Gingerbread Layer Cake with Eggnog Cream Cheese Frosting

Gingerbread Layer Cake with Eggnog Cream Cheese Frosting

November through January is always a hectic time of year in our household with a ton of birthdays, a seasonal food business (my husband’s peppermint bark), a retail shop and family in town but it is also a special time that deserves to be celebrated. I have a large file of recipes I’ve pulled from magazines for referring to and cooking in the future. For my daughter’s birthday we combed through those clippings together and landed upon a recipe that looked amazing, but that I had only tore out half of. The recipe was for a gingerbread layer cake with eggnog cream cheese frosting. I looked online for the rest of the instructions to no avail, so we winged, and combined two other similar recipes.

I don’t have much of a sweet tooth, so the first thing I am going to say is that this recipe is very sweet. My husband and daughter though thought the cake in its entirety was awesome. I think both parts separately would be amazing if you like things slightly less sweet like me: the gingerbread cake without any frosting, or the eggnog cream cheese frosting on another baked good. That said, this is a really good cake and very pretty served with sugared cranberries on top.

Gingerbread Layer Cake with Eggnog Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 125 grams raw (Demerara) sugar (1/2 cup)
  • 1 cup stout
  • 1 cup molasses
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 340 grams all-purpose flour (2 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 210 grams dark brown sugar, lightly packed (1 cup)
  • 200 grams granulated sugar (1 cup)
  • ¾ cup safflower oil
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • ½ stick salted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3.4 teaspoon rum extract
  • 1 tablespoon dark, aged or spiced rum
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar
  • frozen cranberries
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a Bundt pan well with the softened butter. Coat the entire pan with raw sugar so that it sticks to the butter. Turn the pan over to dump out any excess sugar.
  2. Add the stout and molasses to a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat. Carefully whisk in the baking soda and let cool to room temperature. Be careful as the stout mixture will bubble up.
  3. Sift together the flour, ground spices, pepper and salt. Set aside.
  4. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, mix the fresh ginger, eggs, vanilla extract, dark brown sugar, and granulated sugar on medium speed for five minutes.
  5. Turn the mixer down to low speed and add the oil. Mix for another 5 minutes. Slowly add the stout mixture and mix for another 5 minutes.
  6. Carefully add the dry ingredients in two parts, mixing well in between each addition.
  7. Pour the batter into 4 prepared cake pans. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes and then flip pans upside down to release while still warm. Let cool completely.
  8. For the frosting, beat the softened cream cheese and cutter together until smooth in an electric mixer.
  9. Next beat together the rum, nutmeg, vanilla and rum extracts.
  10. On low, add powdered sugar, until smooth.
  11. Frost the cakes when they are completely cool, then stack.
  12. Take frozen cranberries, rinse them in water, then roll them in granulated sugar. Add to the top of the cake.

Food Photography by me, Michelle Smith. Recipe inspired by ones from NY Times & Epicurious.


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