Easy graham cracker gingerbread house ideas for a fun family activity! Decorating graham cracker houses will become a favorite Christmas tradition. Check out these tips to help you simplify your decorating party, plus the best gingerbread house icing recipe to hold everything together.
GRAHAM CRACKER GINGERBREAD HOUSE TIPS
One of my husband’s family traditions is to make graham cracker houses at Christmas time. Needless to say, we have a lot of years of experience!
Here’s our best tips and tricks for decorating your own graham cracker Christmas houses. If you don’t have the time or energy to create your own, check out these Gingerbread House kits that will still make a fun family Christmas activity.
1. GINGERBREAD HOUSE KITS
Before we talk about easy gingerbread house decorating ideas, let me give you the really simple option.
If building and decorating your own gingerbread house seems too overwhelming, there is no shame in using a Gingerbread House kit.
In fact, there are so many fun and unique Gingerbread House kit options that are affordable. Here are some really cute anf fun gingerbread house kit from Target and other options.
SHOP GINGERBREAD HOUSE KITS HERE:
2. PREP THE TABLE WITH PAPER OR PLASTIC COVERING
No matter if you decide to go with a kit or make your own house from scratch, decorating gingerbread houses will make a big mess! And I mean big.
So plan ahead mentally! Also, wrapping your tables in cheap plastic tablecloths from the dollar store will make the mess quicker to clean up.
When you’re finished decorating Christmas houses, all you’ll have to do is wrap up the tablecloth with crumbs, frosting, and extra candy and throw it away!
3. BEST GINGERBREAD HOUSE ICING RECIPE
There are a few options when it comes to gingerbread house icing/frosting. You can always use store-bought cake frosting, but it won’t hold up as well as true gingerbread house icing.
Use this gingerbread house icing recipe . We use this recipe every year because it works so well!
And bonus…you can make the graham cracker house frosting recipe ahead of time if needed.
Look at this cute graham cracker house design with a winter landscape!
4. PRE-ASSEMBLE GRAHAM CRACKER GINGERBREAD HOUSES BEFORE YOU DECORATE
Are you wondering “how to make a gingerbread house out of graham crackers?” Let me show you how easy it is!
First, gather the base for your graham cracker houses. You can use a paper plate or piece of cardboard wrapped in wrapping paper or tin foil.
Using a hot glue gun, create your cheap gingerbread houses using graham crackers. Hot glue is our secret weapon and will make sure your diy gingerbread house will stay together!
Hot glue your houses together before you start decorating. If you aren’t planning to eat it anyway, then it doesn’t matter if you use actual gingerbread house icing or not.
Using hot glue to assemble will open so many possibilities for the shape and structure of your house.
This method is perfect to make a graham cracker gingerbread house without milk carton. Just hot glue the crackers together for an easy gingerbread house for kids.
5. GRAHAM CRACKER HOUSE IDEAS: CANDY & CRACKERS
Chances are you aren’t going to eat the graham cracker gingerbread houses you make. So there is no reason why you can’t use OLD or expired candy or crackers to decorate your houses with.
If you have the space, start buying candy and crackers as you find them on sale or clearance. After Halloween sales are a great time to buy candy! If you don’t mind storing stuff for an entire year, you can find some great deals on Christmas candy after the holiday season is over, as well.
Decorating Christmas cookie houses is not just limited to candy. Crackers, pretzels, cereal, marshmallows, and other dry goods add fun textures.
Tip: Just be sure to tell everyone that the candy is hard before they break their teeth on it! 😉
WHAT TO USE:
- Sugar cones- Christmas trees
- Crackers- shingles
- Square pretzels- windows
- Candy canes- posts
- Licorice rope- garland for tree
- Gum drops- star
6. UNIQUE GINGERBREAD HOUSE IDEAS
Think outside of the box, I mean house! Create and decorate anything you like! Some of the best easy gingerbread house ideas are not houses at all!
Make a train, nativity, or any other structure that would be fun to decorate.
For a quick and easy option, decorate Christmas trees using sugar cones!
7. GIVE YOURSELF PLENTY OF TIME TO DECORATE GRAHAM CRACKER GINGERBREAD HOUSES
Decorating gingerbread houses won’t be very fun if you are in a huge hurry. Set aside a night or day when you have lots of time to spend decorating your Christmas houses.
Turn on some Christmas music or you favorite Christmas movie and take your time!
The joy is literally in the journey of making candy houses, so embrace the mess and chaos and have fun!
Tip: Plan to decorate graham cracker houses during Christmas break when you need something fun to do while children are out of school.
8. GRAHAM CRACKER GINGERBREAD HOUSE SHOPPING LIST
Now that you know how to make easy gingerbread house for kids, it’s time to gather the supplies. Here’s a gingerbread shopping list to help you prepare!
Gingerbread house toppings
- Graham crackers
- mini graham crackers
- chocolate graham crackers (alternative cookie for gingerbread house)
- Stick pretzels
- Candy cane sticks
- Sugar cones
- Gum drops
- Round mint candies
- Square pretzels
- Chex, Golden Grahams, or crackers for roof
- Licorice rope