Bring wonderful old fashioned flavor to your table with this vintage Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake recipe.  Soaked in an orange and cinnamon infused simple syrup this cast iron skillet cake takes the richness of farmhouse simplicity to a whole new level.  Not too sweet, buttery rich with tart blackberries and the zing of orange, this old fashioned cake gives any self-respecting pound or coffee cake a real run for its money!Slice of Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake

Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake:

  • buttermilk cake (ingredients below)
  • blackberry preserves
  • fresh blackberries
  • confectioner’s sugar
  • orange simple syrup (ingredients below)
  • cinnamon stick

Layering the buttermilk blackberry jam cake in the cast iron skillet.There is just something about the rich darkness of purply-black blackberries and buttermilk that make me think of grandmas in house dresses and white clapboard homeplaces.  Maybe it’s because those are the types of humble ingredients that are always present, farm-fresh and ready to be devoured, at such locations.  Where time slows down, and smells from the kitchen permeate every nook and cranny.

Bluttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake ready to bake.

I want a slice of this cake just thinking about it!  As far as cakes go this is a simple one.  No icing.  No fuss.  As a matter of fact, the recipe starts out a lot like any good southern cornbread- with a hot skillet and oil (in this case butter).  That heated skillet sizzles and snaps when those first drops of batter meet with it, creating a golden brown crust that keeps the blackberry jam layer from sticking.

Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake fresh from the oven.A little cake batter on the bottom, topped with blackberries, then covered with more batter and baked until it all comes up golden brown is what you’re looking for.  And oh, how it starts to fill the house with its sweet, warm smells.

Buttermilk blackberry jam cake dusted with powdered sugar.While the cake bakes, and orange infused simple syrup is simmering on the stove.  Orange slices and cinnamon sticks bubble and swirl, weaving their own aromas around the rich scent of the baking buttermilk cake.  When all has cooled and the cake has soaked, a simple dusting of confectioner’s sugar finishes the cake with simple style. 


Upclosse of buttermilk blackberry jam cake

Just look at that golden, sugared goodness.  There is nothing better than baking in a cast iron skillet with just the right ingredients.

Upclose of butermilk blackberry jam cake.
A slice is perfect for brunch, with afternoon coffee, or after dinner.  I have to hide this cake, or it’s gone before the it even cools properly!

upclose of buttermilk blackberry jam cake slice.

The dark layer of blackberry jam on the bottom is hard to resist.


partially eaten slice of buttermilk blackberry jam cake.

Slice of Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake

Old Fashioned Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake

Soaked in orange syrup, this old fashioned buttermilk cake recipe with a blackberry jam layer is a rich, delicious reminder of the past baked right up in a cast iron skillet.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Blackberry, Cake, Old Fashioned
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Cooling Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 8



  • 1 stick salted butter room temp.
  • 1 C white granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs room temp.
  • 2 C all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 1/4 C buttermilk
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 10 oz blackberry preserves
  • 6 oz fresh blackberries chopped

Orange Simple Syrup

  • 1 C water
  • 1 C white granulated sugar
  • 1/3 C orange juice
  • 1 orange thinly sliced
  • 1 cinnamon stick


  • 1 C powdered (Confectioner's) sugar



  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Generously butter bottom and sides of 10in cast iron skillet.
  • Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs one at a time.  Incorporating the first before adding the second.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
  • Add 1/3 of dry mixture.  Completely incorporate without over mixing.  Add 1/3 buttermilk.  Incorporate completely again without over mixing.  Repeat until all dry ingredients and buttermilk have been incorporated.
  • Add vanilla and mix just until incorporated evenly.
  • Briefly heat skillet in oven until butter is beginning to melt.  Remove from oven and add 1/2 of batter.  There will be a nice sizzle (similar to making corn bread).  Distribute blackberry jam over the batter, staying 1/2 inch from the edges.  Add rest of cake batter on top.
  • Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 25-30 minutes.  Cakes should be golden brown.  Remove from oven.  Let cool for 5 minutes.  Drizzle 1/2 of orange simple syrup over top.  Let soak and cool completely before dusting with powdered sugar and serving.

Orange Simple Syrup

  • Before baking cake, add simple syrup ingredients to small sauce pan and bring to a simmer while stirring.  Let simmer for 20 minutes while you make your cake batter.  After 20 minutes, remove from heat and allow to cool before drizzling over finished cake.


The orange and cinnamon infused simple syrup give this cake a yummy seasonal flair.  Leave out the cinnamon and use the fruit preserves of your choice for variety!

Things You Might Need to Make or Serve This Recipe! 



***Pin This Old Fashioned Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake Here***

Orange and cinnamon infused simple syrup give this Old Fashioned Buttermilk Blackberry Jam Cake a rich, aromatic flavor while reminding us of days past. Cooked right up in a cast iron skillet, this buttermilk blackberry cake is perfect for holidays, brunches and anytime in between!

Enjoy these and other great recipes on Meal Plan Monday, Weekend Potluck !