Recipes Sweets

The Icing Recipe You NEED To Make The Perfect Gingerbread House

Photo: Shutterstock//Aleksandra Suzi

Get the scoop on why this recipe makes the best gingerbread house icing.

When it comes to holiday traditions, few are as architecturally complex and hands-on as building a gingerbread house. (Here is our guide for everything gingerbread!) Whether you use a kit or bake the gingerbread from scratch, one of the most important, if not the most important, elements is the icing. Set yourself up for success with the best gingerbread house icing, and you’ll have a masterpiece in no time. Get inspired with this collection of gingerbread houses.

Gingerbread House Icing

Here’s the recipe:


  • 3-3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons warm water
  • 3 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar


  1. In a large bowl, beat confectioners’ sugar, water, meringue powder and cream of tartar with an electric mixer at low speed.
  2. Beat on high speed for 4-5 minutes or until mixture thickens. You’ll be looking for stiff peaks (check out our guide!) when you lift the beaters from the bowl.
  3. Transfer your icing to a pastry bag with your desired tip for icing.

Storage Tip: Cover any excess icing with a damp paper cloth, and if necessary, beat the icing on high to restore its texture before adding to the piping bag.

Why Does It Work?

This icing recipe, also known as royal icing, makes a great mortar to hold your gingerbread house together. It’s also ideal for making sugar decorations. Historically, royal icing covered fruitcake to keep it moist. Fruitcake is traditionally the wedding cake of English royalty, giving the icing its name. As it dries, it hardens to a candy-like consistency, ensuring your house stays up until after the holidays.

With this icing on hand, along with an array of other building materials, you’ll be ready to create a beautiful and festive centerpiece for your table or host your own gingerbread house decorating party. Happy building!

Related Links:

Article by Alexa Hackfort for Taste of Home. View the original article here.

Cravings Culture Hit-Or-Miss Sweets Tastemade/Snapchat

10 Intricate Gingerbread Houses That Look Too Good To Eat

Once we get over the decidedly violent task of carving pumpkins and turkeys, we shift our attention to the sweet, delicate gingerbread houses we plan to construct. You might think your gingerbread house is the best thing since gummy bear gargoyles, but many pastry chefs consider the holidays to be their Olympics. Don’t be jelly; just grab some jelly beans off your house’s roof. Here are a few sculptures depicting (mostly) real locales throughout the world with screen-licking attention to detail.

The Eiffel Tower (Paris, France)


Photo: Fiona Designs

This brings a whole new meaning to eating your way through Paris. Getting everything from the fountain to the tower itself in such great detail makes for a stunning gingerbread house.


The U.S. Capitol Building (Washington D.C., U.S.)


Photo: Windows Catering

They cheated! They used a branch to build this house: the legislative branch! In all seriousness, this gingerbread version of the Capitol building is gorgeous. The only thing it’s missing is gingerbread Congress members outside.


Országház (Budapest, Hungary)


Photo: Oamaru Life

Hungary’s Parliament never made me so hungry. The castle literally looks like a postcard!


Lama Temple (Beijing, China)


Photo: Oamaru Life

I’m finding inner peace already. Oh wait, I’m finding the inner pieces of this compound to be delicious. But sure, peace is there, too.


The White House (Washington D.C., U.S.)


Photo: EJ Hersom

Ah, yes, The White House: post-scorching by the Brits (which is why it isn’t white in this version). If those nutcrackers are to scale, you’d hope they helped put out the fire.


The Smithsonian Castle (Washington D.C., U.S.)


Photo: Smithsonian Magazine

You better not shout, and you better not cry. Oh, and you better not eat any national treasures (we’re all looking at you, Nic Cage)!


The Guggenheim Museum (New York City)


Photo: Two Happy Stampers

This creation is stunning, but also completely unbelievable: those taxis aren’t cutting anyone off at all!


Melbourne Cricket Ground (Melbourne, Australia)


Photo: Melbourne Cricket Ground

Sometimes, you create a gingerbread cricket stadium, but stage an Aussie rules football match. Because you play by your own rules.


The Benson Hotel’s “Castle Dubendorf” (Portland, Oregon, U.S.)



