Black Plantation Gingerbread--Low Sugar

Suzy MacFarland


This is a personal favorite of mine that I made during Christmas.
This bread turns black from the molasses, coffee and cocoa that are added. It almost looks like a chocolate bread! I honestly don't remember where I got this Southern recipe.
This makes one 9" x 5" standard loaf and a small bundt 8" X 3" deep or 2 small bundt or 2 standard loaves or 1 standard bundt.
I made the bundt style for gifts.
Although it has molasses, most of the standard white sugars are replaced with Splenda.
Swerve or other replacements can be used.
I hope you enjoy it!


☆☆☆☆☆ 0 votes

30 Min
1 Hr


  • 1 c
    unsalted butter
  • 3/4 c
  • 3/4 c
    molasses, unsulphered, not blackstrap
  • 1 1/2 c
    splenda or swerve (or your favorite sweetener)
  • 3 cups c
    all purpose unbleached flour
  • 1/2 c
    almond meal
  • 1/2 c
    rye flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    baking soda
  • 1 tsp
    baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp
  • 2 1/2 tsp
    ginger, ground
  • 2 tsp
  • 1/2 tsp
    allspice, ground
  • 1/4 tsp
    cloves, ground
  • 3 large
  • 1/2 c
  • 1 tsp
    vanilla powder (optional)
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    cocoa powder, unsweetened
  • 1 1/2 tsp
    instant coffee powder (i use decaf)
  • 1 Tbsp
    maple extract
  • 2 tsp
    pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 c
    halved cherries, glace' or maraschino
  • 1 c
    toasted pecans
  • 1 Tbsp
    swerve powdered sweetener or powdered sugar for sprinkling on finished bread

How to Make Black Plantation Gingerbread--Low Sugar


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
    Toast pecans on a baking sheet (about 10 minutes until fragrant)
    Cut the cherries in half.
    Grease baking pans. I use Pam or butter.

    Mix water, Splenda, and butter in a small saucepan and heat until the butter and sweetener are mixed well. Add the buttermilk and instant coffee to the warm mixture, stir well.
    Let cool.
    Mix eggs and molasses together along with extracts and add the other liquids.
    Mix the dry ingredients.
    Add the wet ingredients to the dry.
    Mix well but do not overmix.
    Fold in cooled pecans and cherries.
    The mixture should be very wet and just a bit thicker than a cake batter. Add more water or buttermilk if necessary.
    Fill the pans about 2/3 full.
    Bake for one hour or until the center when poked comes out clean.
    Sprinkle with Swerve powdered sweetener or powdered sugar while bread is still barely warm.
    Let cool.
    Remove from pan(s).
    Allow to cool completely before cutting.
  2. Note: If using a stand mixer, be careful not to overmix. Overmixing will cause the gluten to become like glue and make this bread tough. Only mix it enough to incorporate all the ingredients and fold in the cherries and pecan gently.
  3. This bread comes out more like a cake in texture so it must be completely cooled before cutting.

    I use my metal meat thermometer to test the bread or cake center. In the past, broom straws were commonly used.

    I sincerely hope you enjoy this old Southern favorite!

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