When the holidays arrive, I start thinking of easy recipes I can make to keep that festive feeling going. This year we are staying in of course, so I’m my list of homemade treats to try keeps growing and growing. This peppermint bark has been a must make for years!
It’s an incredibly simple recipe, with just three ingredients – white chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate, and peppermint extract. In my opinion, crushed peppermints on top are a must, but they can be optional if you don’t want to include them.
My whole family loves this peppermint bark, and friends get excited when they know it’s coming. They don’t know how easy it is to make, and I think we’ll just keep that our little secret!
Peppermint Bark Ingredients
Because there are only 4 ingredients in this recipe, quality matters.
Semi-sweet chocolate chips – Buy high quality chocolate that contains real cocoa butter, like Ghiradelli or Guitard.
Peppermint extract – This is easy to find at your local grocery store and it in the same place as the vanilla.
Peppermint hard candies – The hard, round peppermint candies can be found year round; candy canes can be harder to find.
How to Make Peppermint Bark
Simplicity is what this holiday recipe is all about! Melt the semi-sweet chocolate chips, either in the microwave or in a double boiler on the stove, then pour then in a pan and spread evenly. Make sure to line the pan with parchment paper first for easy release later. Let the chocolate set, then melt the white chocolate and mix in some peppermint extract. Pour it over the hardened chocolate, spread evenly and top with peppermint candies. Let it bark cool and harden completely before cutting or breaking into pieces.
I like to melt the chocolate in a double boiler because I feel I can control how hot it gets. Microwaving is a great option too and if you prefer to do it this way be sure to do it in short bursts to keep it from getting too hot and add a teaspoon of vegetable oil to it. And of course stir it frequently!
Top Recipe Tips
How do you keep peppermint bark from separating? Make sure the candy is completely hardened and at room temperature before cutting or breaking apart.
Crushed candy canes or round peppermints work equally well. It’s your choice whether to include them on top. If you don’t want the sticky hard candy, try using red sprinkles to give the illusion of peppermint.
Feel free to play around with some of these fun variations – layer white chocolate on the bottom, then the semi-sweet, then white again for a three layer bark; add M & Ms or sprinkles on top; use milk instead of semi-sweet chocolate.
Storage, Freezing and Gifting
As with most chocolate candies, peppermint bark is best stored at room temperature and in a cool, dark place. Kept in an airtight container at room temp, it should last about 2 weeks, making it perfect for holiday gifting! Kept in the fridge it will last up to 3 weeks. Avoid keeping it in the freezer as it tends to break down and discolor the chocolate, and the peppermint candies get sticky as it thaws.
6ouncessemi-sweet chocolatebroken into pieces, use high quality chocolate
10ounceswhite chocolatebroken into pieces, use high quality chocolate
1/4cupcrushed candy canes or peppermint candies
Line an 8"x"8 baking pan with parchment paper trying to make it as smooth as possible; set aside.
In a double boiler, first melt the semi sweet chocolate, stirring continuously - don't let the water boil. To microwave, place the chocolate in a glass bowl with a teaspoon of vegetable oil. Microwave on high in 20-30 second intervals, stirring between each one, until chocolate is melted. (I prefer the double boiler method)
Once melted pour into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Set aside and let set to room temp, don't cool in the refrigerator
Once the semi-sweet chocolate layer is set, melt the white chocolate in the double boiler. Once melted stir in ½ teaspoon of peppermint extract.
Pour on top of the semi sweet chocolate layer and spread evenly, tapping the pan lightly on the counter to even it out.
Sprinkle the crushed candy cane on top of the white chocolate.
Let cool completely for 2-3 hours and once hardened break into pieces.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks or in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
Let us know how it was by leaving a review or sharing on Instagram with the tag #yellowblissroad
This post was updated from 2015.
Kristin Maxwell is the creator and main recipe developer, writer, and photographer of Yellow Bliss Road. A self-taught cook and self-appointed foodie, she specializes in easy, flavorful and approachable recipes for any home cook.