One-Bowl Gingerbread Cake for a Crowd

Servings: 18-20 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 60 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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one-bowl gingerbread cake for a crowd: Beautifully spiced and with a texture that is just dense enough

Gingerbread is best shared with friends. A one-bowl gingerbread recipe that makes a good sized cake is the easiest way to have more to go around.

There’s nothing better than a dessert recipe that can feed a crowd. Not every recipe doubles well and sometimes making two of something is more effort than you have time for. That’s where a big-batch cake comes in handy. One bowl. On pan. One less thing to prep for a gathering.

  • gingerbread for a crowd: Beautifully spiced and with a texture that is just dense enough
    Gingerbread is best shared with friends. A one-bowl gingerbread recipe that makes a good sized cake is the easiest way to have more to go around.

A family favourite recipe…

I was given this recipe last month for a fundraiser that I was helping out with. It’s a family favourite of a woman I volunteer with, and she passed it out to 10 of us to bake for dessert for the fundraiser.

We had to deliver it sliced which meant I was able to taste a little sliver.

One-Bowl Gingerbread Cake for a Crowd has everything you love about a classic gingerbread. Beautifully spiced and with a texture that is just dense enough, this is the cake you want to make for your Christmas (or any other festive) gathering. Make it ahead if you have time since it only gets better with age. Serve it warm with cinnamon whipped cream or our Quick Coffee Toffee Sauce or Toasted Pecan Caramel Sauce.

 

Hard to believe, but in all my years of making gingerbread this is the first classic GB recipe I have ever made that calls for a 9”x 13” pan. This recipe can serve up to 20.

One-Bowl Gingerbread Cake for a Crowd Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 cup boiling water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and grease a 9” x 13” pan or line it with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl beat butter with sugar. Beat in eggs then molasses. Beat in water.
  3. Sprinkle over the flour, spices, baking soda and salt and beat until smooth.
  4. Pour into prepared pan and bake until a tester comes out with just a few moist crumbs attached, about 45 minutes to an hour.

Serve with cinnamon whipped cream.

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Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread Cake

Servings: 8 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 95 minutes

Cooking time: 75 minutes

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Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own - no frosting or ice cream necessary.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own – no frosting or ice cream necessary.

My mom has been baking this Upside Down Apple Gingerbread for years.  It’s a recipe she clipped out of a magazine sometime in the late 1960’s. The recipe was so popular that it made its way into her giant handwritten cookbook.

 

Sometimes old recipes are the best.

I rediscovered the recipe the other day when I was flipping through an old stack of handwritten recipe cards from my university days. The cake caught my eye because I have been buying bushels of apples at our local farmers market and all things apple were top of mind.

  • Pain d’épices renversé aux pommes
    Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake with beautifully balanced spicing. Serve on its own – no frosting or ice cream necessary.

 

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread is a rich and very moist cake that needs no accompaniment. If you can’t resist serving something alongside, choose whipped cream or crème fraiche.  (Anything sweeter might be over the top.)

It is especially good served warm.

 

I lined my pan with parchment paper because I was paranoid about the cake sticking. It worked but the apples didn’t caramelize like they would have against the bottom of a metal pan so next time I’ll skip the parchment paper like I did with this recipe for Rhubarb Upside Down Cake.

Sticky Upside Down Apple Gingerbread Recipe

Ingredients:

For the topping (which begins as the bottom):

  • 4 apples, peeled, cored and cut into 8 wedges each
  • 1 Tbsp. + 1 tsp. butter
  • 2/3 cup light brown sugar

For the cake:

  • 2 1/3 cups flour
  • 2 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ¾ tsp ginger
  • 1 ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • ¾ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ¾ cup melted butter
  • 1 cup boiling water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 F
  2. Put the 1 Tbsp. and 1 tsp. of butter in a high-sided  9” pan and place it in the oven for a few minutes, until the butter melts. Remove it from the oven and use a pastry brush to coat the sides of the pan with the butter. Sprinkle the 2/3 cup of brown sugar over the melted butter in the bottom of the pan. Place the sliced apples on the sugar in a circular pattern.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk the flour with the baking soda, baking powder and spices.
  4. In a large bowl whisk the eggs with the ½ cup brown sugar. Whisk in the molasses and ¾ cup melted butter. Stir in the flour mixture. Add boiling water last and beat well.
  5. Pour into prepared pan.
  6. Bake at 325 F for 60-75 minutes, until the middle is set. (The variety and freshness of your apples will affect cooking time.)

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Easy Hot Water Gingerbread with Lemon Curd

Servings: 8-10 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 1 hours

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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Easy hot water gingerbread is quick to mix up and makes a great snack cake. Or you can dress it up with lemon curd.

