It’s Girls Scout cookie time again! And try as they may, their attempts at gluten-free cookies are mediocre at best.
Plus, everyone loves thin mints and the Girl Scouts haven’t given any indication of when a gluten-free version of their most popular seller will appear in the line up.
But don’t you fret! I’ve recently been made aware of the fact that frustration leads to breakthrough. And that has materialized, in my world, as a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free thin mint cookie.
You see, I was never a Girl Scout but I have always supported their cookie selling efforts. Sure, I’d buy the samoas and tagalongs but my love affair was always with the thin mint.
Enter a gluten allergy and all that it entails and now Girl Scout cookie time sends me into a slight depression.
In my neighborhood, I am literally surrounded by Girl Scouts peddling their goods at my door. I can’t even get away from them at the gym where my petite, super-toned instructor was selling them to help her daughter’s troop. Trying to distract myself from the temptation, I suggested we use the thin mint boxes for bicep curls. She declined.
Anyway, now that I have thin mints on the brain, I see them everywhere I look — Girl Scouts selling them in front of the grocery store, talk show hosts talking about them on tv; I’m even bombarded by them while perusing through pinterest and facebook.
I decided I couldn’t resist the temptation any longer and I hit my kitchen with chocolate in one hand and mint extract in the other.
Here’s the recipe I came up with. And they are delicious if I do say so myself … and I do, otherwise I wouldn’t be posting the recipe! Enjoy!
As always, report back in the comments section and let me know if you made them or have any tips to share with us!
Thin Mints Cookies
Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Egg-free, Casein-free
6 Tablespoons Earth Balance Spread
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, like Enjoy Life Semi-Sweet Chocolate Mini Chips
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon pure peppermint extract
3/4 cup all-purpose gluten-free flour, like Cup4Cup Gluten Free Flour (*Check the ingredients of your flour blend. Some may contain dairy.)
1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if your blend already contains it)
1/2 cup unsweetened natural cocoa powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup turbinado sugar
1/4 to 1/2* pound dark chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon pure peppermint extract, more to taste
* if you are going to glaze the whole cookie use 1/2 pound of chocolate. To glaze only the top of the cookie, use 1/4 pound.
Preheat your oven to 300 degrees F. Line rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper, and set aside.
In a medium-size, microwave-safe bowl, place the earth balance and 1/2 of the semi-sweet chocolate chips. Microwave for 30 seconds then stir. Add the remainder of the chips chips and stir until the chocolate has melted. Add the vanilla extract and peppermint extract, and stir to combine. Set the chocolate aside.
In a large bowl, place the flour, xanthan gum (if using), cocoa powder, baking soda, salt and sugar, and whisk to combine. Add the chocolate mixture, and mix well. Knead the dough until it is well-integrated.
Press the cookie dough into a disk and place the dough between two sheets of unbleached parchment paper. With a dough roller, roll it out until it is about 1/4 inch thick (any thinner and the cookies are more likely to burn in the oven, and they will break when you try to coat them in chocolate).
Cut out rounds that are about 1 1/2-inches in diameter, and place them, 1-inch apart, on the prepared baking sheets.
Place the baking sheet in the center of the preheated oven and bake, rotating once, for 8 minutes. Remove from the oven, and allow the cookies to cool completely on the baking sheet.
Once the cookies are cool, make the glaze. Place half of the dark chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Add the rest of the chocolate and the peppermint extract, and stir until the chocolate has begun to thicken a bit and the chunks have melted.
If you simply want to glaze the cookies as I did in the photos (less work, same flavor) the place a dallop of glaze in the middle of the cookie and use the back of a teaspoon to frost the cookie.
For the full thin mint affect, place the cookies, one at a time, into the glaze. Press down on the cookie with the tines of a fork. Pull the cookie out of the chocolate by slipping the fork under it, lift the cookie then pull the fork along the edge of the bowl and carefully place it on a clean sheet of parchment paper.
Allow the chocolate to set at room temperature. Makes 25-30 cookies.