Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin {gluten-free, vegan}

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Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin is the most moreish treat in your cake tin, sticky, chewy and laced with spices. Plus this version is also gluten-free, vegan and naturally pretty darn yummy.

side view of Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on a wire rack

Parkin is a traditional recipe from Northern England eaten on Bonfire Night which is when this recipe was supposed to be posted but life has been getting away with me a little bit, hence the delay. Really though, parkin is pretty delicious all year round, why limit yourself to the 5th November.

If you are a traditional Yorkshire lad or lass then look away now as you’ll probably shudder in terror that not only have I removed all the butter from your parkin but I have also drizzled it in a tangy blanket of lemon icing. I promise though, once you forgive my blatant flagrancy of the word ‘parkin’ you will learn to love these little changes. These Lemon Iced Sticky Stem Ginger Parkins are lighter than their namesake thanks to the coconut oil and almond milk used in the bake and the zesty lemon gives a lovely textural and tasty balance. Don’t worry though, I haven’t messed around with the thick oozy golden syrup which is what gives parkin its personality.

Overhead shot of Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on a wire rack with a knife

I have been making a variation of this parkin for years and originally started making it from a Sarah Randell recipe ripped out of Sainsbury’s Magazine, I think. It’s always been my go-to bake for WI and school cake sales as it’s difficult to find anyone who can resist the charms of parkin. It’s a bit like gingerbread but stuffed with a lot of oats so is a little chewier. The golden syrup or treacle used in the recipe make the treat gloriously sticky. So it’s chewy, sticky, packed with spice and definitely homely. I’ve recently started including the Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on my own cake stall and customers have been loving it. It’s Mum’s favourite and if she is staying the weekend to help out with Cole then it’s a given that she’ll expect me to tuck a little piece away for her train journey home.

Overhead shot of Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on a wire rack

Parkin is also great as it seems to last and last, as my Mum can attest to the time when she forgot about the parkin in her handbag and only got around to eating it 5 days later. It definitely improves after a couple of days of resting in the cake tin as it gets more sticky. If you don’t want to eat the parkin straightaway then I would recommend leaving it whole and only cutting into pieces when you want some. Although you will find it difficult to restrain yourself.

side view of Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on a wire rack

side view of Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin on a wire rack

Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin {gluten-free, vegan}

Lemon Iced Stem Ginger Parkin is the most moreish treat in your cake tin, sticky, chewy and laced with spices. This version is also gluten-free and vegan.
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Course: Cake
Cuisine: British
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 12 squares
Calories: 451kcal


Stem Ginger Parkin

  • 300 g golden caster sugar
  • 125 g sweet rice flour
  • 100 g oat flour
  • 35 g tapioca flour
  • 185 g gluten-free oats
  • teaspoons ground ginger
  • teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 300 ml almond milk
  • 3 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 165 ml coconut oil
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 3 balls preserved stem ginger finely chopped

Lemon Icing

  • 225 g icing sugar
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon


  • Pre-heat oven to 150°C and line and grease a 20cm square baking tin.
  • In a large mixing bowl whisk together the sugar, flours, oats, ginger, bicarbonate of soda and salt and set aside for a minute.
  • Take a medium sized saucepan and pour in the almond milk, golden syrup, coconut oil and cider vinegar. Turn onto a gentle heat and stir the ingredients together until everything has melted together.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, along with the stem ginger and beat well with a wooden spoon.
  • Pour the mixture into the baking tin and bake for 40-45 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven, leave the parkin to settle for ten minutes then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Make the icing by beating together the lemon juice and zest with the icing sugar until the icing is pourable.
  • Pour the icing over the cooled parkin, leave to set and then cut the parkin into 12 squares.


* A lot of gluten-free oats are of the rolled or jumbo variety but that doesn’t work as well for this recipe. I have found that Nairn’s gluten-free oats which are a finer oatmeal give the best texture as the oats are able to become a part of the cake without being too granular.


Calories: 451kcal | Carbohydrates: 75g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Sodium: 269mg | Potassium: 105mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 47g | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 44mg | Iron: 1.1mg
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  1. These bars are so good. They’re what I’ve always wanted in a bar, but not gotten until now. I couldn’t find stem ginger around here, so I used finely chopped candied ginger. I took them to game night, and my friend’s eyes got huge. She too has been looking for these bars for her whole life. Thank you!

    • I’m sure the candied ginger worked just as well!! I’m happy that you enjoyed this parkin recipe – it’s definitely one of my favourites!!

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