Thin Mint Cookies
Crunchy chocolate peppermint cookies coated in a rich peppermint dark chocolate. These crisp Thin Mint Cookies are the perfect homemade version of the Girl Scout cookie we all know and love!
Thin Mint Cookies
We all know the classic Girl Scout Thin Mint Cookies. They’re crunchy, minty, and enrobed in a lovely dark chocolate. This homemade version of the beloved mint chocolate cookie will delight your taste buds and send you right to that nostalgic *cookie season* (minus the searching and/or waiting for delivery!). These cookies have the perfect snappy crunch of a thin mint cookie, plus the delicious chocolate peppermint flavor.
These cookies take more time (and patience 😉 ) than most of my cookie recipes as they require quite a bit of chill time. Chilling the dough multiple times makes it easier to handle and ensures the cookies won’t spread in the oven, ensuring they keep their lovely cut-out shape. It’s also important to be extra careful when rolling your cookie dough as you only want it to be around 1/8″ thick (or just slightly thicker) in order to get the perfect snappy, crispy cookie. I tested these at 1/4″ thick and the cookies came out chewy in the middle. Yes, these cookies are more work, but if it’s homemade thin mints you’re after, then I promise it’s all worth it!
Why You’ll Love These Cookies
- The dough comes together in just one bowl
- They’re made with pantry staples
- The cookie is snappy, crunchy, and crisp – just like the original version
- The peppermint flavor is perfectly balanced (there’s plenty of it!)
- You can easily halve this recipe to make fewer cookies
What You’ll Need
- Plant-based butter adds that buttery flavor we all love in our cookies. Feel free to use regular butter or plant-based butter (I use Country Crock Plant Butter Sticks).
- White granulated sugar helps these cookies get that crispy, crunchy texture. Of course it also adds sweetness. I would not replace this with any other sugar as we don’t want to risk adding too much moisture (brown sugar will add moisture).
- Honey binds the ingredients together. Since there are no eggs in this recipe (to bind ingredients), honey gets the job done. Feel free to use maple syrup as a vegan alternative to honey.
- Peppermint extract adds flavor! Make sure your extract is labeled peppermint and not mint.
- Vanilla extract also adds flavor. I like to add this to most of my bakes and find it goes well with the chocolate flavor.
- Salt enhances flavor and cuts sweetness.
- Dutched cocoa powder adds a darker color and richer chocolate flavor to these cookies. I don’t recommend natural or black cocoa powder.
- All-purpose flour makes up the bulk of the dough. Feel free to use a bleached or unbleached variety (I like to use unbleached).
- Dark or semi-sweet chocolate bar makes up the chocolate coating. It’s important to use chopped chocolate (and not chocolate chips) as the chocolate bar(s) won’t seize when mixed with peppermint extract.
Do I need to chill the dough? Yes! The chilling process firms up the dough so it’s easier to roll. And then you’ll chill it a bit more so it’s easier to cut. Then you’ll chill it once more right before baking to ensure the cookies don’t spread/or lose their shape.
What happens if I don’t freeze the cookies before baking? You run the risk of the dreaded cookie spread. I promise the key to cut-out cookies is freezing the cookies for a bit right before baking.
Do I need to poke holes in the cookies? Yes, because if the cookies don’t have any holes, then the steam will puff the cookies slightly in the middle during the baking process. For flat, even cookies, you need to poke holes!
Can I halve this recipe? Absolutely! Divide each of the ingredients by two (this is easiest when using a scale) and bake per the recipe.
What kind of plant-based butter do you use? For the last few years, I’ve only used Country Crock Plant Butter Sticks (with olive oil or almond oil) in all my recipes – it’s affordable and relatively easy to find (at least in the US).
Can I use chocolate chips? Unfortunately, no. The peppermint extract will make the chocolate chips seize up upon melting, so only chopped chocolate (dark or semi-sweet) will work in this recipe.
My cookies aren’t crunchy, what happened? This could mean that your cookies are too thick, or that they weren’t baked long enough. It’s really important to cut these cookies around 1/8″ thick (or only slightly thicker). 1/4″ is too thick for these cookies and will result in a chewy cookie. 1/8″ is the perfect thickness to get that snappy, crunchy cookie.
Will the chocolate coating get melty out of the fridge? Since we aren’t tempering the chocolate, the coating will begin to melt once it touches warm hands, but it won’t get melty just sitting out at room temperature. If you’re looking for thin mints with a snappy chocolate coating, I recommend tempering your chocolate prior to coating – you can find some tips on how do that here.
