Healthier Gingerbread Decorating (Kind Of!) The holidays are a time of indulgence, and we get it; we love tasty baked goods just as much as the next person. However, it’s important to remember that too many sugary things can be far from sweet when it comes to your health. In fact, too much sugar is linked to everything from hypertension, to an increased risk of diabetes, to depression and stiffened arteries.

So, what’s a holiday junkie to do when one of their favorite winter sweets is based around sugar? Let’s take a look at a work-around with this family classic: the gingerbread house.

Sugar Swap Out!

Gingerbread decorating is a holiday staple—fun for kids and, let’s be real, fun for adults too! Here are some healthy substitutes to consider once you’ve baked (or bought) your edible holiday house. And remember, it’s all about moderation!

Healthy Decorations

  • Gift IconDried cranberries, oranges, raspberries, blueberries
  • Gift IconPecans, walnuts and almonds
  • Gift IconDark chocolate chips (in moderation!)
  • Gift IconSunflower or pumpkin seeds
  • Gift IconBanana chips
  • Gift IconCoconut flakes
  • Gift IconDried strawberry strips
  • Gift IconSteel-cut oats
  • Gift IconPopcorn
  • Gift IconFresh thyme

Bonus: From Scratch Substitutes


If you’re making your gingerbread from scratch, remember: organic, unrefined coconut oil makes an excellent substitute for butter, and almond flour can work instead of regular flour (as long as you up your binding agent, like your eggs!)