What’s soft, chewy, minty and chocolatey? These Peppermint Brownies are and they’re a must for the holidays. Covered in white chocolate ganache and crushed candy cane, they are festive without being over the top. Make a double batch if you want any leftovers!
These Peppermint Brownies are made with my BEST EVER brownies recipe, so of course they are now the second best ever brownie recipe! These delicious Christmas brownies get a subtle dose of peppermint extract, topped with a creamy whipped white chocolate ganache and sprinkled with crushed candy canes.
This is a tried and true brownie recipe I’ve been making for years now. It just gets dressed up appropriately for the holidays. And of course, it is a great excuse to get rid of those leftover candy canes after the holidays are over and done.
How to make Peppermint Brownies
The brownie batter
- In a medium heat proof mixing bowl, add cocoa powder and 1 oz of chocolate. Pour boiling water over it.
- Whisk until mixture is completely melted. If the mixture cools too quickly and the chocolate doesn’t melt completely, that’s okay, we’ll add hot melted butter in the next step.
- Melt butter in the microwave for 30 seconds and add to the chocolate mixture, whisk until smooth. Then add the vegetable oil, eggs and extracts in succession and continue to whisk until smooth.
- Add the sugar and mix until completely incorporated.
- In a small mixing bowl, mix together flour, salt and 3 oz of chocolate, and add this to the liquid ingredients.
- Fold with a spatula just until incorporated. You want to see a few streaks of flour still in the batter.
Now, just add your brownie batter to a buttered and parchment-lined baking pan and bake. Allow the brownies to cool completely before adding any topping.
The whipped chocolate ganache
- Add white chocolate to a medium mixing bowl and pour the hot cream over it.
- Let the mixture sit for a minute and then whisk until smooth.
- Allow to cool to room temperature and refrigerate for about 30 minutes before whipping until fluffy and the mixture holds a peak.
Be careful not to over-whip the ganache, it takes anywhere between a minute to 1:30 minutes for the mixture to hold a peak. The ganache will separate if you over-whip, but fear not, you can fix it by melting it down again and repeating the process.
If you’d rather not whip the ganache, you can pour the cooled ganache over your brownies like I did with these Stout Brownies. Or spread the cold ganache over the brownies with a spatula or butter knife without whipping.
The whipped ganache will be fluffier like a frosting, and you can either spread it on top with a spatula for a rustic look or pipe it using your favorite piping tip and pastry bag.
Assemble the Christmas brownies
- Add whipped chocolate ganache on top of the brownies. Again you have a few options here regarding the ganache, whip it or use as is, pipe it or spread it.
- Sprinkle crushed peppermint candy over the frosting. You can buy peppermint snow in a bottle or simply crush a couple of candy canes in a plastic bag using a wooden rolling pin.
Finally, you’re now ready to cut and serve these festive brownies.
Can I double the recipe?
If you’re making these peppermint brownies for a holiday party or potluck, the recipe can be doubled and baked in a 9”x13” baking pan. The baking time may need to be increased, so be sure to watch your brownies and check doneness using a toothpick or skewer.
Usually I like using the smaller square baking pan for brownies because it yields crispier and chewier side and corner pieces. But they will be no less delicious if you decide to double the recipe.
Storing and making ahead
How to store peppermint brownies
I typically store homemade brownies in an airtight container at room temperature. However, since these Christmas brownies are topped with a whipped chocolate ganache, which has cream in it, they will need to be refrigerated.
Leftovers will last for a couple of days when properly stored in an airtight container in the fridge. But brownies can dry out quickly in the fridge, so it is best to consume these as soon as you can.
Making peppermint brownies ahead for the holidays
If you want to make them a couple of days ahead of time, make the brownie base and store them at room temperature. If you want to make them weeks in advance, bake the brownie base and freeze it whole, thaw at room temperature.
When making ahead, don’t cut the brownie into pieces to keep them from drying out. Add the chocolate ganache and candy garnishing the day before or when you plan to serve them.
More festive Christmas treats
- Linzer Cookies with peppermint chocolate ganache
- Pinata Cupcakes with mint Swiss buttercream
- Peppermint Truffles
- Peppermint Chocolate Madeleines
- Red Velvet Cookie Cups
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, send me a photo, rate it and don’t forget to tag me @wildwildwhisk on Instagram. I’d love to see what’s cooking up in your kitchen. Cheers!
- ¾ cup + 2 tablespoon whole wheat flour (114 g)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 4 oz dark chocolate wafer (72% cocoa, 113 g, divided)
- 3 tablespoon cocoa powder (natural or dutch-processed, 18 g)
- 5 tablespoon boiling water (67 g)
- 5 tablespoon vegetable oil (63 g)
- 1 oz unsalted butter (melted, 28 g)
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 cup + 3 tablespoon granulated sugar (225 g)
- Extra melted butter for pan
- 6 oz white chocolate wafer (about 1 cup, 170 g)
- ¾ cup heavy whipping cream (183 g)
- 2 tablespoon crushed peppermint candy (about 2 candy canes)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush an 8” square baking pan with some melted butter and line with parchment paper. Brush the parchment paper with some melted butter as well.
- In a small mixing bowl, add flour, salt and 3 oz of chocolate (about ½ cup). Mix together evenly with a spatula. Set aside.
- In a medium heat proof mixing bowl, add cocoa powder and the remaining chocolate. Heat the water in a glass measuring cup in the microwave for 1 minute and immediately pour it over the cocoa powder and chocolate. Mix with a whisk until dissolved.
- In a heatproof bowl, melt butter in the microwave for about 30 seconds and add to the chocolate mixture. Whisk until smooth, the hot butter should help melt any chocolate and cocoa powder not completely dissolved in the previous step.
- Add vegetable oil and mix with a whisk until smooth.
- Add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla extract to the mixture, and mix with a whisk again until smooth.
- Add the sugar and whisk until completely incorporated.
- Finally, add the flour mixture set aside earlier and fold with a spatula just until incorporated with a few streaks of flour still visible.
- Pour brownie batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 40 minutes. A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.
- Allow the pan to cool completely on a wire rack before unmolding the brownie.
Whipped chocolate ganache
- Add white chocolate to a medium mixing bowl. Microwave cream in a heatproof measuring cup for 1 minute and pour it over the chocolate. Let the mixture stand for 1 minutes and then whisk until smooth. Allow to cool to room temperature and then refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- When the ganache is cold but still soft, take it out of the refrigerator and beat with a balloon whip for about 1 - 1:30 minutes, starting at medium speed and gradually increasing to high speed until fluffy and holds a peak.
Assemble the brownies
- Spread the whipped ganache over the brownies with a spatula or butter knife, or use a pastry bag fitted with a piping tip to pipe the ganache.
- Put the candy canes inside a plastic bag, and crush them with a wooden rolling pin. Sprinkle crushed peppermint candy over the brownies.
- Cut into slices and serve.
- When lining the baking pan with parchment paper, allow the excess to hang over the sides. This will help you remove the brownies easily.
- You can substitute all-purpose flour, the brownies will come out a tad softer.
- Either natural cocoa powder or Dutch-processed cocoa powder can be used.
- I prefer dark chocolate for this recipe since it has added sweetness from the chocolate ganache topping, but you can use anything between semi-sweet to dark.
- Don’t over-whip the ganache or it will separate. If this happens, melt it back down and repeat the process to fix. You could also choose to layer the ganache on top of the brownies without whipping.
- Refrigerate leftover and consume within 2 - 3 days.
This post was originally published on 1/7/2015. The recipe has been updated and republished on 12/16/2019 with the latest improvements, extra tips, and process photos to help you in the kitchen.