Handmade Holidays: Gingerbread Fig Cakes with Bow Decoration

I made this cake a few weeks ago to test it out for my holiday celebrations and it passed the test! It’s like gingerbread fig newton with icing…yum! The crystallized ginger bows add a little kick as well as make this cake adorably cute for holiday gatherings.

Gingerbread Fig Cakes with Bow Decoration

(adapted from Sunset Mag)



1 cup chopped dried figs
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup butte  , room temperature
1/4 cup molasses
1 1/2  teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk, at room temperature
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup plus 6 tablespoons of  flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup of boiling water


1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons milk
6 tablespoons of  butter
1 teaspoon of vanilla


crystallized ginger (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.  Butter and flour a rectangular cake pan.
  2. Put figs in a small bowl and pour in boiling water to cover.
  3. Beat (using a hand or stand mixer) brown sugar with 1/2 cup butter until fluffy and pale.  Add molasses, 1 1/2  teaspoons vanilla extract, egg, egg yolk and beat well.
  4. In a seperate bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt and in a bowl.
  5. With mixer on low speed, gradually add dry mixture to wet mixture and beat until smooth. Then add 3/4 cup boiling water.
  6. Drain figs, chop and stir into batter.
  7. Pour batter into the cake pan and bake for approximatye 30 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Meanwhile, prepare the icing. Beat 6 tablespoons of butter in a bowl until creamy. Add 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, milk and beat until smooth. The icing should be thick and stiff, if not add more powdered sugar.
  9. Allow cake to cool before icing.
  10. Optional: when serving, use crystallized ginger to decorate each serving. I used a paring knife to slice thin strips to use to make a bow.