Applesauce Cinnamon Gingerbread Garland

I love to make little gingerbread men each Christmas with my kids.  Each little gingerbread has it’s own unique look, and it’s fun to get creative with their faces and outfits.  But you have to admit, it’s kind of a bummer when they get gobbled up so quickly, and all that’s left of your hard work are a few little crumbs scattered on the plate.

So I came up with a way I can enjoy making and decorating gingerbread men, but have them last from year to year.  A gingerbread garland, made out of that classic mixture of applesauce and cinnamon.  Instead of icing and sprinkles, I used white paint and tiny beads.  And I love the result! These are not edible!  Please do not eat, they are for decoration only.

Here’s how you can make some of your own!
* White fine-tipped craft paint (mine was fabric paint and it worked perfectly)
* Clear or white glitter or tiny beads (optional- My glitter somehow disappeared, so I improvised and used some tiny clear beads I had, and they worked really well)

* Jute, string, yarn, or ribbon (to string the garland)
* A straw (to poke the holes in the arms)


1.  Make the applesauce cinnamon dough using the recipe and steps found here.  I love this recipe because it not only has LOTS of cinnamon in it, but it also includes cloves, allspice, and nutmeg, and smells DIVINE.  I doubled the recipe so I couldhave extras for the kids to decorate.

And here’s a little lifesaving tip- When you are using your cookie cutter, add a layer of plastic wrap to the top, and then cut with your cookie cutter OVER the plastic.  This gives you a nice rounded puffy gingerbread man, instead of a flat one with sharp sides.  Follow the directions to bake, but make sure that you use a straw to poke a hole in each arm before you bake it.  Make sure that your gingerbread men are REALLY hard, because if not, they could crumble.  Mine took longer than the directions said, but it all depends on the humidity, etc.

2. Once your cookies are out of the oven and cooled, use the white paint to decorate your cookies.  Sprinkle glitter or tiny clear beads on the wet paint, and gently shake off the excess.  Let paint dry, and then string gingerbread together using string, jute, ribbon, or yarn.

You can keep this garland from year to year if you are careful with it.  Wrap it in tissue paper when storing it, and it can last indefinitely.

Happy baking!!  So what is your favorite thing to bake during the holidays?  I’ll be sharing my favorite cookie recipe soon, as well as many other fun holiday ideas, so be sure to check back often!

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XO, Laura

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