As 2014 comes to a close, I’ve got part six of our Pure Chocolate Wisdom series, sponsored by Pascha Chocolate. I hand-picked Pascha Chocolate for Go Dairy Free, as it is made in a top allergen-free facility (dairy-free, nut-free, gluten-free, and even soy-free!), and is certified organic, vegan, fair trade, kosher, and non-GMO verified. They even offer 100% cacao chocolate chips that are suitable for paleo diets.
For the yearly wrap-up, I used wisdom from the prior posts in this series to create something simple, but amazing: all-natural, vegan, egg-free, gluten-free, soy-free, nut-free and dairy-free peppermint patties!
Dairy-free peppermint patties are so fun to make. The filling dough comes together in minutes, and is easy to roll and cut, just like sugar cookies!
And then the dipping begins! My favorite technique for melting chocolate is easy, quick, and pretty much foolproof, plus it gives you the freedom to take your time as you dunk each slice.
The end result is so much fresher than store-bought peppermint patties, and unlike the York variety, these are free of corn, dairy, egg, and soy. Plus, you can make them into festive shapes to fit the season: hearts, trees, and yes, even gingerbread men…
Oops, one got away! No worries – it’s okay if he just needs some time to chill alone. These homemade dairy-free peppermint patties taste even better when made a day ahead – allowing the peppermint flavor time to mellow and meld.
Pure Chocolate Wisdom Series Healthy Posts:
Part 1: 5 Surprising and Scientifically Shown Health Benefits of Dark Chocolate
Part 2: New Research: The Chocolate Gut Connection
Part 3: Superfoods Meet Chocolate: Maca, Lucuma, and Arabica
Part 4: The Best Way to Melt Chocolate (Comparison)
Part 5: Bean to Bar Chocolate Explained
Delicious Dairy-Free Chocolate Recipes from my Kitchen:
- Pure Chocolate Truffle Snacks
- Chocolate Banana Monkey Pops
- Cherry Chocolate Chip Shake
- No Bake Superfood Chocolate Crunch
- Chocolate Pumpkin Butter Cups
- Double Chocolate Orange Cookies
- Dairy-Free Peppermint Patties (recipe below!)
Special Diet & Ingredient Notes: Dairy-Free Peppermint Patties
By ingredients, this recipe is dairy-free / non-dairy, egg-free, gluten-free, grain-free, nut-free, peanut-free, soy-free, vegan / plant-based, and vegetarian. Just be sure to use brands and ingredient options in these dairy-free peppermint patties that suit your dietary needs.
- Chocolate: I use Pascha Chocolate because it is dairy-free, soy-free, certified gluten-free, certified vegan, and made in a facility free of the top allergens. Since they offer so many percentages (chips in 55%, 85%, or 100% and bars in 55%, 60% w/ Maca, 70%, or 85%), you can opt for an outer coating that’s milky, semi-sweet, dark, or unsweetened for contrast.
- Oil / Shortening: I used Nutiva Superfood Shortening, but their coconut oil will also work quite well.
- Coconut Cream: I used the thick cream from So Delicious Culinary Coconut Milk. If you have nut allergy concerns, see this post: Are coconut-based foods safe for tree nut allergies?
- Powdered Sugar: I use organic powdered sugar for environmental reasons, but it is also a great option if you are strictly vegan or avoiding corn (most organic brands are not cut with cornstarch).
- Pure Extracts: I actually used Simply Organic peppermint oil, but an alcohol-free extract would also work well. Just make sure you go pure, rather than artificial, with both the peppermint and vanilla for the best taste. I prefer alcohol-free since this is a no bake recipe.
- 2¼ cups organic powdered confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon palm shortening (like Nutiva or Spectrum), divided
- 2 tablespoons coconut cream (see note below)
- 1½ to 2 teaspoons pure peppermint extract
- ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1⅓ cups dairy-free, soy-free chocolate chips or about 7½ ounces chopped semi-sweet or dark chocolate (I use Pascha 55% Organic Chocolate)
- Toppings, such as sprinkles or crushed candy cane (optional)
- Sift the powdered sugar into a mixing bowl. Add 2 tablespoons coconut oil or shortening, the coconut cream, and the extracts. Stir by hand or with a mixer on low until thoroughly combined. It may form crumbs rather than a smooth dough - that is fine.
- Bring the mixture together with your hands, which will help to warm it just enough, kneading a few times until you get a relatively smooth dough. Now you can a) roll the dough into a log that is about 1½ inches in diameter or b) roll the dough out onto wax or parchment paper to about ¼ inch thickness. I like option b - cut the rolled dough with small round cookie cutters or desired shapes (the dough is a little fragile, so nothing too intricate), as you would with sugar cookies.
- Place the log or cut dough into your refrigerator and let chill for about 30 to 60 minutes. If using the log method, remove the log from the fridge, and slice into ¼ inch circles.
- In a medium-sized bowl, melt the chocolate with the remaining 1 tablespoon coconut oil or shortening. If melting the chocolate via the microwave or stove top, let it cool for a few minutes before proceeding.
- One at a time, dunk the filling rounds or shapes in the chocolate, carefully remove, letting residual chocolate drip off, and place on wax paper, parchment paper, or a silicone baking mat.
- If using sprinkles or crushed candy canes, top the chocolates now, while still wet.
- Let the candies set up at room temperature (can take several hours, depending on how warm your home is), or cheat a little and chill in the refrigerator until set.
- Once set, store in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days, or chilled for longer.
Coconut Cream Note: You can buy it at the store in cans, but you can alternatively let full-fat coconut milk (sold in cans or small 11-ounce cartons) settle (in the refrigerator, if needed), and skim coconut cream from the top to use in this recipe. I used So Delicious Original Culinary Coconut Milk and skimmed the cream (keep the rest to use in other recipes!).