Chocolate Peppermint Sandwich Cookies

If you have a neighborhood cookie swap or church social on your calendar this season, these sandwich cookies are sure to be a hit. Cookies and bars are always crowd-pleasers—and make great handmade gifts for friends and family during the holidays. Choose a gingersnap or linzer from this lineup of Christmas treats if you want to include some of the classic holiday cookies on your dessert tray as well.

Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
3 hrs 5 mins
Yield:
2 dozen

Ingredients

Cookie Dough

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup sparkling sugar

Peppermint Filling

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened

  • 4 cups powdered sugar

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons heavy cream

  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract

  • Red food coloring gel

Directions

  1. Prepare the Chocolate Sugar Cookie Dough: Beat butter and sugar with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla. Beat on medium until combined, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl as needed. Melt chocolate chips according to package directions, and cool. Add to butter-sugar mixture; beat on low until blended.

  2. Stir together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. With mixer running on low speed, add flour mixture to butter mixture, beating until just incorporated. Cover dough; chill 1 hour.

  3. Prepare the Cookies: Preheat oven to 350°F. Shape dough into 48 (1-inch) balls. Place sparkling sugar in a shallow bowl. Roll each ball in sparkling sugar; place 2 inches apart onto 2 parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Gently flatten dough balls to 1/2-inch thickness. Bake in preheated oven until cookies are dry to the touch, about 8 minutes. Cool on baking sheets 2 minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely, about 30 minutes.

  4. Prepare the Filling: While cookies cool, beat unsalted butter and cream cheese with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer on medium speed until creamy, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce speed to low, and, with mixer running, gradually add powdered sugar, beating until smooth. Beat in heavy cream, vanilla extract and peppermint extract.

  5. Using a small food-safe paint brush, paint 3 lengthwise stripes of red food coloring gel on the inside of a piping bag fitted with a large star tip. Fill bag with frosting. Pipe frosting onto half of cookies, and sandwich with remaining cookies. Refrigerate 15 minutes before serving to firm up frosting.

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    Victor Protasio; Prop Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas; Food Styling: Torie Cox
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