Starbucks treats are intriguing to me. I never eat them, but people really do love them! Don’t get me wrong, they look delicious sitting there behind the glass, but none of them are gluten free, and with them being so high calorie, I just don’t get them. But that doesn’t stop me from wanting to come up with a healthier version…why not have the taste of Starbucks at home?
So in an attempt to replicate the Starbucks version, I bought a slice of their Gingerbread Loaf to try. It was delicious, but not what I expected at all. It had a slight ginger taste, but a lot of orange flavor and no molasses at all. To me, its not really gingerbread without that dark molasses color, but the first trial of the recipe, I had molasses and it tasted nothing like the Starbucks version.
So I totally revamped the recipe to get it closer to what the Starbucks one tastes like. I think I got the spices pretty close, as in the Starbucks one, I tasted quite a bit of cinnamon and a touch of cloves. The candied orange peel inside the batter and on top of the icing makes it very close to the Starbucks version, which doesn’t have molasses at all according to the nutritional info on their website.
This version can be made dairy free as well with a couple of small substitutions, and its gluten free as its made with oat flour. If you’re celiac, just make sure you use uncontaminated oats.
I also included the nutrition for with and without the icing, as I know some of you like to get creative with your icing options. I prefer the real thing just in a smaller amount to keep the sugar grams down, but if you want something completely sugar-free, you can use whatever substitutes you like. Some have success using xylitol mixed with cornstarch, or some even like using greek yogurt mixed with greek yogurt and stevia. You could even mix whey protein powder with greek yogurt. The options are completely up to you. You could also omit up to 1/2 cup oat flour and replace with whey protein powder if you’d like to up the protein content.
I hope you enjoy it….and to make you feel even better about making a healthy version, I included the nutrition of the original Starbucks version at the bottom…it will SHOCK you!
- 12 packets stevia *or ⅔ cup stevia for baking, or 1 tsp+ to taste concentrated powdered stevia (or ⅔ cup sugar substitute of choice. Could also use honey, sucanat, coconut sugar...etc, but nutrition will change)
- 1 egg
- 2 egg whites (I used ¼ cup carton egg whites)
- ⅔ cup unsweetened applesauce (or 2 snack packs)
- 2 Tbsp melted butter (or oil, or coconut oil for dairy free)
- ½ cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 2 cups oat flour
- 1 Tbsp candied orange peel * (should be in the baking aisle at the grocery store)
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp cloves
- 2½ tsps ginger (dried, ground)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 Tbsp lower fat cream cheese (use Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese or non dairy margarine for dairy free)
- 1 cup icing sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 1-2 tsp milk (just enough for it to come together)
- 1 Tbsp candied orange peel (garnish)
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer with paddle attachment, mix together all the sweeteners and wet ingredients (stevia through to milk). Mix until smooth.
- To the same bowl, add in the dry ingredients (oat flour, cinnamon, cloves, baking powder, baking soda, salt). Mix until combined. Stir in 1 Tbsp of the candied orange peel by hand.
- Spray your loaf pan with cooking spray. Pour in the batter, and bake for approx 40 min until cooked through (test with a toothpick if you like).
- Remove from oven, cool completely.
- Meanwhile, whisk all the icing ingredients together (except orange peel). Slather on the cooled gingerbread loaf and sprinkle an additional 1 Tbsp of the candied orange peel on top of the icing.
- Could be left out at room temp for a day, but then store in the fridge to keep fresh, or can be frozen as well.
*Compared to Starbucks (per slice) Calories: 440 Fat: 14 g Carbs: 74 g Sugars: 52 g Fiber: 1 g Sodium: 360 mg Protein: 5 g