An old fashioned gingerbread for spring.

This easy hot water gingerbread is about the simplest cake recipe out there. It’s practically as fool proof as a cake mix. You toss into a bowl everything but the flour and water, then mix. Next, add the water, then mix. And finally, add the flour.

Its a method that’s exactly what your junior high home-ec teacher taught you not to do but it works and the result is a beautifully-textured gingerbread.

Easy hot water gingerbread is quick to mix up and makes a great snack cake. Or you can dress it up with lemon curd.

This kind of old fashioned gingerbread is comfort food for me. Something about the flavour of ginger, the moist texture of the cake and the smell of the cake baking makes me feel just a little bit warmer on a damp spring day.

This easy hot water gingerbread can be a true snacking cake – a bit like a muffin, only sweeter. If you want to dress it up, just sprinkle with a dusting of icing sugar.

Easy hot water gingerbread is quick to mix up and makes a great snack cake. Or you can dress it up with lemon curd.

Lemon sauce or lemon curd is an old fashioned accompaniment to gingerbread, something that my grandmother always served with this spiced cake. It helps gingerbread transition from winter to spring.  Below the gingerbread recipe you’ll find a link to my go-to recipe for lemon curd. It’s very easy (my daughter has been making it since she was 9) and is very tart.

Easy hot water gingerbread is quick to mix up and makes a great snack cake. Or you can dress it up with lemon curd.

This recipe for easy hot water gingerbread came from the Nova Scotia publication, Saltscapes magazine

Easy Hot Water Gingerbread Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 cup hot water or hot tea
  • 2 1/2 cups flour

Optional:
Icing sugar for sprinkling
Whipped cream
Lemon curd

Instructions:

  1. Grease and flour a 9” high-sided cake pan (round or square) or line it with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine egg, sugar, butter, molasses, salt, baking soda and ginger.
  3. When thoroughly blended, add hot water; stir, then add flour.
  4. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 350°F for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  5. When cool, sprinkle with icing sugar if you like. Serve with whipped cream and/or lemon curd.

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Buttermilk Gingerbread Muffins

Servings: 10-12 muffins serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

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whole wheat buttermilk gingerbread muffins

Buttermilk Gingerbread Muffins a wholesome winter snack.

Winter arrived to Southern New Brunswick with gusto this week. Two storms in three days means that we finally have snow cover, and although a little late, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

Last night began a whole new round of holiday celebrating with the arrival of family from out of town.  We enjoyed a long evening around my mom’s enormous table, chatting and laughing and planning tonight’s big family gathering.

whole wheat buttermilk gingerbread muffins

In the midst of all the parties and rich food I have been craving something simple to snack on. Something flavourful and wholesome to go along with the Gingerbread Lattes that I can’t seem to stop drinking.

That’s why this recipe for Buttermilk Gingerbread Muffins caught my eye.

Made with whole wheat flour, buttermilk gingerbread muffins remind me of a lightly textured bran muffin. They’re not too sweet and have a great ginger kick. The ginger isn’t over powering though so don’t be tempted to scale it back. The overall spice balance is great.

The recipe is from the lovely blog Living Lou

Buttermilk Gingerbread Muffin Recipe

 10-12 muffins 

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups whole wheat flour
  • ⅔ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2½ tsp. baking soda
  • ⅓ cup brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp. cloves
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ cup grape seed oil (or vegetable oil)
  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • Coarse sugar for sprinkling (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Prepare muffin pan.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk flours with sugar, baking soda, spices and salt.
  3. In another bowl, lightly beat the egg then whisk in the oil and molasses. When well combined whisk in the buttermilk.
  4. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the egg mixture. Stir gently until just combined taking care not to overmix.
  5. Spoon into prepared pan. Sprinkle with coarse sugar, if using.
  6. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the tops spring back when lightly touched.

Best eaten within a couple of days. Can be frozen up to three months.

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Gingerbread Latte | An Excuse to Slow Down

Servings: 1 serving(s)

Prep time: 5 minutes

Total time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 5 minutes

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Gingerbread Latte naturally sweetened with molasses

A cosy drink for chilly days…

The Gingerbread Latte is new to me. And I have to say that although I have never been drawn to flavoured coffees this new concoction has become a favourite.

Lightly sweetened with molasses and gently spiced with a lovely gingerbread spice blend, this Gingerbread Latte has become a very comforting drink. Sipping one is a way to slow down during this very busy time of year, which is a gift of sorts.

Making a Gingerbread Latte at home couldn’t be easier, although it feels like a bit of an indulgence. All it takes are four ingredients and a couple of minutes. Molasses is such an ideal way to sweeten this spiced drink. It adds flavour that complements the coffee and the spice, and molasses isn’t too sweet. So unlike hot chocolate, a Gingerbread Latte doesn’t leave you feeling like you over did it.

