Chickpea and Date Gingerbread

Serves 10

We tend to equate gingerbread with the holidays, but this light-textured version makes an unexpected treat in summer. It’s especially good served with fruit and Greek yogurt on the side. This is not a one-bowl cake, but the seductive results are well worth the effort. Delicious on the day it’s baked, it’s even better the next day.


  • ¾ cup chickpea flour
  • ⅓ cup brown rice flour
  • ¼ cup potato starch
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon xanthan gum
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅛ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 4 (2 ounces) Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped
  • ½ cup dark molasses
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for pan
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten with a fork
  • Confectioners' sugar


Heat the oven to 350° F. Grease the sides of an 8-inch square cake pan with butter and line with parchment paper.

Combine the flours, starch, spices, baking powder, xanthan gum, baking soda and salt and set aside.

In a small bowl, toss the chopped dates in 1 teaspoon of the flour mixture to keep them from clumping together and reserve. In another bowl, combine the molasses and water and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar gradually, and beat until fluffy and almost white. Beat in the eggs little by little. Beat in the flour mix in three batches, alternating with half the molasses mixture at a time. The yellow batter may smell a bit vegetal and grassy, but don’t worry—that aroma disappears during baking. Fold in the chopped dates.

Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 35 minutes, until the cake feels springy to a light finger pressure and a toothpick inserted at the center emerges clean. Leave in the pan for 10 minutes before turning out and peeling off the parchment.

Flip the cake onto a rack so it’s right side up and let cool completely. Dust with confectioners’ sugar. Slice in half crossways and then cut each half into 5 bars, or cut into 9 squares.

Cook’s tip: For a special dessert, serve this gingerbread with halved ripe pears and a scoop of thick Greek yogurt drizzle with honey.

Nutrition Analysis: 280 cal, 11 g fat, 60 mg chol, 125 mg sodium, 42 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 27 g sugar, 5 g protein.

The author of more than a dozen cookbooks to date, Gluten-Free Living Contributing Editor Jackie Mallorca’s titles include The Wheat-Free Cook and Gluten-Free Italian.