December 9, 2020
Gingerbread Traybake Cake!
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A deliciously spiced gingerbread traybake cake that’s perfect for the festive season! Scrumptious sticky gingerbread sponge, ginger buttercream frosting, and more!
Gingerbread traybake cake
Was another festive season really going to pass without me posting a gingerbread traybake recipe?! I think not. How could it?! I know how much you guys adore traybake recipes, and gingerbread recipes!
I wanted to do this post last year, but after the downright success of my gingerbread loaf cake I didn’t want to post this so soon! You guys still love the loaf cake though, so hopefully you will consider the traybake version haha!
Traybake cakes are always a hit for me when it comes to baking for a crowd (and yes I know this year is a little different, but you get what I am saying!) for a bake sale, or just because you prefer to eat cakes like that.
Traybake are easy – you just cut out a chunk, it’s one layer, and you have a slathering of something utterly delicious on top. Can you really beat that?! I love them.
My carrot cake traybake is without a doubt one of my favourites, along with my chocolate cake traybake – and this one?! It’s basically a combination of them both, but Christmas.
Ginger cake to me should be sticky, dense, and warming through the spices. My gingerbread drip cake is more classic sponge to make it easier, but the rest of my gingerbread related cakes are the same sticky dense lovely sponge that we all adore.
I won’t lie and say this cake is light and fluffy, but it also shouldn’t be! You use dark brown soft sugar (or light brown) and black treacle (or golden syrup) to create a rich and lovely flavour… add the ground ginger and cinnamon on top and you have the best bake ever.
You can use golden syrup instead of treacle and light brown sugar instead of dark brown but it will effect the flavour ever so slightly – it makes the sponger lighter, and the ginger flavour isn’t as intense – but if you dont mind or thats all you have then then go ahead!
I did change this sponge to use self raising flour and no bicarbonate of soda (As that’s what I had in at the time..) but if you wanted to use plain flour, and add 2tsps bicarbonate of soda to the milk (which you will need to warm and let sit for 10 minute before using) you can!
Tin and topping
I do find traybake tins can really vary in size – so sometimes that creates a bit of confusion. I typically call them 9×13″ tins as that’s what I have mostly – but I do also have a lovely 9×12″ tin. It is a tiny bit smaller – but both size tins will work well for this recipe.
For the topping I did the same style ginger buttercream frosting because I utterly adore it – and it’s so simple to make. It’s important to use block butter when making buttercream and not a spread as it’s too soft. Make sure to bring the butter to room temp first, and it’ll be easy!
You can decorate the cake as you like… I used mini gingerbread men (shop bought, don’t hate..) some crushed biscuits and some sprinkles. So simple – but you can also change it to whatever you prefer or fancy!I hope you guys love this recipe – it’s been very very highly requested so I hope it doesn’t disappoint! Enjoy! x
Gingerbread Traybake Cake!
- 300 g unsalted butter
- 300 g dark brown soft sugar (or light brown)
- 150 g black treacle (or golden syrup)
- 475 g self raising flour
- 4 tsp ground ginger
- 2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 4 medium eggs
- 300 ml whole milk
- 125 g unsalted butter (room temp)
- 250 g icing sugar
- 2 tsps ground ginger
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- Gingerbread men
- Gingerbread crumbs
For the Cake
- Preheat your oven to 180ºC/160ºC fan and grease and line a 9x13" traybake tin (or 9x12" if that's what you have!) with parchment paper.
- In a pan, gently heat the unsalted butter, dark brown sugar and treacle together in a pan until smooth, allow to cool for 10 minutes!
- In a large bowl, sift the self raising flour, ginger and cinnamon together and pour in the treacle mix – stir to combine.
- Add in the eggs and stir to combine.
- Finally, add in the milk and mix again.
- Pour the mixture into the lined tin - it's quite a runny mixture so don't worry.
- Bake in the oven for 35-40 minutes, or until baked through.
- Once baked, leave to cool in the tin fully.
For the Decoration
- Beat your unsalted butter on it's own for a few minutes to loosen it and make it lovely and soft!
- Add in the icing sugar, and the spices, and beat again! Continue beating until the buttercream is lovely and fluffy and perfect!
- If your buttercream is a little thick, add 1-2 tbsp of boiling water or whole milk and mix again to smooth.
- Spread the buttercream onto the cake, and decorate with some gingerbread men, and gingerbread crumbs and some sprinkles. Enjoy!
- This cake will keep in an airtight container for 3-4 days! The flavour keeps on getting better as the days go on.
- You could add some stem ginger to the recipe if you like when you beat in the egg!
- Instead of buttercream you can do a drizzle of icing hinted with ground ginger! Use 200g icing sugar, 2-3 tbsp of water (or as much as you need to get the consistency you want) and 1/2 tsp ground ginger.
- I recommend using this 9x13" traybake tin, or this 9x12" traybake tin!
- And finally, Iced Jems does the BEST sprinkles!
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Hi Jane, I just tried out this recipe today and it was gorgeous! Mine for some reason rose a lot more than it looked like yours did, so each slice is MASSIVE, but that’s not bad thing when you’re taki g it to work to share with colleagues, ha! This tastes so, so nice and is SO easy to make – I think this is going to become a favourite of mine! I made mine with skimmed milk as that’s the only milk I had on hand but it still turned out perfectly. Thank you for this lovely bake!
Hi Jane great cake, as all your bakes are. I intend to ice the cake, can I freeze it iced with stem ginger on top?