In this hectic week leading up to Christmas, take a moment for you, curl up in a cosy chair and enjoy a warm Gingerbread Latte.

Gingerbread Latte with Molasses Recipe

One serving

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup espresso or strong coffee
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/8 tsp. or a generous pinch gingerbread spices (recipe below)
  • 1/2 cup milk

Instructions:

  1. In a mug stir together the coffee, molasses and spices.
  2. Bring the milk to a simmer, either on the stovetop or in a microwave.
  3. Froth the milk with a whisk or frother.
  4. Pour frothed milk over the coffee, sprinkle lightly with gingerbread spices and serve.

 

Gingerbread Spice Blend

  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. allspice
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. cloves

Blend spices and store in a cool, dry place.

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Easy Molasses Walnut Meringues with Gingerbread Spices

Servings: 24-30 meringues serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 135 minutes

Cooking time: 120 minutes

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Molasses Walnut Meringues duested with gingerbread spices

I’m always amazed at bakers who create extra fancy sweets, the home cooks who make fantastically elaborate cakes and fiddly candies. Decorative details have never been my strength (probably why my cooking style tends to be on the rustic side.)

Once in a while I have the urge to create something that looks extra special. That’s why this recipe for Molasses Walnut Meringues caught my eye. While I’m no expert with a pastry bag, meringue I can make, and meringue has a way of looking fancy with next to no effort.

You might be surprised at how easy it is to make meringue — a few ingredients, a good set of beaters and you’re set. Be prepared to feel very accomplished with very little effort.

These meringues have a glossy golden look to them and are very pretty on a plate filled with Christmas cookies. The taste reminds me of the sponge toffee from my childhood and the texture is similar too.

Molasses Walnut Meringues duested with gingerbread spices

The cooking time presented with the recipe is very broad because sugary things can have a mind of their own. Molasses Walnut Meringues bake in a slow oven for a long time, until they dry out, which can vary depending on their size.

Molasses Walnut Meringues with Gingerbread Spices Recipe

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup egg whites, room temperature (about 4 eggs)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • ½ cup icing sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • Gingerbread spice blend (optional, recipe below)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 225 F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Beat egg whites on medium until foamy (about 30 seconds). Whisk together granulated sugar, salt, cornstarch and icing sugar and gradually add to egg whites.
  3. Increase speed to high and beat until stiff peaks form (about 7-8 minutes.)
  4. Using a rubber spatula fold in the molasses and walnuts.
  5. Spoon mixture into a piping bag or a plastic bag with a bottom corner snipped off.
  6. Pipe onto prepared baking sheets (in either swirls or big dollops) about an inch apart.
  7. Dust lightly with a few pinches of gingerbread spices.
  8. Bake meringues until they have completely dried out, anywhere from  1 1/2 to 2 hours depending on the size and shape you choose.
  9. Store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to a week.

Gingerbread Spice Blend

  • 2 tsp. ginger
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • ½ tsp. allspice
  • ¼ tsp. nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. cloves

Blend spices and store in a cool, dry place.

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Gluten Free Gingerbread

Servings: 6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

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gluten free gingerbread cake recipe is moist and flavourful

If you’re into gluten free baking, molasses is your friend.

Molasses helps to keep baked goods moist, especially gluten free baked goods which can often be dry or crumbly.

I have a few different gluten free flour blends that I use but this particular recipe was made with Bob’s Red Mill gluten free all-purpose baking flour. It’s a blend that includes ground beans so can be stronger in flavour than other flour blends but that beany taste is masked by the molasses and the spice in gingerbread.

gluten free gingerbread cake recipe is moist and flavourful

In my oldest cookbooks molasses is often served with applesauce or the cake is simply buttered, like scones or biscuits. This recipe is from the Fanny Farmer Cookbook, first published in the late 1800s by the Boston Cooking School. (I have my mom’s copy, published in the 1950s.) This particular gingerbread is based on the Fanny Farmer recipe for Soft Molasses Gingerbread. I figured, the softer the gingerbread the better suited it is to gluten free flour. This gluten free gingerbread recipe is also free of refined sugar, sweetened only with molasses. That makes for great flavour and means that there is more molasses to keep this cake moist.

gluten free gingerbread cake recipe is moist and flavourful

Gluten Free Gingerbread (Fanny Farmer Soft Molasses Gingerbread) Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/3 cup butter
  • ½ cup sour milk
  • 1 egg, well beaten
  • 2 cups gluten free flour
  • 1 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp ginger
  • ½ tsp. salt

Instructions:

  1. Grease and flour an 8”x8” baking pan or line it with parchment paper.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 F.
  3. In a saucepan over medium heat combine butter and molasses and warm until the butter melts. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl. Whisk in milk then egg. Whisk flour with baking soda, ginger and salt. Stir flour mixture into the molasses mixture. Beat well.
  4. Pour into prepared pan and bake for about 35 minutes. Don’t over bake.

