Mix up these one-bowl Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites in minutes with no mixer, no chilling and no fuss! Each moist, chewy brownie base cradles a spoonful of creamy, dreamy peppermint ganache.
I love to come up with a signature Café Christmas cookie each December but this year I've had a bit of a dilemma. I've had too many ideas and can't decide which will be "the signature" 2023 cookie. These little Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites are definitely in the running but I might need your help as there are a few more holiday cookie recipes are coming up!
These moist little brownie bites have a delicious, dreamy mint thumbprint filling that melts in your mouth. A few drops of green food coloring (optional) and a kaleidoscope of Christmasy-hued sprinkles make them festive, fun and super pretty!
No rolling out dough, no chilling, no fuss!
These Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites come together quickly in one bowl, with no mixer needed. Just divide the dough into portions, roll each portion into a ball and plop the dough balls into a mini muffin pan. Use a small measuring spoon to make an indention in the dough ball then bake and cool. While the brownie base is cooling, you'll have time to put together the white chocolate mint filling.
Spoon the filling into the thumbprint intentions, then sprinkle a festive little shower of Christmasy-hued nonpareils over the top. Your work is done!
Well, maybe you're not quite done. But this is the fun part. There are lots of delightful things to do with these fabulous little treats. Here are a few ideas:
- Pair these adorable little Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites with a bowl of vanilla ice cream for an easy, festive dessert. Add a drizzle of our Ridiculously Easy Hot Fudge Sauce to make things extra special!
- Add them to your annual holiday cookie platter.
- Win first prize at your neighborhood cookie exchange (or at least lots of oohs and aahs)!
- Serve them for an open house or neighborhood get-together.
- Sneak a plateful onto a co-worker's desk (even better, your boss's desk). Then enjoy the smiles from a distance as they check out the pretty little cookies.
- Box, bag or plate up the delicious treats, add a pretty bow and give them away!
- Leave a plateful in someone's mailbox or on the doorstep of someone who needs a bit of cheer.
- Gather a few friends and head to your local nursing home or convalescent center. Sing a few carols and share a plate of these fabulous sweet brownie bites.
- Give them to a favorite teacher, hairdresser, delivery person or healthcare worker.
- Welcome a new neighbor with a plateful of these Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites.
- Make amends with a friend. How could they someone hold a grudge with a plate of these given as a peace offering?
A wonderful gift!
Yes, these Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites make a wonderful gift for old and young alike!
We've created a festive label to dress up and identify your gifts. Feel free to request the free printable labels in the comment section below this post. We'll send you the PDF via email and instructions on how to print the labels. We'll also share links for the boxes and ribbons you see in the pictures.
Need a signature cookie that's easy to throw together yet looks fancy and fun? These Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites are all that! They'll also make your house smell amazing as they bake and each sweet little bite is crazy delicious! Cheers!
Cafe Tips for Making These Peppermint Thumbprint Brownie Bites
- Because this recipe doesn't require a mixer, the butter should be nice and soft - not melted, but soft enough to blend easily. You can let cold butter set out for several hours to soften but if your kitchen is on the cool side, you might need another way to get the right consistency. Here are a few ideas:
- You can soften the butter in the microwave on 10% power level . It works like magic! You’ll need to experiment a bit with your microwave though, as they’re all different. Start with 1 minute. Add 20 to 30-second increments until you learn how long your microwave will take to get the butter nice and soft, but not melted.
- Another technique I often use to soften butter is to put it in the microwave for a few hours with the light on. To keep the light on in the microwave I put a folded paper towel in the door.
- Boil a cup of water in the microwave for 3-4 minutes and get things nice and steamy. Leave the water cup in the microwave, add the butter and close the door. The warmth from the steamy water will help to soften the butter quickly.
- Cutting the butter into small pieces helps it soften quicker.
- Place the hard butter on a small plate. Fill a bowl with hot water. Wait 5 minutes then discard the water. Put the warm bowl over the butter.
- Put the butter in the oven with the light turned on. This will take a few hours.
- The fastest way to soften butter is to put cold butter in the microwave for 10 seconds. Turn it to the opposite side and microwave for another 10 seconds. It might be ready at this point, but if it’s not completely soft, add one or two more 5-second stints.
- You'll need a mini muffin pan to make these sweet treats. I like this 24-cup muffin pan but a 12-cup pan will also work. You'll need to make several batches, depending on the size of your cookies.
