This is what winning looks like:
Well, not that.
That looks like third place.
And only if I was registered as a walker instead of a runner.
This is what winning really looks like:
Those are hot cocoa cookie cups.
And they are the best.
I have evidence.
Hot Cocoa Cookie Cups are everything you love about Christmas sweets all wrapped up into one little chocolate package.
Hot chocolate cookies.
Vanilla Whipped Buttercream Frosting.
Rich, chocolate ganache.
I shouldn’t even share this recipe because it’s the best damn thing to come out of my kitchen since, well, the last winning recipe.
But in the spirit of the season, I will share the recipe with you because you simply must make them.
Oh, by the way, set aside about, oh, six hours or so, because these babies are a little labor intensive.
I started by organizing everything I would need for all three cookie components.
The cookie recipe I used, Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles, was lightly adapted from my all-time favorite cookie book.
To make the
Hot Cocoa Cookies:
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 tablespoons non-dairy milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetend cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl, mix the oil, sugar, syrup, milk, and extracts.
Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
Mix until a pliable dough forms (add additional flour by the tablespoon, if needed).
Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let chill while you prepare the frosting.
I used a basic buttercream recipe directly from my second favorite book:
Vanilla Whipped Buttercream Frosting:
1/2 cup non-hydrogenated shortening
1/2 cup non-hydrogenated margarine
3 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 cup non-dairy milk
Beat the shortening and margarine together until creamy and fluffily. Add in the powdered sugar about 1/4 cup at a time, alternating with a small amount of milk. Add the vanilla and beat until light and fluffy.
Now, put the frosting in the fridge until ready to use.
Remove the cookie dough from the fridge.
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Roll tablespoon amount into balls and place in mini-muffin pan.
Press down with your thumb to create the cookie cup.
Repeat with remaining dough.
Bake for 10-12 minutes.
They will puff up when they bake, but I pressed them back down at about 8 minutes and finished cooking for an additional two minutes.
*Tidbit: It’s better for them to be a touch underdone so the sides do not get too hard. Check them at 8 and 10 minutes.*
Remove from pan and allow to cool.
While they are cooling, prepare your ganache, also taken directly from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World.
To make the
1/4 cup non-dairy milk (I used dark chocolate almond)
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
In a small saucepan, bring almond milk to a gentle boil. Remove from the heat and add the semi-sweet chocolate and maple syrup. Stir until completely smooth.
To assemble the cookie cups:
Add a small spoonful of the ganache to each cookie up.
Pipe or spoon in buttercream frosting.
Drizzle with additional ganache.
I added a small peppermint stick to half.
I added these cupcake toppers to the other half for the peppermint haters.
Here they are before the competition:
These cookie cups are definitely winners.
I hope you decide to devour some!
In case you’re wondering why I walked my 5k, it’s because there are two people in this photo!
You can learn all about the Peanut Baby I’ve been cooking up at