I don’t know what it is about New Year’s Eve parties, but it seems like a time to be colorful. And fun! If there’s any recipe that fits the bill for that, it’s this one: Rainbow Mini Mints. Each one delivers a minty punch, but some have added flavor and color for a more festive mint than normal. I made nine flavor/color combinations and there is one that is by far my favorite.
That’s right. Out of these nine flavors there’s one that is a stand-out. At least for me.
But first, let me explain something. I can’t have caffeine. At least not very much. It can be a bit of a bummer watching a friend drink her espresso or latte and knowing I can’t indulge myself.
Why is it when you know you can’t have something that you want it all the more?
Sure, I could order these drinks “caffeine free” but, really, I ask you, what’s the point? I’ve learned to be content sipping my naturally low caffeine green tea or herbal tea. Coffee shops serve all their drinks in pretty, little cups. So, I remind myself, It’s all good!
And to be absolutely, completely honest…I’ve never really developed a taste for coffee. It seems I like the idea of drinking that cup of espresso, but not really the taste of it.
But that’s what has me completely baffled about these little Rainbow Mini Mints. Because I really like the Orange Mint. And the Almond Mint is surprisingly delicious. Rum Mint? Who would have thought it would taste so good! I love all things coconut so the Coconut Mint is a no-brainer. The Regular Ol’ Mint is a winner too with it’s dark chocolate coating and neon green filling. The Licorice Mint is probably my least favorite of the group, but I know there are those die-hard licorice fans out there who are in for a real treat. That leaves two flavors remaining. Raspberry Mint is my runner up for all-time favorite. And the one who wears the crown? Mocha Mint! How could something coffee flavored could be that good? I don’t know, but it is. In fact, I liked that flavor combination so much I made those a little bigger so I could enjoy a little more of them. Besides, I can consume these little treats without worrying too much about caffeine.
We’re having some friends over for New Year’s Eve this year and I’m definitely serving these mints. I can’t wait to see the reaction as people search for and try different flavors for themselves!
- 8 oz container vegan cream cheese (I used Tofutti)
- 6 - 8 cups powdered sugar
- ½ teaspoon McCormick Pure Peppermint Extract
- Use this guide to create the colors/flavors pictured above:
- Raspberry Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Raspberry Extract; 2 drops McCormick's Neon Pink food coloring
- Regular Ol' Mint: 1 drop McCormick's Neon Green food coloring
- Almond Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Pure Almond Extract; 2 drops McCormick's Neon Blue food coloring
- Lemon Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Pure Lemon Extract; 2 drops McCromick's Yellow food coloring
- Rum Mint: ⅛ McCormick's Imitation Rum Extract; 1 drop of McCormick's Neon Purple food coloring
- Mocha Mint: ¼ teaspoon McCormick's Pure Coffee Extract; 2 teaspoons powdered cocoa
- Coconut Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Imitation Coconut Extract
- Orange Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Pure Orange Flavoring; 1 drop of McCormick's yellow food coloring and 1 drop of McCormick's red food coloring
- Licorice Mint: ⅛ teaspoon McCormick's Pure Anise Extract; 10 drops of McCormick's black food coloring
- 2 cups dark chocolate chips
- 1 - 2 tablespoons coconut oil (firm at room temperature)
- Combine the vegan cream cheese and 6 cups of powdered sugar in a mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until well-combined. Add the peppermint and mix until combined.
- Place the bowl in the fridge for 30 minutes to an hour to allow the mixture to firm up.
- In the meantime, set aside 9 small bowls.
- When the cream cheese mixture is ready, distribute it evenly between each of the bowls, equaling approximately one-fourth cup each. You can add a little extra to some if you'd like. I happen to really like the raspberry and mocha mint flavors so I added a little more to those bowls.
- Use the guide above create the colors/flavors. After you add the flavoring and food coloring to each bowl, also add additional powdered sugar (1 to 2 tablespoons at a time) and stir until the mixture in each bowl is just firm enough to roll into balls. After you're done rolling the mixture into balls, place back in the bowl and refrigerate until fully firm.
- Prepare a pan by placing a sheet of waxed paper over the top. Place 1 cup of the dark chocolate chips and 1 tablespoon of the firm coconut oil in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 30 seconds or so. Stir and then microwave in 11 second increments until the mixture is melted.
- Grab one of the bowls of colored mint balls and begin dipping in the chocolate. I prefer to flatten them slightly before dipping, but you can also serve them round if you prefer. Use a fork to dip them in the chocolate and lightly tap it on the side of the chocolate bowl to remove any excess chocolate. Place the dipped mint on the waxed paper and repeat until you've filled up this pan.
- Place the pan with the dipped mints in the fridge until the chocolate coating firms up. Once that happens, place in an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Happy New Year!