I love creating corny traditions for my boyfriend and I to do. This winter we started a new tradition of making our own gingerbread house from scratch! It was a fun adventure that was actually much easier than anticipated! We’ve decided that every year we will increase the intricacy of our gingerbread house that we make so we started with something simple this year. The best part about making your own gingerbread house is being able to eat the delicious gingerbread, as well as making your house smell heavenly!! I have even created a Gingerbread House Template so you don’t have to! The template is similar to the one pictured above and even includes two different sized tree’s. I recommend tracing the template on wax paper and using wax paper guide you when cutting your dough.
Homemade Gingerbread House
Prep time: 15 minutes
Wait time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15-20 minutes
Yields: 1 gingerbread house or two dozen cookies (small)
- ½ cup (1 stick) butter at room temperature
- ½ cup dark brown sugar
- ¼ cup molasses (or dark corn syrup if you don’t have any)
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1 ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 teaspoon baking soda (yes thats correct! Don’t use baking powder in this recipe!)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons water
For royal icing:
- 1 pound of powdered sugar: about 3 ½ cups
- 2 egg whites
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Plastic Wrap
- Wax paper (for making stencil)
- Baking sheet
- Parchment Paper
- Plastic bags or piping bags
- Mixing bowls
- Hand mixer or whisk
- OPTIONAL: Stencil (Here is a Gingerbread House Template that I made that works great!)
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
- Begin by adding your butter, sugar, and molasses into a bowl. Use mixer to fully mix ingredients.
- Now mix your dry ingredients together (Flour, Baking soda, Cinnamon, Ginger, Cloves).
- Slowly mix in your dry ingredients with your wet ingredients, after pouring ¼ of dry ingredients into bowl add one tablespoon of water, when you get to ½ of the dry ingredients added add your last tablespoon of water.
- Continue mixing till fully mixed
- The dough will seem almost too dry, but that is how it is supposed to be!
- Now form two balls with your dough, this will probably require kneading as the dough will be separated and almost powdery before you start forming the balls.
- Wrap dough in plastic wrap then let rest in fridge for at least thirty minutes
- After you have let the dough firm up in fridge take it out and roll the dough out on a flat surface.
- Use your stencils to cut out your gingerbread house or use cookie cutters to cut out gingerbread cookies. Do you have any extra dough? Try making my White Chocolate Gingerbread Bites!
- Place pieces/cookies onto parchment paper lined baking tray and place into oven for 15 minutes or until dough feels firm
- Remove cookie sheet from oven and let cool for five minutes before moving to cooling rack.
For the Royal Icing:
- Add egg whites, powdered sugar, and vanilla into a bowl, beat until stiffened.
- Place plastic back in tall cup and wrap edges around sides. Fill bag and push icing down towards one of the tips.
- Cut tip and pipe away!
- Or just use a regular piping bag!
- Assemble your gingerbread house after the gingerbread has fully cooled down. I recommend letting the gingerbread dry out for 12-24 hours (at least overnight) before you assemble it. It reduces the chance of your gingerbread house falling down.
- Pro Tip: Decorate sides of gingerbread house BEFORE assembling! It’s much easier creating intricate details that way.