 

 

Fanny Farmer Sour Cream Gingerbread

Servings: 6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

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Sour cream gingerbread is so easy to make. It's a light textured cake that stays moist for days stored in a tin. Great as a snack cake or for entertaining.

You never have to worry about gingerbread going stale.

Leftover cake on the counter isn’t always a blessing. Sometimes you just don’t feel like eating it three days in a row. Unfrosted cakes can always be frozen but gingerbread offers a better solution — You can store it on the counter in a tin and a few days later it tastes even better. Gingerbread gets more and more sticky (which is part of its charm) and the flavour intensifies.

Sour cream gingerbread is so easy to make. It's a light textured cake that stays moist for days stored in a tin. Great as a snack cake or for entertaining.

Gingerbread stores better than any other cake I have ever baked. It actually gets more moist as each day passes and the flavours develop beautifully. We nibbled away at this cake for a week. We served it with Pumpkin Molasses Caramel Sauce when we had guests over and then slathered leftovers with butter to nibble with tea.

This recipe makes a reasonably-sized 8″x8″ cake. You could also bake it in an 8″ round pan if you prefer to serve pretty wedges of cake.

Feel free to play with the spices. Go with the teaspoon of ginger or use a gingerbread spice blend like French Gingerbread Spices from Spicetrekkers. (This is a beautiful blend of ginger, cinnamon, mace, allspice & anise.)

French gingerbread spices

I love old cookbooks that actually have sections devoted to gingerbread. This recipe comes from the Fanny Farmer Cookbook (originally published in 1896 as The Boston Cooking School Cookbook). It’s a classic East Coast cookbook full of gingerbread recipes and other treats that never go out of fashion. The cookbook is also full of molasses. My copy is from the 1950s, a wedding gift to my mom and dad.

Fanny Farmer Sour Cream Gingerbread Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup sour cream or Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 ½ cups flour (can use half whole wheat)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ginger (or a blend of your favourite gingerbread spices)
  • ½ cup melted butter

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Grease and flour an 8”x8” baking pan or line it with parchment paper.
  3. Beat eggs well. Add sour cream, molasses and sugar.
  4. Whisk flour with baking soda and ginger and stir into the egg mixture. Add butter and beat well.
  5. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 30 minutes or until the top springs back when lightly pressed and the edges start to pull away from the sides of the pan.

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Orange Spice Gingerbread Cake

Servings: 8 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 60 minutes

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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Orange spice gingerbread sm

A sticky gingerbread served warm – is there any dessert more comforting?

Hot apple crisp comes close but there is something about the texture and spicing of a gingerbread that wraps your up in a blanket.

I have been thinking a lot about an orange spiced gingerbread after reading a novel that featured just such a recipe (Delicious! by Ruth Reichl). The whole time I was reading the novel (an okay novel filled with amazing food writing) I was dreaming about eating a piece of the cake and I was delighted to discover the recipe printed at the end of the book.

Only the recipe didn’t call for molasses, just white sugar, the zest of two oranges and an abundance of ginger, of course.

I can’t imagine a gingerbread without molasses. For me, the bright, tangy flavour of molasses is part of a gingerbread’s character.

Orange spice gingerbread cake

Orange zest is a lovely addition to gingerbread. It takes the flavour in a whole new direction and works perfectly with molasses and the spices. You decide just how much orange zest you want to add (a little or a lot). The cardamom can be omitted if you don’t have it on hand.

This recipe is an adaptation of a gingerbread recipe found in the wonderful cookbook, Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens (recently reprinted). The spicing is borrowed, in part, from the gingerbread recipe in the book Delicious! by Ruth Reichl.

Orange Spice Gingerbread Cake Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of white sugar
  • 1/2 cup of butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • Zest of 1-2 oranges
  • 2 1/2 cups of flour (spooned in)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger
  • ¼ tsp. cloves
  • ¼ tsp. cardamom
  • 1 cup of hot water

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and line a 9”x9” pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices.
  3. In a large bowl cream butter and sugar then beat in egg and molasses. Stir in orange zest.
  4. Gradually stir the dry ingredients into the creamed mixture. Stir in the hot water.
  5. Pour into a prepared pan.
  6. Bake at 350 until a tester comes out clean, 40-45 minutes.

