The Complete Guide to How to Make a Gingerbread House

This holiday season, make it special for you and your family by building your very own gingerbread house together.

It’s one of our favorite ways to spend the holidays. We have a lot of fun making the gingerbread house, but what makes it even better is when we can share the experience with the people we love.

Building a gingerbread house with your kids is a great way to spend time together during this busy time of year. If you’re looking to add a little holiday magic to your home this year, there’s nothing better than making your own gingerbread house.

child making a gingerbread house

If you’ve never built a gingerbread house before, this can be a challenging task. In this blog post, we will cover how to make a gingerbread house from scratch, so that you can enjoy this Christmas tradition with your loved ones.

In the first part of this tutorial, we will discuss the main ingredients for building a gingerbread house and some of the best ways to decorate it. In the second part, we will show you step by step instructions on how to build a gingerbread house.

We will also provide free printable Gingerbread House templates, links to ready made Gingerbread house kits, and show you a gallery of Gingerbread house pictures for inspiration.

Gingerbread Dough Ingredients:

What do you need to make Gingerbread dough for a gingerbread house? Only these three simple ingredients

  •   ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • – ½ cup butter, softened
  • – ¼ cup molasses

You can also use some of the gingerbread recipes we have on our site if you prefer.

Check out these recipes for Gingerbread people, Gingerbread Snowflakes, or Gingerbread Star Christmas Trees.

Gingerbread House Supplies:

You will also need the following basic kitchen equipment and supplies.

  • baking sheet
  • rolling pin
  • knife for cutting dough into shapes
  • candy decorations (i.e.: gum drops or M&Ms)
  • you will also need royal icing
gingerbread dough

Some families prefer to buy a gingerbread house kit, with everything included in one place. If that makes life easier, go for it!

We will share a few links to Gingerbread House kits at the end of this post.

How to Make Gingerbread Dough:

Mix together all of the gingerbread dough ingredients and roll out your desired thickness – anywhere from a quarter inch to an eighth inch.

How to Create a Gingerbread House template

You will need to create a template and cut out the pattern pieces for your Gingerbread house.

Create your templates out of cardboard that are the exact size and shapes that you will need for your gingerbread house.

You can also look online for free printable gingerbread house templates. We will link to a few at the bottom of this post to make life easy.

Once you have your templates, use these to cut out the shapes from the gingerbread dough. You can do this by hand with a knife or use cookie cutters if preferred.

How to Bake the Gingerbread House Pieces

After you have cut out your pieces, lay them on a baking sheet and bake in an oven for six to eight minutes until they turn golden brown around the edges.

What temperature to bake gingerbread?

  • 350 degrees F
  • 180 degrees C
  • Gas Mark 4

Keep an eye on them and be careful not to overbake your gingerbread as this will make them slightly brittle which makes your Gingerbread house hard to put together later!

baking gingerbread house

Let the gingerbread cool completely before assembling your house.

How to Make Royal Icing for a Gingerbread House


  • 3 Egg whites
  • Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 600g Icing Sugar
  • Water

Mix together the whisked egg whites, vanilla extract and icing sugar in a large bowl. Add water one tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired consistency of icing to hold your gingerbread pieces together.

You can also add a tsp of lemon juice if preferred.

The royal icing is going to be used as the ‘glue’ to attach your house pieces together. To do this, you can use a piping bag or just spread it over the gingerbread pieces with a knife.

Assemble Your Gingerbread House

Allow time to cool after removing your gingerbread pieces from the oven. You need to leave these for an hour minimum, but longer is even better.

Then you’re ready to assemble your house.

Place your royal icing in a piping bag so you can easily use it to glue the house pieces together.

Be careful to make sure to take care of any gaps, and to build your house on a flat surface so that it doesn’t fall over.

After you are finished assembling your house, let it sit overnight to dry and decorate the following day.

little girl decorating a gingerbread house at Christmas

Decorate Your Gingerbread House

Once the house is dry, there are many ways to decorate it. This is normally the most fun part for kids!

At Christmas time (and other holidays) they will love to add candy and sweets such as M&Ms, gumdrops or sprinkles; try adding chocolate pieces like Hershey Kisses for an added twist!

mixed candy decorate your gingerbread house

In this article, we’ve covered everything from the ingredients you need to what kind of tools work best. We hope you enjoy our gingerbread house building experience and that you’ll make it a part of your holiday tradition!

If your kids really enjoyed the gingerbread house decorating and want to keep going, print out some of our Gingerbread man decorating printables which are free and fun for kids to create their own gingerbread man paper craft.

Gingerbread House Pictures

Below are a few beautifully decorated Gingerbread house pictures for inspiration, and keep reading for free Gingerbread house printable templates and information on where to buy pre-made gingerbread house kits.

Graham Cracker Gingerbread House

The Graham Crackers version is a quicker and easier hack for how to make a Gingerbread House without baking. If you want to try this version, skip the steps straight to assembling and decorating.

graham cracker gingerbread house

Candy Cane Gingerbread House

candy cane gingerbread house for Christmas

Rainbow Smarties Gingerbread House with a little Gingerbread Man

rainbow gingerbread house

Gingerbread House with Icing Tiled Roof

gingerbread house with icing roof

Gingerbread House Printable Templates

Try these templates

From Delicious Magazine

From Taste of Home

From Sainsburys Magazine

Gingerbread House Kits

If you’re looking for a pre-assembled Gingerbread house kit, that you can skip straight to decorating, Aldi have these available for £5

This is great for younger kids, as you don’t need to wait for cooling or drying and can skip straight to the creative part.

You can also order Gingerbread house kits on Amazon and have them delivered straight to your door. (affiliate links)

Click the pictures to see these on Amazon

2 Pack Christmas Gingerbread House Kit - Easy to Make - No Baking - with Icing & Decorations - Baking Fun for All The Family!
Bakedin - Gingerbread House Baking Kit - Includes All Dry Ingredients, Icing & Decoration - Perfect Christmas Gift for Kids, Friends & Family - 825g, 1 Count (Pack of 1)
Make Your Own Gingerbread House Kit 444g with all your favourite sweet treats - Haribo, Skitles, M&M's, Peppermint Flavour Candy Canes and more

More Gingerbread Themed Family Fun

Kids may also enjoy our Gingerbread painting idea or our Gingerbread decorating printables

More Fun Christmas Food

Looking for more easy to put together Christmas treats that the kids will love?

Check out our Christmas tree Brownies or Santa’s Hat mini cheesecakes


Feel free to share this guide with friends and family. We always appreciate pins to your Pinterest board

Thanks so much!

Complete guide to How to make a gingerbread house with recipe, templates, decorating ideas and full step by step

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