Gingerbread Bundt Cake with Lemon Glaze (Low Carb and Gluten Free)


As you read this, I am on my way home from what we hope was a wonderful, relaxing family vacation. I have to confess, stepping away from the computer for even a few days, let alone a full week, is kind of scary. The foodblogging world moves quickly, thanks in part to the insanity of social media, and I feel like I am going to miss so much. How many zillions of yummy posts will I have missed seeing that are now buried under masses of tweets? Exactly how many shares will I have in my Foodbuzz and Stumble Upon inboxes? The idea of playing catch up is so overwhelming, it’s enough to make my head spin! I am just trying not to think too much about it.

Of course, as I am writing this, I am not even gone yet. I hope you enjoyed my guest bloggers, Katrina, Roxana and Cara, and the delicious recipes they shared. But I couldn’t help but schedule a post of one of my own creations, because I made this before I left and I am eager to share it. Gingerbread is one of those things that has grown on me as I’ve gotten older, and we are quickly coming into Gingerbread Season. It’s not that I didn’t like gingerbread when I was younger, it’s simply that as always, I would have chosen chocolate over gingerbread for dessert. But I’ve come to appreciate the warm, comforting flavour more and more. Gingerbread baking in the oven, whether in cake or cookie form, is about as good as it gets, especially when it’s chilly outside.

The pairing of gingerbread and lemon seems to me like a natural one. One of my favourite cookies ever, back in the days when I could eat storebought cookies, was Carr’s Ginger Lemon Cremes. I even attempted my own low carb version, and although they turned out more like whoopie pies than crisp cookies, they were delicious. When I thought of making a gingerbread bundt cake, I considered a number of different glazes. Chocolate seemed to heavy and overpowering. Caramel seemed too sweet, if there is such a thing. But lemon seemed like a great choice to play off the warm spices.

The Results: This is such a great cake, and it really could go either way – as an elegant dessert or as a coffeecake-type brunch item. The cake itself was moist and dense, but it rose nicely in the oven…moreso than I was expecting. I do think it needed a little more spice in it, so I added a touch more to the recipe. The lemon glaze was really, really good. I am glad I used a little cream cheese to thicken it, as glazes made with powdered erythritol or xylitol can be a bit on the thin side and simply soak into the cake. But this poured nicely down the sides and the bright white looked so good against the dark cake. And the zesty bright lemon was a lovely contrast to the more earthy gingerbread flavour.

Gingerbread Bundt Cake with Lemon Glaze

3 cups almond flour
1/2 cup granulated erythritol
1/3 cup vanilla whey protein powder
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 oz greek yogurt
1/2 cup butter, softened
4 large eggs
2 tbsp molasses (optional, but adds colour and flavour)
25 drops stevia extract
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

2 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp butter, softened
6 tbsp powdered erythritol
10 drops stevia extract
2 – 3 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tbsp grated lemon zest for garnish

For the cake, preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9-inch diameter non-stick bundt pan very well, making sure to work butter or oil into all crevasses.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the almond flour, granulated erythritol, protein powder, spices, baking powder, baking soda, xanthan gum and salt. In a large bowl, beat yogurt and butter together until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until just combined.  Beat in molasses if using and stevia.

Beat in half of almond flour mixture until just combined, scraping down sides of bowl and beaters with a rubber spatula as needed. Beat in almond milk, then remaining almond flour mixture until well combined.

Pour batter into pan and smooth the top. Bake 40 to 45 minutes, or until top is browned and a tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in pan 15 minutes and then flip out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

For the glaze, beat cream cheese and butter together until smooth. Beat in powdered erythritol and stevia. Add lemon juice, 1 tbsp at a time, until a thick but pourable consistency is achieved.

Pour glaze over top and down sides of cooled cake. Sprinkle with grated lemon zest and serve.

Serves 12 to 16. For 12 slices, each slice has a total of 10.7 g of carbs and 3 g of fiber. Total NET CARBS = 7.7 g.

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  1. Laurie Jesch-Kulseth @ Relishing It says

    Looks delicious! I love gingerbread, too — in fact I made some the other week. I like how you paired lemon with it — I'll have to try that next time.

  2. Divya Yadava says

    I love the idea of lemon with the warm spices. It's not something we see everyday, but I think it would make a great flavour pairing.