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Buttermilk Gingerbread with Warm Lemon Sauce

Servings: 6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 1 hours 15 minutes

Cooking time: 1 hours

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Buttermilk gingerbread is a moist and spicy classic. Serve with a warm sauce or whipped cream. No frosting required.

buttermilk gingerbread with warm lemon sauce

Did you grow up with the old-fashioned combination of lemon and gingerbread?

If there is any recipe that reminds me of my grandmother it’s gingerbread with warm lemon sauce. Gingerbread with lemon sauce sticks in my mind because, as a child, gingerbread with butterscotch sauce was my favourite. But tastes change and by the time I was baking my own gingerbread it was lemon sauce that I preferred.

Lemon and gingerbread might sound like a wacky combination if you weren’t raised with it, but they really are delicious together. The combo is an East Coast classic.

buttermilk gingerbread with warm lemon sauce

I have made this buttermilk gingerbread recipe a few times now, changing up the spices as I go. The last time I made it I used French Gingerbread Spices from Spicetrekkers. (It’s available at Liquid Gold locations in Atlantic Canada and from The Spiceman at the Historic Halifax Market, among other places.)

That’s the beauty of gingerbread — you can make it your own with family favourite blends of spices.

Spicetrekkers french gingerbread spices

The Lemon Sauce is meant to be on the thin side rather than thick like a custard or curd. If you prefer yours a little thicker use the larger amount of cornstarch. The lemon sauce recipe is adapted from Out of Old Nova Scotia Kitchens by Marie Nightingale originally published in 1970 and then reissued a few years ago. I doubled the lemon zest and tripled the lemon juice originally called for in the recipe.

gingerbread with lemon sauce 4 sm

Buttermilk Gingerbread Recipe

Only slightly adapted from Chow

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 1/2  tsp. ginger*
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon*
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg*
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves*
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk**
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • ½ cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 2 eggs

*Can substitute 3 tsp. of your favourite spice blend

** Can substitute buttermilk with an equal amount of unsweetened yogurt. Or, make your own by mixing 1/2 cup of milk  (minus half a Tbsp) with 1/2 Tbsp. of either vinegar or lemon juice. Let the milk sit for a few minutes, until thickened.

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch-by-5-inch loaf pan with parchment paper or grease and flour it.
  2. In a medium bowl whisk flours, baking soda, salt and spices.
  3. In another bowl whisk the buttermilk and vanilla.
  4. In a large bowl beat the butter and brown sugar. Beat in molasses then eggs, one at a time.
  5. Add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with the buttermilk mixture (beginning and ending with the flour mixture.)
  6. Scrape batter into prepared pan, smooth the top and bake for 50-60 min, until a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  7. Cool in pan for 10 minutes then invert onto a rack.
  8. Cut into 1 1/2” slices and serve with warm lemon sauce.

Warm Lemon Sauce

  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 ½-2 Tbsp. cornstarch
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 ¾ cups water
  • Zest of a lemon
  • 3 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. butter
  1. In a saucepan over medium heat whisk the cornstarch and salt in to the sugar. Whisk in the water.
  2. Bring to the boil and let simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until it begins to thicken.
  3. Stir in lemon juice, lemon rind and butter and pour over warmed slices of gingerbread.

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Healthy Gingerbread Muffins

Servings: 12 serving(s)

Prep time: 10 minutes

Total time: 35 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Take me to the recipe

Healthy Gingerbread Muffins offer a comforting gingerbread treat without the richness of a cake or the extra sweet of a cookie. 

healthy gingerbread muffins

A healthy start to 2015

I spent half of Sunday cleaning, pitching, de-cluttering and generally trying to organize our house. I went through piles of papers, drawers and cupboards…

The de-clutter urge comes but once a year so I have to make hay while the sun shines.

healthy gingerbread muffins

I de-clutter my cooking this time of year too. After all that rich food over Christmas I start to crave healthier, simpler recipes.

I crave comfort food.

Healthy gingerbread muffins fit right into that category. They are true muffins — not too sweet and beautifully spiced, they offer a comforting gingerbread treat without the richness of a cake or the extra sweet of a cookie.

These muffins contain no refined sugar and instead are sweetened with flavourful fancy molasses and honey. They also contain a good amount of whole grain flour which adds fiber and flavour.

