Gingerbread Loaves with Lemon Glaze

It’s Christmastime!

gingerbread loaves

Or is it really? {crink eye}

I feel like the world is playing a trick on me. From where I stand it looks more like primo beach season. True, people are wearing jeans and little sweater-like things, Christmas music and flashing neon nativity scenes have been going strong since, oh, I dunno, JULY, and I can’t find a seat at Starbucks.

But nothing about the climate in the Philippines makes me feel like it’s Christmastime. Nothing. There’s not even like, a stray orange leaf or anything.

gingerbread loaves

Bjork and I sometimes create mini Minnesota winters with the air conditioning in our scrappy little office (you should see the curtains that Bjork bought). You know, the whole turn it to “max cool” and put on a hoodie for a little bit kinda thing? And then when that gets old, I go bake something cause it feels like I’m sitting next to the crackling fireplace. That might have something to do with THE ACTUAL FIRE that’s blazing away inside the oven. I dunno, real cold, real fire… it might actually be the Christmas season after all.

I baked this bread a few years ago for my coworkers. It was so yummy, and then I took not-very-good pictures of it and thought they were great. I literally remember thinking that I especially liked this one shot:

Gingerbread Old Photo

But I don’t really like that shot anymore. Funny how things can change.

Speaking of things changing, I am super excited because for the last few weeks (minus Virus Week) I’ve been in the process of making some additions and updates to my food photography eBook, Tasty Food Photography. Yay!

To be a truth teller: I was kind of not excited to start working on it again.

But it’s been such a fun process! I never could have imagined the kind of response that I’ve gotten from you, my readers, on how Tasty Food Photography has made such a positive difference in your food photography, which makes getting back into it supermotivating. Thank you for being so encouraging!


Plus, it gives me a good excuse to go to The Coffee Bean every.single.night. And if I don’t look out the window, The Coffee Bean gives me the warm Christmas fuzzies somethin’ fierce. So it’s Christmas. Fine. I accept, and I’ll take the White Dream Mocha Thingie.

Know what else gives me warm Christmas fuzzies? Gingerbread. It’s so cozy. And is that lemon glaze pretty or what? These make great gifts, but if you can’t summon the strength, I will just let you know that they make perfect Christmastime breakfasts with a side of chai tea latte. Just saying.

gingerbread loaves

5.0 from 3 reviews
Gingerbread Loaves with Lemon Glaze
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 20
  • 2 scant cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 10 tablespoons butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 1 tbs. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. ground sea salt
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. ground cloves
  • (other spice options: nutmeg, allspice)
  • 1 tsp. ground mustard
  • 3 tablespoons fresh grated ginger soaked in 1-2 tablespoons hot water (or 3 tablespoons ginger paste such as Fresh Gourmet)
  • juice of one lemon
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream butter with sugar. Add eggs and beat until fluffy - about 2 minutes.
  2. Add all other ingredients (except lemon and powdered sugar) and mix until moistened.
  3. Divide the batter evenly between two greased loaf pans and bake for about 30-45 minutes, depending on the size of pan, until golden brown and the tops spring back when touched.
  4. After loaves have cooled completely, stir lemon juice with powdered sugar until a thick glaze forms. Spread over tops of loaves and allow to set.
Covering the bread with foil during the last 10 minutes will help the top not to get too brown as it bakes.


I started to get crocodile tears just listening to Amy Grant singing about chesnuts and yuletide carols and coming home for Christmas, so I decided that this year all my Christmas music has to be totally new. Unfamiliar and unknown. No memories attached. I downloaded a Christmas album from…  Martina McBride. Is that weird? Cause I really like it.


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  1. Sorry it doesn’t feel like Christmas to you! This looks great.

  2. Just came across your blog and I can’t wait to try this recipe – gingerbread and lemon sounds pretty good together!

    I have one question though unrelated to this recipe – I’m so curious where your husband’s name comes from. Cause it’s kind of the same as my Icelandic middle name Björk!

  3. It seems like there’s usually a trigger to the “Christmas feeling”, mine is seeing the Christmas lights!

  4. Love this loaf Lindsay! You had me at gingerbread… and glaze :)

  5. Oh I love the idea of using real ginger to get the taste of gingerbread as I live somewhere where its super hard to find & figured again this year I wldn’t get to celebrate Xmas w/ some gingerbread baked goods… but thanks to you I can! :)

  6. You are speaking my language. Gingerbread is probably my favorite holiday flavor (so warm and cozy!), and Chai lattes are my weakness. In other words, I need to go bake now.

  7. When we moved to FL from NY, I remember literally bawling my eyes out when a Home Decorators catalogue made it’s way to my mailbox b/c it had such pretty snowy, Xmass-y scenes and it was 85 and sunny outside. FL was a litttttttle closer than the Philippines to get home if I wanted to, but I totally understand that feeling. It’s rough during the holidays! Just keep baking :)

  8. Hahaha. I love your pictures from 2010. I’ve kept the shots from my first few months of food photography and can’t believe how I would excitedly call my husband to come and look at my “great” shots. Ugh. How embarrassing.

