Gingerbread House: the recipe for an adorable, edible holiday treat

Total time: 45 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 4 people
By Cookist
100 g
Brown sugar
50 g
Softened butter
125 g
150 g
2 tsp
1 tsp
1/4 tsp
A pinch of salt
420 g
royal icing
400 g
sprinkles and decorations

Making a gingerbread house is a fun and rewarding cooking project to make at home. It’s a festive, but involved process that includes cooking the gingerbread, assembling the house, and decorating it with all the holiday touches that make your house shine. Luckily, our video and article explain everything you need to know about how to make and assemble your own homemade gingerbread house, with easy step-by-step instructions and images.

What do you need to build a Gingerbread House?

To make your own gingerbread, house, you’ll need a few simple ingredients:

  • Sugar (both white and brown)
  • Softened unsalted butter
  • Egg
  • Honey
  • Gingerbread spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, and, of course, ground ginger
  • Baking soda
  • Flour
  • Royal icing to hold everything together.

How to make a homemade Gingerbread House


Start making your gingerbread house by combining the sugar, brown sugar, softened butter, egg, and honey in a mixing bowl until smooth. Add the ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking soda, and salt.  Keep mixing the dough as you add the flour, a little at a time. Mix until everything is combined.


Transfer the dough to a floured work surface and knead until smooth. Chill the dough in a disc for 20 minutes in the fridge. Return it to the work surface and roll it into a thin circle. Use a gingerbread house template to cut out shapes for your house.


Cut out windows in the house walls too. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 to 18 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Let the cookies cool fully to room temperature.


While the dough bakes, make royal icing by combining 2 egg whites, a squeeze of lemon juice, and 350g powdered sugar until smooth. Transfer the icing to a pastry bag. Drizzle the roof sections of the house with royal icing.


Decorate the windows and door sight royal icing and sprinkles as you like. You can dye some of the icing other colors to add trees, grass and other colorful decorations.


When you’ve added the decorations you like, build the house, using plenty of royal icing to hold the walls together. Let the house set and dry completely before you add the roof.


Gently place the roof on to the dried house structure and finish decorating as you like.

Gingerbread House dough

The dough for homemade gingerbread is made with your typical cookie ingredients, plus gingerbread spices. It’s flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg and ground powdered ginger. You’ll roll the dough flat

Royal Icing for Gingerbread House

Royal icing is the main ingredient to make a perfect gingerbread house because you can create decorations in a very precise way. Making royal icing is very simple, you just need 2 egg whites, squeeze lemon juice and 350g powdered sugar whisked together.

How to build a gingerbread house

When building your gingerbread house, the most important thing is to let the royal icing harden before you add too much weight. This means that you should build your gingerbread house from the ground up, starting with a solid foundation of well-glued royal icing to keep the walls attached to your base. From there, be sure to glue each side of the gingerbread walls to one another and let them dry before you add the roof or any other heavy candies or decorations.

How to decorate a gingerbread house

When it comes to decorating your house, the possibilities are endless. You can go the traditional Christmas-themed route, with red, white and green candies and a tiny gingerbread Santa Clause. Or, you can decorate the house in a totally different way, with a summertime look and feel. Take a look through the candy aisle for inspiration!

How to store Gingerbread House

The gingerbread won’t be all that edible, especially after you’ve put your sticky hands all over it to build and decorate the masterpiece. But you can proudly display your house on the counter for several weeks.


  1. Mix together the sugar, brown sugar, butter egg and honey.
  2. Whilst still mixing add in the ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, bicarbonate of soda and salt.
  3. When this is combined add in the flour a tablespoon at a time.
  4. Tip out onto a floured work surface and knead to form a dough for a couple of minutes before covering and allowing to rest in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.
  5. Roll out this dough to 4mm thick and cut out the shapes for your favorite gingerbread house template rolling out the dough as often as required.
  6. Cook the gingerbread shapes at 190C or 375F for 15-18 minutes before cooling completely.
  7. Now build your house using ‘royal icing’ to ‘glue’ together the house, leaving it to harden for one hour before moving on to the roof from the walls.
  8. Get creative decoration as you wish.
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