This gluten-free gingerbread with an aromatic blend of seasonal spices is inspired by the classic French spice bread called pain d'épices.
One of my very favorite quick breads to make around the holidays is gingerbread.
It’s a classic this time of year due to its aromatic blend of seasonal spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves but this French inspired gingerbread also known as pain d'épices is well suited for the holidays and beyond.
What is Pain d'Epices?
Pain d'épices is France’s version of gingerbread, although more delicately spiced and with undertones of honey instead of molasses. Bakery windows are often lined with neatly wrapped loaves ready for gifting all year-long.
It’s a hearty loaf whose distinctive flavor improves with an overnight rest, as the flavors of honey and spice mingle and meld together.
My gluten-free version uses a blend of cashew and almond butter instead of wheat flour to which a melody of spices are added. There’s cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves and a hint of black pepper for heat. Orange zest and orange blossom honey give the bread an almost floral note, and anise a mild licorice-like sweetness.
It makes for a terrific afternoon snack with a cup to tea or lightly toasted in the morning for breakfast. I like to eat mine with a spoonful of cherry preserves or drizzled with extra honey. The recipe makes two small loaves, one for giving and one for eating.
More holiday spice recipes:
A hearty paleo and gluten-free French spice bread with an aromatic blend of seasonal spices reminiscent of gingerbread.
- 4 large eggs
- ½ cup/128g cashew butter
- ½ cup/128g roasted almond butter (smooth)
- ½ cup/120ml orange blossom honey
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
- ½ inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground aniseed
- ¼ teaspoon ground black or white pepper
- The zest of 1 medium orange
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Prepare two 6 inch loaf pans.
- Whisk together the eggs, cashew butter and almond butter until smooth. Stir in honey, spices, orange zest and baking soda until well combined.
- Scrape the batter into the prepared pans and place on a baking sheet. Bake for about 30-35 minutes, until the loaves are puffed and browned and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer the loaves to a rack and let cool to room temperature.
NOTE: The loaves can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 5 days.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 175Total Fat: 12gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 93mgSodium: 163mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 6gProtein: 6g
Nutritional information for recipes contained on this website, such as calories, fat, carbs, etc. are only estimates and are not guaranteed to be accurate.
Sylvie Shirazi is the recipe developer and food photographer behind Gourmande in the Kitchen. For the last 10 years she's been making eating more healthfully easy and accessible with gluten-free, grain-free, paleo and vegan recipes that are free from processed ingredients.