Build your very own delicious domicile with this free printable gingerbread house template and recipe! Download your gingerbread house template PDFs and get the recipe below.
One of the best parts of the holiday season is the traditions, especially those that have been passed down from generation to generation like trimming the tree, writing letters to Santa, and baking Christmas cookies.
One tradition that’s always depicted in holiday television shows and movies that looks fun but in reality seems a bit challenging is building gingerbread houses! (I mean, there’s literally a Food Network show called Gingerbread Showdown, so there has to be some level of difficulty involved, right?)
If you’ve always wanted to build a gingerbread house with your family, here’s your chance. The gingerbread house template printable PDF in this post will help you create a structurally sound building and the recipe will help you create a tasty one! 😉
Bonus: This is a free gingerbread house template PDF. In other words the price is right for this time of the year!
While this post contains a gingerbread house recipe and template, let’s start with the pieces of the template before getting into the ingredients you’ll need to snag and finally the step-by-step instructions.
Printable Gingerbread House Template PDF
First you have the front and back of the printable gingerbread house template which are pretty straightforward. Don’t worry about them looking “plain.” Once you get through adding all of your delicious decorations this gingerbread house will look almost too good to eat!
The sides of the cardboard gingerbread house template printable PDF have a lot of windows, which are excellent for letting in natural light. All that natural light is great for resell value should the gingerbread family occupying this house want to change neighborhoods. However, if you want fewer windows, just skip cutting some out; you’re the builder here!
Once in place, the roof of the free gingerbread house template will create nice high vaulted ceilings. Trust me, this is going to be a prime piece of gingerbread real estate! (I wonder what the school rating is….) 😉
And of course, there has to be a chimney as part of the paper gingerbread house template printable PDF! How else could the gingerbread family stay cozy and toasty during the holiday season? Okay, now that we’ve briefly reviewed this free gingerbread house template, let’s talk about what else you’ll need.
Free Gingerbread House Template Printable PDF and Recipe Ingredients
In addition to the paper gingerbread house template PDF, you’ll need:
- 3 egg whites
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
Gingerbread House Ingredients:
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon ground ginger
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 cup molasses
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Gingerbread House Candy:
You’ll need some candy with which to decorate the house you’re building using the printable gingerbread house template. Some possible options are:
- Round hard candies, like peppermints
- Candy canes, regular size and minis
- Marshmallows, regular and minis
- Licorice twists
- Shredded coconut, to use as snow
Gingerbread House Recipe and Template
Okay, now that you’ve got your gingerbread house template printable PDF and your ingredients, let’s talk recipe!
Make the Dough:
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the softened butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
Add the egg to the butter-sugar mixture and beat well. Then, add the molasses and vanilla extract, mixing until combined.
Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until a dough forms. Divide the dough into two equal portions, shape them into disks, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until firm.
Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C).
Roll out each portion of dough on a lightly floured surface to about 1/4 inch thickness.
Cut out the desired shapes for your gingerbread house using templates or a gingerbread house cookie cutter. Transfer the shapes to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the edges are lightly browned. Allow the gingerbread pieces to cool completely before assembling the house. While you wait for your gingerbread pieces to cool, you can have fun decorating these Free Printable Christmas Gingerbread House Coloring Pages (PDF Downloads).
Make Gingerbread House Pieces:
Print your printable gingerbread house template pieces and cut them out. Tip: You will want to either print these gingerbread house template PDFs on thick paper or trace the pieces onto cardboard.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Cover a flat surface, like your kitchen counter with parchment paper and sprinkle lightly with flour.
Roll out dough to an even 1/4 inch thickness.
Use the cardboard or paper gingerbread house template pieces to cut out shapes from the dough.
Place the gingerbread house pieces on cookie sheets.
Once on the cookie sheet, you can cut out doors or windows OR you can wait and do this once you’ve taken the pieces out of the oven but while they are still warm.
Bake 6 to 15 minutes depending on the sizes of the pieces; you want the edges to just slightly darken.
Remove from the oven and trim pieces while they are still warm. To do this, just place the free gingerbread house template pieces over top of the baked gingerbread and trim the dough to fit.
Cool pieces on a rack.
1. Make the royal icing by using a clean, dry bowl to beat the egg whites until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating until soft peaks form.
2. Gradually add the powdered sugar, beating on low speed until the icing is smooth and glossy. You may need to adjust the consistency by adding more powdered sugar or water until you reach the desired thickness.
3. Add royal icing to a pastry bag.
4. Pick a solid base, such as a piece of thick cardboard, for your gingerbread house.
5. Line the base with wax paper or aluminum foil.
6. Pipe a thick line of icing along the short edge of a side piece, and press the iced side edge against the edge of either the front or back piece.
7. Hold in place for a few minutes until the icing begins to set.
8. Repeat with the other side.
9. Pipe icing along the seams, inside and outside to add visual interest and stability.
10. Pipe icing along the bottom edges of the house, where it meets the base.
11. Let sit for at least an hour before adding the roof.
12. To do the roof, pipe icing all along the top edges (all of the top edges—front, back, and both sides).
13. Attempt to place both roof pieces on top at once so they rest against each other. Hold in place gently for a few minutes until the icing starts to set.
14. Pipe icing along the roof seam.
15. Let the house stand for at least an hour before decorating.
16. Use icing to mortar on the chimney.
Bonus: While you can use candy to decorate your gingerbread house and the surrounding “yard,” here are a few templates that may also come in handy:
What candy will you use to decorate your printable gingerbread house template PDF? Please share in the comments