Creamy Peppermint Patties (Vegan, Paleo)
I love the holidays. If you know me, you know I’ve always nerded out over the holidays. When I moved to LA, I rounded up some of my closest friends to do holiday activities like pumpkin carving during Halloween, and gingerbread house building during the Christmas season. This evolved into an annual tradition and every year our traditions grow as more and more get involved in our fun festive activities. It’s fun to see everyone tap into their inner child and have fun -- with mulled wine of course. Since none of my closest friends in LA have children, this is how we have our fun during this time of year. We even make mini gingerbread houses that fit on the sides of mugs. Don't judge!
When I build gingerbread houses, it’s always sad because I can never eat them after, or even pick at the candy while I’m building them. After a couple of years of not being able to indulge in a piece here or there (this would give me major digestive repercussions, sugar is my kryptonite), I’ve decided to create my own holiday candy! And of course this is much better for you any way, having no additives, chemicals or refined sugar.
First up on my holiday candy copycat list….. PEPPERMINT PATTIES. When I say these taste identical to the OG Peppermint Patties, I’m not joking. They’re melt in your mouth, creamy and full of peppermint flavor. It took me a few tries to get this texture correct. I tried with coconut butter but it was too coconut-ty and crumbled a bit once set, I also tried with different types of nut flours and butters, and then it dawned on me — the creamiest texture when soaked and blended are soft oily nuts like cashews or macadamia nuts. These nuts are often used in vegan cheesecakes and desserts because of their creamy texture and neutral flavor. So I used soaked cashews as half of my filling base and these turned out INCREDIBLE. I also think macadamia nuts would work here as well for a cleaner, lower fodmap option. Although, if you are looking for a low fodmap dessert, the cashews will work here as well! They are in such a low serving size in one patty, or even 3 patties! Cashews aren’t the heathiest of the nuts of them all, but dang are they great for that perfect creamy texture. It’s all in moderation, right?!
If you love Peppermint Patties or Junior Mints, this recipe is for you. Only 6 ingredients, no bake and super easy. And they are worth every step!! These are paleo, vegan, gluten & dairy free and damn delicious. And refreshing!
What is in these copycat Peppermint Patties?
Coconut Oil: I suggest REFINED here, this will have no coconut flavor. Coconut oil is one of the main ingredients in your peppermint patties. These allow a solid center when chilled and melt in your mouth immediately. This cannot be subbed.
Cashews: You can replace these cashews with macadamia nuts for a lower fodmap option, or if you don’t tolerate cashews. Both nuts will be a neutral flavor and are soaked prior so they become very easy to digest
Peppermint Extract: This is the hero of your peppermint patties! You can also substitute this with food grade essential oil, I’d start with 1-2 drops and increase from there
Plant Based Milk: Any milk will work here!
Vanilla Extract: You can omit this but it adds a slightly vanilla flavor to your filling
Maple Syrup: This was my sweetener of choice here but you can use any liquid sweetener
Dark Chocolate: I always use my favorite paleo chocolate here, but you can use any dark chocolate of choice
Are these copycat Peppermint Patties easy to make?
SO. EASY. These are NO BAKE. There are only 6-7 ingredients and require no baking. You will just need a blender and a tray to freeze them onto to set. You will just have to soak the nuts in advance to achieve a creamy texture.
Any special equipment?
A small baking sheet or plate for freezing your patties while they set
Have I convinced you yet? Ok good, let’s make them!
8 tbsp of coconut oil, melted and cooled
1/2 cup of raw cashews, or raw macadamia nuts
1+ tbsp of plant based milk
1 tsp of peppermint extract, or 1/4 tsp of peppermint oil
1/8 tsp vanilla extract
3 tbsp of maple syrup, or liquid sweetener
1 cup of paleo dark chocolate chips
1 1/2 tsp of coconut oil for chocolate
Measure out 1/2 cup of raw cashews (or macadamia nuts), and soak them for 5-6 hours, or overnight in a glass of water. If you want to speed this process up, you can soak them in very hot, close to boiling water for an hour. They should be plump and soft or will not work in this recipe. So this is an important step!
Once your nuts are soaked, drain out the water and rinse. Then add them to a high speed blender. Now add in the 8 tbsp of melted coconut oil, milk, vanilla, peppermint extract, and maple syrup to the blender, and blend on high for 1-2 minutes. This mixture needs to be completely smooth. If you feel it’s having a hard time blending because it’s too thick, add 1 more tbsp of milk.
