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Make a gingerbread house

Fancy making your own gingerbread house? Whether it's for a stunning centrepiece or as a fun family project, everyone will love getting involved – even if it's just the eating part. With our simple biscuit recipe, and your choice of design, you can't go wrong. Depending on how big or small you're planning on making your house, you can scale this recipe up or down to suit.

  • 25 minutes prep. time
  • 15 minutes cooking time
  • Serves 1 small gingerbread house
  • Cakes, bakes & desserts, Vegetarian & vegan, Family-friendly, Christmas
End view of a gingerbread house, with an open door and white icing on the roof and around the doors and windows to look like snow
A gingerbread house makes a great centrepiece, or decoration, to nibble slowly | © National Trust Images/Vicki Blatchley


  • 1kg plain flour
  • 500g butter
  • 3 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 250g light brown sugar
  • 3 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 eggs
  • 200g golden syrup


How to build your gingerbread house

To stick your gingerbread house pieces together, you can use royal icing, caramel or chocolate. Whichever you choose, be sure to prop up your walls carefully while you wait for your 'glue' to set (a can of baked beans works well). At this stage, patience is key. Start small and work your way up to a masterpiece. Try making a simple house until you find the best way for you to build it. Then why not try something more adventurous? You could build your own house in miniature, or try and recreate your favourite National Trust place. Decorating your finished house is the fun bit, so get creative. You can use sweets and chocolates, but you could also try roof tiles made of flaked almonds or rose petals, or maybe add fresh herbs as a miniature vegetable garden.

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Make a gingerbread house

See how to create an impressive gingerbread house.

Step 1

Put the flour, butter and bicarbonate of soda into a bowl, rub into breadcrumbs, then add the sugar and spices and mix. This can be done by hand or in your mixer.

Step 2

Lightly beat the eggs and golden syrup together. Add to the dry mix and continue to mix until it forms a dough. 

Step 3

Roll the dough to 4mm thickness on a sheet of greaseproof paper to avoid it sticking to the work surface.

Step 4

Plan out the shape of your house and draw all the pieces you need on paper. Cut them out and use them as a template for cutting your gingerbread.

Step 5

Place the templates on the dough, and cut around them. Repeat until you have all the wall, roof and door pieces you need, and you've used all the dough. You may need to reroll the dough. Don't forget to cut out doors and windows.

Step 6

Place your dough shapes onto baking trays and bake at 180°C (160°C fan/gas mark 4) for 12–15 minutes.

Step 7

Remove from the oven and allow to cool, then assemble into a house. See 'How to build your gingerbread house', above.

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