You can dress them up with a sprinkling of sugar or keep them plain. Either way they’re a tasty treat for a January day.

healthy gingerbread muffins

 Healthy Gingerbread Muffin Recipe

Adapted from Pinch of Yum

Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup oil or melted butter
  • ½ cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1/3 cup honey or maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup yogurt or sour cream
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1½ cups flour (spooned in)
  • 1 cup whole wheat or spelt flour (spooned in)
  • 1½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • Coarse sugar for topping (optional)

 Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a muffin tin or line with paper liners.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the oil, molasses and honey. Whisk in the egg then yogurt and milk.
  3. In another bowl combine the flours, baking soda, salt and spices.
  4. Add wet to dry ingredients and stir gently just until combined. (Batter will be lumpy).
  5. Spoon batter into muffin tins and sprinkle with coarse sugar (if using).
  6. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. (Muffins baked in a dark pan will cook more quickly). Let cool in tins for about 10 minutes before removing to a cooling rack.

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Nutrition analysis (per muffin, made with butter):

Calories (kcal) 246.5
Fat (g) 9.3
Saturated Fat (g) 5.3
Trans Fat (g) 0.5
Cholesterol (mg) 38.0
Sodium (mg) 79.6
Potassium (mg) 296.1
Carbohydrate (g) 36.7
Fibre (g) 1.3
Sugar (g) 16.3
Protein (g) 4.8
Vitamin A (RAE) 82.5
Vitamin C (mg) 0.1
Calcium (mg) 67.6
Iron (mg) 1.8
Vitamin D (μg) 0.2
Vitamin E (mg) 0.5
Thiamin (mg) 0.2
Riboflavin (mg) 0.1
Niacin (NE) 2.5
Folate (DFE) 65.6
Vitamin B6 (mg) 0.1
Vitamin B12 (μg) 0.2

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread Solves Everything

Servings: 4-6 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

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chocolate swirl gingerbread

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread looks fiddly but is oh so easy.

The first cake I learned to bake was a Jell-O cake. It was a plain white sponge cake that you poked all over with a skewer and poured the hot Jell-O mixture over top so it seeped into all of the little holes. It kept the cake moist but left garish jabs of red in each slice of cake.

That is about as fiddly as I ever got with cake, except for my mom’s annual birthday cake.

chocolate swirl gingerbread

I’m also not one for frosting, which is pure laziness on my part. I happen to believe that a really good cake should be able to stand on its own and cakes that I frost look like they have been frosted by a four year old. A sprinkling of icing sugar instead saves the effort and the feeling that I need to apologize.

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread solves everything.

You simply drizzle melted chocolate over top of the cake batter in a deliberate sort of way and then pull a butter knife through it to make a design. Not too fiddly, very pretty when baked and no frosting required.

chocolate swirl gingerbread

Chocolate Swirl Gingerbread Recipe

Slightly adapted from Martha Stewart

  • 1 1/2 cups flour (spooned in)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Butter an 8-inch square pan or line it with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl combine flour, brown sugar, ginger, baking powder, salt, pepper, and cloves.
  3. Combine the butter and water in a pan and warm over medium heat until the butter melts.
  4. Pour butter mixture into dry ingredients and stir until almost combined.
  5. Stir in molasses and egg. Stir until combined.
  6. Pour half the batter into the prepared pan.
  7. Using a spoon, drizzle half the chocolate over the batter. Pour remaining batter on top, and drizzle the remaining chocolate over in a zigzag pattern (or in strips about 1 ½” apart.)
  8. Draw a butter knife through the batter (perpendicular to the chocolate lines) to make a design.
  9. Bake 30-35 minutes until the top springs back when lightly touched.

This cake is a little crumbly but oh so delicious.

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Pumpkin Gingerbread

Servings: 1 loaf serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 75 minutes

Cooking time: 60 minutes

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pumpkin gingerbread

Gingerbread, pumpkin and molasses. Has there ever been a tastier trio?

Thanksgiving is our pumpkin carving weekend. It’s a family tradition up at our cottage with my children and all of my nieces and nephews. The kids (many of whom are now in their 20s) do the carving and the parents drink wine. It’s a great afternoon.

We’re also busy preparing supper so by the time the carving is complete we’re all set to sit down to our Thanksgiving feast.

thanksgiving dinner

When the last piece of pumpkin pie has been eaten and it’s good and dark outside, the great pumpkin lighting begins. It’s an impressive sight to see that many intricately carved pumpkins clustered together out on the deck, flickering in the autumn scented breeze.

 

pumpkins 2

From pie to the great pumpkin carving fest, pumpkin is very much a part of our Thanksgiving weekend.

