Once upon a time, in Germany, the first gingerbread houses were built after bakers were inspired by the Brothers Grimm tale, Hansel and Gretel. Since that time, gingerbread house designs have exploded with popularity. Some gingerbread houses are not houses at all, but some have intricate architectural designs inside and out, more like a home with electricity. Here are some of the best gingerbread houses ever created. We hope you enjoy these 32 astounding architectural designs of gingerbread houses.
Historical Newfoundland Home
(image credits:Rock Recipes)
For some families, constructing a gingerbread house is a family tradition. This house was inspired by the winner of the Newfoundland Historic award. The original house is believed to have been designed by W.F. Butler, famed for designing many grand Queen Ann Revival Style homes. The intricate details on this gingerbread house are astounding.
This Old House
(image credits:This Old House,This Old House,Top Tenz)
The Victorian gingerbread house in the upper left took two months to create and is a replica of the Carson mansion in Eureka, California. The pink Victorian Christmas house was another winner in This Old House gingerbread house contest. Townhouses are another popular gingerbread major undertaking that pleases contest judges. Mansions and Victorian creations are wildly popular undertakings, even when they are blue.
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This is a replica of Winchester Mystery House, a Victorian mansion and architectural marvel in San Jose, California. The real house, unlike most homes of its era, was a 160-room Victorian mansion that had modern heating and sewer systems, gas lights that operated by pressing a button, three working elevators, and 47 fireplaces. From rambling roofs and exquisite hand inlaid parquet floors, to the gold and silver chandeliers and Tiffany art glass windows, you will be impressed by the staggering amount of creativity, energy, and expense poured into each and every detail. The same holds true for the edible version.
Various Shapes and Sizes
(image credits:Cottage in the Making,Top Tenz)
Most gingerbread masterpieces are replicas of actual architecture, made with great patience and an eye for detail. What makes them so sweet is not sugar, honey, or even icing. It is the amount of love that goes into the project, from designing the house, to baking the gingerbread, to putting it all together for hours, weeks, sometimes months.
Unusual Shaped Gingerbread Houses
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Not all gingerbread houses resemble a house. The top candy house is gingerbread but not warm and fuzzy with happy cheer. Enchanted lighthouse, complete with gingerbread mermaid and candy sea creatures was among the winners in a contest. The old mill house was another winner. The tree house, called Forever Autumn won the grand prize. There is no limit to what can be created in gingerbread house fashion, even Noah’s Ark.
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Castles are magnificent architecture. Gingerbread castles are equally as marvelous, edible too even if rarely is such a creation eaten. The Sugar Castle, displayed in the historic Westin St. Francis hotel in San Francisco, took over 400 hours to create and was modeled after European architecture. Some of these castles were National Gingerbread House competition winners, but we think they are all winners.
Lighted Detail of Victorian Rowhouse
(image credits:This Old House)
Family tradition in baking gingerbread houses tend to make each house grander than the year before. This house was inspired by the winner of the Newfoundland Historic award. The original house is believed to have been designed by W.F. Butler, famed for designing many grand Queen Ann Revival Style homes. The intricate details on this gingerbread house are astounding. It took about 60 hours to complete this fantastic Victorian Rowhouse.
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Some bakers set their eye on a high prize, so large and impressive it could only be the White House. Most of these fabulous creations go on to win prizes. Some don’t look like they were created from gingerbread, but each one was. The ones turned from obvious gingerbread to a lighter house took the white in White House quite literally.
2008 White House
This lighted wonder was a 2008 grand prize winner. Yes, it is made of gingerbread but this grand work of art will not be consumed as food. In fact, it might even have Secret Service protecting it.
(image credits:Disney Parks, raphaelson)
Disney never does anything on a small scale. Their 16 foot high gingerbread house even has a store inside of it. What do they sell? Gingerbread of course. This Disney house took 600 pounds of sugar, 800 pounds of flour and over 3,000 egg whites. Disney also created a carousel made of gingerbread and chocolate. To top it off, this merry-go-round actually works.