Classic Hot-Water Gingerbread

Kitchen Tested
  • Yield 8 servings
  • Prep 25 mins
  • Cook 35 mins

This quick gingerbread cake features a sweet and tangy Lemon-Orange Sauce.

If your childhood included cake-style gingerbread, the odds are good it was this one. Bring it out again, and you'll see it's as good as you remember. This goes together quickly, so have the oven preheated, the water boiling and the butter melted before you start.


Cooking spray
1 egg
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup dark molasses
1/3 cup melted butter
1 teaspoon ground dried ginger
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water
Lemon Orange Sauce:
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon finely grated orange rind
Dash of salt
3 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon (generous) mild honey or light corn syrup
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons water


  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Coat an 8-inch square pan with cooking spray.
  2. To prepare cake, beat egg and brown sugar together in a medium bowl; add molasses, butter, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt.
  3. Combine flour, baking powder and baking soda (there’s no need to sift). Add to egg mixture and whisk in boiling water. The batter will be quite thin.
  4. Pour into pan, and bake 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Cool at least 20 minutes in the pan before serving. Serve in bowls with warm Lemon-Orange Sauce.
  6. To prepare sauce, combine granulated and brown sugars with cornstarch. Whisk in juices or mix well using your fingers. Transfer to a small nonreactive saucepan.
  7. Place over medium heat. Whisk in lemon and orange rind, salt, butter, honey and water. Bring to a boil; cook 5 to 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thick and translucent. Serve warm with gingerbread.

Recipe by Crescent Dragonwagon.



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