This recipe was originally posted on Mom On Timeout.
Everything “mint” and “chocolate” SCREAMS Christmas time to me! Mint hot chocolate before going caroling, mint chocolate M&Ms in the wooded Santa candy box in the kitchen, Andes mint thins left in my stocking on Christmas morning, and so on. While I have worked hard to let go of any emotional attachment to food and to simply view food as fuel, it is difficult to not associate food with some of my favorite holiday memories.
While I cannot magically zap the sugar out of all my favorite holiday treats, I am finding some scrumptious recipes that allow me to enjoy the season while also taking care of my body. With a few simple substitutions, these Chocolate Mint Cream Cheese Buttons bring all the YUM without any of the consequence.
*See ketogenic substitutes and modifications at the end of the recipe.
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 ½ cups powdered sugar
½ teaspoon mint extract
Several drops of green gel food color
1 cup heavy whipping cream
10 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips
Combine cream cheese and one cup of powdered sugar in a large bowl and use a stand mixer or hand mixer to combine.
Add the extract and gel food color and mix until combined.
Gradually add the rest of the powdered sugar and mix until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Use your hands to combine the ingredients if your mixer is not up to the task. (I usually end up using my hands because it's faster.)
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Scoop out a teaspoon of the dough and form into a ball using the palm of your hands. Place it on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the rest of the dough.
Use the end of a wooden spoon or a small measuring spoon to create indentations in each bowl. Dust the measuring spoon with powdered sugar if it sticks at all.
Chill the mints until firm, about 1 hour.
Place chocolate chips in a heat-proof bowl or large measuring cup.
Bring heaving whipping cream just to a simmer and then pour over the top of the chocolate chips. Stir once or twice and then let sit for 2 minutes.
Continue stirring until the chocolate is fully melted and incorporated.
Transfer the ganache to a ziploc bag and let it set for 30 minutes or so until it has thickened up - think yogurt consistency. You can speed up this process by placing it in the refrigerator, but keep an eye on it or it will get very firm.
Cut the corner off of the bag and pipe the ganache into the center of each mint.
Chill for about an hour, or until the ganache has set up.
Store in refrigerator.
For a ketogenic lifestyle:
Substitute the powdered sugar with a Xylitol sweetener. I use Swerve Confectioners Sweetener. The confectioners is like powdered sugar and the granular is like granulated sugar. Be sure to use the confectioners version.
For the chocolate, I use Lily's Dark Chocolate Baking Chips.