I don’t think I have fully accepted that the holidays are over and if I had it my way, it would be gingerbread and peppermint bark season all year long. The day after Christmas, I always get a case of the blues knowing that the holiday season is coming to an end. Sure, I probably don’t need to inhale any more cookies or cakes for the next few months, but if you don’t do that at least once a year, you’re missing out.
Post-Christmas, I was in a near-comatose state from the amount of food I consumed within such a short span of time. For such a small person, I have a pretty insatiable appetite. I take full advantage of using the holidays as an excuse to cheat a little, but then again, it’s hard to say no to garlic bread and homemade biscotti any time of the year.
While I know that it’s almost January, I would be remiss not to share one more seasonal recipe before the new year because these gingerbread loaves are oh so tasty! Sugar, spice, and everything nice go into these moist and cakey loaves. Molasses makes these loaves rich and not overly sweet, and a thick layer of lemon cream cheese icing provides a delightful lemony kick. This recipe is so whimsical and fun that you wouldn’t guess it is gluten-free and little refined sugar.
What’s in this Recipe:
- Molasses: Blackstrap molasses is the star of this recipe with its slightly salty, slightly bitter afternotes that give these loaves a dramatic color and beautifully complex flavor.
- Spices: Ginger, nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon add so much depth of flavor to the gingerbread and counterbalance the sweetness of the recipe.
- Cream Cheese: I rarely use cream cheese, because truthfully I don’t like it on its own. However, cream cheese frosting is a completely different story. Rich and tangy, cream cheese makes this recipe come to life! To make the recipe vegan, you could potentially substitute vegan cream cheese, although I haven’t done a vegan version of this recipe yet.
- Lemon: I absolutely love ginger and lemon together! The slightly unexpected combination is bright and zingy, making this recipe anything but dull.
- Baking Powder: To help these loaves rise, I recommend baking powder over baking soda because aside from a pinch of salt, there isn’t anything else in this recipe to activate baking soda, meaning the loaves won’t rise as much. I prefer a lighter and fluffier consistency, so baking powder helps these little guys puff up perfectly.
- 1 1/2 cups GF flour
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup coconut sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted and cooled)
- 1 large egg (at room temperature)
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 14 tsp cloves
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking powder
Lemon Cream Cheese Frosting
- 4 oz cream cheese (softened to room temperature)
- 3/4 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice (about 1/2 lemon)
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- Lemon zest
- Start by spraying a miniature loaf pan with nonstick spray and preheating your oven to 350 degrees.
- Next, whisk together the gluten-free flour, spices, salt, and baking powder together. Set aside.
- Heat 3/4 cup of water in the microwave for 15-20 seconds until it is hot, but not boiling.
- In a small bowl, whisk the molasses and water together.
- In a large bowl, mix the coconut sugar, melted and cooled coconut oil, egg, and vanilla together. Then, incorporate in the molasses mixture and mix well.
- Mix the dry ingredients into the wet mixture until you achieve a thick and even batter.
- Distribute the batter evenly between the wells of the pan (about 1/2 cup of batter per loaf) and use a toothpick or knife to spread the batter into the corners of the pan.
- Bake the loaves for 18-20 minutes until a toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs. The loaves will crack as they bake just because it is a denser loaf, but make sure to test the inside to check doneness before taking them out of the oven.
- Once out of the oven, let the loaves cool in the pan for 20-30 minutes until cool enough to handle and gently remove them from the pan onto a cooling rack.
- While they cool, make the lemon cream cheese frosting. Using an electric mixer, cream the softened cream cheese, lemon juice, and vanilla together, then slowly incorporate the powdered sugar 1/4 cup at a time on medium-low speed until you achieve an even consistency. Zest a lemon into the frosting and mix it into the frosting, then use a knife or offset spatula to frost each loaf with a thick layer of icing.
- You can enjoy the loaves right away or cover and store them at room temperature to be enjoyed for 2-3 days after making them!
This recipe will work for an 8x10 baking pan to make one regular-sized loaf, but please note that the baking time will vary.
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Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1 loaf
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 394Total Fat: 17.6gSaturated Fat: 12.6gCholesterol: 52mgSodium: 198mgCarbohydrates: 59.4gFiber: 2gSugar: 48.7gProtein: 3.4g