 

pumpkin gingerbread

That’s why this pumpkin gingerbread will be a great addition. Flavoured with classic gingerbread spices and a note of nutmeg this gingerbread combines all that I love about pumpkin pie and gingerbread – lovely texture and a beautiful spice blend. The candied ginger sprinkled on top makes it extra pretty and adds a little more sweet heat.

pumpkin gingerbread

 Pumpkin Gingerbread Recipe

From Simply Recipes

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup pumpkin purée
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 3 Tbsp finely minced candied ginger, divided
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 Tbsp water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Butter a 9x5x3-inch loaf pan
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, salt, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  3. In another bowl, mix the pumpkin purée, melted butter, sugar, molasses, 1 Tbsp. of the candied ginger, eggs, and water.
  4. Combine the wet and dry ingredients, mixing gently just until combined.
  5. Place the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle top with remaining 2 Tbsp. of candied ginger.
  6. Bake for about an hour, until a skewer poked into the center of the loaf comes out clean.
  7. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan for about 10 minutes then run a knife around the edge of the loaf to loosen. Invert the pan to remove the loaf. Cool completely before cutting

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6 Scrumptious Blueberry Recipes

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blueberry recipes

I love and lament the arrival of blueberries.

Blueberries are one of my favourite fruits but they appear as summer is winding down and back-to-school is closing in. Still, there’s something thrilling about stuffing my freezer with these blue beauties – so I can savour August all year long.

The blueberries are plentiful along the trails near our home where we often walk. We usually stop to nibble for a bit and even our dog used to “pick” a few once we guided her nose to the fruit on the stem. I lack patience for picking though so the berries we freeze come from local markets.

Wild-grown New Brunswick blueberries are my favourite and although I have seen bags of frozen blueberries in the big grocery stores that are labeled “wild” they just don’t taste the same.

Most of our blueberries go into morning smoothies but there is never a shortage for baking. I’m happy to throw blueberries into just about anything that I bake.

Here is a collection of six of my favourite blueberry recipes from the past couple of years:

blueberry buttermilk cornbread

Blueberry Cornbread – A deliciously moist cornbread dotted with plump blueberries and lightly sweetened with molasses. Perfect with breakfast, for snacking or dessert.

blueberry peach cobbler

Blueberry Peach Cobbler (Pudding Cake) – A warm and comforting cobbler that combines some of the best fruit of summer – blueberries and peaches.

blueberry wheat germ muffins

Blueberry Wheat Germ Muffins – A light textured muffin made with yogurt. Extra healthy and nutty flavoured thanks to the wheat germ.

blueberry muffin recipe

Best Blueberry Muffins – My favourite blueberry muffin recipe that’s ever adaptable. The recipe includes 10 flavour variations, all delicious.

blueberry-flax-gingerbread

Blueberry Flax Gingerbread – This is a great snacking cake made healthier with the addition of ground flaxseed.

blueberry molasses scones

Blueberry Molasses Scones – One of the most beautifully textured scones that I have ever made. A great way to showcase the perfect flavour pairing of blueberries and molasses.

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Gingerbread Coconut Thumbprint Cookies are gorgeous and delicious

Servings: 24 serving(s)

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 44 minutes

Cooking time: 24 minutes

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molasses coconut thumbprint cookies

If ever there was a glamorous cookie then this is it. Gingerbread coconut thumbprint cookies are gorgeous, but down to earth in a “I’m a humble molasses cookie” kind of way.

Rolled in coconut and filled with glossy blueberry jelly (or raspberry jam) these cookies have a compelling flavour-texture combo too.

gingerbread coconut thumbprint cookies

We’re in the thick of jam and jelly season, the thought of which takes me back to my childhood. I grew up in a house where jars of jam and jelly were cooling on the counter pretty much from July to October as mom cooked her way through summer and fall fruit. Everything got packed away in the cold room but a bowl of the jam or jelly foam skimmed off the top was always left on the counter for us to spread on toast or stir into yogurt.

The stash of jam would last us most of the year. Most was used on toast but sometimes mom would bake thumbprint cookies, or use a jar to fill a layer cake. Sometimes we’d spoon it over ice cream.

gingerbread coconut thumbprint cookies

As you can see, there is nothing prettier than a cookie filled with jam or jelly. It’s an effortless way to fancy things up. Feel free to fill these cookies with whatever jam or preserves you have on hand.

Gingerbread Coconut Thumbprint cookies with Blueberry Jelly Recipe

Slightly adapted from Eating Well

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour, spooned in
  • 1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour or regular whole wheat flour, spooned in
  • 1 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • ¼ cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 egg
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange, lemon or lime
  • 2/3 cup unsweetened desiccated coconut (medium)
  • 1/2 cup blueberry jelly or any jam or preserves

Directions:

  1. Preheat to 350°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk flours, spices, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.
  3. In a large bowl beat oil, butter, brown sugar, molasses, egg and citrus zest until well blended.
  4. Beat half the flour mixture into the wet ingredients  then beat in the remaining flour mixture until just incorporated. Let the dough stand for 5 minutes.
  5. Roll dough into 1 ½” balls (about 1 Tbsp. of dough per ball).
  6. Place coconut in a shallow bowl and roll each ball in the coconut.
  7. Place about 1 1/2 inches apart on a prepared baking sheet. Press a well into the center of each cookie with a thumb and fill with a scant 1/2 tsp. jelly.
  8. Bake the cookies until set, about 8 to 12 minutes.
  9. Let cool slightly before removing to a wire rack.

