Grandma’s Gingerbread – A recipe from Orkney

A perfect recipe for Christmas, Grandma’s Gingerbread is a delicious moist and mildly spiced cake, which can be eaten with ice cream as a pudding or spread with butter and brought out with coffee when visitors come round.

Grandma’s Gingerbread is well named, as it has an old-fashioned and comforting flavour.

The recipe comes from the book ‘Recipes from the Orkney Islands’ which was edited by Eileen Wolfe. The book features a collection of tried and tested recipes from the Orkney branches of the Scottish Women’s Rural institute, and from hotels and restaurants throughout the islands.

Grandma’s Gingerbread recipe
Grandma’s Gingerbread sliced photo © Copyright Victoria Dixon

This particular recipe came from the kitchen of Mrs Groat from Orphir. It is well named, as it has an old-fashioned and comforting flavour. Make sure you keep everyone happy by cutting it into nice thick slices!

Ingredients for gingerbread
Ingredients for gingerbread photo © Copyright Victoria Dixon


  • 285g (10oz) plain flour
  • 85g (3oz) butter or margarine
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 115g (4oz) caster sugar
  • 115g (4oz) treacle
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
Gingerbread mixture
Gingerbread mixture photo © Copyright Victoria Dixon


  1. Sift the flour, sugar, mixed spice, ginger, baking soda and salt together.
  2. In another bowl, melt the butter with the treacle
  3. Add the butter and treacle to the dry ingredients and also add the beaten eggs and then the milk.
  4. Mix to a light batter and pour into a loaf tin.
  5. Bake for about 40 minutes in an oven at 180°C.
  6. Enjoy!
Gingerbread mixture in a baking tin
Gingerbread mixture in a baking tin photo © Copyright Victoria Dixon
Magnus DixonBy Magnus Dixon
Orkney and Shetland enthusiast, family man, loves walks, likes animals, terrible at sports, dire taste in music, adores audiobooks and films, eats a little too much for his own good.

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Header image: Grandma’s Gingerbread recipe photo © Copyright Victoria Dixon