  3. Lizzy says

    Welcome home, Carolyn!!! We missed you!!! I was gone for 3 days and somehow my foodbuzz inbox has nearly 1500 messages…YIKES. So I know how you feel. Your gingerbread looks extraordinary…especially with that dripping glaze…mmmmmmmm.

  4. Karen says

    I can't believe it's gingerbread season already!!! Where did the year go?? Your cake looks wonderful and I'm intrigued by the lemon-gingerbread combo…never tried that before.
    Hope you had an amazing vacation! Welcome back…

  5. healthyfoodietravels says

    Oooh gingerbread! I still prefer the German equivalent that's slightly different, called Lebkuchen, but I still love everything with gingerbread scent and flavor. Ad it's low-carb, how utterly perfect! Thank you for sharing this! :)

  6. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel says

    This will be perfect in the coming months! Looks and sounds great. And welcome back! Hope you had a nice break :)

  7. Sandra says

    Hope you're feeling relaxed and mellow. Thanks for bringing cake back with you and the lemon glaze is the perfect choice.

  8. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. says

    Hope you had a great trip!! I do love gingerbread so this cake looks delicious!! Do you have any tips on where to get almond flour for cheaper than $10 a bag? Do you make your own? I bought some for some muffins recently and couldn't believe how much it cost at my health food store!

  9. Becky says

    Welcome Back! Hope that your vacation was wonderful. Your gingerbread cake with the lemon glaze looks very comforting. Just what you need to ease back into reality.

  10. Sandra says

    First let me tell you "Welcome Back" Glad you had some time are working hard!!!
    Second this cake is AMAZING..beautiful and perfect for this time of year!!!!

  11. Katherine Martinelli says

    This looks amazing!! I recently acquired a bundt pan and have been using like mad, I love it. Have an amazing vacation! I completely understand how stressful stepping away can be, but it's so great to unplug! Enjoy every minute. We'll all still be here when you get back :-)

  12. Mighty Morgan says

    Hope you had a great vacation!This looks delicious!!! Any chance you know the carb content per serving?????? I know I could probably figure it myself….but I figured I would ask you first :)

  13. Cookin' Canuck says

    I hope you had a wonderful vacation! Don't let all of those stumbleupon shares, etc. ruin your relaxed vacation feel. That's what the delete button is for – seriously, sometimes it just needs to be done.

    This cake sounds absolutely decadent. What a wonderful dessert or teatime treat.

  14. Ruby says

    Welcome back! I put citrus zest in my gingerbread, so I definitely agree with you about the pairing. That photo of the icing being poured is fantastic!

  15. Kate@Diethood says

    This cake is a fantastic combination of deliciousness and goodness. I love it!

    P.S. Welcome back!! Glad you had some time off with the family.

  16. Jen at The Three Little Piglets says

    Welcome home! Hope you had a great time with your family. Just remember when you're trying to catch up that it's only food, you don't have to do it all, and your fellow bloggers (especially) understand and won't hold it against you.

  17. Cake Duchess says

    Beautiful cake! Love the glaze. I know how you feel. It is overwhelming. I agree with Dara that sometimes it has to be done and you have to click delete. You're such a devoted friend.xx

  18. Eliotseats says

    My mom used to make a gingerbread cake (just in a 9 x 11 pan, cut into squares) that she would drizzle a lemon sauce over. I haven't thought about that in years. Your recipe looks wonderful.

  19. Anna says

    @ Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. – almond flour is easy to make and way cheaper. A lot of people just grind up almonds. I make almond milk first, as it is also cheaper than buying almond milk, then I dry out the leftover meal in a nonstick pan and grind it in a coffee grinder. It's quite a lot of work, but I do this a couple times a week and it keeps up a good supply of almond flour for a fraction of the price. I need to bake all my own stuff due to pre-diabetes, so it's worth it for me.

