KIDS PAGE: How to Make a Holiday Gingerbread House

Sue Kamins and her holiday gingerbread house
Sue Kamins and her holiday gingerbread house

Meet our friend, Sue Kamins, a retired elementary school teacher in Pacific Palisades – and gingerbread house expert. She stopped by the Palisadian-Post to teach us how to make our own gingerbread houses. Now it’s your turn!

Making a gingerbread house is a great way to get in the holiday spirit – and a tasty one too. With your parent, or an adult you trust, follow these simple steps to build the sweet house of your dreams.

You will need the following:

Square piece of foam board or thick cardboard (for the base)


1 lb. box of powdered sugar

3 egg whites

¾ teaspoon of Crème of Tartar (not tartar sauce!)

½ cup of granulated sugar

Graham crackers

Pretzel sticks

Candies for decorating (candy canes, mini marshmallows and gumdrops work great)

Step 1

Cover your foam board or cardboard square with tin foil. This will create the base for your gingerbread house.

Step 2

Ask an adult to help you with this step. Heat the granulated sugar in a saucepan on low heat. Once it has melted, it will look like clear glue. Ask an adult to dip the edges of your graham crackers into the sugar glue to build your gingerbread house. Warning: Be sure they wear rubber gloves and be very careful because the sugar will be hot!

Step 3

With the help of an adult, use an electric mixer to combine the powdered sugar, egg whites and crème of tartar together in a large bowl. Mix for three to four minutes, or until the icing is as thick as toothpaste.

Step 4

Spread a thin layer of frosting on the bottom of your gingerbread house to stick into the base you made earlier.

Step 5

This is the really fun part! Using the frosting, decorate your house with all of your favorite candies. You might want to make a path leading up to the house, build some candy trees or even a whole candy garden! It is up to you to make your gingerbread house look exactly the way you want it.

Step 6

Once you have decorated your house with all of your favorite treats, let it sit for two hours until the icing has dried and is hard.

Step 7

Make sure to keep in the holiday spirit of helping others by doing your part to clean up the mess.

Step 8

Take a photo of yourself with your gingerbread house to send to the Palisadian-Post at Try to get a photo before you eat the whole thing!