dessert Fall gluten-free loaves

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf

October 22, 2013

For as long as I can remember I’ve loved to bake. Over the years boxed Betty Crocker Brownies turned into black bean brownies, but the premise is still the same, mix, stir, bake, eat. Truth-be-told I’ve never felt like I was really good at something. I’m not particularly athletic, musical or artistic. I’ve never really excelled at anything, except baking. Fortunately baking is something I love to do.

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf //
I bake when I’m happy.

I bake when I’m sad.

I bake when I’m stressed.

I bake when I’m carefree.

I bake for others.

I bake for me.

I bake when I’m hungry.

I bake when I’m full.

I bake to get new people to like me.

I bake if they don’t.

I procrastibake.


Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf //

No matter how I am feeling, baking seems to put me at ease. As it turns out,

baking is my therapy.


Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: 12 slices 1x


  • 3/4 cup cup diet dr. pepper or diet ginger ale
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2/3 cup blackstrap molasses
  • 1 1/2 cups Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour (I use Cloud 9 Bakery)
  • 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 T dried ginger
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1 T freshly grated ginger
  • 2 eggs


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease an 8 X 4 inch loaf pan with non-stick spray or coconut oil.
  3. Bring the diet drink to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally.
  4. Remove from heat and stir in the baking soda (mixture will foam up).
  5. When foaming subsides, stir in molasses and coconut palm sugar. Set mixture aside.
  6. Whisk the flour, ground ginger, baking powder, pepper and salt together in a large bowl.
  7. Transfer the diet drink-molasses mixture to a large bowl. Whisk in the eggs, applesauce, and grated ginger until combined.
  8. Whisk the wet mixture into the flour mixture in thirds, stirring continuously until completely smooth.
  9. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and gently tap the bottom of the pan against a hard surface to pop any air bubbles.
  10. Bake until the top of the loaf is just firm to the touch, about 35-40 minutes.
  11. Leave loaf in pan until cool, about 1 1/2 hours. Remove from pan.
  12. Store leftovers in plastic wrap or tinfoil at room temperature for 3-5 days.

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf //

So tell me, what’s your therapy?


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  • Reply
    Kim @ BusyBod
    October 22, 2013 at 10:08 am

    This looks delicious as always! I think baking is a fabulous thing to excel at! I always liked baking much much more than cooking, but I’m not particularly good at either one unless I’m just following directions. My therapy is the outdoors, anywhere away from the hustle, which could be in the woods or on my balcony (the balcony only works because we are up on a hill, so I feel like I”m out in the surrounding woods instead of in a busy town). Maybe it’s from growing up in a rural area, but I always feel like I can step back and breathe easier when I’m outside.

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 10:24 am

    I love baking too, and I always have ever since I was a wee little tot causing trouble in my parents kitchen. Nowadays, I work out for therapy; it gives me an outlet for stress and helps clear my head. I’m happy to accept baked goods from others though, especially since it’s stress relief for you too. When you look at it that way, it’s almost like I’m doing you a favor….alright maybe that’s a stretch. It still looks delicious, and I still want it though.

  • Reply
    Kathy @ Vodka and Soda
    October 22, 2013 at 11:28 am

    procrastibake! HAHAHAH! love it.

    and i DO LOVE YOU so why hasn’t any of your bakegasms hit my belly yet?!

    Vodka and Soda

  • Reply
    Elise @
    October 22, 2013 at 11:29 am

    I NEED to try this! I can’t lie my baking skills aren’t the based but that’s why I need to start practicing! First test..Gluten Free Gingerbread Loaf 🙂

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Davida, this looks so good!!!! The diet soda has me intrigued and I really want to try it! What is my therapy? Baking as well. I love getting lost in the kitchen and focusing on baking and flavors. So much fun and stress relieving!

  • Reply
    Katie @ Daily Cup of Kate
    October 22, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I love gingerbread recipes, but only make them during Christmas time. I might have to make this a few months early though- thanks for sharing!!

  • Reply
    Jo @ Living Mint Green
    October 22, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    I did some therapeutic baking over the weekend too! I made protein bars, GF blueberry muffins & grain-free pumpkin spice muffins.
    Cooking, running, walking, taking a shot shower, spending time in nature = the ultimate therapy. Oh, and wine, obviously. 😉

  • Reply
    Amanda @ .running with spoons.
    October 22, 2013 at 12:18 pm

    Procrastibaking… lol I love that. I’m definitely the same way. Everything else can wait — I need my cookies/muffins/loaves NOW. And speaking of loaves… my goodness does this look amazing. And I’m super intrigued by the use of the soda. I really need to start playing around with molasses a bit more — such an underrated flavour.

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:18 am

      SO underrated. This bottle was catching dust from sitting around for so long so I knew I had to start using it!

  • Reply
    Erin @ The Almond Eater
    October 22, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Prostibake! Lolll love that. My therapy is yoga or any type of exercise. Lately though I have been turning to cooking as well. Errrrr experimenting in the kitchen we’ll call it. Delicious looking recipe as always girl!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    Procrastibaking- classic. You can therapy bake for me anytime! MY therapy is EATING the baked goods.. 🙂

  • Reply
    Alex @ Kenzie Life
    October 22, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    Haha procrastibake…you’re awesome! This looks so good!! I used to not be a fan of gingerbread when I was a kid but I’ve been craving it the last few years!

  • Reply
    elise @ cheers yall
    October 22, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    “I bake to get new people to like me.” HA! I LOVE IT!!! truth, girl.

    love love love gingerbread so much. it makes everything better (and screams christmas too, which of course i swoon over!!!)


  • Reply
    Nicole @ FruitnFitness
    October 22, 2013 at 1:32 pm

    Oh this sounds good and has an interesting ingredient list. I have used soda when cooking roasts but never in bread. Gingerbread is one of my favorites, I’m going to have to give this a try.

  • Reply
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey
    October 22, 2013 at 1:33 pm

    I heard someone asked once if they preferred cooking or baking, and they said that cooking is an art and baking is a science. I couldn’t agree more, which is why, since I am not a scientist, I will have to stick to eating all of the goodies that you bake!

  • Reply
    Kim @ Hungry Healthy Girl
    October 22, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    I can totally relate! Baking is such good therapy…. it lets the creativity out and gives you focus. Even better when the food turns out as good as this bread looks!

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:20 am

      I know you get me Kim! And thank goodness you do because you have such amazing treats on your blog!

  • Reply
    Cailee Joy
    October 22, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    Ohhh yum!! This looks so tasty! And I love that it’s gluten free 🙂

  • Reply
    Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table
    October 22, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    procrastibake. you crack me up. i am sooooo guilty of the same.

  • Reply
    Danielle @Labelsarefortincans
    October 22, 2013 at 3:05 pm

    I like that – procrastibake! Also I have never seen pop before in baked loafs! That’s so cool. It sounds like a science experiment…

  • Reply
    Amy @ Elephant Eats
    October 22, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    hahaha, I love the word “procrastibake” and I can totally relate! I procrasti-everything 🙂 I’m so glad you have an activity that can make you feel so good. And this gingerbread sounds awesome! I love the spices in gingerbread 🙂

  • Reply
    Megan (The Lyons Share)
    October 22, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    What about writing, photography, balancing a million tasks, and being an amazing friend/ girlfriend/ daughter? I think you excel at all of those things! Now here’s what I want to know … how in the world did you know to try out diet soda in your baking?!? Is that “a thing” that I have just been missing?

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    All of those statements about baking…could have come from my head. But never, ever does my baking look this beautiful or taste this delicious (I assume). I love that it’s gluten free, and I am definitely writing down all of these ingredients and going to the store after work and making this bread.

    Baking was my therapy for a long time, but it became kind of self-destructive for a while when I was sick. You make it look very healthy – both mentally and in regards to nutritional value! Therapy for me now is puppy time. I never believed it until I started to live with my boyfriend’s dog, but animals are really the best. Plus I get to bake for him, now!

    Thanks so much for sharing this – I’m super impressed by your recipe creating and baking abilities. I’m sure you’ve got lots of others though, such as writing!

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:22 am

      Trust me, if I had a pet, pet-therapy would be my #1! There’s always a way to healthify baking though many many kitchen fails are likely to happen. But practice really does make perfect!

      Thank you so much for your kind words lovely! Means a lot!

  • Reply
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles
    October 22, 2013 at 3:46 pm

    Procrastibake…I love it :-p And I also love that the recipe uses Diet Dr. Pepper, because that gives me an excuse to buy some! My therapy: the gym, walks, and puppy cuddling.

  • Reply
    Miss Polkadot
    October 22, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    Not good at anything?! Far from it I’d say. Just look at what a great friend [even if I can just say pen pal – so far :)], baker, chef, student and listener [something I truly value] you are – and that’s merely naming a few.
    Procrastibaking can be the bane of my existence when I have a lot of tasks to do but some relaxing, delicious, make-the-whole-apartment-smell-like-heaven activity becomes priority. So yes, baking and walking (!) is my therapy. First baking, then taking a nice long walk to get some fresh air and settle in bed with a book afterwards. Perfect.

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:23 am

      You’re too sweet <3 I wish we could go for walks together...I know we have SO much to talk about!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    I love the deep rich color of this cake. It reminds me of a “plum cake” I bring back every single time from Bombay and I especially love the deep brown color of it.
    And surely,most definitely, even I know, you are excellent at a few things – baking included!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 4:33 pm

    I wish I could bake but I’m just not that good at it! You, on the other hand, are really good at it! My therapy is definitely being active. Hiking, swimming, biking, dancing . . . you name it and it distracts me from my problems.

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 5:08 pm

    Davida, you MUST come bake all of your creations for me immediately!! They always look so beautiful and delicious and delectable and scrumptious and and and… Haha I’m drooling at work!

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:23 am

      Next time I’m in Florida I’ll deliver you whatever treat your big heart desires 😉

  • Reply
    Sarah Cook
    October 22, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    Oh man, this looks so good! And there isn’t any refined sugar. You’re such a badass.

    Haha, I procastibake. Love it.

  • Reply
    Ang @ Nutty for Life
    October 22, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    I have a feeling these gingerbread loaves might make some nice little Christmas giveaways for family and friends! I love to bake and cook, but I wouldn’t say I’m particularly great at either. I actually am very passionate about cake decorating though. Perhaps I will show my greatest creation on the blog some time.

  • Reply
    Sarah @ Sweet Miles
    October 22, 2013 at 5:55 pm

    Oh my. Ohhhh my. This looks delicious!!!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Ooh I love gingerbread, so this looks awesome! I’ve baked with diet soda before and it gives everything a little extra fluff. I love it!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 6:07 pm probably one of the best terms I have ever heard!! YES!! I am so with you.. I LOVE to bake, and I never really thought I would be good at it!! I love sharing my treats with others! Mainly so I don’t eat them all..but also just because I love to see people smile and it makes me feel damn good that I created something YUM!

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:26 am

      I know you’re my baker in crime. And damn am I happy you bake because you seriously come up with the best recipes!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm

    Omg “procrastibake”. I do that SO OFTEN!! hahaha

  • Reply
    Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life
    October 22, 2013 at 6:54 pm

    I like to cook or bake while listening to Pandora and drinking red wine 🙂

  • Reply
    Heather Wilson
    October 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm

    I agree 200%! Baking and cooking alone is my therapy! I just love playing music, dancing and cooking all at the same time. : )

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 7:32 pm

    I LOVE baking and have to say I miss it since I haven’t been doing much during my Whole30. Actaully, haven’t done any! This recipe is so unique and looks amazing! I’ve never added soda to my baking before but have heard it’s good!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 8:03 pm

    I need some of your baking love. I’ve never been remotely good at baking – in fact, it seems to be getting worse.
    I’m very intrigued by this recipe – I’ve never seen Dr Pepper in something baked – umm…maybe you could come a little south and teach me to bake?!

  • Reply
    Consuelo @ Honey & Figs
    October 22, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Well, you’re awesome at writing inspiring posts and definitely baking delicious stuff! I love how baking gets to make me happy everytime too!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 8:50 pm

    I love gingerbread anything, and this looks absolutely delicious! I’m also convinced that soda in baked goods is the greatest trick ever.

  • Reply
    Chelsea @
    October 22, 2013 at 10:24 pm

    Such a cool idea to use pop in this! It looks amazing.

    I’m getting better at letting baking be a relaxing activity for me… but in the past it has usually been a stressful activity for me since I’m such a perfectionist. 😛 Walking, hiking, funny movies, and getting coffee with friends are all my favourite therapies.

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:25 am

      I can definitely have my moments with baking but if I’m stress baking I try to follow a recipe so I don’t end up with a kitchen fail that makes everything worse!

  • Reply
    October 22, 2013 at 10:36 pm

    Those are some awesome, thick slices! 🙂 I’ve made cake with soda before and it gave such a great texture/flavor. I bet it’s equally good in this gingerbread… bread? Haha. Double the bread, double the fun 😉

  • Reply
    Jan @ Sprouts n Squats
    October 22, 2013 at 10:41 pm

    Love this loaf it looks delicious!! I love ginger beer / ginger ale and this looks like the perfect recipe to use it in. I definitely cook or bake for a lot of those different reasons you mentioned too.

  • Reply
    Arman @ thebigmansworld
    October 22, 2013 at 10:53 pm

    You are a baking talent- not even going to bother stating the obvious 😉

    I am one who always procrastibakes too- and I can relate, after spending multiple hours starring at the computer screen, busting out essays and all that jazz- being in the kitchen really is therapeutic- or spilling your thoughts to someone who is not judgemental and happy to listen!

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:31 am

      Yeah therapy works too…but you don’t get a delicious treat at the end! Unless your therapist is AWESOME!

  • Reply
    Sarah Pie
    October 22, 2013 at 11:47 pm

    As someone who is SO NOT good at baking I am always impressed by those who are 🙂 This sounds like a delicious treat, that I can’t wait to make! I say therapy is whatever you want it to be and if making delicious looking breads and cookies make you feel better then all the better for you.

  • Reply
    Maria @ Little Miss Cornucopia
    October 22, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    three words..Goodness…Gracious…Greatness! I loved reading your baking confessions Davida. And procrastibaking?? omg, i do that too lol.

  • Reply
    October 23, 2013 at 1:23 am

    Baking is my weakest spot, I work best with no-bake desserts and my pantry doesn’t have all the essential ingredients for baking. You inspire me to be more active in baking and I hope I will do more baking for the holidays! I like the last sentence, it describes me well: I procrastibake!

  • Reply
    Paty FruitLoverVeggieHugger
    October 23, 2013 at 2:21 am

    I always bake, even if I already am stocked up for goodies, I’ll freeze some or give some away!

  • Reply
    Carla Bruns
    October 23, 2013 at 2:21 am

    I also love baking although I don’t eat what I bake that often. I taste it to see if it’s good and then I’m done. I enjoy the process and I especially love how happy it makes others. I generally feel that way about all cooking. I don’t enjoy the clean up though!

    I haven’t cooked with molasses in awhile. This looks delish!

  • Reply
    Paige Podbelsek
    October 23, 2013 at 2:24 am

    And rightly so! Ahhh….can you just come to Tucson and make this for me? I have a feeling it will come out waaaay better if you do it 🙂

  • Reply
    Karey @ Nutty About Health
    October 23, 2013 at 3:05 am

    Baking is a great therapy to resort to! I love to bake, but my problem is that I’m not very good at it & that I like to eat it ALL. LOL
    The bread looks amazing girl!! Yummy!!

  • Reply
    Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
    October 23, 2013 at 4:18 am

    I’m laughing at you saying ‘procastibake’ — too cute! I like to bake too but would consider cooking more of my therapy… and also hiking! Being out in nature exercising with just my dog and whatever other animals wind up being around is so therapeutic to me.

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      October 24, 2013 at 1:28 am

      Ah I think I would be a way calmer person if I had your access to hiking and your doggie 🙂

  • Reply
    Lee Hersh
    October 23, 2013 at 11:57 pm

    So now that you know where I live. I expect a loaf of bread on my doorstep for Christmas. Thanks.

  • Reply
    Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli
    October 24, 2013 at 7:10 am

    COOKING is my therapy! Baking gives me anxiety! Ha! And who are you kidding? Not artistic? With THOSE gorgeous pictures?! Please! And let’s get a HOORAH for some blackstrap!!! Seriously, I want to put that shit on EVERYTHING! Haha!

  • Reply
    Love What You Do
    October 25, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    I love gingerbread! This looks fantastic!

  • Reply
    Nikki @ The Road to Less Cake
    October 26, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Baking is incredibly therapeutic. I always feel less stressed after I’ve baked, and then I get to eat tasty things to make the stress go away even more. Score!

    I love gingerbread, it reminds me of Christmas.

  • Reply
    November 23, 2013 at 12:29 am

    Sorry to be a damper, but I don’t see the point of being gluten free when you are putting Dr Pepper in your gingerbread. To me, Dr Pepper is way more damaging than gluten. My two cents, anyway.

