Happy December! The beginning of a crazy season filled with holiday baking. And what better way to start celebrating than with a classic flavor like gingerbread? I’m not a big fan of gingerbread cookies, because they tend to be crunchy and that’s not my preference. But the combination of sweet spices like ginger, cinnamon and cloves with molasses is hard to resist. Historically, gingerbread was said to have medicinal qualities that helped ease stomach issues, but today I think we can all agree that it’s one of the best parts of the holiday season. Looking for other seasonal recipes? Try out these chai spice sugar cookies.
This cake recipe is super simple, and the cranberry glaze, while optional, is also quick to make. I chose to separate the batter into four mini bundt pans, each about 1 cup. If you wanted to make one large cake, you can double the recipe and use a standard 10-12 cup bundt pan. The trickiest part about bundt cakes is getting them out of the pan. Make sure to grease it super well, paying attention to all the crevices. I prefer to use crisco and then flour the pan for best results. However, if bundt cakes aren’t your thing, go ahead and use any baking dish you prefer!
How to Make Frosted Cranberries for Garnish
As you can see in the photos, I chose to add frosted cranberries to my cakes. They are beautiful and sparkly, and also taste great. The cranberries are totally optional, but if you want to add them to any treat just follow the steps below.
- Bring 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup granulated sugar to a simmer over medium-low heat.
- Allow mixture to simmer for 2-3 minutes, then remove from heat. Stir in 1 cup cranberries.
- Soak cranberries for 20-30 minutes and then drain liquid and set to dry on a cooling rack.
- After about 30 minutes (the cranberries should still be slightly sticky) roll in granulated sugar and place on wax paper to dry before use.
- 1 1/4 c cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 6 T unsalted butter (room temperature)
- 3/4 c brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/2 cup water (room temperature)
- Cranberry Glaze
- 1 c. fresh cranberries
- 1/2 tsp orange zest
- 1/4 c. water
- 2/3 c. powdered sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease bundt pans.
- In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg and mix in well before adding in the molasses.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, spices, salt, baking soda, and baking powder.
- Add the flour mixture in three additions alternately with the water, starting and ending with the flour. Stir just until combined.
- Pour the batter into the pan and smooth out the top.
- Bake until a cake tester comes out mostly clean, about 20 minutes (for small bundt cake pans). Cool in pans for 10 minutes and then flip onto cooling rack.
- While the cake is baking, make the glaze by cooking cranberries, orange zest and water in a saucepan over medium heat until simmering.
- Let simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring often and crushing berries as they pop. Once sauce has thickened, remove from heat to cool.
- Add cooled sauce to a blender or food processor with powdered sugar, and blend until smooth. (add more or less sugar to taste)
- Spoon glaze over cakes before serving.
Gingerbread cake recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour.