The Chew’s Foolproof Gingerbread House

Are you ready to create your own holiday masterpiece? Thanks to our friends at ABC’s The Chew for this easy-to-follow guide to building your own gingerbread house.

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Servings: 4–6
15 to 30 minutes

Royal Icing:
1 pound confectioners’ sugar (plus additional for dusting)
3 tablespoons meringue powder
3/4 cups water

To Decorate:
1 store-bought gingerbread house
1–2 teaspoons blue food coloring
1–2 teaspoons red food coloring
1/2 cup store-bought chocolate frosting
1 1-pound bag chocolate nonpareils with white pearls
1 7-ounce bag jelly beans
1 13-ounce bag gumdrops
4 candy canes

Step-by-Step Directions

  1. For the Royal Icing: In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat together the sugar and meringue powder until combined. Add the water and beat at a medium speed until very glossy and stiff peaks form. Check for consistency of the icing; dip a spoon into the icing, the icing should fall off the spoon, forming ribbons, and settle into a flat surface again after 15 seconds. If the icing is too thick, add more water; if it’s too thin, add more confectioners’ sugar. Once you have found the correct consistency, divide the icing into thirds. Place two of the three thirds into medium bowls and remove the final third of the icing to a piping bag and snip the tip off.
  2. In one of the bowls with icing, stir blue food coloring until combined. In the remaining bowl of icing stir in the red food coloring. Using a spatula, remove both icings to individual piping bags and snip the tips.
  3. Place the chocolate icing in a piping bag and snip the tip.
  4. Pipe the white royal icing onto the roof of the gingerbread house. Place the nonpareils on top of the icing in rows, creating shingles.
  5. Pipe the blue icing all over the sides of the gingerbread house, leaving the door and windows bare. Even out the icing with a small offset spatula.
  6. Pipe the red icing on the door of the gingerbread house and smooth out icing with small offset spatula.
  7. Trace the outsides of the windows with the chocolate icing, leaving the insides bare. Pipe a cross pattern in the middle of each window frame.
  8. Using the remaining white icing in the piping bag, on the edge of the roof pipe strands of white icing from the top of the roof downwards to create icicles.
  9. Use the white icing to attach gumdrops and candy canes to decorate the house!


  • Crush up the candy canes and add the crumbles to give your gingerbread house a frosted, textured look!

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