Double Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cookies – the name says it all! Chewy chocolate chip chocolate cookies dipped in rich peppermint chocolate with crushed candy canes, these are a peppermint lovers dream!
What could be better than a chewy chocolate cookie covered in peppermint icing and THEN dipped in crushed peppermint? I can’t imagine a whole lot, really.
This time of year I do a lot of baking, and that’s quite all right with me because I thoroughly enjoy it. The actual act of baking itself though is really only half the fun for me. The rest of the fun comes from watching everyone enjoy what I make. I am a people pleaser by nature, so I love it when I can make someone happy, even if it’s just by feeding them a cookie or two.
The best part about holiday baking is making a variety of cookies and other baked goods and piling them all together on a big tray to pass around after Christmas dinner or to give to teachers, neighbors, family, and friends. What fun is the holidays if you can’t spread the cheer right?
That said, I really don’t understand why peppermint is considered just a holiday treat. I mean, I know you can get peppermint candy any time of year but it seems like baking with them is rare unless it’s an actual holiday. I think that’s sad because the flavors of chocolate and peppermint together just so happens to be one of my favorite combinations.
So, while I do hope you make these this holiday season, I also hope you continue to make them (and share them) all year long. And, quite frankly, I think you will.
HOW CAN I CUSTOMIZE THESE PEPPERMINT BARK COOKIES?
These cookie are very easy to customize, and I have done it myself a number of times. For example:
- Skip the crushed candy canes and add chocolate shavings or mini chocolate chips instead.
- Instead of candy cane kisses, use dark chocolate or milk chocolate kisses.
- Try white chocolate chips in the batter instead of milk chocolate or semi-sweet.
- Add a teaspoon of peppermint extract to the batter, exchange candy cane kisses for milk chocolate and use the crushed candy canes.
- Roll these in various colored sprinkles after you’ve dipped them in chocolate or kisses.
- Add nuts (like walnuts or slivered almonds) to the dough or as a topping.
HOW DO YOU MAKE PEPPERMINT BARK?
If you’re wondering how to make peppermint bark itself and not a cookie, you’re in luck, because I can help you with that too. You can check out my recipe for the Easiest 3 Ingredient Peppermint Bark on the blog, or follow my simplified instructions, below:
- Line a large baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or wax paper.
- Melt the chocolates type by type in the microwave or over a double boiler, and layer one at a time, making sure to let the first layer set or chill completely before adding the second.
- Right after you smooth out the second layer of candy cane kisses, sprinkle the crushed candy canes on top (you’ll want these to stick so make sure your top chocolate hasn’t cooled).
- Chill the whole thing completely, then break it apart with a butter knife.
HOW CAN YOU TELL WHEN CHOCOLATE COOKIES ARE DONE BAKING?
It’s much easier to tell when a light-colored cookie is done than when a chocolate or dark-colored cookie is done. So, how would you know then? The answer is to go by the way the cookie feels. Take the cookies out of the oven when the timer goes off or they look and feel set and dry. Give one a quick push in the middle, if it’s still soft and a little puffy, then they are most likely done and ready to cool.
HOW DO YOU MAKE CHOCOLATE COOKIES CHEWY?
A chewy cookie is a moist cookie and vice versa. Now, you don’t want to confuse “moist” with “soggy,” but just think of it as the opposite of hard and crunchy. You want to make sure everything is in tune with the cookie moisture — so you want to cook them at a higher temperature for a shorter amount of time.
I also use the “double up” method (this, and chilling them first keeps them from spreading too much) so the bigger hunks of dough make the cookies softer; more so than smaller cookies which will cook faster and therefore be crunchier.
Double Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cookies
- 1 cup flour
- ⅔ cup cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter - softened
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 large egg - at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 ¼ cups milk chocolate - or semi sweet chocolate chips
- 1 bag Hershey Candy Cane Kisses - unwrapped
- ¼ cup crushed candy canes
- In a medium bowl whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. In a large bowl beat together butter, brown sugar, and sugar until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes). Mix in egg and vanilla until blended.
- Gradually mix in dry ingredients on low speed until just incorporated, don't over mix. Stir in the chocolate chips by hand. (I reserve 1/4 cup for adding at the end) Cover TIGHTLY and chill for 2 hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and take the dough out of the fridge while the oven is preheating.
- Roll 2-3 tablespoons of cookie dough into a ball. Break the ball in half and place one half on a baking sheet. Top with second half of the dough ball and press down to flatten slightly. Press a few extra chocolate chips in the top (optional). Repeat with remaining dough and place on a lightly greased baking sheet two inches apart.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes until the tops of the cookies are just set. Allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Once cookies are cooled, place peppermint candies in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on half power for two minutes. Stir, return to microwave in half power in 20 second increments stirring after each until smooth.
- Dip cookies into melted peppermint candy, then place on a parchment or wax paper-limed baking sheet and immediately sprinkle with crushed candy canes. Allow to cool until hardened (about 5 minutes if you place it in the fridge or freezer). Store in airtight container up to 5 days (best served by 3 days).