Wonderfully minty and sweet, these homemade Junior mints need just 3 ingredients to make and taste BETTER than the OG candy.
At some point in my life, I fell in love with Junior Mints. These chocolate-covered pebbles felt so refreshing that I carried a box with me wherever I went.
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What are Junior Mints?
Junior Mints are popular candies featuring a mint filling covered with dark chocolate. These candies were introduced in the 1950s and have been popular since then.
They feature the classic flavor combination of peppermint and dark chocolate. After tweaking my recipe a couple of times, I finally made it to these decadent cups featuring a minty white chocolate filling sandwiched between layers of semi-sweet chocolate.
Here are some reasons why you’ll love this homemade recipe:
- It’s only 3 ingredients. Peppermint extract, white chocolate, and dark or milk chocolate are all you need to make these candies.
- It’s easy to make. Making Junior Mints in their original pebble form would be too time-consuming for homemade candy. This is why I decided to make them using a muffin pan.
- It’s a lot healthier. Unlike Junior Mints you get in stores, these homemade ones don’t contain unwanted ingredients like corn syrup, modified food starch, emulsifiers, and artificial flavors.
Copycat Junior Mints have never been easier. These are the only three ingredients you need to make them.
- White chocolate. To keep the peppermint filling simple but delicious, I use white chocolate. It’s sweetness balances out the peppermint flavor.
- Chocolate chips. You can use any dark or milk chocolate chips of your choice. The original candies are made with semi-sweet chocolate.
- Peppermint extract. Be very careful with this ingredient- a little goes a VERY long way.
How to make junior mints
Like I told you, I make these minty candies using muffin cups to make things easy and quick without sacrificing the flavor. Here’s how it goes.
Step 1 – Prepare the chocolate base
Add half of the chocolate chips to a microwave-safe bowl and melt. Pour the melted chocolate into the muffin pan with muffin liners. The base layer should be half an inch thick.
Place the muffin pan in the fridge and allow the chocolate to set.
Step 2 – Fill the cups with peppermint filling
In the meantime, melt the white chocolate. White chocolate has a lower melting point. Don’t overheat it and keep stirring until it’s fully melted. Add the peppermint extract and mix.
Remove the muffin pan from the fridge and pour the white chocolate into the muffin cups, trying to distribute it evenly. Refrigerate for another 20 minutes until the peppermint layer firms up.
Step 3 – Add the final layer and chill
Melt the remaining chocolate chips. Distribute it evenly among the candies, making sure to cover the white chocolate layer. Refrigerate until firm.
Tips to make the best recipe
- Make sure you don’t get any water into the chocolate when melting it as it will seize becoming lumpy and impossible to work with.
- Peppermint extract is very potent. When adding to the white chocolate, start with the smallest amount and add more if needed.
- Change up the peppermint filling by using coconut butter instead of white chocolate. You can also use condensed milk or cream cheese mixed with powdered sugar.
- Use a mini muffin pan for bite-size candies.
- Use your favorite silicone candy molds to make minty candies of your desired shape and size.
To store. Store these minty chocolate candies at room temperature for up to 3 weeks. If it is hot where you live and the candies get melty, transfer them to an airtight container or bag and keep them refrigerated.
To freeze. To freeze these candy cups, keep them in the fridge for a day. Then, wrap each candy with cling wrap, transfer to an airtight bag, and freeze for up to 3 months.
More homemade candy recipes to try
Frequently asked questions
No, Junior Mints are not vegan as they contain dairy products. They also may contain eggs.
Both confections feature a peppermint-flavored filling covered in chocolate. The key difference between the two is that Junior Mints have a stronger mint flavor. Traditional Junior Mints are also a lot smaller than peppermint patties.
Yes, you can use peppermint syrup instead of the extract. But note that peppermint syrup is sweet and may not provide a very potent peppermint flavor.
Homemade Junior Mints
- Line a 12 count mini muffin tray with muffin pans and set aside.
- In a microwave-safe bowl or stovetop, melt half the chocolate chips. Pour the melted chocolate into each muffin pan, around half an inch or so. Place in the refrigerator.
- While the chocolate is firming up, melt your white chocolate. Moving quickly, stir through your peppermint extract until combined.
- Take the muffin tin out of the fridge and evenly distribute the peppermint cream amongst the twelve cups and place in the refrigerator for 20 minutes, or until the mint center has firmed up slightly.
- Once firm, melt the remaining chocolate and evenly distribute it amongst all the cups. Refrigerate until firm. Once firm, remove the junior mint cups and enjoy!
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