Dec 10


How to Make a Gingerbread House

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My first try at a gingerbread house led to a little bit of frustration, as the royal icing which came in the kit I was using, just wouldn’t hold the house walls or roof up. Fast forward a few years, and I’ve found a great royal icing recipe (No problem holding those walls up!), and have learned a few tips and tricks to make the experience even more fun.

I’ll be sharing my recipes and gingerbread house tutorial videos in this post, as well as a little how-to on this specific house.


Making a Gingerbread House

Recipes, Template & Candy Ideas

You can find my gingerbread cookie recipe here and a video on how I make my gingerbread house royal icing here. (Recipe included there as well).

Here is the template I used to cut the gingerbread house pieces out, along with a video on assembling the gingerbread house.

{Instagram Pic}

For this year’s house, I went light on the candy, but flooded the house pieces with royal icing instead. (More on that below). If you’re looking for a few ideas, here are a few of mine from previous years, a collection of ideas on Pinterest, and if you’re interested in going a little more detailed, I love Teresa Layman’s books!

One of my favorite candies to use on a house for roof tiles, are Necco Wafers. You could make them from fondant as well, but I love the already made wafers, and they come in such pretty colors too.


Flooding the Gingerbread House Pieces

I used a pale pink royal icing and a piping tip #3.5 to cover my gingerbread house pieces. (Sorry about my dark phone pics here!).

For a how to video on flooding with royal icing, click here. Consistency of the icing is key. If you’d like to see a video on that, click here.

After I let the pieces dry for about 7 hours, I assembled the walls, let those dry for about an hour and then put on the roof. I was a little rushed for this house, so normally play it safe and wait at least overnight to put the roof on, but the humidity in the air was low and the icing was drying quickly, so it worked fine!

{Instagram Pic}

Add your candy before or after you put on the roof – it’s up to you!

Once the roof was dry, I added the roof tiles and the royal icing hanging loops or swags were made using a #2 piping tip and stiff gingerbread house royal icing.

There were fun to pipe, although I’m looking forward to practicing, so that I can make them more even.

A how to video on the fondant snowflake (made using a medium sized PME snowflake cutter, can be found here.

Thanks to Holly’s Sweets and Eats for the idea of using random glittery roof tiles!

Besides the ribbon around the gingerbread house base, all the other silvery glittered items are covered in disco dust. Important to note is that disco dust is considered non-toxic, but for food decorative purposes only. Make sure your gingerbread house recipients know to remove the disco dust items if they’re eating the house.

Are you making a gingerbread house this year? I’d love to hear about your gingerbread house experiences, or would love to see pics of your houses too, if you’d like to share links in the comment section below, or on FacebookGoogle+ etc.!

Have fun baking and decorating!




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  1. December 10, 2013 at 11:51 pm | Permalink

    I love this! I always look at your houses for inspiration, and this is a lovely interpretation. Good job… now off to make some gingerbread houses here (we’re only making one large one, but 30 mini ones!! yipes- I better get to it!)

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:14 am | Permalink

      Hi Rach! How did it go? I’ll bet the kids LOVED it!

  2. December 11, 2013 at 12:23 am | Permalink

    Using your gingerbread tutorial from last year as inspiration, I made 6 gingerbread houses as well as a large gingerbread woman and smaller ones. These were all used for a family Christmas tea I hosted last Saturday. The houses were a huge hit! Here is a link to my blog post about the tea, showing pics of the houses, too.

    Your work is beautiful!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:18 am | Permalink

      Julie, oh my goodness! I LOVE your gingerbread houses, your kitchen, your Christmas tree, the standing gingerbread cookies, your mantle – everything! Thanks so much for sharing with me, and please, feel free to continue sharing posts with me… I’d love to see the amazing things you’re up to (and your pretty house!). Glad you had a great time with your family too… that’s what it’s all about. xo

  3. December 11, 2013 at 12:33 am | Permalink

    Thank you very much. This post answers to lot of my questions. I baked parts for my first ever gingerbread house yesterday and now with your help I am bit more confident when assembling it.

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:18 am | Permalink

      Hope it went well and you had fun, Maria! xo

  4. Finla
    December 11, 2013 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    I made one last year , not planning to do this year as don’t have that much free time. I wish i had time to make as i love the one you have made.

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      Hi Finla, it’s definitely a challenge to fit it all in, I understand! xo

  5. December 11, 2013 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    Just gorgeous! You are so talented, this gingerbread house is amazing! Brilliant choice of colours and decorations, just wow!

  6. Julianne
    December 11, 2013 at 7:21 am | Permalink

    Wow, that house is absolutely stunning – a true work of art!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      Thanks Elisa and Julianne!

