Homemade Gingerbread Loaf is soft, moist, and perfectly spiced with your favorite holiday flavors. Pair with your morning coffee, enjoy as dessert, or give as a gift.
It's that time of year again. Pull out the cinnamon, find the cloves, and buy a fresh jar of molasses. That's right - it's gingerbread season.
You'll love this homemade gingerbread loaf because it's quick and super easy to make. Plus, it gets you in the holiday spirit pronto. Who can resist the warm and cozy scent of cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and molasses?
Ingredients and substitutions
Since this is a baking recipe, I do not have many substitutions to offer. Baking is an exact science, and each ingredient serves its purpose in the recipe. I do not recommend making any substitutions that I haven't mentioned in this section!
Unsalted butter and salt can be substituted with salted butter.
Make sure you grab the baking soda for this recipe - not baking powder. They react differently in recipes and you'll need baking soda for this particular recipe.
Properly measured flour
One key to successful baking is properly measuring your ingredients, including your flour. I recommend weighing your flour, or using the spoon and level method.
Spoon flour into your measuring cup, then level the top off with a knife. When scooping flour directly from the container with your measuring cup, you're compacting the flour into the measuring cup. This adds up to 25% extra flour to your recipe.
Adding extra flour to your bread can make it dry, so be sure to spoon and level your flour for this recipe!
Give as a gift
Quick bread recipes make a fantastic homemade gift. Buy a pretty loaf pan, bake a loaf of gingerbread inside, then gift away!
These Emile Henry Ruffled Loaf Pans are pretty and high quality loaf pans. The white ruffled loaf pan would look beautiful with some fresh gingerbread baked inside.
How to prevent dry bread
If your bread is dry straight from the oven, this is caused by over-baking. When baked just the right amount of time, your bread loaf will turn out soft, moist, and tender.
- Ovens can run hot or cold. If your oven runs hot, your baked goods may be done a few minutes before what is written in the recipe.
- Use a thermometer inside your oven to make sure your oven is set to the proper temperature for any given recipe. Here's what I use: Rubbermaid Instant Read Oven Thermometer
- If your oven runs hot, try testing your bread 10 minutes earlier than suggested in the recipe card. Stick a toothpick in the center of your loaf. If the toothpick comes out dry, or with crumbs, your bread is done. If your toothpick comes out with wet batter, give your bread another 5 minutes and check again.
- Dry bread can also be caused by slicing while still hot. Slicing into piping hot bread will release extra steam from your bread loaf and cause it to dry out quickly. Allow it to cool most of the way before slicing and enjoying.
- Homemade bread will stay moist for about 3 days before it needs to be eaten, frozen, or discarded.
Homemade Gingerbread Loaf
- ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ½ cup brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup molasses
- ½ cup boiling water
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x5 loaf pan with parchment paper (or grease and flour bottom and sides) and set aside.
- In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla. Stir until well combined.
- In a small bowl, add molasses and boiling water. Stir until combined. Add to wet ingredients and combine.
- In a separate bowl, whisk (or sift) together the dry ingredients: flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and salt. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and add wet ingredients. Stir until just combined.
- Pour batter into loaf pan. Cover loaf pan lightly with foil (remove foil halfway through baking. This ensures that the top of your bread doesn't burn.) Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Optionally, dust with confectioner's sugar or serve with a dollop of whipped cream.