    I love ginger and lemon together! But mustard? No. Nooo! Mustard is my arch enemy. Just the thought of it makes me queasy. Bla. Anyway, lovely looking bread!

  9. Gingerbread gives me the Christmas fuzzies too! I’ve tried many kinds of cookies but never a loaf… looks yummy!

  10. This gingerbread loaf looks great! And I also love seeing how much your photography has improved over the past few years… congrats!

  11. We live in Alabama where it’s been in the 70’s lately. We moved here from Indiana earlier this year, so we are adjusting to having warmer weather during the Christmas season too. It’s so weird!

  12. Well, these photos certainly have my stomach growling! I want a slice of this bread for a mid-morning snack.

  13. This looks delicious! It would be difficult to be in a warm climate during the Christmas season.

  14. it would be difficult to not have the “normal” things to cue holiday time… my Dad grew up in Hawaii and didn’t see snow until college, I cannot even imagine that! I suppose you come to expect different things meaning holidays…

    like this bread… the smell in the kitchen, the flavor of the gingerbread… all of it looks fantastic! (and I LOVE to look at my old photos, the ones that I thought were SO good… 😉 )

  15. Try Lady Antebellum for a new Christmas Album! This looks yummy….so many recipes, so little time!

  16. Gorgeous! This looks so delicious…I love gingerbread and lemon together.

  17. It’s strange being in a warm place for Xmas, isn’t it. Growing up in MN, I can relate because it’s hot and humid where I’m at now. But no crocodile tears for me :) I love it hot. Except for food photography! Gah…everything melts and glistens!

    And I love the looks of this bread – so rich and moist looking, perfect!

  18. Oh wow, this looks delicious and I can definitely get behind eating this for breakfast like! This will be added to my long list of breads and cookies I want to make this season!

  19. These loaves sound like a total dream! Love that glaze!

  20. Oooh, I just made ginger cookies last week! Loaves with lemon glaze top those cookies for sure though – yum!

  21. Who doesn’t love gingerbread? This one looks perfect, with that tart glaze!

  22. Well that looks insanely delicious! I’m such a sucker for lemon glaze :)

  23. Beautiful! And an absolute perfect holiday loaf

  24. I love that lemon glaze! I had some gingerbread this weekend – it was the perfect snack while watching my first Christmas movies of the season : )

  25. Haha I love you, girl. I love seeing how your blog expands and grows, and I may be a couple of years behind you in blog style and experience, but I feel the same way about my photos. There are so many that I thought were totally badass a while back, and I now look at those same pictures and roll my eyes. I love how it’s changing! Anyway, I hope this new and different Christmas for you is new and awesome :)

  26. I know what you mean about the climate. We moved from WI to NC many years ago and riding bikes on New Years and picking out a Christmas tree wearing shorts had me all befuddled. But gingerbread would do the trick, especially this yummy looking gingerbread. Maybe you could be a bit more generous with the icing through :) love it!

  27. We just bought your eBook about a month ago (soon after discovering your blog). There were a few key tips like working with the white balance eye dropper, sharpening, and learning how to get around limited MN daylight that we really benefitted from. Despite being rejected by foodgawker in the past, our next four submissions, after reading the eBook, were accepted! Love your blog…Thanks!!

  28. Kimberly Voigt says:

    I am so going to make this for my co-workers…and maybe have a bite for myself. :)

  29. Christmas! Best time of the year for gingerbread.

  30. That is a pretty amazing recipe…glazes like that is what always catches my eye at Staryucks and makes me get a slice of their bread…

  31. Allen Mork says:

    Rigo and I are looking at these pictures now (drool running down our faces) and we were wondering if you could send us a few slices!! Hope you have enough to last you through the storm! Stay dry!

  32. Lindsay – your photography improvement is impressive! You have so much talent. And this recipe – I am SO glad you made it again because it’s been introduced into my little gingerbread loave-less life! I must make it. I love gingerbread + lemon together – I made gingerbread cupcakes last year with lemon buttercream. OMG. amazing.

  33. Awesome to see the evolution of your photography. Shows you shouldn’t stop. You’re an inspiration! If only I was a better cook… did you use artificial light before?

  34. Yum. Making them for gifts. A TBS of soda…is that correct? Seems like a lot…

    • Yes, it’s correct. I honestly couldn’t remember for sure (and I have typos all the time), so I made the loaves again just now and they’re perfect and puffy. You could get away with less if you don’t mind the bread being more less puffy and more dense – I’ve done that before in years past – but I did use a full tablespoon this time. Thanks for checking!

  35. It doesn’t really feel like Christmas here, either and I am in NY. It was 55 degrees out today, in December. Eeek Global Warming?! Anyways, this bread looks delish! I am sure it would bring Christmas cheer to anyone withing smelling distance of it! Must try!

  36. Yum-o! Can’t wait to try this. Thanks for the recipe!

  37. When we lived in FL, it felt like Christmas never happened. We even went to see light shows and fake snow. Nope. It wasn’t the same. It felt really strange to be wearing summer clothes and see Christmas lights.

    I’m just happy that it feels like Christmas in WI, even without snow!

    The gingerbread looks incredibly delicious.

