Have you started your holiday baking? Are you finished already? I am somewhere in between. I have baked a few treats to give away, including these cranberry almond biscotti and these white chocolate cranberry macadamia nut cookies that I posted the other day. I will be doing most of my baking tomorrow, and I’m looking forward to a relaxing and busy day in the kitchen. I cannot wait to take a bite of each of our family’s traditional favorite Christmas cookies!
These candy cane cookies are a family favorite. Rolling and twisting the candy canes is a fun project for the kids, and the finished cookies are so pretty with their sprinkling of peppermint-sugar. I prefer to make my candy cane cookies with almond extract but you can use peppermint extract if you want even more peppermint flavor. If you are baking plates of cookies to share with friends or neighbors, these candy cane cookies would be a fun and festive addition.
Candy Cane Cookies
Makes 4 dozen cookies
- ½ cup crushed peppermint candies or candy canes
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 ½ tsp. almond extract*
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- Red food coloring (or red and green)
- Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
- In a small bowl, mix the crushed peppermints and granulated sugar together. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and powdered sugar together. Add the egg and extracts and mix until combined.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. With the mixer on low speed, mix in the flour and salt until just combined.
- Divide the dough in half. Add red food coloring to one half and leave the other half white. (If you want half of your cookies to be red and white, and half to be green and white, tint ¼ of the dough red and ¼ green, and leave ½ white.)
- To make each cookie, shape 1 rounded teaspoon of white dough and 1 rounded teaspoon of red (or green) dough into 4-inch ropes. Lay the ropes side by side and gently twist them together. Shape the twisted ropes into candy canes and place on parchment-lined baking sheets.
- Bake cookies for 9 minutes, until just set and barely golden on the bottom. Immediately sprinkle with the peppermint-sugar mixture. Let cool for a few minutes on baking sheet before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
*You can substitute peppermint extract for the almond extract if you want more peppermint flavor in your cookies.
Source: I think this recipe comes from an old Betty Crocker cookie magazine.