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Festive Peppermint Meltaways for the holidays!
Peppermint Meltaways are fun little bite-sized holiday cookies with a bright and buttery flavor.
The texture of our Peppermint Meltaways is tender but not crumbly, so they truly melt-in-your-mouth! We love a good cookie that’s not overly sweet and with only 1/2 cup powdered sugar in the dough, this one is just right.
The cool peppermint flavored icing really sets these apart, and the little crunch from the crushed candy canes add the holiday bling.
I use a drop of red food color in the icing giving it a pretty pink hue, but it’s not necessary. White icing with crushed peppermint is always pretty too!
Make sure you’re using peppermint extract.
We only use pure peppermint extract in this Peppermint Meltaways recipe, not spearmint or other mint extracts. The other extracts do not taste the same as peppermint.
And, you don’t need a lot of peppermint extract to get plenty of flavor. There’s a little extract added in the cookie dough and 1/4 teaspoon in the icing as well. Don’t be tempted to add more. A little goes a long way when baking with peppermint extract!
These baked Peppermint Meltaways can be made ahead and frozen for up to a month.
Wait to add the icing until a day or two before serving. These cookies are best kept in a cool location or refrigerated for longer storage. Once the icing dries, the cookies can be stacked between layers of wax paper.
Cute and festive and easy to make, your favorite cookie monsters will enjoy these delicious Peppermint Meltaways with the fun holiday flavor.
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For the cookie dough:
- 14 tablespoons unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 tablespoons cream cheese room temperature
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- ¼ teaspoon salt
For the icing:
- 1 cup powdered sugar more or less for desired consistency
- ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 tablespoon milk or cream
- 1 drop red gel food color optional
- crushed peppermint candies for garnish (about 2 (6-inch) candy canes)
To prepare the cookie dough:
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and cream cheese on medium speed until creamy. Add 1/2 cup of powdered sugar and 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract. Beat until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl and blend again until incorporated.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, cornstarch and salt. Add the flour mixture in four batches to the creamed butter mixture. Blend on medium-low until each addition is incorporated. Scrape the dough into a ball, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- To bake the cookies, preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Scoop a level spoonful of dough using a 1-inch cookie scoop. Roll each into a tight ball and place two inches apart on the prepared baking sheet. Flatten each dough ball gently with the bottom of a small glass or measuring cup to the desired thickness. If the cookies are sticking to the glass, wrap the bottom of the glass in wax paper and secure with a rubber band. Bake for 11 to 13 minutes at 350°F or until lightly browned around the edges. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool. Repeat using a cool baking pan until all cookies are baked.
- Cool cookies completely before icing. Alternatively, you can toss the warm cookies in powdered sugar instead.
To prepare the icing:
- Whisk together 1 cup of powdered sugar, 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract and the milk. Add more sugar or milk as needed to reach the desired consistency. Add a drop of red food color, if using, and blend well. Spread the icing on the cooled cookies and immediately top with the crushed peppermint candy. Allow the icing to fully set then store the cookies in a cool location or refrigerate for longer storage.
- Prep time does not include the 1 hour chilling time for the dough
- Omit the salt if using salted butter
- Makes 36 to 42 cookies
You’ve probably figured out by now that we are nuts for meltaway cookies. If you are too, you’ll want to try these Lemon Meltaways with a light and buttery lemon flavor.
Our Coconut Key Lime Meltaways have a tropical flare and a nice bite from the Key lime zest.
And finally, don’t miss these Peanut Butter Chocolate Meltaway Cookies perfect for the chocolate and peanut butter lover in your life! These light little bite-sized cookies are not too sweet and get a nice salty bite from the crushed roasted peanuts.