  7. Cindy
    December 11, 2013 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    I love that your gingerbread house is so pretty and sweet. I made a very large gingerbread castle this year, it was my 3rd attempt at gingerbread. I’m pretty much hooked now. I want to make a pretty, feminine gingerbread house now. Here’s a link to see my castle.

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:22 am | Permalink

      Hi Cindy,
      I know what you mean about being hooked!
      Clicked on the link but it says the “content is unavailable”. I’ll bet your castle is amazing!

  8. December 11, 2013 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Absolutely gorgeous! 🙂

  9. December 11, 2013 at 8:31 am | Permalink

    Oh dear, what can I say.. like I said in your previous blogpost, I am such a fan of your gingerbread houses, love them SO much!

    Thanks for so many tips on making a gingerbread house.
    It does seem challenging but I am sure once I’m done, I’d be filled with joy 🙂

    Lovely post, Marian! Thanks <3

    niner 🙂

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      Hi Niner,
      It does take effort but also brings joy! Hope you have fun making one too!

  10. December 11, 2013 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Gorgeous gingerbread house! I love all the sparkles. 🙂

  11. Kathy
    December 11, 2013 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Beautiful. Thanks for another great tutorial.

  12. December 11, 2013 at 11:24 am | Permalink


  13. December 11, 2013 at 11:36 am | Permalink

    Incredible!! I never would have thought to ice the walls beforehand.

  14. December 11, 2013 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    Simply amazing! Love those icicles!

  15. December 11, 2013 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

    absolutely stunning, marian! wow.

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 11:57 am | Permalink

      Thanks for the comments guys!

  16. Flower
    December 11, 2013 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    You outdo yourself every year! Sigh, this is so beautiful. I want to make one this year from scratch. I cheated last year by using a pre-made box (gasp!). But this year, I want to bake the house and decorate it all on my own.

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

      Hi Flower, I hope you do! Let me know how it goes! xo

  17. December 11, 2013 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

    Hi I really love your tutorials. Using your gingerbread recipe I made a gingerbread house and a gingerbread train. 🙂 thanks

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

      Hi Snooky Doodle cakes,
      It’s soooo cute! I just “liked” it on Facebook. Thanks for sharing!

  18. December 11, 2013 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

    This is my favorite gingerbread house of all time! Thank you for all your tutorials 🙂

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Donna!

  19. Irene
    December 11, 2013 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    I said it on Facebook and I’ll say it here – your gingerbread houses are the best. So whimsical. I will be attempting your pink gingerbread house from a couple of years back for Christmas this year.
    May I ask what size board you use under your gingerbread house please?
    Irene x

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

      Hi Irene,
      I think it’s a 8 inch round but I’ll have to check at the store when I’m there again. xo

  20. December 11, 2013 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    I love the pink and silver color scheme – such a beautiful gingerbread house. I’m inspired…but uncertain. We’ll see what the week brings. Thanks for sharing!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

      Hi Debbi,
      Hope you have fun decorating if you try it out! xo

  21. karen brown
    December 11, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

    After more than a year of regular reading your beautiful blog, I thought it was time I expressed my gratitude for all your hard work and care in maintaining such a fabulous site. This house is particularly lovely, but I really just wanted to say a big “thank you” for all the wonderful information and inspiration you offer. Merry Christmas and best wishes from the bottom of the world, Karen Brown, Wellington, New Zealand

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:11 pm | Permalink

      Awww, thanks so much Karen! I really do appreciate reading your comment, and thanks for the warm fuzzy. 🙂

  22. December 11, 2013 at 6:11 pm | Permalink

    Hi Marian! I’m panning on visiting an Old Time Confections soon to pickup some candy for my gingerbread house this year (I’m in Brampton so it’s not too far from both locations). Do you recommend the Barrie location or the one in Upper Canada Mall?

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      Hi Vanessa,
      Yay! I actually haven’t been to the one in Newmarket yet, but maybe a quick phone call to the store to see if one is larger than the other?
      Have fuuun shopping and with your gingerbread house!

  23. December 11, 2013 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    This is the most elegant gingerbread house!!

  24. December 11, 2013 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

    ok, you blow all the other gingerbread houses out of the water!! this is so stunning and elegant!!! where do you find the time to do this?! you’re awesome!!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Julie and Marla!

  25. December 12, 2013 at 1:02 pm | Permalink

    Fabulous colours!

    Here is my slightly Dr Seuss/winter wonderland inspired design..

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:20 pm | Permalink

      I love them – they’re all beautiful, Anjum!

