Gluten Free Fresh Ginger Bread with Quick Vanilla Pear Butter Recipe

by Carol Kicinski on October 23, 2012

Post image for Gluten Free Fresh Ginger Bread with Quick Vanilla Pear Butter Recipe Gingerbread is one of those things that in the past I have liked the idea of more than the actuality. I love the way the house smells all cozy and comforting as it bakes. I love the homey, unpretentiousness of it, the simplicity. What I have not been so fond of was the taste. Until now that is.

I happened to stumble upon this recipe for fresh ginger cake from David Lebovitz. He uses fresh ginger as opposed to dried in the cake and I was intrigued. I am a huge fan of fresh ginger but don’t care too much for the dried version. I though perhaps fresh ginger would make a difference.

Rather than make a cake I opted for a loaf – ginger bread instead of gingerbread. And I opted to make it not just gluten free but grain free with the use of almond meal.

The fresh ginger made all the difference! I really, really like this bread! It is moist, tender, and almost cake-like and my house smelled like my own private piece of heaven whole it baked.

The bread is refined sugar free; I added depth of flavor and richness with organic blackstrap molasses and a lighter sweetness with organic amber honey, both from Wholesome Sweeteners.

The bread is simple to make; the only hard part was waiting for almost 2 hours to taste it. It takes an hour to bake and then it needs to cool in the pan for at least 45 minutes. As difficult as it may be to wait out the cooling period, I strongly advise you resist the urge to rush it; the bread will slice much easier if you do and the texture will be more even.

To go along with my ginger bread I made some really quick and simple vanilla pear butter. Really it is more like pear sauce than actual pear butter but it takes 10 minutes to make and tastes divine so that is fine by me.

It is warm and sunny here in Florida; there is no vibrant burst of fall color or cool, crisp dip in temperatures but this ginger bread and bread butter made me feel like fall is the air.

Gluten Free Grain Free Fresh Gingerbread

Gluten Free Fresh Ginger Bread with Quick Vanilla Pear Butter Recipe


4 ounces fresh ginger (a piece about 4 inches long, 2 inches wide and 1 inch thick), peeled a grated or minced
½ cup organic blackstrap molasses
½ cup organic honey
3 large organic, cage free eggs
½ cup grapeseed (or vegetable) oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 ½ cups fine, blanched almond meal
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 ½ inch by 4 ½ inch loaf pan with cooking spray or brush with oil. Line with a piece of parchment paper and grease the paper.

Combine the ginger, molasses, honey, eggs, oil, and vanilla in a mixing bowl and whisk to combine.

Put the almond meal in a blender with the salt, baking soda, cinnamon, cloves, nut meg and pepper and pulse a few times to combine. Add the wet ingredient to the almond meal mixture and blend for about 30 seconds or until really smooth and pour into the prepared pan. (If you don’t have a blender, just whisk the dry ingredients  together in a mixing bowl and then whisk the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients but the bread is a little lighter and tenderer if made in the blender.)

Bake for 1 hour. After 35 – 40 minutes, lightly place a piece of foil over the bread to keep it from getting too brown on top. Let cool in the pan for 45 – 60 minutes. Cut into thick slices with a serrated knife.


A gluten free, grain free recipe that makes 1 loaf.

Quick Vanilla Pear Butter


3 medium pears, peeled cored and chopped
Juice of ½ lemon
2 – 3 tablespoons organic honey
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract


Place the pears in a microwave-safe bowl, cover with a plate or piece of plastic wrap and cook on high power for 6 – 7 minutes or until the pears are very tender. Let cool slightly. Remove pears with a slotted spoon, discarding the liquid. Place pears in a small food processor or blender with the vanilla 2 tablespoons of honey and puree. Taste the pear butter and add more honey if desired.


Makes about ¾ cup of pear butter.

Ready for dessert?

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Categories:    Breads
  • Kim

    I’m just going to have to try this. Sounds and looks amazing!!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks Kim, enjoy!

  • Gabriela

    I can just smell it! It looks very tasty and will be trying it out some time soon.

    • Carol Kicinski

      Hi Gabriela – yes it does make the house smells wonderful! Enjoy.

  • the 3volution of j3nn

    That’s a gorgeous grain-free loaf! I haven’t perfected my grain-free baking. Mine still sink when they come out. :(

    • Carol Kicinski

      Oh, I don’t see why it would stink! Make sure you use blanched almond meal, finely ground and if you have a blender, that helps with the texture too.

  • Wild Child

    I LOVE ginger anything! I can’t wait to try this in my new bread pan.

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks – that fresh ginger made all the difference!

  • Wild Child

    I have some fresh ginger just waiting to be used – this looks like just the thing! I love ginger like some people love pumpkin. Of course, I like pumpkin too, but that’s a whole other thing. Thank you for sharing this recipe.

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thanks so much and enjoy!

  • Ina gawne

    Carol this bread sounds wonderful! Love anything with fresh ginger! :)

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thank you Ina, I am a fresh ginger fan myself!

  • Tammie Grey

    love this recipe!

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thank you Tammie!

  • Hemrid

    It is so tasty. Thanks for this post.

    • Carol Kicinski

      Thank you!

  • Betsy Lirakis

    I love the ginger bread but wonder if you have an alternate recipe for grand-children who are gluten free and nut allergic ?

    • Carol Kicinski

      I have not made this any other way as I was trying to make it specifically grain free but you could check out the link I gave in the post for the original recipe and use that substituting a good quality all-purpose gluten-free flour blend.

    • pan-fried rainbow

      I made this using rice bran and coconut flour instead, because i’m allergic to almonds. came out great. added a few more eggs and a touch more oil, as coconut flour is super dense and dry.

      • Carol Kicinski

        Glad to know you could make it work with coconut flour! Thanks.

      • Trish Truitt

        Awesome! I can’t do tree nuts either. What were your ratios? How much of each?

      • Trish Truitt

        Pan-Fried Rainbow: Could you give an idea as to the amounts for the adjustments you used?

  • Pam

    Carol, I have made this twice for my gluten-intolerant holiday visitors and I love the taste! But…the batter always foams up and overruns the pan. I switched to two loaf pans instead of one – still foams. I wonder if it’s because I live at a high altitude (7200 ft in Colorado). I line the pans with parchment and that has “saved” them to a point…I just tear off the overflow and put the cakes upside down on a plate. I’m thinking of reducing the baking soda from 1 teaspoon to a half, what do you think?

  • Trish Truitt

    Any substitute suggestions for the almond meal flour? I’m on a low-oxalate diet.

  • CarolKicinski

    Hi Trish – I created this recipe especially to use almond flour and unfortunately I don’t have a good answer off the top of my head. Anyone else?

    • Trish Truitt

      No problem. Even if not you still gave me some ideas I can use with another recipe. BTW: Your photos are great.

  • CarolKicinski

    It is so hard to answer this because I formulated the recipe specifically to be grain free thus I used almond flour. I hate to venture a guess. Sorry I could not be more help.

  • CarolKicinski

    Thank you so much!

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