Gingerbread Loaf Recipe without Molasses

This post may contain affiliate links which means we receive a small commission at no cost to you when you make a purchase. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Grandma's homemade gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses makes moist, soft cake full of the best spiced flavor. This classic quick bread is baked perfect for a holiday dessert!

When I was a little girl, my mom would make gingerbread loaf, pull it out of the warm oven, and slather it with butter. I barely remember it, but I do remember it being really special, a homemade gingerbread treat.

One weekend I searched through my grandma's recipe box, looking for gingerbread loaf cake, and I found just the recipe… A bit tattered, but definitely still readable and so very special because it looks like it's been used quite a lot.

slice of gingerbread loaf on wood cutting board beside Grandma's torn and tattered recipe

What Is Gingerbread Loaf?

When you think of gingerbread, you probably automatically think gingerbread cookies. This gingerbread loaf is essentially a gingerbread cake recipe without molasses, but in loaf form. Mom used to make it in a 9×13 cake pan too, so it can be either/or.

Did you know it's thought that gingerbread actually originated in Greece? There's also history of it in China and then in Europe… But it was first made in Greece.

And just for kicks and giggles, gingerbread houses first came along in Germany in the 16th century. Sometimes I find little historical facts like this fascinating.

Why You'll Love This Recipe

There are definitely a few reasons to love this gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses…

  • You can serve it for breakfast or dessert. It's great for both!
  • It's delicious sliced with a simple dollop of butter spread into each slice.
  • It's quick and easy to make, especially perfect for last minute.
  • This recipe makes 2 loaves, so you can eat one and gift the other.
  • When baked, it's not too sweet, not too strong…. it makes a really delicious breakfast treat or snack.

Ingredients and Substitutions Notes:

You'll need a handful of ingredients, most of which you probably already have in your pantry.

  • Butter – While I prefer to use unsalted butter when baking, you can also use salted. Just know that unsalted allows you to more easily control the amount of salt in the recipe.
  • Cane Sugar – You can also use granulated sugar.
  • Large Eggs – These are better used at room temperature.
  • Light Corn Syrup – While this is a gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses, I do use light corn syrup, which adds to the sweetness and gives a moister texture to the loaf cake. My grandma's recipe calls for Ribbon Cane Syrup, and it seems to be a darker syrup but not quite as dark as molasses. However if you can't find any, a good substitute is actually molasses or light corn syrup.
  • Buttermilk – I love using buttermilk for its leavening effect, especially when I'm making a recipe gluten-free. It really helps with rise, no matter what you're baking. Now… If you don't have buttermilk, you can easily make a substitute out of milk and vinegar. Just add a tablespoon of vinegar to a glass measuring cup; then fill up to the 1 cup line with milk. Give it a little stir, and allow it to sit for just a few minutes. This makes an excellent substitute for buttermilk.
  • All-Purpose Flour – I prefer to use an unbleached all-purpose flour, like King Arthur. If you're making gluten-free gingerbread, I recommend using a quality gluten-free flour like my favorite, and add maybe 1/4 teaspoon of xanthan gum, as well.
  • Baking Soda and Salt – I recommend using a good sea salt, like Redmond.
  • Ground Spices – You'll need ground ginger and ground allspice.

How to Make This Gingerbread Loaf Recipe without Molasses

Before you get started mixing up the batter, be sure to pre-heat the oven to 350° F and grease 2 loaf pans.

  1. First cream (which means mix) the softened butter and sugar together in a large bowl.
mixing batter for homemade gingerbread
  1. Then beat in the eggs.
  2. Next add the corn syrup and the buttermilk, mixing everything together well.
  3. In a separate large bowl, sift or whisk together the dry ingredients, including the flour, baking soda, salt, ground ginger, and ground allspice.
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture, and mix well.
sifting and adding dry ingredients to ginger loaf batter in mixing bowl
  1. Divide and spread the batter in the prepared loaf pans.
gingerbread loaf batter in large and mini loaf pans
  1. Bake at 350° F for about 45 minutes, or 'til a toothpick inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean.

Serve gingerbread loaf with butter; it's definitely best while warm.

sliced ginger loaf with butter on wood cutting board

We really enjoy this gingerbread loaf recipe. It's not too sweet, not too strong; it makes a really delicious breakfast treat or snack.

Expert Tips and Recipe FAQ's

How can you prevent dry bread or cake?

This is the main reason this recipe calls for light corn syrup. It gives it more of a moist texture, rather than a dry, mealy crumb. Also, watch your bake time. Ovens can vary, so your ginger loaf cake may bake faster; it may not take 45 minutes. If over baked, it can turn out dry and crumbly.

How do you store gingerbread loaf?

Gingerbread loaf cake can sit out on the counter; there's no need to refrigerate it. It should keep well for 2-3 days. But good luck keeping it that long, because in my house, it's usually gone within a day. Gobbled up!

Can you freeze ginger loaf?

Yes, you totally can. You can make this ahead of time and freeze it. Just allow it to cool before wrapping in plastic wrap and aluminum foil, and place it in an airtight, freezer-friendly container or freezer bag. Then freeze. It should keep for up to 3 months in the freezer.

Recipe Variations

There are a few ways you can tweak this recipe to add more oomph, flavor, different textures, etc. Here are a few of those ways…

  • Put an icing or glaze on top. You can always drizzle a simple powdered sugar icing on top; maybe even add a little citrus flavor to the drizzle by squeezing in a bit of lemon juice or orange juice to the icing. Of course, you can also make a thinner form of cream cheese frosting to drizzle on top, as well. Yum!
  • Add walnuts or pecans to the batter; then sprinkle a few chopped nuts on top before baking.
  • Add chocolate chips to the batter before baking.
  • Mix raisins or dried cranberries into the batter before baking.
  • Add 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon to the dry ingredients when mixing.
  • Add a teaspoon or so of vanilla extract to the batter for more flavor.
sliced gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses on wood cutting board

More Quick Bread and Muffin Recipes

And if you're looking for more holiday recipe inspiration, check out my list of The Best Christmas Recipes for Your Holiday Celebrations.

If you try this recipe, why not leave a star rating in the recipe card right below and/or a review in the comment section further down the page? I always appreciate your feedback. You can also follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. And subscribe to my email list too!

sliced gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses on wood cutting board

Gingerbread Loaf Recipe without Molasses

Grandma's homemade gingerbread loaf recipe without molasses makes moist, soft cake full of the best spiced flavor. Classic quick bread!
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Breads & Muffins, Desserts
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Servings: 16
Calories: 529kcal
Author: Mel Lockcuff




  • Pre-heat the oven to 350° F, and grease and flour 2 loaf pans.
  • In a large mixing bowl, cream or mix together the softened butter and sugar.
  • Beat in the eggs.
  • Then add the corn syrup and buttermilk, mixing well.
  • In a separate large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger, and allspice.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture, and mix well.
  • Divide and spread the batter in the prepared loaf pans.
  • Bake at 350° F for about 45 minutes, or 'til a toothpick inserted in the center of each loaf comes out clean.
  • Serve while warm with a generous slather of butter.


Serving: 1Servings | Calories: 529kcal | Carbohydrates: 76g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 58mg | Sodium: 237mg | Potassium: 98mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 47g | Vitamin A: 121IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this Recipe? Tag us Today!Mention @mellockcuff or tag #aomrecipes!

7 thoughts on “Gingerbread Loaf Recipe without Molasses”

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating

featured on ...

↑ Back To Top