Pain d’Épices (Gingerbread)

Pain d’épice means "spice cake" in French, although the traditional recipe doesn’t call for any spice: The quality of the honey you choose makes all the difference. In Alsace, in the east of France, cinnamon, ginger, and clove are added. Gingerbread is a great tradition there, especially during the holidays.

Serves: 6Hands-on: 10 minutesTotal: 1 hour 10 minutesDifficulty: Easy

Serves: 6


  • 1⁄2 cup whole milk
  • 1⁄2 cup honey
  • 1⁄2 cup sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 Tbsp. butter


  • Preheat the oven to 250°F.
  • In a small saucepan, warm the milk slowly over medium heat. Add the honey and the sugar. Stir with a wooden spatula until melted and combined.
  • Pour the flour in a large bowl, add the baking soda, mix it in the flour, then make a small well in the middle, and slowly pour in half of the warm milk and honey combination. Stir, and then slowly add the rest of the milk, stirring continuously. Stop when the mixture is perfectly smooth.
  • Butter a loaf pan and pour in the mixture. Use a wooden spoon to smooth the surface. Cook in the oven for 1 hour.
  • You can serve warm, but it’s better the next day, and even the following days.