6 Ways Ginger Makes a Better Dessert

Sweet reasons to love our favorite rhizome

Ginger: The Renaissance root. It brightens up savory dishes by adding just the right amount of heat, soothes our aching stomachs, and most importantly, satisfies that sweet tooth with an extra bite. Here are six recipes that show just how far our favorite rhizome can go, from rich Southern pies to nose-clearing spiced shortbreads.

Sweet pears + spicy ginger = a fall pie for chilly days

Pear and Ginger Pie with Streusel Topping

Fresh ginger gives the filling of this pear pie a warming kick of spice, balanced by the buttery crumble of sweet streusel.

And that buttery streusel topping that brings it all together.

Garnish this Southern classic with candy

Chocolate Ginger Chess Pie

A decadent mix of chocolates and ginger ups the ante on a classic Southern pie. Get the recipe for Chocolate Ginger Chess Pie »

Mix chocolate and ginger for a luxurious dessert.

Add cardamom for a New Zealand-inspired sweet

Cardamom-Ginger Crunch

These shortbreads get their spicy kick from ground cardamom and ginger.

These glazed beauties are great for tea time.

This shortbread amps up the spice

These yellow-hued shortbread cookies from chef Chris Tan are inspired by spicy English gingerbread, as well as Dutch and Indonesian ginger cookies.

Add turmeric, white pepper, and coriander to your cookies if you can handle the heat.

Pillow-soft molasses cookies

Gluten-Free Ginger Molasses Cookies

This recipe, from Gluten Free Girl & The Chef blogger Shauna Ahern, appeared in our 2012 Cookie Advent Calendar. Shauna says: “Every year when my mother made her pillow-soft molasses cookies, I just sighed with happiness at the holidays. But by the time she was ready to hand over the baking, I could no longer eat gluten, and she couldn’t find that recipe. So I fiddled and baked until I came up with these.” Get the recipe for Gluten-Free Ginger Molasses Cookies »

They just happen to be gluten-free.

Raisin-spiked cake with a side of American history

Lafayette Gingerbread Cake

According to tradition, this gingerbread cake was made in the 1780s by George Washington’s mother for General Lafayette. Get the recipe for Lafayette Gingerbread Cake »

Legend has it that George Washington’s mother made this spicy, buttery cake for Marquis de Lafayette in the 1780s. And it’s still good, even over 230 years later.