Adobe Flash CS4. But I just started out, so it’ll probably be awhile prior to I get anything. Tongue