By Kelley Lindberg
|My niece's creation from a Christmas past.|
It’s that time of year when gingerbread houses and gingerbread men (and their assorted wives, children, neighbors, dogs, and lawn furnishings) make their appearance. Traditional gingerbread recipes are full of common allergens, so I updated my list from last year of allergy-safe recipes for those days when you have entirely way too much creative energy and time on your hands. (Yeah, right. We can all hope.)
If you’re in the mood to bake up some festive architecture or the ginger-folk that live there, here are a few places to jumpstart your allergy-free baking frenzy:
- Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies from Kids with Food Allergies (free from the Big 8)
- Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies from Eating with Food Allergies (free from the Big 8)
- Gluten-free Gingerbread House Frosting from Kids with Food Allergies (free from the Big 8)
- You can order a baking mix for Jules Gluten-Free Graham Cracker-Gingersnap baking mix (free from the Big 8). You can also order a Gingerbread House Making Kit from Jules, which includes the baking mix, cookie cutters, and cardboard base, and instructions.
- Don’t need to be gluten-free? Here’s a recipe for StorybookGingerbread Men using regular flour, but free from the other Big 7, from allrecipes.com.
If you don’t have time for baking, but still feel compelled to glue candy to a house (and who doesn’t?), here are a couple of fantastic no-bake options:
- The Candy Cottage snap-together plastic gingerbread house lets you add your favorite icing and candy without the time-consuming baking. Nice! You can even wash off the decorations and use it again next year. Many thanks to Michelle Fogg (UFAN’s fearless president) for finding this one last year.
- Sensitive Sweets' Allergy-free Gingerbread House Kit uses pre-baked gingerbread pieces, and you can order it with or without allergy-free candy from Surf Sweets. The kit is free from nuts, gluten, soy, egg, and dairy. Cool, hunh?
Looking for safe candy to use for decorations? Depending on your allergens (check all labels for ingredients), try Necco wafers, Chex cereal or Frosted mini-wheats for roofing, Smarties (I like to stack them, wrappers and all, to look like firewood or logs on a gingerbread train car), Dum-Dums, Spangler’s candy canes, Bob’s Sweet Stripes Soft Mint Candies (red & white peppermints), Bakers & Chefs Starlight Mints, Skittles, Starburst, your favorite safe fruit snacks and fruit roll-ups, Haribo gummy bears, Jolly Ranchers, Hot Tamales, Mike & Ikes, Dots, Life Savers, rock candy, candy sticks (those swirly candy sticks that they used to sell in general stores – maybe the ones at Cracker Barrel are safe?), or sticks of safe chewing gum.
Enjoy your new Home Sweet Gingerbread Home!