Thank you keep your recipes and books coming
Yes absolutely you can, for up to 3 months! Hope this helps! x
Could you use baking block instead of butter
Hiya! Yes absolutely, but be sure to still use block butter for the frosting! Hope this helps x
First time I have used a recipe from this blog. Absolutely delicious, so soft & moist. I used semi skimmed milk so it did split a little but nothing to worry about, I left the frosting off as it was so good without int ,made it for a get together with a few neighbours , they will love it. Thank you Jane
Love this cake!
Will it freeze with the frosting on?
Yes absolutely, you can freeze this for up to 3 months! Enjoy! x
I wonder if this could be make gluten free please?
I accidentally left out the milk and they still came out ok! Perhaps a smidge dry, but with the butter cream it’s was great!
Absolutely gorgeous recipe – as is every single recipe from this wonderful lady. Have made almost everything from the book and working through the website – please say you have plans for another book!!!
Thank you so much that is so sweet! x
Tastes and smells of Christmas 🥰. Anyone who hasn’t tried this recipe should !
Hi Jane iwould love to make this but in a 9×9 would I be right in thinking half it or 160 g amd 3 eggs just don’t know how much syrups and etc to reduce to x
I’m thinking of making this but would like to do it as a cupcake version. Christmas practise! Any ideas on quantities?
Thank you so much Jane this was another amazing recipe as usual, literally anytime I bake I always come to your website. When I bake things from here they have never gone wrong so thank you so much for all the hard work. U r such a role model for me so thank you.
Hey!! Aww this is such a lovely message to receive thank you so much! I am so glad you love baking my recipes xx
made this and it was absolutely AMAZING – first time making a ginger cake and it turned out so delicious, exactly as the blog described. the texture was dense and fudgey but not too much so, and it had just the right amount of sweetness! i also hand made the gingerbread men to put on top, great way to use up any leftover christmas spices!
Delicious, went down a storm over Christmas. Will definitely be making it again!
I only have semi skimmed milk, is this OK to use instead of whole milk?
Ideally whole milk is used as semi skimmed can sometimes make the mixture split, but it may be okay!
I made this in a bundt tin and it came out perfectly! My mixture wasn’t very runny though (I checked the recipe at least three times to make sure I measured correctly!). The flavour and texture was delicious – like the traditional gingerbread biscuits I would make with my mum as a kid. I took it to work and it was gone by lunchtime! Thanks again Jane for another fantastic recipe! ❤
Amazing!! Tastes like christmas🎄
The best cake we’ve made
Made this recipe today. Can safely say it’s not going to be around for long! Surprised how runny the mix was – have had thicker milkshakes. But it cooked fine so all good! 👍
Just got to decide what to make next from this amazing site. Keep up the amazing work Jane! 😁
Made this today and it was sliced by my partner before I could decorate it 😂 he said its the best he’s tasted and I have to agree.
Another great recipe, thank you and merry Christmas 🎄
This is absolutely gorgeous, I love it! The whole family loves it and we even gave some to friends and they said it was amazing too x
Lovely recipes each and every1 of them. This recipe says ground ginger. Is it powder or fresh ginger please?
Ground ginger is a powder I guess – usually found in a spice pot!
Delicious recipe! I thinking of serving it with Ice Cream, what flavour do you think will go well?
Ooh something vanilla, caramel or salted caramel!
Lovely recipe came out really well. My old people I care for absolutely love it.
Just made the ginger tray bake tasted amazing just iced the top with speinkles
Hi 🙂 love your recipes. I brought a 9” for the brownies but I’m trying to branch out. Any chance this would work in a 9” square ? Maybe 3/4 of the recipe? X thank you
I would use 2/3! x
If I want to make a batch of 12 cupcakes using this recipe, how would you suggest altering the quantities? Would halving them work?
I’m not 100% sure but yes that should be about okay! X
Thanks for sharing, this looks a lovely cake for a different treat 🙂
Hi Jane, as always the recipe looks amazing.
There are only 2 of us. So wondered if the cake can be frozen?
Thank you in advance for your time.
Wishing you a very Merry Christmas x
Yes it can be! And merry Christmas! x
Just made this. I only had large eggs so I used 3 large instead of 4 medium. It’s delicious and gone down well with my gingerbread family. I bought the little gingerbread men from Tesco, they were in the Christmas aisle.
Recipe looks great could I also use it for cupcakes aswell as tray bake? Thanks
Yes you can – cupcakes take about 20 minutes to bake!
Really looking forward to making this. Is there a way to make this vegan?x
I’m afraid I haven’t tried it vegan – I guess with a good egg replacer and vegan substitutes it should be fine!
HI Jane, this looks amazing!! Where did you get the little gingerbread men from please?
Mentioned on the post – all supermarkets sell them in the festive/baking/biscuit aisle.
You can get them in clear plastic containers in most major supermarkets. There are quite a few in a box/container and are usually very cheap.
Sounds delicious! Would you be able to convert this to a 9×9 tin?
You would want to use about 2/3 of the recipe I think!
I only have large eggs. And your recipe calls for 3 medium eggs. So would I just use 2 eggs?
Hiya, the recipe is four medium so I would use 3 large x
Hi, I used four large eggs (only had large ones, too) as I wasn’t sure if three would not be too little, and it came out well.. it got extremely fluffy, actually – nice, but next time I’d probably only use three large eggs as a bit denser probably would go better with the gingerbread flavour..