On the 4th Day of December my Sweet Tooth Gave to Me……. Flourless Chocolate Peppermint Blossoms! With just 6 ingredients, these pretty holiday cookies starring chocolate and peppermint bark are rich, fudgey, and naturally gluten free. That’s reason for an all out kitchen happy dance.
Normally I’m a peanut butter blossom or frosted sugar cookie kind of girl, but when I spotted the Hershey’s peppermint bark bells, inspiration for a chocolate peppermint came over me. Pretty soon I was seeing visions of sugar plum fairies, otherwise known as decadent chocolate cookies rolled in powdered sugar and topped with peppermint bark candy.
One of the reasons I love peanut butter blossoms is because this recipe became my go to during my very first gluten free holiday season. They were extremely easy and so delicious! I brought them to a Christmas cookie exchange and they were a hit. Nobody could believe they had just 5 ingredients and were naturally gluten free.
That’s when the light bulb clicked. What if I could make a peanut butter blossom type cookie using something like Nutella or Jif’s Hazelnut spread and the peppermint candy? I knew the tough part was going to be keeping them flourless because chocolate hazelnut butters behave differently in baking recipes compared to a pure nut butter. Essentially they spread a lot more when heated so flour normally helps prevent this.
My kitchen was in quite a disarray after a few failed recipe tests, but with chocolate smeared hands and a powdered sugar kissed nose, I finally landed on a winner!
The secret to preventing them from spreading into a gooey mess came down to two things:
~ The speed and length of mixing time
~ Using equal parts powdered sugar instead of 1 cup of granulated like in the peanut butter blossom recipe
~ A brief chill down in the freezer
These Chocolate Peppermint Blossoms have just the right amount of fudgey chew and a nice crisp outer edge, precisely my definition of a great cookie. With rich cocoa, cool mint, and their snow kissed look, your holiday dessert tray is begging for their presence. You probably have half of the ingredients on hand and an innocent plug here – all six are available for you to save on right now with Cartwheel by Target, the project I work on during my day job.
So now that you’ve got the details its time to get baking! Let the powdered sugar fly, the holiday tunes blast, and your merry spirit shine with the start of the holiday season.
*One thing to note: I contacted Jif and confirmed that their Hazelnut spread is gluten free. Here is their response: “We’re happy to help, Amanda! Jif® Chocolate flavored Hazelnut Spread does not contain ingredients derived from wheat/gluten. However, there is a potential for cross-contact in our processing facility because we make other products with these ingredients, which is why wheat is listed in the May Contain statement.” If you or someone you are baking for has full blown celiac disease, I would use Nutella in this case as it is made in a completely gluten free facility. *
makes about 2 dozen cookies
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar + additional for rolling dough in
1 cup Nutella or Jif Hazelnut Spread
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 bag Hershey’s Peppermint Bark Bells
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add the Nutella or Jif hazelnut spread, granulated sugar and 1/2 cup powdered sugar to large mixing bowl. Cream together for 3 minutes on medium speed, scraping down the sides of bowl periodically. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add in egg. Mix on low for 1 minute. Add the baking soda and mix on medium for 2 minutes. Place in freezer for 30 minutes. (Don’t skimp on the time.)
Add about a 1/2 cup of powdered sugar to a small bowl. Heavily grease a cookie sheet with nonstick spray. (This is important!) Remove dough from freezer, grab a heaping teaspoon of dough, and roll into a ball, then roll in powdered sugar to give them a thick coating. Repeat with 8 more dough balls, then place them evenly across cookie sheet (9 per sheet).
Place bowl back in freezer. Bake cookies on middle rack for 7 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 7 minutes on the pan, then lightly press peppermint bell in middle of each. Repeat with remaining dough. Store in covered container for 4-5 days.