Peppermint Meltaways Christmas Cookies

These delicious, melt-in-your-mouth holiday cookies are topped with a peppermint glaze and crushed candy canes. The perfect cookie to leave for Santa Claus!

This is my very favorite Christmas cookie recipe.  You guys, they are so good-they literally melt in your mouth!  They aren’t called Peppermint Meltaways for nothing! We love them.

Maybe a little too much.

Since I have two daughters who are gluten free, I don’t want to deprive them of their favorite Christmas treats.  I am bound and determined to figure out what works best for each recipe. Last year (my first gluten-free Christmas), I just didn’t eat a lot of treats, because making them gluten-free was way too much of a hassle.  I see myself eating a lot more Christmas treats this year, which is both very good and very, very bad.

But, let’s get back to these delicious Christmas cookies (I’ve already eaten three today).  You definitely need to make these, gluten-free or not! If you don’t need to make them gluten-free, just use the same amount of all-purpose flour and omit the xanthan gum.

Peppermint Meltaway Christmas Cookies

Cookie Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 1/4 cups gluten-free flour

Make sure the flour blend you use includes xanthan gum, otherwise also add 1 teaspoon xanthan gum


Combine butter, powdered sugar, and peppermint extract in a large bowl. Beat at medium speed until creamy. Add flour, cornstarch, and xanthan gum and reduce the speed to low.  

The batter will appear very crumbly at first, but keep beating! When it forms a dough, you can stop. Cover and refrigerate until firm. I actually prefer to stick it in the freezer for fifteen minutes while I work on the glaze, and that is plenty of time.

Preheat oven to 350°F.  Using a cookie scoop, drop one inch balls of dough onto an ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12-15 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned.  Let stand one minute; remove from cookie sheets and cool completely.

Glaze ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 3 tablespoons milk (more if needed)
  • 1/4 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 2-3 drops red food color
  • Crushed candy canes for topping (make sure candy canes are gluten-free—we used Brach’s)


Combine all but the food coloring and crushed candy canes in a small bowl. Stir in food color (or you can leave it white, which will look just as pretty and Christmasy). Drizzle or spread over cooled cookies and immediately sprinkle with crushed candy.

I was so thrilled with how well these turned out gluten-free! The true test of the success of a GF recipe at our house is my husband’s reaction. And I believe his exact words were, “These are amazing!”

Did I mention I’ve already eaten three today? For breakfast?

Don’t judge me until you’ve made them yourselves. You’ll be eating them for breakfast, too.  That’s a promise.

gluten-free peppermint meltaways

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Oooh yummy!


just came back to this to get the ingredients and ordered the flour you recommended. working on getting brian back on gluten free and have peanut free guests coming for Christmas. can't wait to try these! thanks for sharing!


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