This easy peppermint bark is made with only four simple ingredients, including low-sugar chocolate chips which makes it healthier than most recipes. Each piece only has 2 grams of sugar.
I love this time of the year! My blog is getting filled with holiday treats and you seem to be making your fair share as well. Christmas cookies and treats always bring back fond memories of being in the kitchen with my family and I’m excited to create those same memories with Olivia through the years.
Peppermint bark is always seems to be around at holiday parties, but up until this year I hadn’t ever made it myself. Turns out, it’s crazy simple to make. You just need four ingredients and a little patience while each layer sets up and you’ve got a festive treat to enjoy… and share! Peppermint bark makes a lovely homemade gift for friends and family. Simply package it up in a cute tin and you’re good to go.
As you’ll see I’m using Lily’s chocolate chips for this recipe. Other chocolate chips work, but I like using Lily’s because they are lower in sugar and calories. When made with Lily’s chocolate, each piece of bark only has 2 grams of sugar!
I’m not going to say that candy canes are a healthy ingredient but there are some things to look for when trying to pick out the best possible option! When buying candy canes, I try to look for organic, allergen friendly and ones made without artificial dyes or high fructose corn syrup. Yum Earth candy canes fit the bill and are delicious!
Melting the chocolate properly is more important than you might think! If you heat your chocolate too much, you’ll end up with a burnt or super hard final product. Heat it too little and you’ll have chocolate chip chunks throughout! Here are the two options I recommend:
Microwave – I always melt my chocolate in the microwave because it’s quick and easy! I recommend heating the chocolate in 30-second intervals. Stir well after each interval and stop eating as soon as the chocolate is completely melted and smooth. It will likely take 1-3 minutes depending on your microwave.
Double boiler – If you have a double boiler, this is a fool proof way to melt chocolate without scorching it. If you don’t have a double boiler you can make one by adding water to a pot and then placing a heat-safe bowl in top. Bring the water to a simmer and melt the chocolate in the upper bowl, stirring occasionally.
Prep your pan – Start by lining a 8×8 pan with parchment paper. I like to cut two pieces and have one going in each direction so each side is covered.
Melt the dark chocolate – Melt the dark chocolate using one of the two methods listed above. Be sure not to overheat the chocolate! Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of the peppermint extract. Pour the chocolate into the pan and spread with the back of a spoon so an even layer is formed. Place in the fridge to set up for 30 minutes.
Crush candy canes – There are two ways to get crushed candy canes – you can do this in a food processor or place candy canes in a freezer bag and crush with a rolling pin or the bottom of a glass.
Melt white chocolate – Once the dark chocolate has set, melt the white chocolate. Stir in the remaining 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract and then pour the white chocolate over the dark chocolate. Spread with the back of a spoon until an even layer is formed. Sprinkle on the crushed candy cane and lightly press with your hands. Place in the refrigerator to set another 30-60 minutes.
Cut and serve – Once the chocolate has hardened, cut or break into pieces and serve.
I’ve made this recipe many times without issues, however a few people have had trouble with the chocolate layers separating. Here are a couple tips to prevent this from happening. The first is to score the bark just before the top layer has set so it’s easier to cut. Another tip is to let the chilled peppermint bark sit at room temp for 5-10 minutes before cutting or breaking into pieces.
Store peppermint bark in a dark, cool place. It should last about 7-10 days in a cool kitchen or even longer (about 3 weeks or so) in the fridge or freezer. If you keep the bark in the fridge or freezer, be sure to bring it out and let it rest for 5-10 minutes before eating because the chocolate gets really hard when chilled.