How to Make a Gingerbread Sensory Bin for Simple Holiday Fun!

Our Gingerbread sensory bin is so simple and so cute! Using some white rice, some ingredients from the cabinet, and a few holiday candies I made this super fun invitation to play and it went over wonderfully!

a pin with two images that show a gingerbread sensory bin. One image is an overview showing the tray with the rice, cinnamon sticks and sensory bin tools the other is a close-up of a gingerbread man candy.
A pin that reads gingerbread man sensory bin and has four images on it. One is a close up of the gingerbread candies, one is a styled shot of the tools, one is an overview of the sensory bin, and the other shows a close up of the sprinkles, gingerbread men, and cinnamon sticks

A Gingerbread Sensory Bin for some simple Holiday fun! 

With the holiday season upon us I wanted to find a way to work some seasonal fun into our sensory play. There are lots of red and green sensory bins out there and plenty of candy canes but I wasn’t finding anything that really spoke to me and then I stumbled upon the CUTEST little gingerbread candies and I knew that was it!

an overhead shot of the gingerbread sensory bin with three bowls of extras to add to the gingerbread rice. as well as three tools, and a sugar and creamer set for pouring

Gingerbread Sensory Bin Supplies

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an overview of the setup gingerbread sensory bin. with the cinnamon sticks, sprinkles, and gingerbread men all mixed into the rice and the tolls scattered around.

How to make Gingerbread Rice with simple ingredients from the pantry!

I wanted to take the white rice a little more interesting, so I tried adding some spices and a touch of vanilla to make it really smell like gingerbread! 

I went with Cinnamon, All Spice, Nutmeg and Vanilla. 

Pour  6 cups of rice into a ziplock bag then I added ½ TBSP of cinnamon, ¼ TBSP All Spice, ¼ TBSP Nutmeg. Honestly, you can eyeball it and just use whatever you want. Then pour ½ TBSP vanilla and ½ TBSP water into the bag. Seal and Shake shake shake!

a toddler playing in a gingerbread sensory bin placing sprinkles as the buttons on a gingerbread man

It smells amazing and the vanilla dyed the rice a light tan color. Most of the spices did end up falling off the rice as they dried but they are in the bottom of the tray, so it still smells great!

an overhead shot of a toddler playing in a gingerbread rice sensory bin
a detail shot of the set up in our gingerbread sensory bin. Using rice sented as gingerbread as the filler and sprinkles and cinnamon sticks mixed in. There are also gingerbread man candies scattered around as well as a gingerbread man cookie cutter and a couple other little tools and a creamer and sugar bowl for pouring

How to Set up a Gingerbread Sensory Bin

Our Gingerbread sensory bin an open-ended sensory bin if ever there was one. Just some tools, a few manipulatives, and a fun filler!

What really sets the stage for this sensory bin is the sprinkles and gingerbread man candies! The jar of sprinkles that I picked up had the little red balls mixed in with the gingerbread men and I didn’t mind so they went it the bin as well. The set of gingerbread man candies also came with the brown candy stick so I added one of them just for fun. 

a toddler practicing with some wooden tongs in the gingerbread sensory bin

For tools I chose some tongs that would be perfect for the tiny gingerbread sprinkles, a small scoop, and a rice spoon. Both of these pose a challenge for her as one is quite small and the other is flat so it doesn’t hold the rice well. Then I added some wooden bowls and sugar and creamer set for pouring.

a pin that reads gingerbread sensory bin and shows a close up of a gingerbread man candy

Gingerbread Sensory Bins are super easy to customize!

The gingerbread sprinkles should be easy enough to find BUT the little candy gingerbread men might be a little tougher. 

Taking that into mind it would be SO simple to replace them with actual gingerbread men cookies or you could make ones out of felt or paint little wooden ones. Honestly, there are tons of options for the gingerbread men!

Share your Gingerbread Sensory Bins with Me!

This was a super simple way to add a little extra Christmas cheer into our Monday and It would be a great idea to add to your elf activities or advent calendar! If you do make a Gingerbread sensory bin I would LOVE to see what you do!

a pin that reads easy DIY gingerbread sensory bin with an image of the sensory bin behind it.

Tag me on Instagram and share your Gingerbread sensory bins. I feel like there are so many different ways you could alter this one to make it work with what you have on hand!

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