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Are you and the children fed up with the frustrations of trying to make a complicated 3D gingerbread house? Why not try this idea for easy 2D gingerbread houses instead? It’s the perfect family Christmas recipe with all the fun and prettiness but without all the hassle!
I’ve always loved gingerbread houses, they look, smell and taste gorgeous and just shout out Christmas don’t they? The only trouble is that they’re actually very tricky for children to make. They often need lots of grown up help to get them upright and sticking together which can be so frustrating for little hands!
Instead of battling with tricky templates and complicated 3D Gingerbread Houses I have a family tradition where we make these easy flat gingerbread houses instead.
Flat gingerbread houses are simple enough for children to work on independently and making and decorating them is a wonderful family activity to enjoy together. When they’re finished they look fantastic hanging on the Christmas tree and make super homemade gifts too.
These flat easy gingerbread houses give you all the fun, cuteness and deliciousness without the difficulty!
While you’re here you might like to pin or bookmark some of other favourite Christmas family recipes to come back to later too.
How To Make an Easy Gingerbread House For Kids
Gingerbread House Ingredients
- 350g Plain Flour
- 1tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
- 2tsp Ground Ginger
- 1tsp Mixed Spice
- 125g Butter
- 175g Light Brown Sugar
- 1 Large Egg
- 1tbs Golden Syrup
- 1tbs Treacle
- 1tbs Honey
- Icing Sugar
- Small Sweets
- Pipe cleaners
To Make The Gingerbread Dough
This is a nice simple recipe that children can easily help with.
Start by measuring the flour, bicarbonate of soda and spices into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter and rub it in until it resembles breadcrumbs. Then stir in the sugar.
In a small bowl mix together all the wet ingredients: egg, syrup, treacle and honey. (I use a mixture of syrup, treacle and honey because I love the rich flavour and colour it gives but you can just use one or two of them if you prefer, just make sure you have 3 tablespoons in total.)
Add the wet ingredients into your breadcrumb mix and blend to make a smooth dough. Pop your dough in the fridge to chill for 20 minutes.
To Make The Gingerbread Houses
Preheat your oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
On a lightly floured surface roll out the dough to 0.5 cm or 1/4 inch thickness. Using a knife children can then cut out any house shape or size they like. We love that each one is unique!
If you plan to hang your gingerbread houses up then use the end of some scissors or a skewer to make a small hole at the top.
Place each gingerbread house onto a greased or lined baking tray and bake for 10-15 minutes until lightly browned.
Decorating Gingerbread Houses
This is the really fun bit! You’ll need to mix up some thick icing and have a selection of small sweets.
We zipped along to our local Co-op to buy our sweets. They had a great range and lots of three for £1 offers which was super.
I like to use a sectioned tray or individual bowls to lay out all the sweets so it’s easy for children to see and choose which ones they want. I also add a pair of scissors so they can cut things like the strawberry pencils and laces into different sizes.
Children can dip the sweets into the icing and then place them onto the gingerbread or they might prefer to put the icing onto the gingerbread and then add the sweets. Either works just fine.
I love that children can add as many or few sweets as they like and each gingerbread house will look totally different and totally gorgeous!
We use pipe cleaners to hang our gingerbread houses because they are so much easier for children to thread through the holes than ribbon!
Making gingerbread houses is one of my favourite Christmas traditions. It’s such a lovely activity for the whole family to enjoy together and I just adore how even very young children can make them independently (apart from the oven bit). It gives them such a wonderful sense of achievement!
Will you gobble up your gingerbread house straight away, hang it on the tree or give it as a gift? We tend to do a bit of each!
More Fun Christmas Activities To Try: