For many years I made chocolate-ginger-almond-cranberry bark for Christmas gifts, and later I began a new tradition making Chocolate Gingery Cookies (from LTEV). With those goodies in mind, I created this new whole-foods Chocolate Gem Vegan Gingerbread!
This vegan gingerbread is delicious without the addition of the chocolate. So, if you are a gingerbread purist, the chocolate can certainly be omitted.
I sometimes make it without the chocolate myself. Shocking, yes… but true! Or, try substituting currants or raisins for the chocolate chips. If you do use the dried fruit in the loaf, I’d recommend not adding the crystallized ginger topping. The crystallized ginger is balanced with dark chocolate chips, with the raisins it’s too much.
This whole-foods vegan gingerbread is moist and flavorful thanks to the addition of almond meal. It’s also not too ‘spicy’ for young palates. My girls don’t enjoy crystallized ginger, so I often omit it or add to just a portion of the loaf. If you enjoy more ginger kick, use the full 1 1/2 teaspoon of dried ginger in the loaf, along with the crystallized ginger for the topping.
With the holidays almost here, you can add this vegan gingerbread to your menu as a brunch/tea treat. Or, if you pair with a vanilla non-dairy ice cream, it can be transformed into dessert!
Enjoy, guys. Do share any feedback in the comments, as well as sharing any of your favorite chocolate-ginger combinations.
(p.s. I announced my new book on facebook this week, if you missed it, link through. You can count on a more detailed post about the book right here, in the new year.)
Chocolate Gem Vegan Gingerbread
A whole-grain vegan gingerbread studded with dark chocolate!
- 1 cups whole-grain spelt flour
- 1 cup + 1 tbsp oat flour or 1 cup more spelt flour; but I prefer spelt/oat combo
- 1/3 cup almond meal
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 - 1 1/2 tsp ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 1/2 cup unsweetened organic applesauce
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup plain non-dairy milk
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- options: 1/4 cup mini chocolate chips or currants/raisins
- optional toppings: 2 tbsp finely chopped crystallized ginger omit if using raisins OR 1-2 tbsp coconut sugar mixed with 1/2 tsp cinnamon OR 2 tbsp chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C). In a large bowl, combine the dry ingredients, sifting in the baking powder and baking soda. Stir through until well combined. In another bowl, first combine the molasses with the apple applesauce and then whisk/stir in the maple syrup, non-dairy milk, and vanilla, and mix together. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture (as well as raisins or chocolate chips, if using). Gently fold and mix through, until just combined (do not overmix). Transfer mixture to a lightly oiled loaf pan (lined with a strip of parchment also useful). If using any optional toppings, sprinkle those on. Bake for 37-40 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove, and transfer (keeping in pan) to cooling rack. Let cool completely, then remove from pan and slice. Makes one quick bread.
Ginger Note: I typically use 1 tsp ginger, that keeps it mild enough for the kiddos. If you love ginger, feel free to bump it up!
Photo credit: Emma Potts