Taste your mixture. If it’s not sweet enough, add 1 tbsp more of maple syrup. Don’t be worried if your filling still has a cashew flavor. This will go away once these are chilled and set.
Take your baking sheet or plate and line with parchment or wax paper.
With a spoon, scoop out one spoonful of mixture and carefully spoon it on your parchment so it forms a small round circle, the size of a mini peppermint patty. Mine ended up being about 1-3/4” round. They will be thin, but you are eventually going to add one more layer to it.
Repeat spoonfuls on your baking sheet until you make about 14-16 circles. You can shape the circles with your spoon to get them round. Now carefully transfer your baking sheet to the freezer, laying flat so the circles do not run and they keep their shape. Freeze for 10 minutes for that layer to set.
Remove from freezer and repeat the same process, instead now you are going to add another layer on top of the existing circles. This makes them a bit thicker. Spoon your remaining mixture on top of the circles carefully. This layer should stay on top the frozen circles. You can shape with your fingers and smooth the two layers together if you’d like. It should make about 14-16 total pieces. (If you have more mix left after topping the circles with the second layer, you can repeat this process over again until all your mixture is used up)
Place in freezer to set until fully frozen, about an hour. Check on them, they should peel up easily from the parchment sheet and should be nice and solid.
When the filling circles are ready, keep them in the freezer while you melt your chocolate. In a small bowl, melt your chocolate chips or chopped bar with the 1 1/2 tsp of coconut oil. Make sure you do not melt your chocolate too hot. I’d start in the microwave in 30 second increments. Stir well in between, if the chocolate chunks are almost melted but not quite there, you can keep stirring and the chocolate will eventually melt into itself. This is better than heating the chocolate too warm. Too hot chocolate will melt your patties when you dip them.
Now remove your patties from the freezer. Peel the pieces up from the parchment so they’re all loose and ready to dip. Lay one of your circle pieces onto a fork and dip into the melted chocolate, shake off excess and lay back on the cookie sheet.
Repeat with the rest of the circles. I place them back on the same baking sheet since it’s still cold. But try to work quickly here so the center of your patties do not melt. You can even dip half of them and freeze those while you finish the rest.
Once all your circles have been dipped, place back in freezer to fully set,1-2 hours. You can store them in the freezer (they’re SO GOOD frozen), or you can store in the fridge for a softer, meltier peppermint patty. They would be more the texture of a Junior Mint.
Enjoy!! These are good in the freezer for 6 months, or in the fridge for 2 weeks. These will most likely melt at room temp, so try to keep them cold!
You will want to eat these all at once. They are the perfect after dinner treat. They may be one of my more “omg these taste just like the original” copy cat recipes!
Make sure you do not melt your chocolate too hot. I’d start in the microwave in 30 second increments. Stir well in between, if the chocolate chunks are almost melted but not quite there, you can keep stirring and the chocolate will eventually melt into itself. This is better than heating the chocolate too warm. Too hot chocolate will melt your patties when you dip them. Ideally your chocolate should be just warm, closer to room temp.
If you're having a hard time blending your mixture because it’s too thick, add 1 more tbsp of milk. This maybe the case if you use macadamia nuts.
Make sure your nuts are soaked for 6 hours to overnight to ensure they are nice and soft and ready to be blended. You can speed the process up by soaking them in close to boiling water for 1 hour, just make sure they are swollen and soft before you blend them.
If your circles are kind of wonky because you cannot spoon pretty circles, you can always reshape once both layers are completely frozen. They’ll be more formable when they are cold. Before you dip them.
You will need to work quickly while you dip your patty centers in the chocolate, careful not to melt the patties with the chocolate. You can dip half and return to the freezer to set while you do the rest.
I used maple syrup as my sweetener but you can use any liquid sweetener. It just may slightly change your flavor. Taste your filling before spooning and freezing to make sure you like the sweetness, but keep in mind there will be chocolate on top, too.
If you make these PEPPERMINT PATTIES I'd love to hear from you! It's also very helpful to leave a comment, rating or questions below. Or tag me on Instagram #gutsybakes at @gutsy_baker! Nothing makes me happier than seeing your creations!
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