Gingerbread House

Total Time:
1 hr 30 min
1 hr 15 min
15 min

One recipe of dough makes one

Gingerbread House:

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter, brown sugar, molasses, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and baking soda together until the mixture is smooth. Blend in the flour and water to make a stiff dough. Chill at least 30 minutes or until firm.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut out the following paper patterns for the gingerbread house template:

Two rectangles, 3 by 5 inches, to make the front and back of the house. Two rectangles, 3 by 5 1/2 inches for the roof. Two pieces for the ends of the house, 3 inches wide at the base, 3 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 5 1/2 inches from the bottom. Four smaller rectangles, 1 1/2 by 1 inch for the roof and sides of the entryway. And one piece, 2 inches wide at the base, 1 1/2 inches to the roof line, and slanted to a peak 2 1/2 inches from the bottom for the front of the entryway.

Roll gingerbread dough out to edges on a large, rimless cookie sheet. Place paper patterns onto the rolled out dough. With a sharp, straight edged knife, cut around each of the pieces, but leave pieces in place.

Bake at 375 degrees F for about 15 minutes until dough feels firm.

Place patterns on top of the gingerbread again and trim shapes, cutting edges with a straight-edged sharp knife. Leave to cool on baking sheet.

Place royal icing into pastry bag with a writing tip and press out to decorate individual parts of house, piping on decorations, windows, door, etc., as desired. Let dry until hardened.

Glue sides, front and back of house together at corners using royal icing. Place an object against the pieces to prop up until icing is dry (it only takes a few minutes).

Glue the two roof pieces to the pitched roofline of the house. Then, similarly, glue the sides and roof of the entryway together with icing. Attach the entryway to the front of the house.

Continue decorating the house, glueing on gumdrops, licorice and peppermint, as desired.

Royal Icing:

Mix all of the ingredients together using an electric hand mixer, until the icing is smooth and thin enough to be pressed through a pastry bag with a writing tip. Add more lemon juice, if necessary.

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3.9 52
This was my first gingerbread house. The gingerbread was very sturdy and tasty. Not at all crumbly like I read in other reviews. It was difficult to get the shapes precisely the right size but I think with more practice, it will come together even better next time. For a first attempt, I was pleased with the recipe and my ability to make a cute if not perfect house. After reading the reviews on the royal icing, I looked up my own recipe and it was perfect. Just 3 egg whites, 2c sifted powdered sugar and cream of tartar. It has to be stiff enough to have immediate gluelike properties. Add more powdered sugar until it is stiff enough. Be patient and take your time with all steps. Very true that you need to re-trim the shapes after baking while still hot, which is difficult. Kids had loads of fun decorating it after mom did all the hard work :) item not reviewed by moderator and published
I was looking for a basic gingerbread cookie recipe for a school project for my son. Taste didn't matter. Worked up the dough, chilled it, rolled it, cut pieces and baked according to the recipe. It baked up perfectly. Once cooled completely on a rack, we assembled the project and off to school he went, and I had a lot of leftover dough in the fridge, despite the fact I'd cut twice the number of pieces he needed for his project. Little brother and sister enjoyed decorating the leftovers and I was surprised to find them quite tasty, though crisp as befits a gingerbread house. A few days later, I rolled out the remaining dough and baked it at 325* for 9 - 10 minutes and was pleasantly surprised to discover a gingerbread cookie of the softness and consistency I remember from my favorite childhood bakery. This is the recipe I have been searching for all my life. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Here's the deal, if you've made good gingerbread house recipes before, you understand why this one is so crumbly, I mean crummy. We followed the directions exactly and I still ended up with a frustrated tween niece and disappointed teenage nephew who, like me, wished I could find last time's rock hard gingerbread and cement icing recipes that were forgiving and could make just about anything. Positives: smells great, it will make a gingerbread house one can actually eat (but come on, who eat bits of something that's been sitting out uncovered for weeks?), it did not require lots of chill time, and the tip about parchment paper is decent if incomplete. Negatives: thick or thin, more cooking time or not, leaving it out overnight, this gingerbread isn't good for building houses as it has a cake-like texture. Icing was more like frosting that doesn't become the trusty icing cement one needs when constructing a gingerbread house. It also warps shape easily when baking. item not reviewed by moderator and published
The reason I am giving this only one star is that the icing instructions are terrible. All the other recipes that I looked at after this one was a disaster all say to beat the eat whites until they are fluffy --this one just says mix the ingredients all together. This website just put whatever crap up here. We had runny icing that would not glue the house together and it ruined the special day I had planned with my daughter. This site just has random recipes--if they cared whether they were good they would take this one down. I don't believe the good reviews--they are probably posted by staff. item not reviewed by moderator and published
First time ever making gingerbread house from scratch and it came out great. I used parchment paper and measured ingredients exactly like previous reviewers noted. Will make again for sure. item not reviewed by moderator and published
no good it came out hard and tasteless item not reviewed by moderator and published
thanks!! this was great!!! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was my first time making a house from scratch and was a little worried but it came out great. I made three and half batches witch was perfect for my medium house which had a surface area of about 320 square inches. I rolled mine out a little too thick (1/3 of an inch) and found that when it was baked and cooled the pieces were a little soft for my liking so I threw them back in the oven on the rack at 200F for about 45 minutes to dry out after this they were perfect. I baked mine on parchment and was very glad I did (one less thing to stress over). I used my own icing recipe of 3 tbsps meringue powder 4 cups icing sugar and 6-10 tbsps water mixed with an electric mixer for 7 minutes. My advice to novice bakers would be: roll out to 1/4 inch, add more water as needed and take into account that this is a very small recipe and if you are using your own template scale the recipe up as needed based on the measurements given i believe this recipe makes about 95 in square. item not reviewed by moderator and published
This was my first gingerbread house. My dough was slightly dry to my liking so before I put it in the refrigerator to chill I add 2 more T of cold water and beat in. The dough came together perfectly. I found that I can use this for a regular gingerbread cookie as well, it just needs a little less cooking time. I was very happy to discover that I didn't even need to flour the surface, I just cut on top of parchment paper. So, no flour to sweep off the cookies...just a nice browned and tasty cookie. item not reviewed by moderator and published
We doubled this recipe to make it bigger. It was great my bf had to make a 2nd batch and he made it too dry, he used heaping scoops of flour instead of scraping the excess off the top, so the is what your mistakes probably were also... when you are baking it is crucial to follow the main ingredients to the T... if you don't know the proper way to measuring dry and wet ingredients you should google it. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Me and my kids had fun with this. item not reviewed by moderator and published
*My kids and I.... #grammarhammer item not reviewed by moderator and published

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