Gingerbread Pudding Cake is a spice-filled cake with its own sauce that is great for the holidays. Bonus: it can be made in the slow cooker!
When I was growing up, my family would eat Ukrainian food on Christmas Eve and a standard "holiday" meal of turkey or ham, stuffing, and sides on Christmas day.
Now that I'm the one cooking, I don't usually do the Ukrainian food anymore, but I do usually do the Christmas day holiday meal. But I absolutely do NOT want to be spending my Christmas day in the kitchen, so I prepare as many dishes ahead of time as possible.
This Gingerbread Pudding Cake is a great option for Christmas dinner dessert, especially for those who don't want to be cooking all day.
You can get it all mixed up, and toss it into the slow cooker ahead of time. Or you can bake it in the oven, and warm it up when it's time to serve. It can even stay in there for a little while after it's done cooking to keep warm.
Or you can bake it in the oven, and warm it up when it's time to serve.
And, as an added bonus, this spicy, molasses-y dessert is exceptionally tasty, especially when served with whipped cream or ice cream!
How to make Gingerbread Pudding Cake:
I have made this cake many times, both in the slow cooker and in the regular oven. It turns out great both ways, so it depends on your schedule and oven requirements which way you do it. The slow cooker takes longer, but it's hands-off and frees up the oven.
When you take a look at the ingredient list for this cake, don't be daunted by the seemingly long list of ingredients - they're mostly spices that you probably already have on hand.
This cake really is easy to whip up. You mix the dry ingredients together, then cream butter and sugar together and add the egg. Mix in the flour mixture and water-molasses mixture to form a batter
Then you sprinkle the batter with brown sugar and pour hot water over the whole thing. It feels weird pouring water over a batter that you just lovingly mixed up, but this is what forms the delicious pudding sauce.
When the cake is done, either in the slow cooker or oven, it will develop cracks on the top. If it's cooked in the oven, the cracks will appear slightly drier.
If it's cooked in the slow cooker the cracks will be a little wetter and "brain-like" in appearance. Don't overcook it.
If you're making it in the slow cooker, turn off the slow-cooker when the cake is done, and you can keep it warm in there until you're ready to serve it - up to an hour or two.
This pudding cake is absolutely best served warm. And although it is definitely good enough on it's own, it's even better served with a lightly sweetened whipped cream or your favorite vanilla ice cream. Merry Christmas!
Gingerbread Pudding Cake Ingredients:
- All-purpose flour
- Whole wheat flour
- Ground ginger or minced or grated fresh ginger
- Baking soda
- Kosher salt
- Freshly grated nutmeg: or ground nutmeg
- Ground allspice
- Ground cloves
- Finely ground black pepper
- Unsalted butter: Use Dairy Free butter alternative to make this recipe Dairy Free
- Large egg
- Warm water: use whatever water you normally drink, tap water is fine.
- Brown sugar
Want more spicy dessert recipes?
Gingerbread Pudding Cake Nutrition Notes:
The nutrition information in the recipe below does not include any whipped cream or ice cream.
To make this recipe dairy-free, replace the butter in the recipe with your favorite dairy-free butter substitute.
Gingerbread Pudding Cake
- ¾ cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup whole wheat flour (optional - replace with an equal amount of all-purpose flour if desired)
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger or 1 Tablespoon minced or grated fresh ginger (see note below)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg (or ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg)
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon finely ground black pepper
- 8 Tablespoons unsalted butter softened and divided (Use Dairy Free butter alternative to make this recipe Dairy Free)
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 large egg lightly beaten
- ½ cup molasses
- 2 cups warm water divided
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- Heat the oven to 350°F. Grease a 9x9" glass baking dish or similar sized casserole dish. (I used a 2.8L Corningware)
- Whisk together ¾ cup all-purpose flour, ½ cup whole wheat flour, 1 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 teaspoon baking soda, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, ½ teaspoon kosher salt, ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, ¼ teaspoon ground allspice, ¼ teaspoon ground cloves, and ¼ teaspoon finely ground black pepper in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Cream together 4 Tablespoons of the butter and ¼ cup sugar on medium speed using a stand mixer or hand mixer. Add 1 large egg (and fresh ginger if using) and beat until just combined.
- Stir together ½ cup of the warm water and ½ cup molasses in a small bowl or measuring cup.
- Alternately mix ⅓ of the flour mixture and ⅓ of the molasses mixture into the butter mixture until completely combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition.
- Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish. Sprinkle the batter evenly with ¾ cup brown sugar. Melt the remaining 4 Tablespoons of butter in a heat-proof bowl or measuring cup and combine with the remaining 1 ½ cups of warm water. Pour this mixture gently over the batter and brown sugar (the batter will be completely covered with liquid).
- Place in the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes. Note that the cake should be dry on the top, but should have a slight jiggle when gently shaken. Cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm. If desired, serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
*Recipe adapted from Whitewater Cooks with Friends