This Gingerbread Cake is a soft and tender one-layer gingerbread cake with maple frosting and full of classic Christmas flavors. It’s easy to make and the perfect festive dessert for the holidays. Gluten-free, dairy-free, dairy-free and includes low carb and keto sweetener options.
A Moist and Healthy Gingerbread Cake
Looking for a simple and festive cake for the Christmas season? This Gingerbread Cake is full of delicious gingerbread flavor and so easy to make in one bowl. It’s perfect for the holidays but it’s just as delicious any other time of year. This is my go-to recipe when I want to make a cake from scratch. The flavors go together perfectly and the texture of the cake is divine!
Not only is this cake supremely soft and moist, but it’s also made with healthy ingredients. Both the gingerbread cake and the maple frosting are paleo, gluten-free and dairy-free. There are also low carb and keto sweetener options for this recipe.
What we love about this holiday recipe
Other than the fact that it’s a healthier dessert option, there are so many things we love about this glucake. The frosted gingerbread cake recipe accommodates various dietary needs and the flavors and textures are spot-on. Another great thing about this gluten free gingerbread cake is how easy it is to make.
Everything bakes in a little over 15 minutes, and the frosting comes together in 2 minutes. This is one of the easiest homemade cake recipes ever, but it’s tasty and pretty enough to be the star of the Christmas dinner table!
Ingredients You’ll Need
The ingredient line-up for this paleo gingerbread cake keeps things nice and simple. You just need some classic gingerbread spices and your typical cake ingredients.
For the Gingerbread Cake
- Egg: holds the cake together and help it rise. Be sure to bring eggs to room temperature for best results.
- Pure Maple Syrup: Use Lakanto sugar-free maple syrup or yacon syrup for a keto gingerbread cake.
- Refined Coconut Oil: You can also use vegan butter or ghee, if you’re not dairy-free.
- Molasses: to add sweetness and that classic gingerbread flavor. We like unsulphured blackstrap molasses but you can leave this out if you prefer.
- Vanilla Extract
- Superfine blanched Almond Flour + Coconut Flour: our favorite combination gluten-free flours to replace all purpose flour
- Baking Soda
- Spices: Cinnamon + Ground Ginger + Nutmeg
- Fine Sea Salt: just a pinch to balance out the sweetness
For the Maple Frosting
- Dairy-Free Cream Cheese: The cream cheese should be softened. If you can eat dairy, you can use regular cream cheese.
- Refined Coconut Oil: Feel free to use vegan butter or regular butter instead, if you’re not dairy-free
- Pure Maple Syrup
- Vanilla Extract
- Chopped Pecans or Walnuts: You can leave off the nuts if you’d like, but I enjoy the added crunch!
How to Make Gingerbread Cake
Firing up your oven is honestly half the work for this paleo gingerbread cake. The recipe is quick, simple and fool-proof. Watch the video below to see how easy it is to make!
- Prepare for Baking: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8 square baking pan with parchment paper.
- Combine Wet Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg followed by the maple syrup, coconut oil, molasses and vanilla until smooth.
- Add Flours: Hold a large fine mesh sieve over the bowl and sift in the almond flour and coconut flour.
- Add Remaining Dry Ingredients: Stir in the baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt until combined.
- Bake: Transfer the batter into the baking pan and smooth the top. Bake in a preheated oven for 16-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Let Cool: Remove the pan from the oven and let the cake cool completely before frosting.
How to Make the Maple Frosting
This frosting is so easy to throw together, I could do it in my sleep! It’s a great recipe for any baker to have in their back pocket.
- Combine Ingredients: Beat together all the frosting ingredients.
Assembling Your Cake
Last but not least, you have to put your masterpiece together.
- Top Cake with Frosting: Use an offset spatula to spread your frosting over the cooled cake.
- Garnish & Serve: Sprinkle the top of the frosted cake with cinnamon or chopped nuts, cut it into servings and enjoy!
Tips for Success
- Bring Ingredients to Room Temperature: Using room temperature ingredients will give you the perfect smooth and silky batter. This also applies to your frosting. Room temperature ingredient blend together more easily.
- Use Dark Molasses: I recommend using dark, unsulphured molasses for the best gingerbread flavor.
- Let Cake Cool Before Frosting: Avoid frosting your cake before it’s completely cool. Otherwise, the frosting will melt and may soak into the cake.
How to Store this Homemade Cake
I like to store this cake in the fridge to keep it nice and moist. Keep the frosted cake in an airtight container and enjoy it within 5 days. The flavors intensify after the cake sits for a day or two, so it’s great for making in advance!
Can I Freeze Gingerbread Cake?
If you’d like to, you can store your cake in the freezer with or without the frosting. It will last for about 2 months. When you’re ready to eat your cake, thaw it overnight in the fridge.
More Holiday Baking Ideas to Try
- If you want a more classic manifestation of the gingerbread flavor, try my Easy Vegan Gingerbread Cookies!
- These easy Chocolate Peppermint Cookies make amazing stocking stuffers.
- When it comes to healthy holiday desserts, this Low-Carb Pecan Pie is another one of my favorites.
- My kids are obsessed with these Soft Frosted Eggnog Cookies! They’re sweet, festive and delicious.
- Gingerbread Loaf
Gingerbread is one of those classic Christmas flavors, and this Moist Gingerbread Cake with Maple Frosting truly does it justice! Once you sink your teeth into this sweet and tender cake, you won't be able to stop at one piece.
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup , for low carb/keto, sub with 3 tbsp Lakanto sugar-free maple syrup or yacon syrup.
- 1/4 cup refined coconut oil , melted & slightly cooled, may also sub with vegan butter or ghee if not dairy-free
- 3 tbsp molasses , to add sweetness and that classic gingerbread flavor. We like unsulphured blackstrap molasses but you can use any you have or prefer.
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 cups superfine almond flour
- 3 tbsp coconut flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/8 tsp fine sea salt
- 8 oz softened dairy-free cream cheese , or regular if not dairy-free
- 2 tbsp softened refined coconut oil , can use vegan butter or regular butter if not dairy-free
- 3-4 tbsp maple syrup , for low carb/keto, sub with Lakanto sugar-free maple syrup or yacon syrup.
- 2/3 tsp vanilla extract
- chopped pecans or walnuts , for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Line an 8x8 square baking pan with parchment paper.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg followed by the maple syrup, coconut oil, molasses and vanilla until smooth.
Hold a large fine mesh sieve over the bowl and sift in the almond flour and coconut flour. Then, stir in the baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt until combined.
Transfer the batter into the baking pan and smooth the top. Bake in a preheated oven for 16-20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove the pan from the oven and let the cake cool completely before frosting.
Beat together all the frosting ingredients and use an offset spatula to spread over cooled cake. Sprinkle with cinnamon or chopped nuts.
Cut into 12 squares and serve.