For most people, building a gingerbread house is a family activity to keep children busy during Christmas break. You glue together slabs of gingerbread cookie with frosting, and add more frosting to cover up the messy bits. But other people take gingerbread architecture very seriously. Here are a few who have taken the gingerbread house and made it an art form.  

1. The house from ‘Up!’

O. F. P. Bakery constructed a gingerbread house that just may float away. The mother-and-daughter project is entirely edible, except for the lights.

2. King’s Landing

You might recognize this city from the opening sequence of Game of Thrones, but this replica of King’s Landing is made of gingerbread. Food artist Michelle Wibowo built this specifically for the Taste of London food festival in 2015. You can see more pictures here, including a comparison with HBO’s vision of the city.   

3. Gingerbread greenhouse

We don’t have a lot of information about this gorgeous new gingerbread greenhouse by Instagram user @victoriaingmarie, but a Google translation of the Swedish caption indicates that this is the first gingerbread house she’s ever made. Well done! 

4. Fallingwater

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Melodie and Brenton went all out for their gingerbread house in 2010. This is a faithful recreation of the Frank Lloyd Wright home called Fallingwater. They assembled 164 pieces of gingerbread over 40 hours, along with plenty of snow frosting and water made of candy. They posted the recipes for the gingerbread and the “water,” along with plenty of pictures.  

5. Alpine castle

Food artist Christine McConnell constructed this gorgeous gingerbread castle in 2016. Every bit of it is edible, including the supports, with the exception of the lights.

6. Hogwarts

Garner Beggs and Kelsey Johnson of the Duchess Bakeshop in Edmonton, Alberta, built a gingerbread version of the entire campus of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry last year.

The 50-square-foot display was a promotion for the Bissell Centre’s sock drive. It was inspired by the Harry Potter character Dobby the house elf, who was given his freedom with a sock.

7. Gingerbread City

The Museum of Architecture in London presents an entire city of gingerbread buildings every year. Gingerbread City is on display through January 5 at Somerset House. More than 100 architects, engineers, and designers work together to create the city with a different theme each year. This year’s theme is “Transport,” which is evident in the trains, bridges and roadways you can see in the images above. 

8. ‘The Shining’

Gingerbread Overlook Hotel from The Shining

Posted by on Sunday, December 11, 2016

What you see here is a faithful reproduction of the Overlook Hotel from the movie The Shining, made of gingerbread and lots of other food. Yes, it’s entirely edible!

Imgur user agkeeling and his family do an elaborate gingerbread project every year, and they pulled out all the stops for this one. The famous maze is made of Rice Krispy Treats, the roof texture comes from quinoa, and the windows are Jolly Rancher candies. Several of the windows lead to meticulously-constructed dioramas inside, depicting scenes from the film. Even the carpet and wallpaper was printed on edible paper! See a gallery of pictures that take you on a delicious tour of the classic horror movie.  

9. Imperial Star Destroyer

Gingerbread art doesn’t necessarily have to be a house. Star Bakery in Sweden made a model of an Imperial Star Destroyer from the Star Wars movies out of gingerbread for Christmas 2017. It’s not quite life size, but it is pretty big.

The spaceship was photographed on display at the office of the video game company DICE in Stockholm. You can see more pictures of this masterpiece here.

10. Alien Xenomorph

Oslo artist Caroline Eriksson used gingerbread to bring the terrifying xenomorph from the Alien movie series to life in 2018. It’s half as big as the movie alien, which is huge for a gingerbread sculpture. In past years, Eriksson has crafted gingerbread versions of Darth Vader, Smaug, and Optimus Prime. We can’t wait to see what she’ll do for Christmas 2019! 

11. The White House (and other American landmarks)

For Christmas at the White House this year, the theme is “The Spirit of America.” Gingerbread creations include Mount Rushmore, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Gateway Arch, the Space Needle, the Statue of Liberty, the Alamo and the White House itself.

The White House pastry team used 200 pounds of gingerbread dough, 125 pounds of pastillage dough, 35 pounds of chocolate and 25 pounds of royal icing.