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Chewy Chocolaty Gingerbread Blondies

Servings: 16 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 50 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

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chewy gingerbread blondies

Dark, chewy and flavourful.

That’s how I like my brownies and these blond brownies fit that category perfectly thanks to the cup of chocolate chips added to the batter.

I grew up with cake-like brownies and blondies, which I still love, but there is something a little decadent about a chewy, fudgy brownie. To some they’re simply undercooked but to others they take on a candy-like quality.

chewy gingerbread blondies

My dad was a connoisseur of fudge so I grew up with fudge always being around the house. Dad’s fudge was tucked away in his armoire but he used to share it with us in the evenings when we were getting ready for bed.

Now my kids have taken up the cause. When we’re at markets where fresh fudge is sold they pool their money to buy it in great slabs.

And they love all things fudgy.

It was no surprize when I baked these fudgy gingerbread blondies that they disappeared at an alarming rate. Every time my son passed through the kitchen he grabbed another. I finally had to put the few remaining squares in the basement freezer.
chewy gingerbread blondies

Chewy Gingerbread Blondie Recipe

AKA Blond Brownies

Adapted from Averie Cooks

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 Tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup + 2 Tbsp. chocolate chips, divided

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl mix the melted butter (slightly cooled) with the brown sugar, egg, molasses and vanilla.
  3. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, baking soda and spices.
  4. Add flour mixture to butter-sugar mixture and mix until just combined.
  5. Stir in 1 cup chocolate chips.
  6. Spread in prepared pan and sprinkle with remaining 2 Tbsp. of chocolate chips and press them into the batter ever so lightly.
  7. Bake 30-35 minutes until the blondies start to pull away from the edge of the pan. Bake a little longer if you prefer a firmer blondie.
  8. Cool in pan and cut into squares.

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Espresso Gingerbread Cake Recipe is Festive and Comforting

Servings: 8-10 serving(s)

Prep time: 15 minutes

Total time: 1 hours

Cooking time: 45 minutes

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If you’re in the mood to celebrate, this easy Espresso Gingerbread cake is for you. Moist, with just a hint of coffee flavour, it’s festive and comforting all at once.

Espresso molasses cake

The art of celebrating for no reason at all.

I’m of the mind that we don’t celebrate often enough. As a society we’re good with the Hallmark events: birthdays, weddings, graduations, special holidays and the like.

But I think we’re in a bit of a celebration rut, feeling like we need a significant reason or excuse to celebrate, to host a party, to holler “Yippee!”

My friend Laura, on the other hand, has perfected the art of pulling celebrations out of thin air. And once you create a reason to celebrate everyone climbs on board. It’s infectious.

 

Espresso molasses cake is moist, delicious and festive, just right for any celebration.

It’s a good lesson for all of us.

This weekend I’m going to put all of the winter stuff in the basement and then celebrate the reclaiming of our back entryway.

If you’re in the mood to celebrate, this is the cake for you. Moist, with just a hint of coffee flavour, it’s festive and comforting all at once. Make it in a bundt pan if you’d like to dress it up a bit. this cake can also be baked in a 9″ x 13″ pan.

Espresso Gingerbread Cake recipe

Adapted from Bon Appetit magazine

Serves 8-10

Ingredients:

  • 3 ¼ cups flour
  • 5 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup Crosby’s Fancy Molasses
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup yogurt (Greek yogurt is great) or sour cream
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup hot, strong coffee or espresso
  • 1 cup canola or grape seed oil

Instructions:

  1. Grease and flour a 12-cup bundt or tube pan (or line a 9″ x 13″ pan with parchment paper)
  2. In a medium bowl stir together  the flour, ginger, cinnamon, baking soda and salt.
  3. In a large bowl whisk molasses, sugar, yogurt, eggs and vanilla.
  4. Whisk in the hot coffee and the oil.
  5. Add dry ingredients to wet and whisk until well combined.
  6. Pour into prepared pan and bake at 350F for 45 minutes or until a tester comes out clean and the cake starts to pull away from the edges of the pan.
  7. Cool in pan 20 minutes then invert onto a plate (carefully).
  8. Dust with icing sugar and serve with cinnamon scented whipped cream.

If you love a good molasses cake with coffee and may be a bit of chocolate try this spicy ginger cake with molasses and coffee.

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Rich dark molasses cake with coffee and chocolate. Moist and delicious.