When I think of Christmas desserts, I instantly think of chocolate and peppermint. These cookies take those flavors very seriously, with cocoa powder and peppermint extract in both the cookie dough and the frosting. Add in some crushed candy canes, and you’re left with an extremely festive batch of cookies.
But those fun holiday flavors aren’t all that these cookies have going for them. The texture is heavenly, as these Christmas cookies are soft, moist, and fluffy. And the frosting is rich and not overly sweet. It also doesn’t hurt that these festive chocolate peppermint cookies are fairly easy to make, and take less than 40 minutes.
Here are all the ingredients you need to make these festive Christmas cookies. Check out the recipe card at the bottom of the page to see the exact quantities for each ingredient.
For the Cookies:
- All-purpose flour
- Unsweetened cocoa powder – You’ll want to sift the cocoa powder before using it.
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Kosher salt
- Granulated sugar
- Butter – Make sure to only use unsalted butter in this recipe.
- Egg yolk
- Sour cream
- Vanilla extract – Be sure to use 100% pure vanilla extract.
- Peppermint extract – Make sure that you’re using a peppermint extract that doesn’t have any artificial flavors.
For the Frosting:
- Butter – Use unsalted butter for the frosting.
- Peppermint extract
- Vanilla extract
- Powdered sugar – You should sift the powdered sugar before using it.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder – The cocoa powder also needs to be sifted
- Heavy cream
- Candy canes – Make sure that the candy canes are crushed before you start baking.
Here’s how to make these fun and mouth-watering cookies.
- Prep. Preheat the oven to 425F, and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Mix the dry ingredients. Place the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a mixing bowl, and stir to combine.
- Beat the butter. Add the butter and sugar to the bowl of a stand mixer, and beat on medium-high until the mixture is fluffy. This should take about 3 minutes.
- Add the wet ingredients. Add the whole egg and egg yolk to the butter mixture, and beat until well mixed. Then add the sour cream, vanilla extract, and peppermint extract. Beat until the mixture is combined.
- Mix the wet and dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients to the stand mixer, and beat on low until the ingredients are fully combined.
- Roll the dough. Scoop out 1 ½ tablespoons of dough, and roll into a ball. Place the dough ball on the baking sheet, and smash it until it’s ¼ to ½-inch thick. Repeat with the rest of the dough, leaving space between each cookie.
- Bake. Put the cookies in the oven, and bake them for 7-8 minutes. Then remove the cookies from the oven, and place them directly on a wire cooling rack.
- Make the frosting. Add the butter, vanilla extract, and peppermint extract to the bowl of a stand mixer. Beat until smooth, then add the cocoa powder and powdered sugar. Beat until the mixture is smooth again, then add the heavy cream. Beat one final time, until the frosting is creamy.
- Finish. Frost the cooled cookies with the frosting, and then top the cookies with pieces of crushed candy cane.
Tips for Success
- Use room temperature ingredients. For best results, take the butter, sour cream, eggs, and heavy cream out of the fridge a few hours before making these cookies. You want those ingredients to be at room temperature, because that is when they’ll best mix with other ingredients. If you use eggs and dairy products while they’re still cold, the cookie dough will be a bit more dense.
- Make the dough ahead of time. You don’t need to bake these cookies as soon as you make the dough. Instead, you can store the dough in the fridge for up to 3 days, and bake cookies whenever you want.
These cookies will last in an airtight container or bag at room temperature for up to 3 days. You can also store them in the fridge for up to 1 week. You can store the cookies with or without the frosting on them.
Can You Freeze This Recipe?
You definitely can! Store the cookies in an airtight container or bag, and place it in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw the cookies at room temperature or in the fridge before eating. For best results, freeze the cookies and the frosting separately.
More Cookies to Make
Here are a few more of my favorite cookie recipes for you to make.
- Melted snowman cookies
- Apple crisp cookies
- Vegan oatmeal chocolate chip cookie cups
- White chocolate chip raspberry oatmeal cookies
- Cinnamon brown sugar cookies
For the Cookies:
- 3 cups (375 g) all-purpose flour, sifted
- ½ cup (43 g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
- ½ cup (114 g) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 egg yolk, room temperature
- ¾ cup (173 g) sour cream, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ teaspoon peppermint extract
For the Frosting:
- ½ cup (114 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cup (160 g) powdered sugar, sifted
- ¼ cup (22 g) unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 ½ tablespoons heavy cream
- ¾ cup (177 g) crushed peppermint candies or candy canes
- Preheat the oven to 425 °F (218 °C). Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, then set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and butter together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the egg and egg yolk and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Add the sour cream, vanilla, and peppermint extract and beat just until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients, mixing on low just until combined, scraping down the bowl a few times to make sure the dough mixes well.
- Using the palms of your hands, roll 1 ½ tablespoons of dough into the shape of a small ball. Place on the prepared baking sheets and smash it down until it is ¼ to ½-inch thick. Continue with the rest of the dough, leaving space in between each cookie for it to expand.
- Bake for 7 to 8 minutes, then immediately transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the frosting: In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter, peppermint extract, and vanilla. Sift in the powdered sugar and cocoa powder and beat until well incorporated and smooth. Add in heavy cream and mix until rich and creamy.
- Once the cookies have cooled completely, frost each cookie and add crushed peppermint candies on top.
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