- 1/2 cup (113g) plant-based butter (or regular butter), softened
- 2/3 cup (140g) white granulated sugar
- 6 Tbsp (126g) honey
- 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup (40g) Dutched cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 cups (195g) unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups (230g) dark or semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped (NOT chocolate chips)
- 3 Tbsp (42g) plant-based butter (or regular butter)
- 2 tsp peppermint extract (feel free to add less if you like)
- 1-1.5 Tbsp olive oil (or coconut oil)
Bake the Cookies
- In a large bowl, beat together the softened butter and sugar until fluffy, about 30 seconds. Beat in the honey. Then beat in the peppermint and vanilla extracts. Beat in the salt.
- Sift in the cocoa powder and flour and use a large spoon or spatula to mix until the dough comes together. Use your hands to shape the dough into two balls. Flatten each ball into a disc shape, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Once chilled, remove one dough disc from the refrigerator and place between two pieces of parchment paper (about the size of a baking sheet). Roll dough to slightly thicker than 1/8" (thinner cookies will be crispier). Place the rolled dough, along with the parchment paper on a baking sheet and place in the freezer for 10 minutes. Repeat for the second dough disc.
- Pull the rolled dough out of the freezer and use a round or scalloped circular cookie cutter (mine is 1 3/4" across) to cut the cookies. It's okay if your cookies stick to the parchment paper (they likely will as these cookies are thin). Remove the excess dough and then gently peel the cut-out cookies off the paper and transfer them to a clean baking sheet lined with parchment (you can re-use the original paper if you'd like), spacing them at least 1/4" apart - these cookies don't spread.
- Immediately poke venting holes into the tops of each cookie, using a fork or toothpick (I poked five holes). Place the cookies back in the freezer for 10 minutes and preheat your oven to 325°F.
- After the final chill, bake the cookies at 325°F for 12-14 minutes. It's difficult to tell when the cookies are done as they will come out of the oven soft and crisp up as they cool. I recommend doing a test cookie to see how long it takes in your oven - take a single cookie and bake at 13 minutes, allow to cool, and then test the snappiness by breaking it in two (it should make a snapping sound).
- Allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet before transferring to a cooling rack. In the meantime, repeat steps 3-6, re-rolling the excess dough, until all cookies are baked.
Coat the Cookies
- Once the cookies are cooled, you can begin making the coating. Near your stove, set up a baking sheet with parchment paper, 2-3 forks, and some paper towels.
- Prepare a double boiler by bringing 1 inch of water to a simmer in a medium pot. Set a large, heat-proof bowl (metal or glass) on top of the pot, making sure the bowl isn't touching the water.
- Add the finely chopped chocolate, butter, and peppermint extract to the pot. Gently stir as the steam from the simmering water melts the chocolate. Once melted, add olive oil by the teaspoon until the chocolate reaches a thin enough consistency that it runs off of a spoon in a stream.
- Lower the heat to the lowest setting, keeping the chocolate warm, and begin dipping the cookies. Place cookie top-side down into the chocolate. Use a fork to turn the cookie over, making sure the cookie is coated. Lift up the cookie and gently shake off the excess chocolate.
- Take another, clean fork, and transfer the cookie to it. Then slowly transfer the cookie to your prepared baking sheet to set. I found it's best to go slow to avoid making a mess of the chocolate.
- To keep the cookies from pooling chocolate around them, I like to wipe the forks on the edge of the bowl so they don't accumulate too much chocolate. Every other cookie, wipe the second, cleaner fork on your paper towel. This ensures the cookies won't pool with chocolate around the edge once they're laid on the paper.
- Once all cookies have been dipped, place the baking sheet in the refrigerator to allow the cookies to set. Enjoy the cookies cold or let them "thaw" at room temperature for 10 minutes before enjoying. These cookies can be very crunchy once chilled, so I recommend cutting them in half before enjoying cold - they're easier to eat this way.
- Store leftover cookies in the refrigerator in an airtight container, or at room temperature, with parchment paper between layers to keep them from sticking together.
- Butter: I use Country Crock Plant Butter Sticks (with olive oil or almond oil) in my recipes.
- Chilling: you won't want to skimp on the chilling in this recipe. It's necessary at every step to ensure the dough is easy to work with and doesn't spread in the oven.
- Vegan: for vegan cookies, replace the honey with maple syrup.