Gingerbread House Ideas

Christmas is coming and that doesn’t just mean the stress of gift shopping, it also means a lot of fun memories and experiences that make your kids light up with joy. One of our favorite family Christmas traditions is creating gingerbread houses! I’ve pulled together some great tips and gingerbread house ideas that will make this year your best gingerbread house memory yet.

26 beset creative gingerbread house ideas

Why You Need New Gingerbread House Ideas

Sure you could just go to the store and pick up one of those gingerbread house kits for $20, those are fun too and we’ve done that a million times.

But to make some fantastic Christmas memories with your kids you don’t need to feel obligated to stick to the traditional gingerbread ideas. if you DO want to use a kit for a base, there are still lots of ways that you can customize it for an even more epic gingerbread house.

Whether you just don’t feel like running to the store one more time during the holiday season, if you don’t want to spend extra money on a gingerbread house kit, or if you are looking for a more special and creative idea this year, you’re going to love this post.

RELATED: Memory-Making Christmas Traditions to Start With kids

Traditional Ideas and Fun Twists on Gingerbread Houses

If you want to build a gingerbread house with your kids this year, I have some great ideas for you! I found tasty recipes for making your own gingerbread house from scratch. This can be an insanely memorable thing to do over Christmas break if you have the patience for it and your kids are on board.

If that sounds like a bit much I also found some super creative ways to make gingerbread houses at home without baking the walls of the house from scratch AND without buying a kit at the store either.

I think you’ll love these ideas.

Use nuts or cereal to create unique elements on your gingerbread houses

A Cereal Rooftop for your Gingerbread house

Gingerbread House Icing

Arguably the best part of the gingerbread house is the icing. At least, it seems to be one of the most popular for sampling when it comes to my kids during the gingerbread house-making process. Even if you buy a store-bought gingerbread house kit there is never enough icing, especially if you want to decorate the “ground” too. So learn how to make your own gingerbread house icing from scratch.

Don’t be afraid to great creative with your candy décor

Check out the detail on these houses! (And notice that it doesn’t have to be perfect – some times an eclectic flair is a great way to make a professional looking house!)


Make a Graham Cracker Gingerbread House

If you don’t want to bother with cooking gingerbread (as I often don’t) there are alternate options for building houses that don’t require baking!

graham cracker gingerbread house idea

Building a gingerbread house this season just got easier! Here is how to make a graham cracker gingerbread house. It’s amazing what a cute professional-looking gingerbread house you can make with just graham crackers! And don’t worry, I’ve got a great recipe for homemade gingerbread house icing coming up too.


Make a Pop Tart Gingerbread House

pop tard gingerbread house idea

Easy Pop Tart Gingerbread House – no kit required for this fun holiday idea! This post will show you how to cut Pop-Tarts for gingerbread houses, how to make the candy stick to your gingerbread houses, and what candy is good for these Pop-Tart gingerbread houses! These turn out really cute.

Try This “Log House” Gingerbread House

Vegan Gingerbread House

Using chocolate covered pretzels make the cutest “logs” for your house – bonus, this recipe is vegan, so If your family is vegan you can still enjoy a gingerbread house too! I mean, most of us don’t actually eat the gingerbread house itself, but we all do like to sample some while making it! Or is that just me? Either way, try out this vegan gingerbread house recipe

Gluten Free Gingerbread House

gluten free gingerbread house recipe

Making homemade gingerbread houses is such a great family tradition, but not everyone can eat gluten, even those who don’t have Celiac Disease. So for those who don’t process gluten correctly (whether it be mom, dad, or one of the kids) try making this gluten free gingerbread house instead.

Gingerbread Houses (with Template)

Gingerbread Houses (with Template)

Ready to make traditional gingerbread houses from scratch? If that entire idea sounds a little daunting don’t worry! This post comes with a free template too. So you can easily begin the tradition of creating fully homemade gingerbread houses with your kids this year.

Make an A-Frame Gingerbread House

a frame gingerbread house ideas

Though building an A-frame house is a bit easier than a traditional four-walled house, that doesn’t make this design any less extravagant. Try to create your own version of this beautiful a-frame gingerbread house.

Get super creative and go beyond HOUSES with your gingerbread

Check out these ideas for a gingerbread castle, gingerbread carousel, and gingerbread church.


Create a Mini Gingerbread Village

Perfect if you have multiple children – let them each decorate their own house!

nativity scene gingerbread house idea

You can make your own nativity scene gingerbread house this Christmas from scratch! Use this fun family bonding activity to also teach the real meaning of Christmas and have a new Nativity scene to keep up for the season.

11 More Gingerbread House Design Ideas for Inspiration

You now have gingerbread crafts, recipes for homemade gingerbread houses, ideas of what prepackaged store items you can use to make great gingerbread houses, and a recipe for the icing… what’s left?

Well, design inspiration of course!

