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Gingerbread Spice Loaf

Gingerbread Spice Loaf
The warm spices and molasses taste of gingerbread transforms this zigzagging bread loaf into an instant holiday classic.
Yield 1 (8½ x 4½-inch) loaf




  • 2 1/2 to 2 3/4 cups cups (313 to 344 grams) all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/4 cup (55g) firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons (7.5g) kosher salt (see note)
  • 1 (0.25oz) package (7g) Platinum Yeast
  • 2 teaspoons (4g) ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons (4g) ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1g) ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1g) ground cloves
  • 1/3 cup (76g) unsalted butter, cubed
  • 1/4 cup (60g) water
  • 1/4 cup (60g) whole milk
  • 2 tablespoons (42g) unsulphured molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon (2g) vanilla extract
  • 2 large (100g) eggs, room temperature


  • 3 tablespoons (42g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/3 cup (73g) firmly packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (4g) ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon (2g) ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1.5g) kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1g) ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon (1g) ground cloves

Molasses Glaze

  • 3/4 cup (90g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon (15g) whole milk, cold
  • 1 teaspoon (7g) unsulphured molasses
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1g) vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Make the dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer, whisk together 1 cup (125g) flour, brown sugar, salt, yeast, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves by hand.
  • In a small saucepan, heat cubed butter, water, milk, and molasses over medium-low heat until butter is melted and an instant-read thermometer registers 120°F (49°C) to 130°F (54°C). Add warm butter mixture and vanilla to flour mixture; using the paddle attachment, beat at low speed until combined. Add eggs, and beat until well combined. With mixer on low speed, gradually add 1½ cups (188g) flour, beating just until combined and stopping to scrape sides of bowl.
  • Switch to the dough hook attachment. Beat at low speed until a soft, sticky dough forms, 5 to 7 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl and dough hook; add up to remaining ¼ cup (31g) flour, 1 tablespoon (8g) at a time, if dough is too sticky. Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and shape into a smooth round.
  • Lightly oil a large bowl. Place dough in bowl, turning to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°F/24°C) until doubled in size, 35 to 50 minutes.
  • Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface, and gently press into an 8×6-inch rectangle. Loosely wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to overnight.
  • Spray an 8½x4½-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. Line pan with parchment paper, letting excess extend over sides of pan.
  • Make the filling: In a medium bowl, combine room temperature butter, brown sugar, ginger, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and cloves. Using a silicone spatula, press and stir together until well combined.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a12x10-inch rectangle (about ½-inch thick). Using a small offset spatula, spread room temperature butter mixture onto dough, leaving a ½-inch border around edges. Using a knife or pastry wheel, cut dough into 4 (10×3-inch) strips. Starting at one short end of prepared pan, arrange 1 dough strip in a zigzagging ribbonlike pattern, leaving about ½-inch gap between dough and long sides of pan. Repeat with remaining dough strips.
  • Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place (75°F/24°C) until puffed, 30 to 35 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C).
  • Bake for 15 minutes. Loosely cover with foil, and bake until top and sides are golden and an instant-read thermometer inserted in center registers 190°F (88°C), 20 to 25 minutes more. Let cool in pan for 15 minutes. Using excess parchment as handles, remove from pan, and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Make the molasses glaze: (makes ⅓ cup) In a medium bowl, stir together all ingredients until smooth and well combined. Drizzle immediately over cooled loaf.


Salt weight and volume vary by brand. Diamond Crystal kosher salt was used in this recipe (1 tablespoon is 9 grams). If you a have different brand or type of salt, use the weight listed in the recipe, not the volume measurement. If you do not have a scale, check your brand’s website for what the equivalent volume measurement is for the weight listed in this recipe.
Recipe by Bake From Scratch.

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Review & Comments

Linda Goetz | Reply

I don’t understand the zigzagging in the pan. Do the strips go the length of the pan on top of each other or zigzag from short side to short side?

Red Star Yeast | Reply

Hi Linda – It’s like you’re creating an ‘S’ shapes with the dough strip, going back and forth from long side to long side. Once one strip ends, repeat with remaining 3 strips. Leave about 1/2-inch gap between long sides of pan and the dough to allow room to rise.
I hope this helps. Please give us a call (phone number is on our contact form here) if you have any further questions.
Happy baking!

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