This Gingerbread Roll with Lemon Cream Cheese Filling – a delightful dessert that’s not too sweet, is loaded with warm, aromatic spices and flavored with just the right amount of molasses.
I don’t mind telling you, I LOVE gingerbread. It’s conjures up visions of childhood wonders, snow capped mountains, sleigh bells, warm scarves and cozy fires. Nothing says winter holidays like gingerbread!
Baking gingerbread has an aroma like nothing else in the world. Whether it be in the form of cupcakes, cookies, or a spongy cake roll like this, I could never refuse a great gingerbread.
This gingerbread cake is soft and spongy, which makes it easy to form into a roll. The cake stays moist, but not at all wet, and continues to taste great even after a few days. Beyond that, we have no idea because it didn’t last that long! We usually share our new treats with various groups of taste testers, but this particular cake never got outside the family. It is just too good to give up!
The gingerbread bakes up quickly, is easy to make, and hard to mess up. The simple cream cheese filling is a dream to whip up and very easy spread on the cake. You really should make this Gingerbread Roll and let me know what you think! Can you tell we love this cake?!
The Gingerbread Roll is best served with just a sprinkle of powdered sugar on top. There’s no need for heavy icing or nuts; the pure, simple taste of gingerbread is perfect all by itself.
The cake recipe includes chopped crystallized ginger. Don’t skip adding this ingredient if you can help it. The crystallized ginger adds a wonderful bite without overpowering the rest of the cake. You can find it in the spice section of your local grocery store. Enjoy!
- ¾ cup cake flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ teaspoon allspice
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 5 large eggs, yolks and whites separated
- ¾ cup granulated white sugar, divided, plus 2 tablespoons
- ⅓ cup unsulfured molasses
- 2 tablespoons crystallized ginger, chopped
- powdered sugar, for garnish
- 10 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1¼ cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 1¼ teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 medium lemon, zested
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a 17 x 11.5 jelly roll pan with parchment paper. Fit the parchment to completely cover the bottom and so it goes up the sides of the pan.
- Sift the powdered sugar onto a clean kitchen towel (somewhat heavily) spread out on a clean work surface. A smooth, thick, non-terry cloth, tea towel works best. Set aside.
- In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg and salt. Add the crystallized ginger to the flour mixture and stir to combine. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the egg yolks until pale, about 4 minutes. Add the molasses and ½ cup of the granulated sugar and beat until combined. Fold in the flour mixture with the chopped ginger and mix until smooth.
- In a clean bowl using clean beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add ¼ cup granulated sugar and beat until firm and glossy. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter until no more egg white is visible.
- Spread the batter evenly onto the prepared pan. Bake for about 15 minutes or until top of cake springs back when touched. Cool the cake (still in the pan) on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Use a small knife to loosen the cake from the sides of the pan/parchment paper. Carefully turn cake out onto the prepared sugared towel. Slowly peel off the parchment paper. Sprinkle the surface of the cake with the two remaining tablespoons of granulated sugar. Roll the cake up in the towel, starting with narrow end. Not too tight. Cool completely on a wire rack.
- Combine the cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, lemon zest and vanilla in a medium bowl. Beat until smooth.
- Gently unroll the cake. It will not completely hold the shape, but the center of the roll should. Spread the cream cheese filling evenly over cake leaving about ½ inch open at the end that will be in the center of the roll. Re-roll the cake, and filling, fairly tight. Store in an airtight container with a lid. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.
- Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving. To slice the cake, use a soft sawing motion with a serrated knife. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.