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Gingerbread FAQs

Need some help assembling your Wilton Gingerbread House? Check out some of our frequently asked questions.

How do I get the right icing consistency?

  • Your icing should have the consistency of toothpaste. In a mixing bowl, combine the contents of the icing pouch with the appropriate quantity of water per package directions. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for 1 minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes.
  • Icing too thick? Simply add additional water, 1/2 teaspoon at a time, until you have the right consistency.
  • Icing too thin? Add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until you have the right consistency.
  • Remember that icing sets quickly, so keep your bowl covered with a damp cloth at all times to prevent drying. When you're not using the bag and tip, cover tip with a damp cloth or place in a sealed plastic bag.
  • If your icing becomes stiff and hard to pipe, you can warm it up in the microwave IF YOU ARE USING A PLASTIC DECORATING TIP. Simply place the filled bag and tip in the microwave and warm it for 5 seconds.

What do I do if I break a gingerbread panel?

  • No problem! If you crack or break a panel, just use the icing as "glue" to join the pieces. Let it set at least 1 hour, and then continue assembling and decorating.
  • Icing can be used to fill in any uneven areas, too.

How can I easily put together my gingerbread house?

Click here to view step-by-step instructions and a how-to video.
  • Be sure to start assembling your house the day before you want to decorate, so your house has plenty of time to set up and be ready for decorating.
  • Before you even begin to assemble your house, check all the pieces! As with any baked product, sometimes there may be slight shape variations in the gingerbread pieces. Look over all the pieces to be sure the edges are straight.
  • Using a ruler and a sharp knife, trim the bottom and inside edges on each piece so that they will align when assembled.
  • Now it's time to build your house! Join one side wall to one peaked wall. Pipe icing along the bottom of the side wall and along the bottom and inside of the peaked wall. Join the panels so that the side wall is positioned on the inside edge of the peaked wall. Press the sides together and attach to the base. Hold in place for several minutes until the icing begins to set.
  • You can prop the panels with cans on each side so they stay together and straight. (Remember to remove them when it's time to assemble the roof.)
  • Attach the other side wall and peaked wall in the same way. Press together, and let dry at least one hour before going to the next step.
  • You're now ready to attach the roof panels! Pipe the icing along the roof angle of both peaked wall panels and along the top side walls. Pipe icing along one long side of one roof panel. (This will be the peak of the roof.) Position one roof section, so it meets the peaked wall and side wall edges. Hold this half in place while you add the other roof section. Adjust so that each side is evenly pitched and the center seam meets. Press and hold in place several minutes to allow the icing to set. Let your house dry at least two to three hours before decorating.

Do you have any more tips on decorating my gingerbread house?

  • Use the designs on the package as a starting point for your imagination. Keep in mind that the candy colors are random and packed by weight, not by color. So, you might not have an exact number of a particular candy color piece shown on the design.
  • Part of the fun of building a gingerbread house is eating the candy, and sometimes you might find yourself needing more. Have leftover candy from Halloween? Use it for your design! Or, try the Wilton Gingerbread House Candy Assortment that contains a wonderful array of different types of candy to decorate your house.
  • Want a larger display for your house? Use a Wilton Cake Board and cover it in Fanci-Foil Wrap for a finished look.
  • Dust your decorated house with confectioners' sugar to look like snow or add shredded coconut.
  • Click here for other quick decorating ideas!

How long do gingerbread kits stay fresh?

Our gingerbread kits are freshest if used within 12 months. It is best to use the kit during the current season, but if it is not used immediately it should be stored in a cool, dry place. We are unable to guarantee the product freshness or quality if held for the next season.

If you plan to keep your decorated house or cookie kit longer than the current season, consider assembling with a hot glue gun, then cover the dried glue with icing. To further strengthen your house or cookie kit, cut cardboard pieces that are the same shape as the gingerbread pieces, then glue the gingerbread and the cardboard together prior to assembly. Remember that making gingerbread houses or cookie kits each season can be a great family tradition, so we suggest enjoying the experience with a new one each holiday.

How do I make the icing?

Locate the icing packet amount for your kit below and follow the instructions:

4 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water, 1/4 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.
6 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 1 Tbsp plus 2 tsp warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water, 1/4 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.
8 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 2 Tbsp plus 1 tsp warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water, 1/4 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.
10 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 3 Tbsp of warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water 1/2 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.
16 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 4 Tbsp plus 1 tsp warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water, 1/2 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.
20 oz. bag In a mixing bowl, combine contents of icing packet with 5 Tbsp plus 1 tsp warm water. Using an electric mixer, beat on low speed for one minute. Beat on medium speed for 2-3 minutes or until thick and smooth. Icing will not be fluffy, but will be the consistency of toothpaste. If icing is too thick, add additional water 1/2 tsp at a time. If too thin, add additional sifted confectioners' sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time.

How can I preserve a decorated gingerbread house or cookie kit?

There are several ways to preserve your gingerbread house or cookie kit.

  1. You can spray the house or cookie with crystal clear acrylic spray (purchased from a paint store).
  2. If the kit you assembled the house yourself, then reinforce the inside of the house with cardboard cut to fit the pieces and hot glue them to the inside of the gingerbread pieces. Then assemble.
Please note, if you choose to preserve your kit in the above method(s), the house or cookie will no longer be edible.

How can I store icing for the gingerbread kit if I need to finish the project the next day?

It's ideal to complete your building and decorating in one sitting since the icing is designed to dry hard. If you must hold your prepared icing, place it in a small bowl and keep covered with a damp cloth. When filled bag and tip are not in use, cover with a damp cloth and seal in a plastic bag.

Are gingerbread kits edible?

All gingerbread, candy, and icing in the kits is edible. Remember that if your gingerbread house or cookie kit is displayed for a period of time, it will lose its freshness and may no longer be in ideal condition for eating.

How should I store my gingerbread kit?

It is our recommendation that the unopened gingerbread kits be stored in a cool, dry place.

I can't find my Gingerbread Instructions. Where can I find a copy?

You've come to the right place. Just click and print. It's that easy!

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