    • Reply
      Davida @TheHealthyMaven
      November 23, 2013 at 12:37 am

      I think it’s a misconception that gluten-free is synonymous with healthy. I kept this gluten-free because I think people with gluten intolerances and allergies should be able to eat the same foods as everyone else, but that does not mean the rest of the recipe has to be healthy. And all things considered, when you do look at the ingredients, 3/4 of a cup of diet soda is far less harmful than most other baked goods and bakery goods currently being sold.

    • Reply
      Diane Dougherty
      September 30, 2016 at 4:44 pm

      I agree – can you make it with club soda or without soda? I CAN’T put that garbage into my body. Artificial sweeteners are poison.

  • Reply
    April 21, 2014 at 11:10 am

    Yum! Gingerbread is my absolute favourite 😀 Is there an alternative to blackstrap molasses? I can understand it gives a very specific flavour, but it is rather deathly for my diabetic FIL, who I try to include in my baking escapades. Otherwise I’ll just make it for the lasses at work, but it MUST be made! NOM NOM!

    • Reply
      Davida Kugelmass
      April 24, 2014 at 7:41 am

      Ah there really isn’t an alternative since it’s the molasses flavour which really makes this a gingerbread loaf (plus the ginger of course!). You could try replacing it with honey though the flavour might be slightly different. If you do end up making a substitution, let me know!

  • Reply
    Is Gluten Is Ginger Healthy For The Body | my gluten free diet
    September 4, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    […] Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf – The Healthy Maven – Gluten-Free Gingerbread Loaf. by The Healthy Maven. Prep Time: 15 mins. Cook Time: 35-40 mins. Keywords: bake dessert snack gluten-free sugar-free ginger loaf fall… […]

  • Reply
    Mathew Tragash
    October 1, 2014 at 9:20 am

    Baking is absolutely an excellent form of therapy. Food in general is an art of its own. To be able to go all Mad Scientist in the kitchen and concoct something of immense flavor or simple elegant proportions, to deconstruct and plate the simplest of dishes, or to craft a spaghetti or intricate part of a meal. Baking is the same. While the basic process doesn’t vary much, it certainly takes a keen eye for detail and respect and admiration for the end result.

    I really like your recipe. Bonus points for being gluten-free and looking so delicious. Perfect for the holidays, your gingerbread cake is easy to make and makes for a great Thanksgiving/Fall giveaway to friends and family.

    A little addition to the cake, I think a cream cheese frosting would make a nice topping, but that goes against the healthy concept in some ways. Thanks again for the great recipe.

    • Reply
      Davida Kugelmass
      October 1, 2014 at 12:10 pm

      Thank you so much! Such a sweet and thoughtful comment. P.S. I totally agree on the cream cheese frosting 😉

  • Reply
    October 27, 2014 at 6:08 pm

    This look amazing but what would you suggest as a replacement for the eggs? Flax or applesauce? Recently diagnosed with an egg-allergy in addition to my gluten-sensitivity and still don’t understand egg replacements yet, alas.

    • Reply
      Davida Kugelmass
      October 28, 2014 at 11:23 pm

      Hi Mei! I’m sorry to hear about your egg allergy!

      I haven’t tried making this loaf egg-free so I can’t be certain but perhaps you’ll have luck with some flax eggs. That’s what I would go with. The loaf if pretty moist so I’m not sure how well it will hold up but if you have success, do let me know! Enjoy 🙂

  • Reply
    Carrie E
    December 13, 2015 at 4:54 pm

    I love the pic of this bread! I’m curious about the role of the diet soda? I try not to do sugar free b/c it messes with me. I’m sure I could do regular soda, but would you have any other suggestions?

    • Reply
      The Healthy Maven
      December 15, 2015 at 8:54 am

      Unfortunately it must be soda. Regular soda will work just fine!

  • Reply
    December 14, 2015 at 2:30 am

    This looks so good. My question is, can I substitute a different sugar, I don’t happen to have coconut palm sugar? I really want to make this for Christmas! Please email me. 🙂

    Thank you!

  • Reply
    Lorraine Kuras
    October 25, 2016 at 8:21 pm

    Could I use Raw Coconut Nectar in place of the molasses? It doesn’t have the strong flavor of molasses but is just as thick. I use it on pancakes and as a sweetener replacement in other recipes. I love anything ginger and can’t wait to try this.

  • Reply
    Connie Gleeson
    November 11, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    Would I need to make any changes if I wanted to use this recipe for mufins instead?

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