Go Back
+ servings
Gingerbread Layer Cake
Prep Time
40 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: gingerbread cake
Servings: 12
Author: Jackie
Gingerbread Cake-
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • teaspoon cardamom
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1 cup dark brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup hot water
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting-
  • 8 oz 1 block full fat cream cheese, room temperature
  • ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Sugared Cranberries-
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1/3 cup sanding sugar regular sugar will work here too
  • Gingerbread men
  • Sugared cranberries
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Star Anise optional
  1. Gingerbread Cake

  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line the bottom of two 8 or 9 inch round baking pans with parchment paper rounds. Grease and flour the sides of the pans.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Set aside.
  4. In a separate large bowl, beat oil, molasses, and sugars until mixture on medium speed until mixture is light and airy. Scrape down bowl and add eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated.
  5. Stir in vanilla extract.
  6. With beaters running on low, gradually add in flour mixture, mixing until just combined. The batter will be thick and lumpy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add hot water. Mix on low until batter is smooth.
  7. Evenly pour batter into pans and bake for 25-28 minutes or until a knife is inserted into the center of the cake and comes out clean. Allow cakes to cool for 15 minutes in pans then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
  8. To make the frosting-

  9. Beat cream cheese and butter until light and smooth. Add powdered sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla and beat until combined. Increase mixer speed to high and beat frosting until light and airy, about 4-5 minutes.
  10. If needed, level the cakes by cutting off the domes using a serrated knife. Place one cake layer on a cake stand or serving plate. Evenly spread about ¾ cup of frosting on the layer. Top with the second layer and spread remaining frosting over the top and sides of the cake. Garnish with sugared cranberries, cinnamon sticks, gingerbread men, and star anise, if desired.
  11. To make the Sugared Cranberries- from Decadent Fruit Desserts Cookbook (my cookbook)

  12. Combine sugar and water in a small pan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer, stirring until sugar dissolves.
  13. Once simmering, remove from heat and cool syrup for 10 minutes.
  14. Place cranberries in a large bowl and pour the syrup over the top. Stir gently to coat all the cranberries with the syrup. Let cool completely, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

  15. Once cranberries have steeped, and are now cold, drain into a colander. Reserve syrup for cocktails! Place sanding sugar in a shallow dish.

  16. Add the cranberries in small batches, rolling to coat with sugar. Spread sugared cranberries in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Let cranberries sit at room temperature until dry, about 1 hour. Store cranberries in an airtight container in a cool, dry place for up to one week.