These Chocolate Dipped Cookies take a classic buttery shortbread cookie recipe made with a handful of baking staples and dip them in creamy, chocolatey ganache then top them with crushed peppermint candy. They perfect Holiday treat!
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Chocolate Dipped Shortbread Cookies
Christmas time is the time when I do most of my baking and, like most of you, timeless recipes are a must! Classic cookie recipes like gingerbread men, Grinch cookies, or easy snowball cookies always have a place on my cookie trays, whether serving guests or just to snack on!
Typically I also make traditional iced shortbread cookies with the 3 basic ingredients of butter, sugar, and flour. However, this year, I’m trying something new.
I’ve taken the sweet, buttery old-fashioned shortbread cookie and added an egg to the dough for a sturdier base. Then once baked and cooled, I dip them in chocolate ganache and finish them with crushed candy cane.
As impressive as these melt-in-your-mouth chocolate topped cookies are, they are super quick and easy to make. With very few pantry staples, and a whole lot of butter, you’ll have a freshly baked batch of everyone’s favorite holiday treats with a mint chocolate twist!
Enjoy them with your afternoon tea, bring them to a cookie exchange, serve them at all your holiday gatherings, and don’t forget to leave a couple out for Santa!
- Butter: Bring it to room temperature ahead of time so it’s soft enough to cream easily. You can use salted or unsalted butter, it’s up to you. This is what gives the cookies their buttery, crisp, and crumbly texture.
- Sugar: Granulated sugar gives the cookies their sweet taste. It’s a must in any good shortbread cookie recipe! Using white sugar helps give them a bit of crispness and structure.
- Large egg: Not part of the original ingredients, but I’m using an egg to bind the ingredients together to make it extra sturdy.
- Vanilla extract: A delicious flavor addition. If you can find it, use pure vanilla extract instead of anything artificial.
- All-purpose flour: The foundation of the cookie is needed for a strong base. Always make sure to measure the flour correctly with a kitchen scale or spoon it out into the measuring cup and level it with the flat edge of a knife.
- Chocolate: Chopped melting chocolate is what I use for my ganache. Any good quality chocolate will work.
- Heavy cream: When added to melted chocolate it because rich, creamy, and thick. As any ganache should be!
- Crushed candy cane: The combination of little bits of mint overtop the chocolate covered cookie is irresistible.
1. Use powdered sugar in place of white sugar to give them a bit more of a melt-in-your-mouth bite or use brown sugar for richer flavor.
2. Instead of candy cane you could use chopped nuts like walnuts, pecans or peanuts or even toffee bits. Festive holiday sprinkles would be fun too. You could also leave it with just the chocolate dipped cookies, or have a few of each different kind.
3. For a slightly different flavor, swap the vanilla extract with almond or orange extract.
4. Use dark chocolate, semi-sweet, or milk chocolate bars. Chocolate chips can also work, but again, using the best chocolate gives the best results!
5. Get creative with the chocolate! Use it to dip the entire top surface, half only, use it as a drizzle, or even melt white chocolate chips half white chocolate and half chocolate. Have fun!
How to Make These Chocolate Covered Cookies
Let’s get started on making these decorative shortbread cookies in only a few simple steps. Everyone knows, everything is better with chocolate!
Step 1: In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar together with an electric mixer on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until fluffy. Then blend in the egg and vanilla.
Step 2: Combine the dry ingredients and then gradually add the flour mixture, about ½ cup at a time. Use low speed to combine the dough between each flour addition.
Step 3: Scoop out 1.5-2 Tablespoons of the shortbread dough and use your hands to roll them into smooth balls. Place them in a single layer onto a prepared baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Lightly press down on each ball until they are about ½” thick.
Step 4: Chill the cookie dough for about 15 minutes and in the meantime, preheat the oven to 350° F.
Step 5: Bake cookies for 10-11 minutes until they just start to turn slightly golden brown on the bottom. Allow them to cool completely on a cooling rack before dipping.
Make the Ganache
Whip this up quickly while the cookies are cooling off.
Add the chocolate bark to a medium bowl (heatproof) and microwave for 30 seconds. Remove, stir, and heat for another 30 seconds. Stir until smooth and, if needed, heat for an additional 15 seconds. Be very careful not to overheat the chocolate or it will seize and be unusable. The bowl will usually warm as well and keep melting the chocolate after removed from the microwave.
Once the cookies have cooled, dip each one into the melted ganache and immediately top with crushed peppermint candies before the chocolate cools.
Place the chocolate dipped cookies back on the cookie sheets and into the refrigerator to chill for 15-20 minutes until the chocolate has set completely.
- Use a bowl with an electric hand mixer or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment to beat the butter and sugar.
- A large cookie scoop will ensure all the chocolate dipped cookies are the same size. This will also help to ensure even baking.
- Do not overbake the cookies. Just slightly golden on the bottom and no more than that. Once the cookies start to brown, it changes the taste.
- Keep the dough balls about 2 inches apart on the cookie sheet. They’ll need a bit of room to spread.
- Do not skip the chill time. This is so the butter can firm up before baking. Otherwise, they’ll spread too much.
When stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, these cookies can last up to 5 days. The chocolate needs to be kept chilled for it to remain solid.
You can do this with or without the chocolate topping. If you know that you’ll be freezing some, I would hold off on adding any chocolate yet. Store them in a freezer bag or container for up to 1 month.
If they already have the chocolate and candy on top, flash freeze them for about 30 minutes on the baking sheet to make sure they are solid. Then, transfer them to a freezer bag. You can also separate the layers with parchment paper so they don’t stick together.
A great way to avoid the mess is to do any dipping over a sheet of parchment paper. That way, when you’re done, cleanup couldn’t be easier.
When this happens your chocolate will seize. It will no longer be creamy, or melted, and may smell burnt. You can try adding a teaspoon at a time of boiling water or vegetable oil and stir to blend.
If all fails, just discard it and start over again.
Chocolate Dipped Cookies
- 1 cup butter softened (2 sticks)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 4 ounces chocolate chopped
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 2 tablespoons crushed peppermint candy or chopped nuts optional
- Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, add the softened butter and sugar and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for 1-2 minutes until fluffy. (you can also use the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment).1 cup butter, 1 cup white sugar
- Then add the egg and vanilla extract and blend to combine.1 large egg, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Gradually add the flour in batches of ½ cup and blend on low after each addition just until the dough gets thick.2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- Scoop out 1 ½ – 2 tablespoon scoops and roll them into smooth balls.
- Place the balls on the lined baking sheet at least 2” apart.
- Press down each ball until it’s approximately ½” thick.
- Place the cookie sheet with dough in the refrigerator 15 minutes
- Pre-heat the oven to 350° F while the dough is chilling.
- Then bake the cookies for 10-11 minutes, just until they are beginning to turn golden brown on the bottom.
- Remove from the oven and to cool on the baking sheet for 2-3 minutes then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely before dipping in chocolate.
Making the Chocolate Genache
- Add the chopped chocolate and heavy cream to a microwave-safe bowl.4 ounces chocolate, ½ cup heavy cream
- Microwave for 30 seconds and then stir and repeat for another 30 seconds. Remove and stir until smooth. Microwave for an additional 15 seconds if needed but be very careful not to overheat or the chocolate will seize and be unusable.
- Dip each cookie into the chocolate ganache and immediately top with crushed peppermint candies.2 tablespoons crushed peppermint candy or chopped nuts
- Place the cookies back to the refrigerator and chill for another 15- 20 minutes, until the chocolate has set completely.