Gingerbread Cupcakes - Best Recipe for 2019 Holidays
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Gingerbread Cupcakes

Gingerbread cupcakes are the perfect holiday cupcakes – these cupcakes taste just like gingerbread men! I top the gingerbread cupcakes with a spiced cream cheese frosting and people go crazy for the combination.

a group of gingerbread cupcakes

The Secrets to Perfect Gingerbread Cupcakes

The molasses that you choose will have a huge impact on your gingerbread cupcakes. While blackstrap molasses works well for a less sweet gingerbread loaf, it is too bitter for cupcakes or even ginger molasses cookies. Always opt for a light molasses like Grandma’s Original Molasses.

Use lots of spices! When I was creating this recipe, I kept adding more and more spices until I was happy. To make the perfect gingerbread spice blend, use a combination of cocoa powder, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, and ground allspice.

Adding spices to the batter

How to Make This Gingerbread Cupcake Recipe

a gingerbread cupcake with a gingerbread man on top
Start by using an electric mixer to mix the dry ingredients (sugar, flour, all of the spices, baking powder, baking soda, and salt) with the butter until thoroughly combined.

Next, mix in the molasses.

Then, in a small mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, vegetable oil, and vanilla until smooth.

Whisking eggs, sour cream, and vanilla
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. You’ll end up with a thick batter.

thick gingerbread cupcake batter
To get light cupcakes, you’ll need to thin out the batter. This recipe thins out the batter with the addition of milk. After adding the milk, the batter should be runny.

Gingerbread cupcake batter
Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full. If in doubt, it’s better to under-fill the liners than to overfill them. When you overfill them, the cupcakes won’t dome as well.

Filling cupcake liners with an ice cream scoop
Bake until the cupcakes bounce back when lightly touched and a toothpick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean.

Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

frosting with spiced cream cheese frosting

I frost these cupcakes with a spiced version of my classic cream cheese frosting. It’s very similar to my cinnamon version of the frosting, but I up the ante by using all of the gingerbread spices instead of just cinnamon.

The trick to great cream cheese frosting is having all of your ingredients at room temperature. I’ve also learned that it works best to beat the butter first, then add the cheese. If you over-mix the cheese, it can become gummy.

Butter and cream cheese mixed in a stand mixer
If this frosting isn’t your thing, these cupcakes would also be wonderful with marshmallow frosting or caramel buttercream.

Decorating This Gingerbread Cupcake Recipe

Decorating gingerbread cupcakes

I love topping this gingerbread cupcake recipe with gingerbread men and women. I bought mine from Craft Cookie Co. If you’re creative, you could always make homemade gingerbread people. It’s a fun project!

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a group of gingerbread cupcakes
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4.89 from 9 votes

Gingerbread Cupcakes

Gingerbread cupcakes are perfect for the holidays. The gingerbread flavor carries into the cream cheese frosting as well.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword gingerbread cupcakes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 14 cupcakes
Calories 593kcal
Author Stef


Cupcake Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups cake flour not self-rising
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1/2 cup molasses not blackstrap
  • 2 large eggs room temperature
  • 1/3 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup whole milk room temperature

Frosting Ingredients

  • 16 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 6 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 14 gingerbread people optional


Cupcake Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C).
  • In a small bowl, combine sugar, cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices.
  • Add butter and mix on medium-low speed for three minutes. Because there is so little butter, you'll end up with a very fine crumb texture.
  • Mix in molasses until fully combined.
  • In a small mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, oil, and vanilla extract until smooth.
  • Add the egg mixture to the flour mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined.
  • Slowly add milk and mix on low speed until just combined. The batter will be liquid. (Don't worry, you didn't do anything wrong. It's supposed to be that way.)
  • Fill cupcake liners just over 3/4 full.
  • Bake for 14 minutes and then test to see if they are done. They are done when a toothpick comes out without wet batter stuck to it. If they are not done, test again in two minutes. If they are still not done, test again in another two minutes.
  • When the cupcakes are done, remove them immediately from the tins and leave them on a cooling rack (or just on your counter if you don't own a cooling rack) to cool.

Frosting Instructions

  • Use an electric mixer to cream butter until creamy and light, about three minutes on high speed.
  • Mix in cream cheese until just combined.
  • Mix in powdered sugar one cup at a time. You can add more or less to get your desired consistency.
  • Mix in spices until fully integrated.
  • Spread or pipe onto cooled cupcakes.
  • Optionally, decorate with a gingerbread person.



The molasses that you choose will have a huge impact on your cupcakes. Always opt for a light molasses like Grandma's Original Molasses.
If in doubt, it's better to under-fill the the liners than to overfill them. When you overfill them, the cupcakes won't dome as well. 
For the best results on your frosting, make sure that your frosting ingredients are all at room temperature.


Nutrition Facts
Gingerbread Cupcakes
Amount Per Serving
Calories 593 Calories from Fat 243
% Daily Value*
Fat 27g42%
Saturated Fat 17g85%
Cholesterol 89mg30%
Sodium 253mg11%
Potassium 328mg9%
Carbohydrates 84g28%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 68g76%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 826IU17%
Calcium 109mg11%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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Gingerbread Cupcakes
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