8 tips to hosting a chaos-free gingerbread house party
I love a good gingerbread house party, but if you’ve got kids, sometimes it can become a bit chaotic. That’s why I’ve created a fail-proof list of tips to make the entire party a success. So take a look!
So, we have four little boys. Every year when we make gingerbread houses, it never fails that I have four kids asking for my help at the same time. I felt like it was a night full of chaos, tears and frustration. But this year, our gingerbread house party was going to be different. With a few small changes, our party ended up being super fun and frustration-free. Here’s what we did.
Tip #1: Assign guests to bring some candy
There are tons of different candies you can buy for your party but it can get expensive. If you are having guests come to your party, ask them to bring a bag or two of candy. Don’t limit yourself to items just in the candy aisle. There’s tons of different candies you can buy to make your gingerbread houses sugar-packed. Here’s some fun candy suggestions:
- Fruit by the foot
- Vanilla wafers
- Gummy bears
- Mini candy canes
- Pretzel sticks
- Andes mints
- Chocolate balls
- Hershey’s kisses
- Sugar cones
- Twizzlers pull n’ peel
- Twizzlers nibs
- Melted Jolly Ranchers (for ponds and windows)
- Gum drops
- Cinnamon Imperials
- Spearmint wedges
- Santa candies
- Cinnamon bears
- Tootsie rolls
- Mike & Ikes
- Holiday sprinkles
- Starbursts Minis
- Fruit leather
- Cracker Jacks
- Coconut flakes
- Christmas nougats
- Life savers
- Dum dums
- Reese’s Christmas trees
- Christmas candy corn
- Peppermint rounds
- Christmas gummy rings
- Old fashioned Christmas hard candy
- Peanut brittle
- Rice Krispy Treats
- Milk duds
- Sweet Tarts ropes
- Peppermint bark
- Christmas nougats
- York Peppermint Patties
- Tic Tacs
- Teddy Grahams
Tip #2: Separate candy into bags for each child
If you place all of the candy out on the table, sometimes it become a free-for-all. Little Tommy ends up not getting any M&Ms while Little Katie’s houses in covered with them. Avoid the tears and give each child an equal amount of everything.
Tip #3: Don’t use real gingerbread
Hosting a gingerbread house party is already a lot of work. So, don’t stress yourself out by making your own gingerbread. Sheesh! Graham crackers do the trick just fine. Or, if you want, you can buy a gingerbread house kit.
Tip #4: Use cardboard for the base
I just went through our recycle bin and cut up some old cardboard boxes. Then I just covered them with foil. That’s better than a paper plate which can be too small.
Tip #5: Assemble your houses BEFORE the party
It took me and hour and a half to assemble my kids houses before our party started. Then when we started the party, the kids could start right away on decorating their houses. It was perfect and I didn’t have four kids asking me to build their houses at the same time.
Tip #6: Glue houses together with hot glue
This is a must! Frosting takes longer to dry. Hot glue dries instantly and makes for a quick building process. Just make sure you have enough hot glue sticks because you’ll use a lot. Plus, we didn’t have one gingerbread house fall over the entire night. Success!
Tip #7: Use the right royal frosting recipe
You’ll still need frosting to glue all of the candy to your houses. But not all recipes are created equal. You need a thick royal frosting recipe that dries quickly. I found the perfect recipe that only calls for cream of tartar, powdered sugar and eggs white. We had eight gingerbread houses and I quadrupled this recipe. And make sure you make the frosting ahead of time.
Tip #8: Invest in frosting bulbs for kids
Of all my tips, I would recommend buying these frosting bulbs the most. They are perfect for little hands and easy to use. Just fill them up, screw on the cap and start frosting. No more dealing with sandwich bags or frosting bags. These are the bomb and will make your life so much easier.
I couldn’t have been happier with the way our gingerbread house party turned out. I wasn’t frantically rushing to help each child. Everyone was able to decorate their own houses without any drama. It was wonderful. Here’s house some of our houses turned out. So cute.
All in all our party was a huge success and it will quickly become a Christmas tradition in our home. What tips and tricks do you have to hosting a fun gingerbread house party? Leave your comments below.
Related link: 15 Kids Christmas Crafts