Recipe: Guinness Gingerbread Cake

I’m burnt out on Christmas. Maybe I’m just a bit bummed that we didn’t put up a tree this year and every room in our house is under renovation. I had a friend over for lunch today and made Guinness Gingerbread for dessert. Super yummy and spicy. You can barely taste the Guinness—if I close my eyes, think “Guinness” and take big bites I can. The cake is nice and moist and perfect with a dollop of whipped cream. The recipe comes from The Sweet Melissa Baking Book, a bakery in Brooklyn, New York.

2/3 cup Guinness stout
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons best-quality unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
2 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
1/2 granulated sugar
1/3 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
2/3 cup molasses
3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil

Position a rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter and flour a 9 x 9 x 2 square cake pan.

1. In a medium saucepan, bring the beer to a simmer and remove from heat.

2. Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, ginger, white pepper, and cinnamon into a medium bowl.

3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and molasses until smooth. Whisk in the oil to combine. Whisk in the dry ingredients in three batches, alternating with the beer. (Dry, beer, dry, beer, dry.) Mix until just combined. Do not over mix.

4. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack to cool.

The gingerbread is best at room temperature with freshly whipped cream.

Working on Scarf for Sister

Guiness Gingerbread Cake

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  1. It was torture waiting for this cake to cool and it made the house smell so nice! Thanks for the suggestion! (& happy new year!)


  2. We had more than one Christmas spent renovating — we did everything from top to bottom ourselves, just like you, with a very similar style. Knitting definitely helps!

    I hope you have a lovely time in Maine, and come back feeling refreshed and rejuvenated!

    All the best!


  3. I finally wnated to tell you how much I enjoy your blog …I live in Melbourne, Australia and and am a shoe-string budget home-rennovator and DIY gal. Thanks Katie for all the beautiful things you give us readers. And I think you deserve a tree of some kind. Once in the midst of rennos my husband and I ‘planted’ a huge branch of ghost-gum in our lounge and decorated it with lights and twists of old craft paper. Sure it was make-do but it and a well-earned martini helped us feel festive!
    best and bless from a regular reader.


  4. I can DEFINITELY feel you on the desire/need to ‘calm the crazy’. i’ve been running around like a chicken with my head cut off ALL WEEK. i don’t remember past years being this bad, but surely they must have been, right? Right…?

    in any case, i’ll be accepting donations of leftover gingerbread…


  5. yum yum that recipe looks fine! i’ll try to find time to try it this holiday but i am so not into christmas. frankly, i never am. it makes me tense. and then i feel guilty for that. and round and round i go. but katy, i was just thinking the other day how lovely your house will be eventually.xo


  6. I did the same thing with my knitting and I feel like every part of my life is under renovation! Ugh… more eggnog cheer!


  7. yum, yum, yum!! My family has a bit of an obsession with chocolate & Guinness cake, my sister had it for her wedding cake, and I recently made it for a friend’s wedding cake with white chocolate frosting, deeeeeeeeeelicious! I am going to have to give this gingerbread variety a go, it looks too good to be ignored!


  8. Yum. One of our local restaurants has a chocolate Guinness cake, which I like. Our house is a complete wreck too, I feel exactly the same way. Don’t let it get you down.