Pumpkin is to fall what peppermint is to the holiday season. It’s added to everything from cookies to coffee to popcorn, making it impossible to avoid and resist.
While peppermint ice cream may be belle of the ball, there are tons of other treats worthy of the minty infusion, so we rounded up the best of ‘em. Some will keep you warm, and most of the ones that made this list are actuallyhealthy.
It’s time to crush some candy (we’re talking real-life candy canes, not the addictive game), sweeten up winter, and treat yo’self.
Traditional brownies taste great without fancy fixings. Gooey fudge squares cooked to perfection—what more could you need? While we’re firm believers in the powers of chocolate, a little peppermint goes a long way in this holiday-inspired recipe. Simply add a dash of peppermint extract to brownie mix and top with crushed candy canes. It doesn’t get easier than that!
Colder temperatures may have you yearning for soup and hot chocolate, but that doesn’t mean milkshakes should be shunned. This simple recipe sticks to three ingredients (four including whipped cream) and is ready to slurp in less than 10 minutes. Tip: To make it healthier, use a combination of Greek yogurt, vanilla almond milk, and ice cubes in place of the dairy milk and ice cream.
For the times when something cold simply won’t do, turn to this warm winter beverage. Brewed in a Crock-Pot, this recipe is ideal for holiday parties or any group gathering. The recipe is delicious as is, but we’re big fans of subbing dark chocolate chips for semi-sweet, nixing the syrup in favor of extra peppermint extract, and sweetening with agave instead of granulated sugar.
When craving piles of peppermint cookies, turn to our healthier friend, peppermint bark popcorn. Made with all the good stuff—almond bark, candy canes, and chocolate chips—this recipe satisfies those sugar cravings but keeps things on the lighter side. Bonus: It also makes a great last-minute gift.
Some days, turning on the oven feels like sucha chore. Who wants to wait for cookies to bake when you can have them, well, now? These mini cheesecakes skip the baking and stick to simple mixing. Plus, you can taste-test the melted chocolate while cooking (yum!), which is still pretty quick and painless.
Even when cookies are extra sweet and loaded with frosting, eating just one doesn’t seem like enough. These cookie bars solve that problem by having a dense, cake-like consistency thanks to Greek yogurt and more flour than the average cookie recipe. Tip: Add dark chocolate chunks or cacao nibs to get your chocolate fix.
Holiday treats don’t get easier than this (unless you’re eating peppermint ice cream straight from the tub—something we do often at Greatist). Simply melt chocolate chips with peppermint creamer and butter, chill, and roll in crushed canes or cocoa powder. Happy holidays, indeed!
Winter months are a time to splurge, but there are plenty of healthier options out there too! Take this chia pudding, for example. Made with maple syrup, espresso, chia seeds, and dark cacao, the finished product is rich, filling, and insanely delicious—basically all of the best dessert qualities. No fear if you don’t have festive sprinkles on hand; just use crushed candy canes.
No, this tasty snack isn’t actually for puppies. But we love it just as much as those furry little guys! With only four ingredients, this recipe is a cinch to make—and a joy to eat. Even better: They last up to two weeks (unlike most baked goods), meaning you can enjoy the goodies that much longer.