Peppermint Candy Cane Cookies
Makes 4 dozen
This recipe is one million percent inspired by the original Betty Crocker Candy Cane Cookies recipe. Her recipe was a huge part of my childhood, and we always made them for Santa, ensuring we got the best gifts possible…and we did! This year I decided it was time for me to make them for myself (ensuring that I give myself the best gifts possible, of course), and when I did, I had to play around and make them Grossyfied. There are very few recipes I don't do this to, honestly...
First things first, I added some moisture! I found Betty's recipe to be too dry overall, and too brittle to form into canes canes. Then I tackled the flavor. Betty uses a mix of vanilla and almond extracts, which are lovely, but I really wanted some peppermint in there. So, I added it, which resulted in removing the almond extract all together. Lastly, Betty sprinkles her cookies with crushed candy canes, which truly does not make me happy! You see, while I have fond memories of candy cane cookies, I am not a fan of candy canes themselves. Of course, if you are, you should do as Betty does!
These cookies are super easy and a joy to make. They are also basically a craft project, which makes the Pinterest Mom in me very happy! If craft projects are not your thing, I have to say these make great slice and bake cookies! Just roll the two color doughs together into a log (in any way you want), then slice and bake! I played with these as I was recipe developing and loved them!
Okay now let's get baking...
Watch me make this recipe on Instagram!
WHAT YOU'LL NEED:
1 cup shortening or softened unsalted butter
1 cup confectioners sugar, sifted
1½ teaspoon peppermint extract*
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
⅛ cup of whole milk**
2½ cups all-purpose flour***
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon red food coloring
¼ cup granulated sugar (for dipping)
*Betty uses almond extract here, but I prefer peppermint! You do you.
**sub any non-dairy milk you like
***Gluten-free All-Purpose 1:1 flour can be used.
WHAT YOU'LL DO:
Preheat your oven to 375°.
In a large bowl, combine 1 cup of shortening, 1 cup of sifted confectioner’s sugar, 1 egg, 1 ½ teaspoon of peppermint extract and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract with a wooden spoon or spatula. Once combined, add in ⅛ cup of milk and combine until a smooth dough forms.
Sift 2 ½ cups of flour and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt together into the shortening mixture and stir. Divide the dough in half and blend ½ teaspoon of red food coloring into one half of the dough, leaving the other half white.
Use a teaspoon to form dough balls and roll a 4" strip from each color. Place the strips side by side, press lightly together and twist like rope. Form the cane by arching the top. Dip the formed cookie into granulated sugar and place on a baking sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes. Enjoy!
Dough can be made ahead and kept in the fridge until you are ready to bake form and bake the cookies.
For information on how to store your cookies, head to Grossy's Guide to Holiday Cookies.