Warm spices, bright orange and a good kick from fresh ginger as well as candied ginger make this Gingerbread Bundt Cake THE best ginger cake you will ever have. So turn up that holiday music, make a batch of hot chocolate and enjoy!
Books are my other great love right beside baking. And some of the most enjoyable books I have read are also about food! Just to be clear, I’m talking fiction, not cookbooks. This Gingerbread Cake was adapted from a recipe in Delicious!: A Novel by Ruth Reichl.
You’ll have to read the book if you want the original recipe, or you can just make mine instead! If you haven’t put up your Christmas tree yet, I would humbly suggest a slice of gingerbread bundt cake and a cup of hot cocoa or spiked eggnog would be perfect for a night of tree decorating.
Making gingerbread cake from scratch
This ginger cake has a long ingredient list, so I suggest getting all of your ingredients measured out ahead of time before you start whipping up the batter for a smooth process.
- First, get all of your dry ingredients sifted and combined into a medium mixing bowl. These include the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.
- Second, get your wet ingredients beaten together in a separate mixing bowl. These include the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla extract.
- Third, get your fresh ginger root and orange grated, and your candied ginger chopped into small pieces.
Now, we’re ready to make the cake batter!
- Cream softened butter with brown sugar in the stand mixer bowl or with an electric mixer in a large mixing bowl for 3 whole minutes until it is light and fluffy.
- Add the grated ginger and orange zest and beat to incorporate.
- Now add some of the flour mixture and mix to combine.
- Then add some of the liquid mixture and mix to combine.
- Alternate between the flour mixture and liquid mixture, and beat until everything is incorporated.
- Fold in the chopped candied ginger.
- Prepare the bundt pan by brushing it generously with melted butter and then sprinkle with flour, tap out the excess. This is the best way to grease a bundt pan to ensure a clean release.
- Transfer the cake batter into the bundt pan and even out the surface.
- Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean with just a few crumbs attached.
When and how to remove cake from a bundt pan?
Allow your gingerbread bundt cake to cool inside the pan on top of a wire rack until you can comfortably touch the pan with your bare hand before turning it over to release the cake from the pan.
As the cake cools, the side will start to shrink in and release itself from the wall of the pan. If you try to turn the cake out too early, it may not release and will break apart. So be patient and give it a little time to help itself out.
When you’re ready to flip the pan over, place a wire rack on top of the bundt pan opening and flip the whole contraption over. This way when the cake falls out, it only has a short distance to travel to hit the wire rack.
Don’t free hand and flip the cake pan over onto the wire rack sitting on the counter, it could fall out of the pan halfway and miss the wire rack.
Properly greased bundt pan should release the cake fairly easily. If your cake doesn’t seem to want to come out, give the pan a few taps all around, and it should come out.
Optional orange glaze
You could serve this gingerbread bundt cake simply with a dusting of powdered sugar or add another layer of sweetness with a quick orange glaze. The glaze is made by whisking together powdered sugar, a little bit of salt and orange juice.
➤ Tip: You can adjust the amount of orange juice to control the desired thickness of your glaze.
- Ensure all refrigerated ingredients are at room temperature for better mixing.
- I do think the fresh ginger makes all the difference in this gingerbread cake. However, if you don’t have fresh ginger, you can substitute 2 teaspoon of ground ginger. But use fresh whenever you can!
- If you don’t have a bundt pan, you could make this cake in two 9” round cake pans, and use a cinnamon cream cheese frosting to make a 2-layer ginger cake.
- You could also substitute buttermilk with sour cream for this recipe.
Store leftovers ginger cake at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 3 days. You can certainly keep it longer in the refrigerator for up to a week. I like to warm it up a bit in the microwave if the cake is stored cold.
This cake will also freeze well, wrap it tightly in plastic and store it in a freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw the cake completely before serving.
More cakes for the holidays
Gingerbread Bundt Cake
- Bundt Pan
- 2 ¼ cup all-purpose flour (290 g)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp cloves
- ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- ¼ tsp cardamom
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk (237 g)
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup olive oil (50 g)
- 4 oz unsalted butter (room temperature, 1 stick, ½ cup, 113 g)
- 1 cup brown sugar (light or dark, 200 g)
- 2 large pieces fresh ginger roots (finely grated, about ¼ cup tightly packed, 53 g)
- Zest from 1 large orange (about 1 tbsp grated)
- ½ cup finely chopped crystallized ginger (67 g)
Orange Glaze (optional)
- ¾ cup powdered sugar (75 g)
- A tiny pinch of salt
- 4 – 5 tsp orange juice
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Brush melted butter on the inside of a regular size bundt pan, make sure to get all the nooks and crannies. Sprinkled flour all over it and tap out the excess. Set aside.
- Sift the flour with baking powder, baking soda, and spices into a medium mixing bowl. Add the salt and any spices with large granules that may not have gone through the sieve, whisk to distribute evenly. Set aside.
- Whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla extract in a small mixing bowl. Set aside.
- Grate the ginger root and orange zest. Put them into a small bowl and set aside.
- In the stand mixer bowl or a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.
- Add the grated ginger and orange zest to the butter mixture and beat to combine. Add ⅓ of the flour mixture and beat to incorporate, then add ⅓ of the egg mixture and beat to incorporate. Continue adding flour and egg mixture, alternating between the two, into the butter and beat until each addition is incorporated. The batter should be as luxurious as mousse. Fold in the finely chopped crystallized ginger.
- Spoon the batter into the prepared pan, even out the top, and bake for about 35 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake should come out clean with just a few crumbs attached.
- Remove the cake from the oven and allow it to cool to the touch in the pan, on a wire rack, before removing it from the pan.
- To remove the cake from the bundt pan, place a wire cooling rack on top of the cake pan opening and flip it over, the cake should fall out easily. If not, give it a few taps. Let it cool completely on the wire rack.
- Once the cake is cooled completely, make the glaze. Whisk together powdered sugar, salt, and orange juice. Drizzle it over the cake.
- If you don’t have fresh ginger, you can substitute 2 teaspoon of ground ginger.
- You could also substitute buttermilk with sour cream for this recipe.
- Adjust the amount of orange juice to control the desired thickness of your glaze.