  38. I can’t imagine a green Christmas. I love having snow for Christmas but after that I don’t mind if it goes away. Living where I do though we are stuck with it for months. Some of this lovely gingerbread is just what I’ll need to get me through :)
    Good luck on the updates to Tasty Food Photography. No doubt it will continue to be a big hit.

  39. Oh Lindsay, yes, welcome to the world of the strange tropical Christmas. We pull the crank-up-the-AC trick too. Our third December in the tropics and it turns out that there may be no hope for Midwesterners to adapt to 90-degree “winters”. Baking helps though, and this gingerbread looks amazing!

  40. Donna Amis Davis says:

    I totally get that Christmas music thing. Hmmm. Maybe that’s why we liked to get a new Christmas CD every year, so we wouldn’t have to listen to the old ones with all the homesick-making memories?

    Your gingerbread loaves sound wonderful. I’ll have to give them a try.

    Sorry you were sick and had to go to the hospital. Not fun at all! Glad you lived to tell the story.

  41. Your photography is beautiful, but I love the drip on that loaf. I am going to the kitchen and make this now. If I am successful I am going to try to make into mini-loaves to give to the neighbors. Last year they gave me lemons from their tree, and my other neighbor gave me pots of herbs that he had thinned from his garden. Both highly appreciated.

  42. I know exactly what you mean about it not feeling like Christmas! We are currently traveling through China and nothing about China is christmasy. In a few days we’ll be heading to Vietnam and I’m going to take a wild guess that that won’t be particularly into the holiday season either! Knowing I would miss out on having a xmas tree this year, last year I kept mine up until March to try and make up for it (though it still doesn’t). This gingerbread looks great and I’m seriously jealous you can at least whip up xmas themed treats in your kitchen! We have been staying in hostels so no kitchen facilities in sight : (

  43. Omg I think I just drooled on the keyboard while I looked at these gingerbread photos, it looks delicious! Also, I know how you feel about the hot weather not feeling like Christmas thing. I live in GA and it has been like 80 degrees here everyday lately, so when I need a little Christmas cheer I just go to Starbucks and get my little (or big) red Christmas themed cup filled with something sweet and seasonal (and way to many calories) and taa daaa, it feels like Christmas time!! And If you are still looking for Christmas music I strongly suggest downloading Justin’s Biebers new album..guilty pleasure 😉

  44. Stephanie says:

    This looks so good. Wow your pictures have really improved :) Glad you are all better. That bites its not feeling like Christmas there. I COMPLETELY understand. I grew up in cold wet rainy soggy Washington State and have lived in all warm places since I got married (9 yrs ago). We occasionally travel back for Christmas but its hard. I miss the cold weather.. Currently have been transplanted to a dessert (Arizona) ugh. no snow. wearing t-shirts and sandles in December doesn’t exactly want me to start drinking cocoa but we are doing the a.c. thing too which makes it nice for baking yummy treats like THIS! :)

  45. This gingerbread loaf looks amazing. Your photography has improved a lot! I remember looking back at old food photos and thinking how did I ever think this looked good?

  46. It doesn’t really feel like Christmas out here in LA too!

    These loaves btw are gorgeous! That dripping lemon glaze is so inviting!

  47. It’s so sad it doesn’t feel like Christmas but I had to smile of the turn the AC to max idea. Your loaf turned out so beautiful, I love the glaze and the flavors.
    Thanks for sharing

  48. I’ve got this in the oven right now and it smells amazing!!! Thanks for the recipe :)

  49. Made this yesterday and it’s delicious! Is the reason it’s so light and fluffy the 1 Tbs of baking soda? That quantity totally threw me off but I followed your instructions anyway and it came out great…especially the crumbs at the end with the remaining glaze that pooled over!

  50. I love gingerbread, too, and have added this to my list of recipes to try. I love all your photographs, even the one you decided you don’t like. : ) Thank you for a great recipe!

  51. So nice to have dropped in on your blog. When I read that you’re here in the Philippines, I thought you’re Filipino but reading the ABOUT section in your blog, found out you aren’t but is currently a teacher in Cebu!

  52. Hello,

    Have you used this recipe in different pans? I have the cutest mini bundt pans that I would love to use for this recipe. Looks so yummy!

    Thanks, Mary

  53. Is this recipe for regular sized loaf pans or the mini sized? Thanks and cannot wait to try!

  54. Hi Lindsay!
    Greetings from Bankok, Thailand! The first 2 times I made this recipe, it turned out so very delicious – just perfect balance of tastes and the flavor of the orange zest was so refreshing. However, the last 4 times, it has turned out peculiarly bitter and the orange flavor no longer prominent. I still enjoy it myself, but others do not. I long for the original delightful taste….I can’t figure out what could be wrong…..any suggestions?

  55. Hi!
    So I’m a college girl looking to use up my eggs before I leave to go home for break, and was searching for something Christmasey/gingery/yummy- to bake, and this looks perfect! The only thing is I only have ground ginger, not ginger paste. Is there any way I can try substituting? Otherwise I guess I’ll have to try making it when I get home :) Can’t wait!

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