  26. Maria Theresia
    December 12, 2013 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

    wow…. wonderful work,gorgeos, elegant gingerbread house. I love it very much.The icicles are amazing.You are so talented and thank you for sharing all your knowledge.

  27. Marcus Gaetano
    December 12, 2013 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    I see on this house you put windows on the side, what size are the windows in inches. I would like to know for when I make my house so they are proportional to the rest of the house. Thanks!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

      Hello Marcus!
      I used a small square cutter (Just over 1 inch), and then cut that in half for the shutters. Have fun with your house!

  28. Kim
    December 13, 2013 at 10:15 am | Permalink

    Do you have to think out your royal icing at all?

  29. December 14, 2013 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    I am such a huge fan of your gingerbread houses! I seriously adore them! I love that you flooded the house walls before putting it together…so smart!

    • marian
      December 16, 2013 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Katrina and everyone for your comments!

  30. December 18, 2013 at 4:56 pm | Permalink

    Wow, that is a fantastic looking gingerbread house!

  31. December 18, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

    Marian, your houses are so beautiful, and I love, love, love your blog. I’m always inspired by your beautiful creations!!

    I’ve made several gingerbread houses, and have participated in a few local competitions, too. Nothing major.

    This year I made this Gingerbread Country Church for a local Pittsburgh fundraiser competition….and won first place for the adult division!

    • marian
      January 2, 2014 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      Sooo beautiful, Dawn! That must have taken a lot of time and love! FABULOUS job!

  32. December 20, 2013 at 12:06 am | Permalink

    Your gingerbread houses are so beautiful. I’m the grandma of 7 grandsons and our crafty houses at “Camp Grandma” wouldn’t win a prize. We’ve had a blast making Halloween houses and pretzel log cabins in post at:

    I used your house templates and loved giving you credit in my post. Thanks for helping me with the Camp Grandma craft projects.

    • marian
      January 2, 2014 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      You guys did a fantastic job! Love it!

  33. December 21, 2013 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    I don’t want to be to bossy, but I think you made an error in the title and need to fix it immediately. Instead of “How to Make a Gingerbread House” it should be “How to Make the Awesomest Gingerbread House Ever.”


    • marian
      January 2, 2014 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      Haha, Amanda, you’re so funny! xo

  34. Judy
    December 24, 2013 at 2:31 am | Permalink

    I live in the U.S., do you have any idea where I can purchase the candies you use on your houses, i.e., Necco wafers in white,and the little pearl looking candies and the glitter dust? Your houses are absolutely adorable! You have inspired me to try to make the first one ever using your template and recipes.
    Judy M.

    • marian
      January 2, 2014 at 11:03 am | Permalink

      Hi Judy, is a great site for starters, and I actually like Amazon too. You can find almost anything on there!

  35. December 28, 2013 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for all the incredible inspiration!
    Got the recipes from your amazingly generous site. Would love you to have a look at my first try at a gingerbread house-

    • marian
      January 2, 2014 at 11:03 am | Permalink

      Anna, it’s soooo cute! I love the mushrooms and the pink roof tiles! Gorgeous job!

  36. rachel
    February 3, 2014 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

    your gingerbread house is so pretty do you think thank it would be the same if you did the loops in white fondant.

  37. Christina
    October 21, 2014 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    Hi Marian! I love your work and your gingerbread houses are amazing! I plan on attempting to make 7 of them for my daughter’s gingerbread house and cookie exchange birthday party this year. I’m a little worried about time management because I have to make other food for the party, several batches of cookies and her birthday cake. Would it be possible to freeze the dough ahead of time and defrost it when I’m ready to bake the houses? I was thinking about making the dough and cutting out the parts and maybe freezing it a few weeks before and then baking them in the days leading up to the party. Do you think this would work? Thank you so much!!!!

  38. Pamela
    March 6, 2016 at 6:04 pm | Permalink

    I love your gingerbread house. I’m currently in culinary school and my final for my baking course is to make a gingerbread house. Since we are past Christmas and will be past Easter in May, our theme is Children. Any thing at all to do with Children! I have never made one so I need something fairly easy. Any ideas or pictures?

    Thank you.

  39. Annika
    December 27, 2017 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the awesome tutorial! I made it this past week and it was so much fun.

    • marian
      December 30, 2017 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

      Wonderful! Glad you had fun!

  40. Lianne
    November 4, 2018 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

    Love this. Planning on making first gingerbread house this year!! Will definitely using some of your decorating tips

    • marian
      November 5, 2018 at 8:25 am | Permalink

      Have fun Lianne!

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