Photo: The Benson Hotel

Over the moat and through the courtyard, to grandmother’s ethically-built crib we go! What an amazing masterpiece put up by The Benson Hotel to promote a Make-A-Wish toy drive.


The Empire State Building (New York City, New York, U.S.)


Photo: Le Parker Meridien 

He’s got the world on a string light, this jolly Santa Kong.


This Life-Sized Gingerbread Bank Actually Lets You Pull Out Money

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 10.42.08 AM

If you think banks just focus on taking your money and sending you junk mail, you’re selling them short because sometimes they think about building giant gingerbread houses.

Using 5,000 pounds of gingerbread, 12 bakers and 6 months of prep-work, PNC Bank built a life-sized Gingerbread branch in Philadelphia.

From December 4-6, PNC opened the bank to the public handing out hot chocolate and letting customers pull out money from their cookie-covered ATM machine.


Supposedly, it was in celebration of the “Christmas Price Index,” but a more accurate answer would probably be that it just sounded cool.

All in all, the bakers used 3,000 pounds of flour, 1,000 pounds of shortening, 1,000 pounds of molasses, 50 pounds of cinnamon, 50 pounds of ginger, 25 pounds of cloves, 40 pounds of baking soda. That’s over 5,000 pounds of ingredients, which is the average weight of a white rhino.

Bredenbeck’s Bakery in Philadelphia were the masterminds that baked this thing for PNC, using 12 of their bakers and pastry artists to skillfully craft the giant building. Somehow they figured out the right mix of ingredients to let this thing hold up, regardless of winter weather and hungry children eager to munch on the walls.

I’m fully behind this. Gingerbread anything you can get your hands on.

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 10.41.30 AM


This Gingerbread TARDIS Probably Tastes Timey-Wimey


via That’s Nerdalicious


Literal Gingerbread House


Picthx Nerdalicious


World’s Largest Gingerbread House Uses 7,200 Eggs and 22,304 Candy Pieces


As a kid, I never got why Hansel and Gretel were so easily tricked by a gigantic sugar caked, artery clogging house in the middle of the woods, but now I understand.  Thanks to volunteers from A&M Texas Traditions Club,  we have the world’s largest gingerbread house, which is big enough to actually be a home. Using 7,200 eggs, 22,304 pieces of candy, a ton of butter, and 36 million calories later, this genius was built.  The construction of this house was done as a charity event for the trauma program at St. Joseph Hospital, and they have raised over 150k from the 600 customers that come each day. The sugary bememoth is open until December 14, 2013 and has set the Guinness World Record for largest gingerbread house.

I don’t know what it is about the winter that makes people want to build structures in its honor, but this season we’ve also seen the world largest gingerbread village. Let’s keep it up people! Before New Years I want to see the first gingerbread city.

H/T DesignTaxi


This is What the World’s Largest Gingerbread Village Looks Like

Ginger Village

Every child with a sweet tooth dreamt of living in a gingerbread world at some point. There’s something magical about all the candy, icing and cookies that just screams Christmas. Thanks to New York Chef Jon Lovitch, the world came just a little closer to that dream.

Lovitch created the world’s largest edible gingerbread village, according to Fox News. Consisting of 152 hours, 65 candy trees, 5 trains and an underground subway station, it was certified last week by the Guinness Book of World Records. The village was made from homemade candy and custom-made gingerbread and has a final weight of 1.5 tons. Lovitch started this massive project in February early this year, baking all the pieces in his apartment. All the parts were stored at his home until they were moved to the New York Hall of Science to assemble the final product.


There are surprisingly only three main components to the village: 2,240 pounds of icing, 400 pounds of candy and 500 pounds of gingerbread dough. The final product ended up costing Lovitch a few thousand dollars, though he didn’t specify exactly how much.

The world’s largest edible gingerbread village will be on display until Jan. 12; afterwards, visitors will be able to take home a piece of the village as a souvenir. Though I wouldn’t recommend eating the almost year-old candy.

H/T Fox + PicThx Gingerbread Lane


Breaking Bad Gingerbread Meth Lab


Picthx Thrillist