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Maple Gingerbread Layer Cake

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This maple gingerbread layer cake with salted maple caramel sauce is the perfect fall showstopper of a dessert. Flavorful, moist and delicious!

This weekend I had extra special guests over to my house for lunch.  I wanted to make something special and this cake totally fit the bill!  It’s perfect for Fall and would easily fit onto your Thanksgiving table.  I sadly do not have a picture of the inside of the cake because we devoured it….eek!  What kind of food blogger am I!  The good thing is that it was really delicious and hopefully you will trust me on that 🙂   The cake was perfectly spiced and the addition of crystallized ginger really brought the lovely warm ginger flavor front and center.  The biggest thing to remember about this cake is to make sure you do not over bake…it is not forgiving!  When perfectly cooked it remains dense but moist and packed with flavor.  

The original recipe called for maple coated pecans which I left off (not a huge fan of nuts) but I will include the recipe because I know I tend to be the odd ball out when it comes to not liking nuts….

Looking for more cake recipes? Try my Black Forest Cake, Nutty Cinnamon Roll Apple Cake or my Strawberry Rhubarb Coffee Cake

Maple Gingerbread Layer Cake with Salted Maple Caramel Sauce

This maple gingerbread layer cake with salted maple caramel sauce is the perfect fall showstopper of a dessert. Flavorful, moist and delicious!

Yield: 6-8 servings

Prep Time: 1 hour

Cook Time: 2 hours

Total Time: 3 hours


Maple-Coated Pecans:

  • 3/4 cup pecan halves, toasted
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • Coarse kosher salt


  • 2-1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1 cup maple sugar
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup hot water
  • 2/3 cup mild-flavored molasses


  • 1-1/3 cups chilled crème fraîche
  • 1-1/3 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup maple sugar
  • 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoons Chinese five spice

Salted-Maple Caramel Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup maple sugar
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
  • 5 to 6 drops imitation maple extract


Maple-Coated Pecans:

Place large piece of foil on work surface. Combine nuts and maple syrup in heavy medium skillet (do not use nonstick) over medium-high heat and bring to boil, tossing to coat. Cook until syrup is dark amber and almost cooked away and thickly coats nuts, tossing often, 3 to 3 1/2 minutes. Scrape nuts onto foil. Working quickly with 2 forks, separate nuts. Sprinkle with coarse salt. Cool until coating is crisp and hard, about 1 hour.
DO AHEAD Pecans can be made 1 day ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 1 1/2-inch-high sides. Combine first 4 ingredients in processor; add ginger. Blend until ginger is finely ground, about 1 minute. Using mixer, beat maple sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy. Beat in eggs 1 at a time (batter may look curdled). Stir 3/4 cup hot water and molasses in small bowl. Beat dry ingredients into butter mixture in 4 additions alternately with molasses mixture in 3 additions. Divide batter between prepared pans (about 2 1/2 cups each). Bake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, 30 to 32 minutes. Cool cakes in pans on racks.


Combine crème fraîche, cream, and both sugars in large bowl. Using electric mixer, beat until very thick and stiff.
Cut around pan sides to loosen cake layers; turn out onto racks. Place 1 cake layer on platter. Spread with 1 1/3 cups frosting. Drizzle with 3 tablespoons caramel sauce. Top with second cake layer. Spread remaining frosting smoothly over top and sides of cake. Drizzle top of cake with 3 tablespoons sauce. Cover with cake dome; chill at least 1 hour.
DO AHEAD Can be made 1 day ahead; keep chilled. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes before continuing.
Cut pecans into pieces or leave whole. Press pecans into frosting on sides of cake. Cut cake into wedges. Spoon sauce over.

Salted-Maple Caramel Sauce:

Melt butter in heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar. Whisk until sugar melts and mixture is thick and boiling, 2 to 3 minutes. Gradually whisk in cream. Bring sauce to boil, whisking often. Boil until sauce thickens enough to coat spoon and is reduced to 1 cup, whisking often, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. Whisk in coarse salt and extract. DO AHEAD Can be made 1 week ahead. Cool, cover, and chill.