- I like to make each ball of dough the same size so I use a medium-size cookie scoop and a kitchen scale for consistent portioning. I make each portion around 1 ounce or 30g. You can make them larger or smaller to your preference.
- Before baking, these brownie bites are rolled in sugar. You can use regular granulated sugar but I like to use cane sugar which is a little coarser and gives each cookie a little crunch on the exterior. You can find cane sugar at most larger grocery stores in the same section as regular granulated sugar or online. Cane sugar is not as coarse as Demerara or Turbinado sugar.
- I use regular Hershey's cocoa for these cookies.
- This recipe calls for half & half. For those of you living outside of North America, half & half is simply a convenience product, often used for coffee here in The States. It's a combination of half milk and half cream.
Thought for the day:
And Mary said,
“My soul magnifies the Lord,
and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
for He has looked on the humble estate of His servant.
For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed;
for He who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is His name.
And His mercy is for those who fear Him
from generation to generation.
He has shown strength with His arm;
He has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts;
He has brought down the mighty from their thrones
and exalted those of humble estate;
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.
He has helped His servant Israel,
in remembrance of His mercy,
as He spoke to our fathers,
to Abraham and to His offspring forever.”
What we're listening to for inspiration:
If you enjoy this recipe, please come back and leave a star rating and review! It’s so helpful to other readers to hear your results, adaptations and ideas for variations.
- ¾ cup very soft butter I use salted
- ¾ cup brown sugar packed
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 large egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt I use Morton's
- ½ cup cocoa powder
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- granulated or cane sugar for rolling
- 2 ounces white chocolate
- 2 ounces butter I use salted butter
- 2 tablespoons half & half
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- nonpareils for sprinkling on top optional
Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Spray a 12 or 24-cup mini muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Wipe the inside of each cup with a paper towel to thoroughly coat. Set aside.
Place the soft butter in a medium-size bowl and stir to blend. Add the sugars and stir until well combined.
Add the egg yolks, vanilla and peppermint extracts, baking powder and the salt and stir again.
Next stir in the cocoa powder until completely incorporated. Lastly, add the flour. At first, it may seem like too much flour but keep stirring until all the white streaks are gone.
Scoop the dough into 28-34 equal portions and roll each portion into a ball with your hands. (I like to use a scale and make each portion around 30g or 1 ounce.)
Place about ¼ cup granulated or cane sugar in a shallow bowl. Roll each ball in the sugar then place it in the center of one of the cups of the prepared mini muffin pan.
With a small round measuring spoon (I use a half teaspoon spoon) make an indention in the center of each ball of dough.
Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies are slightly firm to the touch. It’s better to underbake just a bit than to overbake.
Remove from the oven and reinforce the indentations with the same little measuring spoon. (At this point, you can make the indentations a little deeper to hold more of the delicious filling if you like.)
Allow the cookies to cool for 10 minutes then remove the brownie bites to a cooling rack to cool completely. (I use a table knife to gently lift each cookie enough to be able to remove it from the pan.)
In a medium-size microwave-safe bowl, combine the white chocolate and butter. Cook on high power for 30-40 seconds until the butter is melted. Stir until the white chocolate is melted. You might need another 10-20 seconds in the microwave.
Add the half and half and extracts and stir again. Then add the powdered sugar and stir until nice and smooth. I like to use a whisk for this. You may need a little extra powdered sugar. You want a thick but pourable consistency.
Add a few drops of green food coloring to achieve a hue of green that you like (I add 4-5 drops, stirring after each drop until I like the color.
Using a 1 teaspoon measuring spoon, fill each brownie indentation to the top.
Sprinkle with nonpareils (if desired) while the filling is still wet. I like to fill 3-4 cookies at a time, then sprinkle with the nonpareils so they stick to the filling.
Allow the filling to set. This will take 1-2 hours. If you want to speed things up, you can refrigerate the brownie bites for 30 minutes.
These cookies keep well at room temperature for several days and also freeze well.
See Café Tips above in the post for more detailed instructions and tips to ensure success.
If you prefer to use Metric measurements there is a button in each of our recipes, right above the word “Instructions”. Just click that button to toggle to grams, milliliters, etc. If you ever come across one of our recipes that doesn’t have the Metric conversion (some of the older recipes may not), feel free to leave a comment and I will add it.