For years we have made candy houses for a christmas craft and decoration. Just like traditional gingerbread houses ours are decorated with candy, cookies and royal icing but I dont have to sweat building the structure. Our candy houses are built with a sturdy cardboard box base. Juice boxes, milk cartons, cake boxes and other small boxes are perfect to use as long as the cardboard is not too thin because it has to hold alot of weight from the icing and candy. Its a super easy craft that lets kids jump right in and build their Sugarplum Dream House without fear of the house breaking. And most importantly the sky is the limit when you are using cardboard….every year we do a skyscraper!
The only tricky part of this craft is the getting the correct consistently with the royal icing. You need it to be thick and full of meringue powder to dry quickly holding the candy pieces in place. I work the boxes on their side, one side at a time, so there is some drying time involved before you can complete one house. This craft will take a few hours. We usually build entire villages and display them as sets on separate cake boards or I arrange them on cake plates.
We have hosted Candy House Parties and asked that everyone bring 2 bags of candy and a few boxes. The more variety the more creative you can be, but some candys are a must. Definately pick up M&M’s, pepermints, gumdrops, Neco waffers and graham crackers. Creating additional trees from gumdrop covered styrofoam cones or paper can turn a few houses into a village scene. Dont forget the paths, mailboxes, lamp posts and ponds and add Schleich animals or Lego men to inhabit the village. My favorite part of this craft is it is one that I let go of my perfectionist tendency and just let the kids create, our houses never look like a storybook gingerbread house and I dont mind a bit because its candy and no matter how they turn out they always look colorful and fun.
Dont miss my favorite Winter Candy Craft, Sugar Cube Igloos here.