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  • Writer's pictureCulinary Cam

Painted Peppermint Cookies

I have been making these for years. They are one of my favorites to put on a holiday cookie platter. They are reminiscent of candy canes, but are a much more enjoyable treat.

These were inspired by the article "12 Stunning Cookies That Will Impress Everyone You Know" that appeared in the New York Times about four years ago. They are a family favorite now.


Peppermint Sugar Cookies

  • 2-3/4 cups flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 3/4 cup butter, softened

  • 1 cup organic granulated sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract

Royal Icing

  • 3 egg whites, or more to thin icing

  • 6 cups organic powdered sugar

  • juice from 1 to 2 organic lemons (I used a Meyer lemon)

  • 1/4 teaspoon pure peppermint extract

To Finish

  • red food dye (I used a natural dye)

  • 1/2 t pure peppermint extract

  • Also needed: clean paintbrush


Peppermint Sugar Cookies

Sift together flour and baking powder. Set aside in a bowl.

Beat butter and sugar until creamy. Add eggs and peppermint extract. Mix well. Gradually add flour mixture, until completely combined.

Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill dough for 1 to 2 hours. Roll out between two pieces of parchment paper.

Shape them with your cutters, using flour to keep them from sticking. Place on a silicone mat-lined baking sheet. Put the sheet in the freezer for 5 to 10 minutes to firm up.

Bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 9-11 minutes, depending on size of cookies. Cool completely on wire racks. Make the royal icing while the cookies cool.

Royal Icing

Beat the whites until stiff but not dry. Add sugar, peppermint extract, and lemon juice. Beat for another minute. If the icing is too thick, add more egg whites; if it's too thin, add more sugar.

To Finish

Smooth the royal icing over cooled cookies. Let icing set completely before painting.

Once the icing is set, stir together the red food dye and peppermint extract in a small bowl. How much dye you use depends on your preference of shade; I wanted mine more dark, so I used more dye.

Pull your brush across the cookies, creating uneven peppermint stripes. Let dry before serving.

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