This article originally appeared on SouthernLiving.com.
On November 21, gingerbread artists from near and far gathered at The Omni Grove Park Inn in Asheville, North Carolina to participate in the 24th annual National Gingerbread House Competition. With more than 150 entrants from across the U.S. and Canada vying for a chance at the $8,500 grand prize (and at $22,000 worth of assorted prizes), the competition was steep and the bounty was, well… sweet. Ultimately, it was Beatriz Müller of Innisfil, Ontario whose stunning gingerbread mansion (above) earned her the top spot. Seriously, would you look at that detail!
Each gingerbread creation was judged on overall appearance, originality/creativity, difficulty, precision and consistency of theme, and needed to be at least 75 percent gingerbread. An elite panel of judges included pastry chefs, artists and media experts, including the nutritionist for NBC’s “The Biggest Loser,” a curator from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, instructor and co-owner of International Sugar Art Collection, the author of “Making Great Gingerbread Houses” and others.
Scroll down to see the rest of the incredible gingerbread houses that topped this year’s field and try to keep your jaw from dropping.
Adult second place winner Glenda Tant of Lebanon, TN
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Adult third place winner Linda Carney of Asheville, NC
Adult top 10 finalist Jessica Isaacson of Pelzer, SC
Adult top 10 finalist Billie Mochow of Burns TN
Adult top 10 finalist Team Gingerhorse of Burlington, NC
Adult top 10 finalist Gail Oliver of Johnson City, TN
Adult top 10 finalist Suzanne Kanaly of Liberty Township, OH
Adult top 10 finalist Meghan Morris of Apex, NC
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Adult top 10 finalist Heather Haynes of Clarksville, IN