This recipe for devil’s food cake makes for an absolutely sensational birthday treat.
In fact, devils food cake is almost always the birthday goodie my kids choose for me to make when their special day rolls around. Though recently, this recipe for chocolate chip cookie cake is giving it some good competition!
The inherent moistness of devils food cake combined with the nutrient-loaded butter frosting recipe I posted about recently makes for a melt in your mouth experience your child (and you) won’t soon forget and neither will the birthday party guests!
Homemade Devils Food Cake (traditional method)
This particular recipe for devils food cake varies from other recipes due to the fact that it is soaked in sour raw milk to improve digestibility, break down the gluten in the wheat, and improve nutrient absorption from the wonderfully nutritious, fresh flour you are using to make it.
Soaking is one of the three traditional ways our ancestral cultures prepared their grains. The great thing about traditional preparation of grains is that you eat far less when these foods are prepared this way because they are more filling and nutritious. When a food is more nutritious, you need to eat much less to feel full and feel satisfied for longer periods of time.
For those of you who try this devils food cake for yourselves, please email me to let me know how you like it!
Homemade Devils Food Cake Recipe (traditional method)
This traditional recipe for devils food cake is easy and uses only whole ingredients instead of buying the chemical and GMO loaded cakes from the supermarket. Suggesting recipe for frosting too.
- 4 cups flour freshly ground is best
- 3 cups whole milk yogurt or lightly soured raw milk
- 4 eggs
- 1 cup expeller pressed coconut oil
- 3 cups sucanat unrefined cane sugar
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- 3 tsp baking soda
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
Sift the fresh flour and feed the discarded bran to chickens, ducks or other birds. Removing bran allows just a quick soak of the flour to be effective for improving digestibility and also increases the lightness of the cake considerably.
Mix the sifted flour with the yogurt or soured raw milk, cover, and leave on the counter for about 7 hours. I usually mix the flour and the milk in the morning and make the cake in the afternoon.
Blend in the remaining ingredients. Pour the devils food cake batter into 2 - 9x13 glass baking pans greased with expeller coconut oil dividing the batter equally between the 2 pans.
Bake at 350F/177 C for about 30 minutes or until a knife or toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool devils food cake completely and then remove one cake layer onto the cake serving platter and ice the top with raw butter frosting.
Remove the second devils food cake layer and carefully place on top of the frosted cake layer. Cover the remaining cake with more butter frosting.
Store devils food cake for up to 2 days in the microwave which makes the ideal, airtight pastry cabinet! After that, refrigerate any devils food cake leftovers (there probably won't be any).
Substitute 1 cup carob powder and 1 TBL chocolate extract for the cocoa powder if desired.
Substitute coconut sugar or date syrup for the sucanat if desired. Do not use honey, as baking with honey is not healthy.
Budget-wise tip: Using homemade vanilla extract is much less expensive than buying it.
More Healthy Cake Recipes!
Love making cake using traditional methods and ingredients? Try these other old fashioned recipes too.
I think I’m gonna give this a try as I grew up on “whacky cake” and love a good moist chocolate cake! I have a question though. You use sucanat in many of your recipes, and suggests substitutions such as coconut sugar and sometimes cane sugar. Do you not use rapadura? I am still figuring out which natural sweeteners work for me for baking and have tried sucanat but it is very strong. My nourishing traditions cookbook recommends rapadura over sucanat but does rapadura not go well in baking? There are so many to choose from compared to good old white and brown sugar! But maybe the term “good” isn’t correct hahaha. Thanks in advance!
Sarah Pope MGA
Rapadura is a brand name for sucanat. They are the same thing.
Sarah, I made this recipe today along with your butter frosting. I followed your recipe with the only exceptions being that i sprouted my flour prior to soaking and I made cupcakes rather than cake. I am overjoyed with my results! The cake is perfectly moist and the texture is spot on! The butter frosting is delicious. I didn’t add quite as much sucanat as called for. The cupcakes will be perfect for a nourishing birthday party tomorrow. I added a grind of fresh salt on to of the adult cupcakes and it’s now a salted caramel cupcake. Oh, I made 24 cupcakes from this recipe. With the remainder I made pancakes… yeah, that was good too! Thanks again. This recipe is a keeper for sure.
This cake turned out fantastic! It was so good! Many others agreed too! I did follow the recipe..including soaking the flour..i soaked mine in yogurt instead of soured milk..I belive this is what made the cake so moist..like brownies 🙂
And with my oven it was almost 40 minutes. Now for the frosting..sucanat sugar which i used was a bit of a strong flavor for my liking but with the cake it was okay. I want to try coconut sugar next time. Also I learned that next time I will be doing a quarter of the recipe for the frosting. So much was wasted..but I do have to say I am not a huge frosting person so it might be different for others.
Other than that..thx for the great recipe sarah and this will be made every year which is funny since my husband and I don’t usually like chocolate cake. But this is a for sure winner!!
Olga Acosta Clement via Facebook
Hi Sarah, Or anyone who can help! Have you tried this cake with Einkorn wheat? If you have, could you please tell me what amount of flour did you use? It seems that I always need a lot more Einkorn flour when I use it. I have messed up a pizza and some other bake goods. Any help in how to use this flour would be greatly appreciated.
Einkorn is what sarah recommends using in this recipe..it turned out perfect for me in the measurements.
Ilona Khemiy via Facebook
Great. Thanks everyone. But after 1 it is safe to give him raw cows milk???
Monica Connerly via Facebook
Chocolate Coconut Lara Bars taste just like ding dongs but no added sugar.
Michelle Karwatt Anstadt via Facebook
I made the blonde brownies you posted a week or so ago, yesterday, only instead of butter I used coconut oil, they are delish! Only thing I would do different next time, since I used coconut oil in place of butter, I would use 3/4 C oil instead of a C.
Ilona Khemiy via Facebook
Sarah! Thank you for all your posts and videos. They are amazing. I want to ask you for your advice please. I have a 11 months old and my milk supply is decreasing. What is the best next thing to give him. Raw Cows or goat milk? Should I still be adding lactose and gelatin? I would really appreciate your comments. Thank you so much.
lesley from kent
well, I’ve got a some sour (raw) cream and milk left over from Christmas (and it all smells gently sour, not nasty) – so I’m going to remind all the guys (1 x dh + 2 x male teenagers) why they love me so much by baking them this for tea tomorrow! I bet I get lots of brownie points for it. Happy New Year to you all – great site.
Just wanted to share that my son requested vanilla cake for his birthday – followed this recipe, just omitted to cocoa powder and it came out great! I made it with raw whipped cream and blueberries on top – delicious! And several friends asked for the recipe. 🙂