Tips and tricks to making gingerbread houses with royal icing and graham crackers.
Building and decorating gingerbread houses is one of my cherished childhood memories from the holidays. It was aways so much fun and such a mess! 😆 I knew it and that’s why the last couple of years I’ve picked up one of the easy kits that comes with everything you need. Super convenient for sure, especially with a baby in the house! But this year we wanted to give it a go with graham crackers and homemade royal icing. And yes, it was a mess but SO worth it! P was more proud then she’d ever been about her house and J loved picking his sprinkles and sneaking extra icing. Here’s how we made our village!
Homemade royal icing worked so much better than any of the frosting packets that come with the kits. It’s easier to spread and dries much quicker.
3 cups /360 grams confectioners sugar
2 large egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Combine sugar, eggs and cream of tartar in a large mixing bowl and whip until stiff and glossy. Transfer to popping bag or bottles. Keep covered when you’re not using it.
Building the Houses
We made one large house and a few little houses in our village. I think part of the process is playing around with the graham crackers to see what works and what doesn’t. This what made it easier for us:
We used blocks to support the walls of our house while we spread on the icing. We eventually switched to piping bags and bottles.
Pipe or spread icing on the sides of the cracker before putting it on the house.
The based dried for about 40 minutes before we put on the roof. Using whole graham crackers for the roof worked really well.
For our little houses we used 3 whole crackers snapped in half. If it were just my 2.5 year old, I would make these little houses every time. They are quick to dry and just enough space to decorate without loosing interest.
Now the fun part 😂 Each little elf got a bottle of icing and decorated away. I helped J with spreading the icing and he loved to choose which sprinkle to use. P worked happily with her house on a spinning cake stand. Her biggest success was using mini candy canes to make a door and decorating the cake stand with gumdrops and chocolates.
As the years go by, I look forward to seeing how the they change and create a unique house every time! I don’t think I’ll ever go back to buying the kits.
If you make a house like ours we’d love to see it! Share your gingerbread house creations #junebugbakerslove
June Bug Bakers