Do you have a favorite Christmas movie? I love a number of them but will admit after seeing ‘Elf’ with Will Farrell there was no turning back for me. It is hands down the movie I can’t wait to watch each holiday season.
Besides his ever jubilant outlook on life I think one of my favorite parts is his listing of the four major food groups: Candy, Candy Canes, Candy Corn and Syrup. Tossing out the candy corn, that sort of is what takes over our counter tops on baking racks for December, as well as the noshes at holiday and school parties, isn’t it? Fortunately I have not attended any soirees where they serve pasta tossed with maple syrup as he did!
As much as I love a good tried-and-true holiday cookie, I sort of love a bar more. To me a bar is a holiday sweet that really man’s up with a sturdy constitution, packing a punch of flavor delivered in a chewy, gooey texture.
As with many families it is a holiday tradition to bake for Santa on Christmas Eve in the Boulder Locavore household. We love trying new recipes each year. We do have our favorites however. Anyone for Peppermint Bark? Couldn’t be easier and no one would ever know. Forgotten Cookies were something my Grandmother made every year and I thought they were magical. I now know they are meringues with nuts and chocolate chips that are put into a warmed oven turned off to sit overnight. I loved waking up early and opening the oven to find them perfectly crisp and delicious. For a festive sipper to accompany cookie decorating, try a nice mug of Wassail (and it can be served spiked if one is so moved).
These Holiday Chocolate Peppermint Magic Bars are sure to become a new favorite. With a theme of chocolate and mint, the bars are layered full of rich chocolate, mint, marshmallow with a fanciful appearance thanks to the colored M&M’s. They satisfy any sweet tooth and despite not having any candy corn or syrup, I feel sure they’d get a big thumb’s up from ‘Elf’.
This post is a tad short but I’m working on an extra special project I can’t wait to share with you Sunday! Please hop back for some inspirational holiday cheer.
These bars are so easy to make and will delight anyone with their festive appearance and ooey, gooey goodness. Chocolate and peppermint are perfect partners and it's never been more obvious than in these tasty bars.
The bars can be made gluten-free or with gluten and instructions for both are included in the recipe.
- 2 cups gluten-free Chocolate Cookie Crumbs (I used Pamela’s Products Extreme Chocolate Mini Cookies, ground in a food processor) or 1 ½ cups regular Chocolate Cookie crumbs if not gluten-free
- ½ cup Unsalted Butter, melted
- 1 14-ounce can Sweetened Evaporated Milk
- 1 cup Holiday Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips (red, green and chocolate)
- 1 cup Milk Chocolate Holiday red and green M&M’s
- 1 cup Dark Chocolate Mint green M&M’s
- 1 cup Mini Marshmallows
- 4 standard size Candy Canes, smashed with a rolling pin
- Butter or spray with non-stick spray a 9-inch by 13-inch baking pan. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
- In a medium mixing bowl combine cookie crumbs with the melted butter. Mix well and spoon into the prepared baking pan. Press down into pan to form a crust.
- Drizzle half of the sweetened evaporated milk over the cookie crumb crust and smooth out with the back of a spoon.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the chocolate chips, M&M’s, and marshmallows. Toss to fully combine. Distribute evenly over the crust.
- Drizzle the remaining sweetened evaporated milk over the entire mixture in the baking pan. Evenly distribute the smashed candy canes over the top.
- Bake the bars for 25-30 minutes until the marshmallows and condensed milk begin to turn golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool fully before slicing. Tip: after the bars cool to room temperature, put them in the refrigerator to chill before cutting. This allows firm bars to be cut.