Icing spatula or spoon; we like this Icing Spatula
⭐ Optional: Electric mixer for beating cream cheese frosting; you can use a whisk if you do not have one! This 6-speed electric mixer works well.
⅓cupCooking Oil(I use Canola oil)
1 ½Tbsp.Maple Syrup
1 ½cupPlain Flour
1 ½tsp.Ground Ginger
1 ½tsp.Ground Cinnamon
Cream Cheese Frosting
½Orange - zest only(optional)
Candied Pecans (optional)
How to Make Gingerbread
Preheat your oven to 350°F and grease a loaf pan. Dust it with flour or line with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl, whisk 2 eggs and ⅓ cup brown sugar until frothy. Add ⅓ cup cooking oil, 1 ½ Tbsp. maple syrup, and 1 cupapplesauce. Stir well.Mix plain 1 ½ cups flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1 ½ tsp. cinnamon, 1 ½ tsp. ground ginger, 1 tsp. ground cloves, 1 tsp.ground nutmeg, and a pinch of salt, then sift into the bowl with the wet ingredients. Quickly mix with your whisk until fully combined.Pour the gingerbread batter into the loaf pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes. The tip of a knife or toothpick should come out clean when it’s ready.
How to Make Cream Cheese Frosting
Allow 8 oz. cream cheese to come to room temperature first by letting it sit out for at least 30 minutes before making the icing. When ready, beat the cream cheese until smooth, using a mixer or whisk. Add 1 tsp. vanilla extract and stir well.Slowly whisk in ⅓ cup icing sugar until combined. Add orange zestfrom half an orange and fold the frosting together.Once the bread cools completely, spread the cream cheese frosting over top.
How to Make Candied Pecans (Optional)
Add ¼ cup brown sugar and ¼ cup water to a small pan on low heat. Once the sugar dissolves, add ½ cup pecans (chopped or whole).Leave to caramelize for 2 minutes or until all the liquid evaporates. Stir occasionally to evenly coat the pecans.Transfer to a plate and allow to cool before adding over the frosting on your gingerbread loaf.
The perfect center: To get the perfect 'center crack' in the loaf, remove it from the oven mid-baking and use a sharp knife to cut a straight line in the middle of your loaf before placing it back in the oven. It will help it open evenly.
Refrigerate after frosting: After adding the cream cheese, you will need to keep the gingerbread loaf refrigerated.
Spread out the pecans: When done cooking the caramelized pecans, make sure to spread them flat and not on top of each other, otherwise, they will stick together.