Ginger cake with caramel frosting

Ginger cake with caramel frosting

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(21 ratings)

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 1 hr

More effort

Cuts into 12 slices
This moist treacle sponge will keep without the frosting for up to a week wrapped in foil and, if anything, will improve with time

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freeze un-iced

Nutrition: per slice

  • kcal527
  • fat27g
  • saturates17g
  • carbs65g
  • sugars45g
  • fibre1g
  • protein5g
  • salt1g
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  • 200g butter, plus extra for the tin



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 200g dark muscovado sugar
  • 100g black treacle
  • 100g golden syrup
    Golden syrup

    Golden syrup

    goal-dun sir-rup

    Golden syrup is a translucent, golden-amber coloured, sweet syrup

  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 300ml milk



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

  • 350g plain flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 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-…

  • few chunks crystallised ginger, chopped

For the frosting

  • 85g butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 175ml double or whipping cream
  • 175g caster sugar (we used white - use golden for a darker icing)


  1. Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Butter and line a 23cm round cake tin. Put the butter, sugar, treacle and syrup in a large pan and gently heat, stirring until the butter has melted and the mixture is smooth. Remove from the heat and cool for 10 mins.

  2. Stir in the eggs and milk, then sift in the flour, ginger and bicarbonate of soda. Mix well, then pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 50 mins-1 hr until the cake is firm to the touch and springs back when pressed in the centre. Cool in the tin for 15 mins, then turn out, peel off the paper and cool on a wire rack.

  3. Put the frosting ingredients in a small pan over a medium heat and stir until the butter has melted and the mixture is smooth. Increase the heat and boil hard for 3-4 mins, stirring occasionally; at this stage the frosting should look like runny custard. Pour into a bowl and leave to cool for 30 mins. Beat with an electric whisk until thick and spreadable. Spread over the cooled cake and decorate with crystallised ginger.

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Comments, questions and tips

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lottylouby's picture
19th Aug, 2017
Made again recently for an afternoon tea party. Doubled the ginger quantity again, and baked in the round tin as per the recipe. I made the topping this time as it was a special occasion. After boiling I placed in the bowl and left to cool as stated. Then I placed in the fridge, before mixing up later. It was probably in the fridge a couple of hours. Thought it would be difficult to mix but it was fine. Wow, the topping is amazing, but so rich. There was maybe too much topping, so will reduce the quantities next time. Will make again. It's pretty easy too.
24th Oct, 2018
Sorry I know this is an old comment, but did you find it worked just as well in square/lb cake tin?
lottylouby's picture
27th Feb, 2017
Really lovely cake, very easy. Made 2 large 1lb loaves plus a few muffins for me to 'test'! When I melted the fats and sugars, it was a bit lumpy and after 10 minutes cooling it looked a bit curdled! I baked anyway and still tasted lovely. I used margarine suitable for baking so maybe that was why it curdled. The treacle was the prominent flavour. Didn't have cream so mixed icing sugar with Creme fraiche with a squirt of black treacle for the topping which was nice. The cake definitely improved with age so could make ahead if for entertaining. I reckon it'd be nice without the topping, warmed, with custard.'s picture
11th Aug, 2016
This cake is superb and really easy to make! I also baked it at 150 degs for an hour and it came out perfect. The frosting; once melted and boiled, pour it into a bowl, leave it to cool and then refrigerate. Once it is hard, whip it up with an electric hand whisk. It is divine and you will make it time and again! The second time I made it, I added a teaspoon of mixed spice as well as the ginger.
20th Sep, 2015
What I love about this cake is that is it all made in the saucepan and therefore an easy and quick cake to make. The resulting sponge was superb, with an even and moist texture, absolutely perfect. It has indeed also improved the next day. There are a few 'howevers' though - As others have said this isn't really a ginger cake, but more a treacle cake, you will need to double the ginger in order to get much of a tang of it. I think next time I might increase the ginger and reduce the treacle, substituting more syrup instead, to try and turn it into a ginger sponge. Saying that everyone loved the flavour this one had anyway. I have a good fan oven and cooked at 150 degrees (not 140 as stated on the recipe); the cake needed a longer time than stated and took more like 1 hour 10 minutes. My other issue is with the frosting. I had never made frosting like this before and allowed cooling for the required 30 minutes. It was still very hot after this and so cooled longer in the fridge. Then I started whipping with the hand mixer...and beat and beat for an awfully long time.....and really very little change happened. I was starting to think that my daughter had weighed ingredients out wrong, until we stood the bowl in cold water and then we started to see proper changes occuring. The frosting changes from looking like runny custard to looking a thickened creamy colour. However, it was still too warm to use and was pourable. So, my advice is that 30 minutes cooling for the frosting isnt sufficent, it either needs much more cooling or once you have whipped it up then set in the fridge for it to set to the consistency you need.
31st Aug, 2015
Delicious cake. Thoroughly recommend. The frosting is divine. I doubled the ground ginger which was ideal. A true 5 star recipe. Am storing in the fridge due to cream content however needs to be room temperature ideally to eat.
9th Mar, 2015
I am so happy this Ginger Cake with Caramel Frosting walked into my life this valentines day. Fortunately, society doesn't demand monogamy when it comes to cake! I think it turned out even more beautiful than pictured here! We put crushed pecans sprinkled on top, have a look at how it looked on my cake blog:
11th May, 2014
I wanted a ginger cake that would be like the one my nan, used to make. Well this was perfect, I just swapped the frosting for icing sugar. Everyone who tried it thought it was lovely. I have made another one for my brother-inlaw with more ginger as he likes it stronger.
30th Nov, 2013
This is a fantastic recipe. I have made this cake three times now, and it is delicious, although I double the quantity of ginger in order to create a stronger flavour. The frosting is superb and so versatile. ..I often add orange juice, lemon juice, or lime juice depending on what flavour I fancy. Thanks for sharing this recipe.
lizfisher56's picture
10th Aug, 2013
This review is of the cake, unfrosted. This is a very nice, moist cake but needs a bit more ginger in it for me. I made the frosting but took my eye off it and managed to burn it so had to throw it away. Never mind, there's always next time!


Alice Compton's picture
Alice Compton
18th Oct, 2018
Does this cake need to stay in the fridge once iced? Thanks
goodfoodteam's picture
23rd Oct, 2018
Thanks for your question. As the frosting contains double cream, we'd recommend keeping it in the fridge. Before serving, leave out for 20 mins to come to room temperature.
Deirdre Redican's picture
Deirdre Redican
31st Jan, 2018
I feel maybe I was heavy handed when ‘combining’ ingrdients. Thinking the better I mixed it, the lighter it would be. Turned out very ‘dense’. Any tips for combining the ingredients?
goodfoodteam's picture
6th Feb, 2018
Thanks for your question. We'd suggest mixing in the flour until combined but avoid overbeating beyond this point as it can toughen the cake.
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