Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

Sticky stem ginger cake with lemon icing

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(205 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
    Golden syrup

    Golden syrup

    goal-dun sir-rup

    Golden syrup is a clear, sparkling, golden-amber coloured, sweet

  • 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, questions and tips

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31st Jan, 2012
This is the best ginger cake recipe I have tried (and I have tried a lot). My tweak is to use about 3 balls of stem ginger from a jar, and then about 40-50g crystallized ginger as well as the ground ginger. Drizzling the icing over is fine, but unless it is very thick the icing discolours long before the cake's shelf-life is over. Very thick royal icing works well as a topping for this ginger cake.
31st Jan, 2012
Made this in a 2lb loaf tin without icing - best ginger cake I've ever made! Just perfect and shall be making lots more...
24th Mar, 2014
I make mine in a 2lb loaf tin too but find the mixture is too much and make a few buns with the surplus. Do you pour all the mixture into the loaf tin?
30th Jan, 2012
I love this cake and make it over and over again!!
23rd Jan, 2012
When I cooked this a few months ago it looked lovely when I took it out of the oven. It was only on tasting it at my first dinner party in the new house that I realised it was really salty and not sticky at all. In fact it was rather dry and didn't have all that much of a rich ginger taste either. Was really disappointed, it was a let down to my other courses which everyone enjoyed. I really don't know WHAT went wrong, it must have been some of my ingredients. Maybe the butter was too salty.. or the flour was too long sitting in the cupboard.. I don't no!!!
22nd Jan, 2012
Wow amazing.. My family loved this, will made again.
15th Jan, 2012
My liquid mixture in the saucepan separated and was lumpy. I couldn't salvage it so bunged it in with the flour mixture and kept fingers crossed. It's in the oven now. I am an inexperienced cake maker so not sure what my mistake was - any thoughts? Will taste and rate when it comes out the oven.
4th Dec, 2011
Made this yesterday, very easy, only thing I did different was I used crystallised ginger instead of stem ginger in syrup, as it was quite expensive! I did not think it made any difference at all, this cake was lovely and moist and very gingery, the lemon icing was a nice surprise to. All in all a lovely cake, easy to make and delicious to eat!
3rd Dec, 2011
I'm not sure whether I put the temperature on too high, but after leaving the cake in the oven for 35 minutes I decided to check it, only to find it was burnt on top but uncooked inside - did I do something wrong?
2nd Dec, 2011
Delicious! This was easy and really lovely. I've tried several ginger cake recipes in the past and I think this is "the one"!


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