Peppermint cookies are cookies whose main ingredients are mint extract and crushed peppermint candies. There are typically only a few basic ingredients needed for the basic recipe, but making different varieties requires adding one or more, such as cocoa powder. Extra crushed peppermint pieces are usually added on top as a decorative touch and as an extra kick of flavor. Although the cookies can be made year-round, they are usually made during the winter months, especially around the holidays. There are many cookie shapes to make that complement the main ingredient.
The basic peppermint cookies recipe includes mainly typical cookie ingredients. The two stand-out ingredients are crushed peppermint and mint extract. Dry ingredients include flour, brown sugar, salt, baking soda and white sugar. Milk, eggs, butter and vanilla extract are also necessary. Considering some have an aversion to a strong flavor of peppermint, adjust the amount of extract according to preference and only add a few pieces of crushed peppermint on top as decoration.
Adding one or more additional ingredients creates different varieties of peppermint cookies. For chocolate peppermint cookies, add unsweetened chocolate into the mix. To get a chocolate pecan variety, add cocoa powder and crushed pecans. Revamp two finished cookies by putting melted chocolate in between them to create a larger single cookie.
Mint extract is added into the recipe for peppermint cookies, and although some add crushed peppermint candy into the recipe as well, it's usually added only on top of finished cookies as a garnish. Peppermint, vanilla or chocolate icing also makes a flavorful and decorative touch. Depending on the recipe, some may add dark chocolate chips, white chocolate chips or crushed walnuts.
The cookies are delicious year-round, but due to the popularity of candy canes around Christmas, they're often made around the end-of-year holidays. Some make them before Christmas to enjoy before or on the holiday while others make them before the new year. Early January is also a popular time for these recipes considering how many people are trying to find additional uses for leftover candy canes.
Round cookies are great, but certain cookie shapes can help complement the peppermint ingredients and make them even better. Make candy cane shaped cookies with a cookie cutter; use extra dough to make a bow shape on the candy cane and color it in with green icing after it bakes. Another option is to use a cookie cutter shaped like a peppermint hard candy. Both options are ideal when baking cookies to give as gifts or for a party.