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Chocolate Gingerbread Cake

Chocolate Gingerbread Cake

I’m taking a break from holiday cookie baking for, like, a minute while I work out some last-minute kinks in how best to wrap all of my holiday cookie gifts. (Are you gifting cookies? Here‘s where I find my boxes.) So consider this chocolate gingerbread cake to be an intermission during gluten-free Christmas cookie-baking event.* It’s a riff on this traditional gluten-free gingerbread cake, but with all due respect to the traditional, it’s way better—without being super rich or anything.

*Oh oh and then I also have a GF Bûche de Noël to share with you later this week. Fancy punctuation optional (I copied & pasted from google). And fancy ingredients need not apply.

This cake is a snap to put together, and gluten-free cake flour keeps it from being dense even though it’s moist and rich (but not too too rich). For extra flair, serve it at your holiday table on small plates, and dust each plated piece separately with confectioners’ sugar. Kapow!

The top doesn’t even crack. It’s just super balanced, unlike some people I know. Okay, unlike me.

Tomorrow, more cookies. That’s what happens after an intermission. There’s more. We’re in the home stretch, so limber up. Oh, and not for nothing, but this cake freezes perfectamundo.

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Prep time: Cook time: Yield: 16 servings


6 tablespoons (84 g) unsalted butter

2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate, chopped

2 ¼ cups (315 g) gluten-free cake flour (254 g high-quality all purpose gluten free flour + 56 g cornstarch)*

1½ teaspoons xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it

½ cup (40 g) Dutch-processed cocoa powder (I use Rodelle brand)

1 teaspoons baking soda

½ teaspoon baking powder

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

2 teaspoons ground ginger

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar

½ cup (109 g) packed light brown sugar

2 tablespoons (42 g) unsulphured molasses

6 tablespoons (126 g) pure maple syrup

4 tablespoons (84 g) honey

1 extra-large egg (60 g without shell) at room temperature, beaten

1 cup warm water

2 tablespoons (28 g) vegetable oil

Confectioner’s sugar, for dusting (optional)

*In place of 2 1/4 cups gluten-free cake flour, you can use the same amount, by weight, high-quality all-purpose gluten-free flour. Your cake will simply be a bit heavier.


  • Preheat your oven to 325° F. Grease a 9 inch square baking pan, line it with unbleached parchment paper, and set it aside.

  • In a small, microwave safe bowl, place the butter and chopped chocolate, and microwave for 45 seconds at a time at 60% power, stirring in between intervals, until melted and smooth. Set the mixture aside to cool briefly.

  • In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and granulated sugar. Whisk to combine well. Add the brown sugar and whisk to combine, working out any lumps in the brown sugar. Add the molasses, maple syrup, honey, egg and water, mixing well after each addition. Add the oil, and the melted chocolate and butter mixture, and blend well. The batter will be smooth, and thickly pourable (see the photo). Pour into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a wet spatula. Bang the pan on the counter a few times to remove any air bubbles from within the batter.

  • Place the pan in the center of the preheated oven, and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with, at most, a few moist crumbs attached, about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in pan until firm (about 10 minutes). Turn the cake out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Once the cake is cool, dust with the optional powdered sugar, slice and serve.



P.S. If you haven’t yet, please pick up a copy of Gluten-Free on a Shoestring Quick & Easy! Take the stress out of gluten-free cooking and baking, and support the blog that supports you!

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