Sweet Potato Gingerbread

sweet potato gingerbread

I came up with this sweet potato gingerbread recipe because I had a bunch of sweet potatoes around because I’m trying to eat healthier, but I also wanted cake because I’m not the best when it comes to eating healthier. This is my grandma’s gingerbread recipe, but I swapped out half of the butter for sweet, caramel-y, roasted sweet potatoes. I didn’t swap out all the butter because I’m not a fucking maniac, but I imagine you could, if you are. The sweet potato also allowed me to reduce a sugar a tiny bit and the resulting gingerbread is light and airy and tender and just barely sweet enough to be considered a cake, but not so sweet that you couldn’t eat a whole big piece for breakfast.

Don’t skip the roasting step, I beg you. Boiled sweet potatoes will be too wet, and microwaved sweet potatoes don’t compare to the toasty, caramel results of roasted sweet potatoes. But don’t just roast one potato! Go ahead and throw a few extra in the oven and store them in the fridge. Later on, you can mash them up with sour cream and butter and reheat in a casserole dish for “healthy mashed potatoes”. Hardy har har. We can pretend.

For extra gingery gingerbread, add 1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger to this recipe. Super yum. I would do it all the time, but I love eating crystallized ginger so much by itself, I can never keep it in stock.


Sweet Potato Gingerbread

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  • Author: Hilah Johnson
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 9 servings 1x


  • 1 small-medium sweet potato
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 cups whole wheat pastry flour or all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


  1. Set oven to 375F and poke a couple shallow holes in the sweet potato. Place on baking sheet and roast about 45 minutes, or until very soft. Allow to cool then peel. Mash enough to yield 1/2 cup.
  2. Reduce oven to 350F and grease and flour an 8 inch square pan.
  3. Beat together potato, butter and sugar until smooth. Add eggs and combine well.
  4. Add half of buttermilk and combine.
  5. Whisk together remaining ingredients and add half to batter, followed by remaining buttermilk. Mix until smooth, then stir in remaining dry mixture.
  6. Spread into prepared pan and bake 25-30 minutes until firm.
  7. Cool 5 minutes, then turn onto rack to cool. Cut into 9 squares and serve warm with butter if desired.


No buttermilk, no problem!
Use 1 cup regular milk (or non-dairy milk drink) mixed with 1 teaspoon white vinegar or lemon juice. OR use 1/2 cup plain yogurt plus 1/2 cup water.


  • Calories: 228
  • Sugar: 14
  • Sodium: 158
  • Fat: 6.8
  • Carbohydrates: 36

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sweet potato gingerbread recipe


If you liked this, you’ll love my grandma’s gingerbread muffins recipe!

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