Gingerbread row houses are so simple, making them terrific for little hands and family group projects! I can’t really help wondering how I didn’t try the idea out sooner. Why go to the headache of making it 3D when all kids care about is the decorating and copious amounts of candy?!
Traditions and Frustrations
We have our annual tradition with the cousins to make gingerbread houses and eat heaps of candy. I get why, especially to avid bakers and creators, pulling out all the stops and making an old school 3D gingerbread house is cool. And there is definitely a time and place for that! But nothing frustrates and brings on the (possibly sugar induced) tears like trying to get a gingerbread house to stand and set, while holding approximately 5 pounds of candy, within a kid’s limited attention span. So why not have everyone just decorate the front and create a whole row of homes or your own little neighbourhood?!
The Best of Both Worlds
It is the best of both worlds!! It also means that no special equipment or cookie cutters are actually required. The shapes can be done freehand. Making them as simple or complicated as desired. And it works equally well in both traditional gingerbread and sugar cookie options.
It also makes a gingerbread decorating party all the more feasible and fun.
It’s All in the Set Up
I suggest setting up ahead of time. Lots of little bowls for candies and toppings. Toothpicks. Icing and piping bags. Or small ziplocks with a tiny hole in one corner for icing.
Making Gingerbread Row Houses
As for making the actual houses. I rolled out large sheets of both gingerbread cookie dough and sugar cookie dough separately to an even 1/4 inch thickness. Then I cut out my shapes free hand with similar proportions and sizes for even cooking and uniformity. If you are worried about straight lines, try using a clean ruler and sharp knife. Then carefully transfer with a floured spatula to a parchment lined baking sheet. After they bake, allow them to cool on a cookie rack completely, before setting them out for decorating.
I loved seeing everyone’s ideas and different takes on decorating. There are countless possibilities that come from these row houses. I love that they can be made bigger or smaller and that both the kids and adults had a blast!
Why not check out my sugar cookie house post for more inspiration!