Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

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(201 ratings)

Cook: 50 mins - 1 hr


Serves 12

Try this moist and gooey stem ginger cake

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal285
  • fat10g
  • saturates6g
  • carbs50g
  • sugars31g
  • fibre1g
  • protein3g
  • salt0.81g
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  • 225g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 1 tbsp ground ginger



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon



    A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

  • 1 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 115g butter, cut into cubes, plus extra for greasing



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • 115g dark muscovado sugar
  • 115g black treacle
  • 115g golden syrup
  • 250ml whole milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 85g drained stem ginger, finely grated



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 1 egg



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

For the icing

  • 50g icing sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice


  1. Preheat the oven to fan 160C/conventional 180C/gas 4. Butter and line an 18cm round, 7cm deep cake tin with greaseproof or parchment paper.

  2. Put the flour, bicarbonate of soda and all the spices into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub it into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

  3. Put the sugar, treacle, syrup and milk in a medium saucepan and heat, gently stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Turn up the heat and bring the mixture to just below boiling point.

  4. Add the stem ginger to the flour mixture, then pour in the treacle mixture, stirring as you go with a wooden spoon. Break in the egg and beat until all the mixture is combined and it resembles a thick pancake batter. Pour this into prepared tin and bake for 50 minutes-1 hour, until a skewer pushed into the centre of the cake comes out fairly clean. Leave to cool completely in tin before turning cake out. (To freeze: wrap in greaseproof paper, then in cling film. Freeze for up to 1 month.)

  5. To make the icing, mix together icing sugar and lemon zest, then gradually add lemon juice until you have a smooth, slightly runny icing, adding more juice, if needed. Drizzle icing in a zig-zag pattern over surface of cake, turn cake around and drizzle again to create the cross-hatched finish (see below). Cake keeps for up to 2 weeks stored in an airtight container.

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Comments (273)

sjones's picture

This is fab and gets better with time - it kept for well over a week with no problems at all except for getting gooey and more delish. I made it even more moist and yum by pricking holes all over it and pouring in the syrup from the stem ginger as you would with a drizzle cake - it worked really well and made it so that you could really have served at a pudding if you wanted, with something like mascapone or creme fraiche. Was loved by everyone.

elliehappyface's picture

This is a delicious ginger cake I put more stem ginger in and it was so scrummy ..was very easy to eat too.....

joekah's picture

I made this cake and it tasted amazing and the texture was fantastic. Everyone loved it.

I'm ashamed to say that the milk and sugar curdled. Milk was totally fresh and i have no idea how it happened. any ideas?

starameth's picture

Was worried about how runny it was when I poured it into the cake tin but it came out lovely and moist.
I used 3x frozen ginger cubes and it came out lovely and gingery.

chutknee's picture

I`m new to the site, joined today in fact! I love the sound of this and will certainly be making it..will report back when I do!!

sarahhawker's picture

This recipe is fab, we left out the cinnamon and put more mixed spices in, this cake tastes so much nicer than the tate and lyles jamacian ginger cake, ive made it a few times and always comes out perfect.

imkah85's picture

I have made this cake on several occasions now and it never fails to taste stunning.

I always skip the icing and have it with ice cream/custard instead. It's just lovely warmed up.

As far as the recipe goes, I put extra ginger (ground and stem) in as I am ginger's biggest fan. My less ginger loving friends have never said it's too gingery so I think there's definite room for tweaking with regard to the amount of ginger used.

heleben1's picture

Just to add to my earlier comment. I did not change any of the ingredients. No need to, but I didn't put the icing on. I did however spread some butter on a slice or two and it was fab!

heleben1's picture

Just to add to my earlier comment. I did not change any of the ingredients. No need to, but I didn't put the icing on. I did however spread some butter on a slice or two and it was fab!

heleben1's picture

This Ginger Cake was FAB!!! The best I have ever tasted.

Thank you Tom Dolby!!

Helly Welly x

katy_mo's picture

i think this was a perfect cake, perfect amount of gingeryness, is it weird to have some of it with cheese?

sallywilliment's picture

Delicious! I make a lot of cakes and apparently this is the best! Very easy too.

hellewrites's picture

I added extra ground and stem ginger (but I always do), this cake is every bit as good as the reviews and stars say.

w1lmington's picture

Ooops forgot to rate it in my excitement :)

lucindakenny's picture

Really lovely, great-tasting cake ... I've also split it in half and filled with vanilla buttercream - scrumptious!!

octavia72's picture

Great recipe, I would prefer the syrup and treacle in tablespoon measurements, it was a bit of a pain to measure on the scales. I made the batter into cupcakes and managed to yield about 22 cakes. They took 25 mins and were delicious!!!

chantel25's picture

Love this cake, taste so much better than the shop bought stuff. Used fresh ginger, and light muscadova instead of dark and all golden syrup because that's all I had, but it still worked out fine.
So YUMMY this is a favourite for sure. I nearly panicked when the sugar, syrup and milk mix started to turn into fudge, but I managed to save it. 5* recipe, thanks again BBC good food.

thecakefairy's picture

Have made this several times and it always looks perfect and tastes lovely. I love spicy ginger cakes though so I am extra generous when adding the spices just to be sure!

nguttridge's picture


barbarathebaker's picture

Excellent recipe - enjoyed by all my friends who asked for the recipe. Easy and keeps well.


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