Homemade brownies with a peppermint butter cream frosting and crushed candy cane topping is a festive Christmas dessert for chocolate mint lovers. The crunchy peppermint candy cane topping is the perfect end to a sweet chocolate bite of cool minty goodness. Pair these peppermint brownies with a hot cup of coffee or peppermint cocoa (yes, I know that’s a lot of peppermint) and you’ve got yourself a nice tasty duo.
Ever since I made homemade brownies one time, I hardly ever make the box brownies anymore. They are so easy to make and you don’t even have to melt chocolate. You can just use cocoa powder and get a good chocolate flavor. For a few more ingredients than what it takes to make boxed brownies, you can have from scratch brownies that taste a lot better.
The peppermint frosting is easy to make too. It is comprised of powdered sugar, butter, half-n-half creamer, and peppermint extract. Do NOT substitute mint extract for the peppermint extract. It is not the same. I did that once making peppermint bark because the store was out of peppermint extract and my peppermint bark tasted like a stick of spearmint gum! I had to learn that lesson the hard way.
I only use one teaspoon of peppermint extract in this peppermint frosting because when you top them with the crushed candy cane pieces, it add more peppermint flavor to each bite. You can certainly add a little more peppermint extract if you wish but, I wouldn’t go over 1 ½ teaspoons in the frosting or it will be too much.
If you don’t have half-n-half creamer, you may substitute milk or cream. I like to use half-n-half creamer because it is creamier than milk and I always have it on hand because I put it in my coffee. Oh, how I look forward to my hot coffee in the morning, especially in the winter months.
Making these tasty peppermint brownies for a holiday party is not only a festive dessert but, also a tasty and aesthetically appealing one. If you cut the brownies, spread the frosting on them and top with the crushed candy cane pieces and then put them on a platter rather than keep them in the baking dish, it will give the best presentation to your guests and make it easier to serve.
- 3 eggs
- 2 tsp of vanilla extract
- 2 cups of sugar
- 2 sticks of butter, melted
- 1 cup of flour
- 3/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp of salt
- 1 cup of semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 stick of butter, softened
- 2 cups of powdered sugar
- 1 tsp of peppermint extract
- 2 tbs of half and half (creamer)
- 3 candy canes
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs and vanilla extract. Add sugar and melted butter and mix until blended.
- Add flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt. Mix just until blended. Stir in chocolate chips.
- Pour into a greased 8"x 11"x 3" baking dish and bake at 350F for 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- In a medium mixing bowl, add softened butter and mix until creamy (about one minute.) Add powdered sugar,half and half creamer, and peppermint extract. Mix until smooth. If the frosting consistency is still hard, you may add a teaspoon more of half and half creamer.
- Put candy canes in a zipper plastic baggie. With a gravy ladle or mallet, hit the candy cane until it breaks into small pieces and chips as pictured.
- After the brownies have cooled, spread peppermint frosting over the top in a thin layer or cut the brownies and then spread the frosting onto each brownie. Sprinkle the candy cane topping on top of the peppermint buttercream frosting.