One thing about making homemade gingerbread houses instead of one that comes out of a box is that you can be as creative as you please. Let these photos and ideas lead your inspiration year after year.

gingerbread house ideas

Consider using nontraditional colors when designing your gingerbread house. It can be just your favorite colors or something that matches better with the decor of your house then traditional Christmas colors do.

gingerbread house ideas

Remember to buy candy to decorate your gingerbread houses with too! Gum drops are essential but you can let your mind run wild with what candy you want to use.

gingerbread house ideas


Try doing a candy overload theme on the house. Use as much icing and candy as you possibly can to cover every square inch with sweet goodness.

gingerbread house ideas

Try making a gingerbread house that follows a certain color scheme. Instead of rainbow and wild as they always seem to turn out try a red and white candy cane theme or a red, green, and white Christmas theme.

gingerbread house ideas

Use food coloring on some of the icing to make extra special details like doors and wreaths that are different colors. Don’t forget you can use lots of different icing piping tips too to get different effects.

gingerbread house ideas

Write a Christmas message on the roof of your gingerbread house or on the ground around it if there is room there with the way you choose to design it. Try, “Merry Christmas,” “Ho ho ho,” “Feliz Navidad,” or “Noel.”

gingerbread house ideas

Try using flat square cereal pieces as roof tiles. Cinnamon toast crunch works great but you could also try something like Chex for a more thatched roof look.

gingerbread house ideas

Buy lots of types of candy. Things like M&M’s, Mike n’ Ikes, Sixlets, Skittles, and Peppermints are great to decorate a gingerbread house with.

gingerbread house ideas


Try making an elegant gingerbread house by decorating it with only delicately piped icing. Sift powdered sugar over the house for a snowy effect.


gingerbread house ideas

Make gingerbread cookies in the shape of trees to set your gingerbread house up in an entire gingerbread forest.


gingerbread house ideas

You can also make gingerbread cookies in the shape of characters like Santa or a gingerbread man so that you can set up characters around your house as well.

7 Gingerbread House Craft Ideas

Maybe you love the idea of making a gingerbread house with your kids but this year it just sounds like too much. Let’s be real, it’s messy, the sprinkles end up everywhere, and inevitably at some point, one kid ends up sucking on the frosting tube and grossing everyone else out.

So whether you’ve got a new baby on board this year, are stretched thin this season, or really just love all things gingerbread houses, you might want to try a gingerbread craft this year instead of the actual baking.

Free Printable Gingerbread House Coloring Page

gingerbread house ideas

This gingerbread house coloring page is a great DIY craft for holiday fun. Featuring a super cute gingerbread man and decorated home in black-and-white, you’ll be able to customize the colors, textures, and more with this free printable.

This is even a great idea to print out for the kids while you cook the gingerbread if you are baking your own gingerbread house. Or even while you set everything up for building the gingerbread houses. They can get their gingerbread house ideas out of their head and onto the paper!

Free Build a Gingerbread House Printable Craft

Free Build a Gingerbread House Printable Craft

This is a really creative way to “make a gingerbread house” but without the baking and sweets. To make this gingerbread craft you will need simple materials found around the house. You will need the free PDF printable, coloring materials,  glue, scissors, and optional embellishments like glitter glue, glitter, sequins, beads, and more.

Cute Paper Gingerbread House Craft for Kids

Cute Paper Gingerbread House Craft for Kids

This gingerbread house craft is so darn cute that you could use it as Christmas decor. It also makes a great gift for grandparents or can just be a fun holiday activity for the kids.

gingerbread house garland idea

Recycle cardboard into a charming gingerbread house Christmas garland this year! This DIY Christmas garland is easy to make with the free printable templates available in the post, and some paper and cardboard.

Hang this craft across your mantel, over a doorway, or along the top of a large picture to make the room more festive.

felt gingerbread house craft ideas

Make a felt gingerbread house with this tutorial–it’s a three-dimensional gingerbread house toy, covered in felt, with felt and yarn “candy” decorations that children can use again and again for mess-free Christmas gingerbread house play.

I adore this idea, it would make an adorable gift or just a fun craft for your kids to enjoy too. If you are taking a road trip this Christmas vacation, consider bringing this one along for the drive to kill a lot of time!

gingerbread house ornaments tutorial

This is another craft that is so cute and well-done that it is not only a blast to do with the kids, but also can make great Christmas gifts to give. Check out this tutorial for making your own adorable gingerbread house ornaments.

gingerbread cookie ornaments craft idea for Christmas

This salt dough recipe for ornaments is extra perfect for Christmas because it’s a gingerbread salt dough!  Make your salt dough ornaments look and smell like gingerbread cookies. It’s not 100% a gingerbread house but if you have gingerbread man and gingerbread house cookie cutouts then you can make them that way! Creating these every year, along with all these other ideas are great traditions to start with your kids this Christmas.

Wrapping Up the Best Gingerbread House Ideas

If you are ready to begin making some gingerbread house-themed Christmas memories, I hope this post gave you all the ideas you need! I tried to cover everything from gingerbread house crafts to so many different ways to make your own gingerbread houses at home without a generic kit. Which idea is your favorite? A craft or one of the edible houses? Let me know in the comments below!

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