Peppermint Mocha Cookies

These peppermint mocha cookies are soft-baked with a generous dunk in white chocolate and sprinkle of candy cane crunch. They taste like brownies and are always the first to disappear at a cookie exchange!

Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

I was inspired to make today’s cookies after baking chocolate crinkle cookies and mocha cheesecake brownies on the same day. Individually, they’re delicious. But combined? I had to try it. I got to work mixing espresso powder and peppermint extract together and crushing every candy cane in sight. The end result was out of this world– in fact, my friend said “these are the best thing to happen to Christmas cookies.”

Peppermint mocha cookies are soul-warming and pepperminty– just like an actual peppermint mocha, but better!

Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

These Peppermint Mocha Cookies Taste Like Brownies

One bite of these peppermint mocha cookies and you’ll be surprised to find a cookie instead of a brownie in your hand. These cookies taste just like fudgy brownies! We can thank my basic chocolate cookie dough for that. You probably recognize this cookie dough– it’s what I use to make chocolate crinkle cookies and many other chocolate cookie creations. It’s the best base recipe because this magical dough creates rich, thick, and chewy chocolate cookies that stay soft for days. We’re talking soft cookies even on day 7. If in the very strange event that your chocolate cookies last that long. (Who are you?)

Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

How to Make Peppermint Mocha Cookies

I love baking cookies year-round, but especially during the holiday season. These are quick, easy, and always a hit! Let’s run through the process:

  1. Cream the wet ingredients together.
  2. Mix the dry ingredients together.
  3. Add the chocolate chips. The dough will be very thick and sticky.
  4. Chill the cookie dough. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
  5. Roll cookie dough into balls. Use about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per ball.
  6. Bake. Let the cookies cool completely.
  7. Melt the white chocolate. 
  8. Dip each cookie halfway into the white chocolate. Place each cookie onto a parchment or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle crushed candy canes on top of the chocolate. Repeat this process with the rest of the cookies.
  9. Refrigerate the cookies. This helps the chocolate set.

Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top! Recipe on sallysbakingaddiction.com

Secret Ingredient: Espresso Powder

Espresso powder gives the cookies their unbelievable mocha flavor. I use just two teaspoons and the flavor is unreal. If you can’t find espresso powder in stores, you can use instant coffee instead. You’d need a little more instant coffee since it isn’t as strong or rich as espresso powder. I find espresso powder at my regular grocery store, but you can also find it online. I don’t recommend using ground coffee because it’s not as flavorful as espresso powder or instant coffee, both of which have super concentrated flavor.

Peppermint extract is another power player here. Always be careful when using peppermint extract! It’s scary potent– a little goes a very long way. And make sure you are using peppermint extract, not mint extract. The latter tastes like spearmint toothpaste. It’s not good.

Everything You’ll Love About Peppermint Mocha Cookies

As if you need more reasons to bake these cookies:

  • They’re super chocolatey and taste like brownies. Sometimes I add mini chocolate chips to the cookie dough for extreme chocolate flavor.
  • You’ll love the combination of white chocolate + regular chocolate.
  • They’re totally festive and stand out on holiday cookie trays.
  • The bites with the white chocolate and candy cane crush are the best. The candy canes add a soft crunch– perfect if you love texture like me!
  • Peppermint + mocha = perfection.

Whenever I go to a cookie exchange I always make these cookies; they’re really unique and everyone goes wild for them!

Print

Peppermint Mocha Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 3 hours, 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 hours
  • Yield: 20 cookies
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These peppermint mocha cookies will be the star of your holiday cookie tray and cookie exchanges! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top!


Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup (115g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 cup (125g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tablespoons (53g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons espresso powder or 1 Tablespoon instant coffee granules
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (180g) mini or regular size semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 8 ounces white chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 3 large candy canes, crushed

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the granulated sugar and brown sugar and beat on medium high speed until fluffy and light in color. Beat in egg, vanilla and peppermint extracts on high speed. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, espresso powder, and salt together until combined. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. The cookie dough will be quite thick. Switch to high speed and beat in the chocolate chips. The cookie dough will be sticky. Cover dough tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and chill for at least 3 hours and up to 3 days. Chilling is mandatory for this cookie dough. I always chill mine overnight.
  3. Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes– if the cookie dough chilled longer than 3 hours, let it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes. This makes the cookie dough easier to scoop and roll.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. (Always recommended for cookies.) Set aside.
  5. Scoop and roll balls of dough, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough each, into balls and place on the baking sheets.
  6. Bake the cookies for 10-12 minutes. My oven has hot spots and yours may too- so be sure to rotate the pan once during bake time. The baked cookies will look extremely soft in the centers when you remove them from the oven. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. They will slightly deflate as you let them cool. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
  7. Melt the chopped white chocolate in a double boiler or (carefully!) use the microwave. For the microwave, place the white chocolate in a medium heat-proof bowl. Melt in 15 second increments, stirring after each increment until completely melted and smooth. Dip each completely cooled cookie halfway into the white chocolate and place onto a parchment or silicone baking mat-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle crushed candy canes on top of the chocolate. Repeat with the rest of the cooled cookies. Place the baking sheet into the refrigerator to help the chocolate set. Once set, enjoy!

Notes

  1. Make Ahead & Freezing Instructions: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Baked cookies (without white chocolate and candy cane) freeze well – up to three months.  Decorate after they thaw out. Cookie dough balls freeze well too – up to three months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for about 10 minutes. No need to thaw them. For more information, read my tips on freezing cookie dough.
  2. Chill Cookie Dough! Make sure you chill the cookie dough for at least 3 hours. The longer, the better! Chilling helps the flavors develop, prevent spreading, and makes the otherwise sticky cookie dough easy to handle.
  3. Double Batch: This recipe can easily be doubled.

Keywords: peppermint mocha cookies, mocha cookies

Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top!
Soft-baked and chewy peppermint mocha cookies! The candy cane crunch and white chocolate put them over the top!

235 Comments

  1. Hi Sally I am having white chocolate candy melts . So can I use this for dipping the cookies… Will it change the texture of cookies

  2. Sigh. I don’t know how I always manage to do something wrong. I was very excited to make these cookies today, I measured all of my ingredients perfectly, chilled the dough for 3 hours.. but that seemed not to be enough?! My hands looked like I was playing in mud. I’m assuming my cookies didn’t turn out like yours because the dough was still too sticky and most of the batter stayed globbed in the center. Maybe my fridge wasn’t cold enough? Could it be I put it on top of another container in the fridge? Thanks, Sally.

    1. The dough definitely could be chilled longer. Try chilling it overnight. And maybe baking the cookies an extra minute or two. Do you have any dough left? You can chill it longer, if so!

    2. Jill, I hope you used a decent email address and get to read this – you probably did just fine. Sally’s edited her recipe, taking out 2 tbsp. of milk you probably added. If you used extra large or jumbo eggs, instead of large – that could have made it a little too wet also. I’m sure by now you’ve trashed that dough, but I didn’t want you to go on believing it was totally your fault that the cookies went wrong. I had an over-wet problem with them too, but over a week after you had your problem. The solution to over wet, “muddy” cookie dough is to add more flour. Happy Holidays!

  3. These look SO good, Sally! It appears we were on the same wavelength this week–I posted my own version on Wednesday!

    https://e2bakesbrooklyn.wordpress.com/2015/12/09/peppermint-mocha-cookies/

  4. I immediately had to share this on my facebook page! And the next day at work, I had several disappointed co-workers when I didn’t bring a batch in!

  5. Sally – I made the dough last night and baked the cookies today.  They taste amazing!!!  Mine look less amazing.  Not sure if you have any suggestions: very flat, thin, and fall apart easily so I am not able to dip into white chocolate.  Any suggestions other than chill longer (it’s been 15 hours)?  Btw, the cookies were still devoured by everyone!  

    1. Dani, the solution to cookies spreading– or one of them at least!– is to add a little more flour to make the dough a little sturdier. Try adding 1/4 cup of flour.

      1. Is adding flour probably the same thing you’d tell me to solve my problem? It sounds similar… I made this batter last night, using a Kitchenaid stand mixer for the first time. I doubled the recipe, and regretfully – did not spoon and level flour. I did the “dip and scrape inside bag” method. After letting the dough chill overnight, it’s easily scoopable right out of the fridge, kind of like when a new container of ice cream scoops perfectly. The balls I made with a cookie scoop gunked up my hands easily. I test baked six balls, rotating the pan halfway through, and they spread too much, two still had uncooked middles, and they broke apart when I tried to transfer them from the parchment lined pan to a wire rack. They did taste delish, but they can’t be decorated and are not acceptable for gifting.

      2. Added more flour (thank goodness for the stand mixer!) and re-chilled overnight, and the next test batch baked came out PICTURE PERFECT. The dough was still pretty easy to scoop right out of the fridge (the cookie scoop helps) but when balling them up nice, my hands got sticky, but hardly any dough stuck to them.
        I think another part of the problem could have been the extra large eggs I used, when the recipe says plain large. Also, when I printed out your recipe, it had milk in the ingredients/directions, which you have edited out since my comment but never responded. Since I never have milk in the house, I’d used 50/50 half n’ half and water. I’ll cross the milk off my printout, since omitting that extra liquid surely would help the issue I had. Thanks for the recipe, but my feelings are a little hurt that you changed the recipe based off of the issues people are having with it, and you didn’t even bother to respond.

      3. Rose, I receive over 250 comments per day and it’s very easy to miss a few. I’m only one person! So sorry that I missed your comment but yes, I did make changes to the recipe because of the results a few readers were having. That’s why I left a recipe note.

  6. These look amazing! Do you have a recommendation for white chocolate that melts well? Last time I think I used white chocolate chips and that didn’t go so well I’m definitely gonna try these cookies though!

    1. Bakers or Ghirardelli bars. Both sold in the baking aisle near the chocolate chips. Do not use chocolate chips when dipping. They’re unbelievably hard to work with.

  7. These turned out so pretty, just as pictured.  I haven’t tried the finished product yet, but the dough sure was tasty!  Great recipe.

  8. I’m not sure what happened.  I carefully doubled the recipe, omitting only the mocha (I don’t like coffee).  But they are as dry as can be!  I can’t even make a ball.  Any suggestions?  I’m putting them back in the fridge for now.

  9. I made these yesterday as an early Christmas gift. They were so good fresh out of the oven.. but they are even better today!! And they looked just like the picture. Fantastic recipe! If anyone is undecided about trying these- make them!! I will absolutely make these every year. Thank you so much!

  10. These cookies are fantastic! I made two batches of them for a holiday party last night and they were the first dessert to go. And I had multiple friends ask me where I got the recipe. They are so soft! I’ll be making them again next weekend for a work event. Thanks for sharing Sally!!

  11. I made these for the teachers at my daughter’s school. They taste amazon! For some reason they didn’t flaten as much as yours pictured, so I had to help them a little with the spatula. I tried baking them a bit longer but was afraid they would burn. Any suggestions?

  12. I just made these cookies yesterday as well as the hazelnut dipped in chocolate. What a beautiful cookie!!! AND they tasted absolutely amazing! I could not find peppermint anywhere in my hometown as the supermarket had a 2 for 1 sale during the holidays. I am glad I searched high and low to find it because these cookies made my dessert party!!! 🙂 Thank you- I have been wanting to make your cookies forever and they were excellent!

  13. http://imgur.com/gallery/exCyQvg I wanted to share my results with you, and take the time to tell you that I think you are amazing. Your recipes, and the geeky in-depth explanations that go along with them, have changed my life. You made me love making cakes and cookies. I just really wanted to put that out there. Thank you for everything you do.

  14. these are AMAZING! My son and I made them for teacher gifts this year. Moist, sinfully rich and gorgeous presentation. Highly recommend them to anyone – remember to make at least two recipes as they disappear fast!

  15. I just made my first batch of these. I had the dough in the fridge for 3 days (busy time of year). I had dusted it with flour just lightly enough so it wouldn’t stick to the plastic wrap when I put the dough in the fridge. After about 45 minutes on the counter, it was pliable and I just rolled small dough balls in my fingers. The baking turned out perfectly with 9 minutes. I used the Ghiradelli white baking chips for melting and the dipping was easy. I wish I had doubled this recipe because after I gave some to our neighbors and to our cleaning lady, I know I will be making another batch for my family soon! They look so pretty. And don’t even get me started on the taste! OMG! I am a peppermint chocolate finatic so this makes my heart sing.
    Sally, I heart you!

  16. I made these for our family Christmas party today. They taste amazing, not to mention they look really fancy and cute. =) Thanks for a great recipe! 

  17. Made these for a holiday treat swap, and received glowing reviews! These cookies look great, are festive, and taste amazing. 

  18. I made these for the weekend, I didn’t have peppermint extract so they’ll just be mocha cookies!

    one thing, the cookies didn’t spread in the oven, the first batch was the ball scoops I put in… am I supposed to flatten them before hand or did I make a mistake somewhere?

    other then the round ball shape they tasted great and super chocolaty!

  19. Please help – all the cookie/cupcake/cake recipes and so on say granulated sugar…..I am from the UK, our granulated sugar has larger granuals than yours but our caster sugar has been granuals than your granulated sugar. I’m worried using UK granulated sugar won’t mix/cream well but be grainy but the caster sugar may then be too sweet? Which should I be using? HELP

  20. I think these cookies can be all year round super favourites (especially for those who love chocolate-mint duet). I made even larger ball that suggested. They spread well. Delicious!!!

  21. It’s July and I’m still craving these cookies! I made them for a cookie exchange last December while 9+ months pregnant. Everyone loved them! Then my son was born Christmas morning, and I didn’t get the chance to bake them again over the holidays. Yesterday I was in the baking mood and these were my top choice! I used half Special Dark cocoa powder and they are SPECTACULAR. This recipe is perfect, Sally!

  22. I know this sounds crazy, but would it be possible to make these without the coffee? I am one of the few strange people that doesn’t drink or like it but the chocolate/peppermint combo sounds amazing!

    1. I cheated because I was in a hurry. I used Archway dutch chocolate cookies right out of the package. Dipped them in the white chocolate and sprinkled with crushed candy canes. I put them on a lovely tray and then proceeded to lie my a#$ off. They were amazing.

  23. I live in Ecuador, and virtually all extracts here are synthetic disgustingness. (Sorry, Ecuador.) But I have peppermint oil. Do you think I could use that? If yes, what would be your guess as to the quantity? Thank you!

  24. I cheated because I was in a hurry. I used archwat dutch chocolate cookies right out of the package. Dipped them in the white chocolate and sprinkled with crushed candy canes. I put them on a lovely tray and then proceeded to lie my a#$ off. They were amazing.

  25. Hi Sally!

    I made this twice this week. The first time , I followed your recipe as is and it turned out too sweet. The second time I reduced the sugar to 3/4 cup. I even cut out the chocolate chips but still turned out too sweet. I used 1 tablespoon of instant coffee and I used less than 1/8 tspn peppermint oil instead of exract. The dough turns out tough and it does not spread much. What could I have possibly done wrong? HELP ME!

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