  20. kita says

    This cake looks fabulous and I hope your trip was too! As for how overwhelming your foodbuzz inbox can be – I say there always is a time and place for mass delete 😉

  21. Susan Pelter says

    This looks divine! I want to make it but am not sure about the difference between stevia glycerite, which I have and use, and stevia extract. Is there a particular brand you use, or is there a conversion chart somewhere? Thanks! I am dying to make this 😉

  22. Carolyn says

    Hi Susan…good question, I am not sure how to use Stevia Glycerite. I tried a google search to get the difference between the two and came up with very little info. The best I can discern is that stevia extract is just pure stevia, whereas stevia glycerite is a watered down version that includes water, glycerin and stevia extract. Stevia extract is intensely sweet, wherea stevia glycerite is going to be a lot less so, to be used for sweetening drinks and such with just a few drops.
    It's a tricky one and I think you are going to want to experiment. I always taste my batter for sweetness and adjust accordingly, but not everyone is as comfortable tasting raw eggs as I apparently am!
    Mayve if you tell me how many drops of it you use to sweeten other things, I can get a starting point?

  23. eatthecookie says

    i've been getting pumped up to try this recipe! just wondering, do you mean unflavored whey powder, like bob's red mill brand? or protein powder, like comes manufactured for shakes etc? all help appreciated!

  24. Carolyn says

    Hi Liz, I mean the kind that comes for shakes, but not with any vanilla or chocolate flavouring. It's very useful for replacing gluten to give nut-flour baked goods a bit of structure.

  25. Anonymous says

    It is the beginning of summer, but I just found this fall recipe and had to try it. It was WONDERFUL! I think I will leave off the glaze next time I just love the cake as is. Truly a great recipe.

  26. beth says

    I’m thinking ahead and trying to plan to bake some LC goodies to stash in the freezer for the holidays. I saw you used a cake round you had frozen from when you made the lemon cream cake and then you used the frozen round for the Boston Cream pie (which we made and loved last Christmas). I am thinking of making the lemon cream cake this year…I assume I could do the cake in advance, freeze it, and finish it with the filling, etc. closer to Christmas? Have you ever tried freezing the Gingerbread bundt cake (sans glaze of course)? I know LC pound cakes often freeze well…just wondering if you had any favs that you like to stash in your freezer before the holidays :) DH and I have LCd for years, and my parents have been on the LC wagon for almost 5 years now….so handy to have some things stashed for holiday get togethers and house guests.

    • Carolyn says

      The cake part of the lemon cream cake freezes wonderfully, and I suspect this bundt cake would too because it’s made in a similar way. I would just caution that you wrap it up very tightly, because the shape will create air-pockets and you don’t want freezer burn. I freeze all sorts of my muffin recipes. I can’t think of a single one that won’t freeze well. The almond crusted butter cake would freeze well too. If you have your eye on a particular recipe and want to know my opinion on the freezability of it (not a word, but whatever…), let me know!

        • beth says

          One other question if you don’t mind…any chance I can make this in a non bundt pan and then adjust baking time? For some reason, I am in my mid 30s and still don’t own a bundt pan LOL.

  27. beth says

    Hmmm…no idea! Loaf pan? Spring form? Regular 8 inch round cake pan? I know the batter will likely need to be divided into more than one pan, and that’s okay with me. I had mini bundt pans years ago but donated them a while back.

  28. Beth says


    I made the cake and it turned out great. Couple of questions, though. The recipe says vanilla whey protein powder but then in the comments you mention to use plain whey powder, not flavored, so I’m wondering which is best? I used the vanilla since I didn’t see the comment until later. Also, the recipe calls for molasses (optional) and stevia but the instructions don’t mention them. I added them to the almond milk– was that the right thing to do?

    I’m happy to find your blog– I had gestational diabetes with both my pregnancies but the second one (twins) was much worse and now three years later I’m still quite glucose intolerant, so low carb and sugar free is the only way I’ll ever eat treats! Thanks for all your hard work!

      • Carolyn says

        It’s vanilla whey, I just don’t usually write it all out fully again in the instructions. But I was missing the molasses and stevia in the recipe, thanks for noticing!

    • Carolyn says

      It’s vanilla whey, I just don’t usually write it all out fully again in the instructions. But I was missing the molasses and stevia in the recipe, thanks for noticing!

  29. Melissa says

    Just before I make this, wanted to confirm the sweetener amounts. In this and your almond butter cake you use 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp sweetener (25 drops sweet leaf liquid equals 2 tbsp) for 3 cups flour. Is this intentional? The ratio of sugar to flour seems like it might make for a no-too-sweet cake. Thanks for your help!

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