If you follow me on Instagram, you have probably seen the photos that I have posted of the homemade Andes mints that I made as Christmas gifts! I made about 600 candies and now the recipe is deeply ingrained in my brain and I wanted to share it with you! I originally tried a healthier set as well that used coconut butter for the base, and those were pretty good, but for big batches, this way is MUCH easier. So you if you are looking for a fun, homemade Christmas gift to take to friends and family, this is a great treat!
Homemade Andes Mints:
recipe adapted slightly from Ashlee Marie
makes 1 cookie sheet full of chocolate mints
24 oz dark chocolate (divided into 2 12oz portions)
12 oz dark green candy melts
4-6 drops mint extract or mint oil (mint extract will make the melts set up faster, so I would recommend the oil, but I used mint extract for all of mine, and it worked okay, you just have to work extra quickly!)
Start with two heat-safe bowls. Fill one with 12oz of dark chocolate. Fill the other with 12oz of candy melts. Place the dark chocolate in an oven, preheated to the lowest setting (warm or 170°F). Stir it every 2 minutes until it is melted.
While it is melting, line a rimmed cookie sheet with a sheet of wax paper or tin foil, lining it as best as you can so that it fits the corners well and lays flat. Once the dark chocolate is melted, remove it from the oven and quickly pour it onto the cookie sheet, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula.
Quickly spread the chocolate in an even layer across the cookie sheet, doing your best to get the chocolate as smooth as possible. Bang the pan down on the counter to remove any bubbles from your chocolate. Place in the refrigerator. Set the bowl that had the chocolate in it aside for further use later.
Then, place the bowl of candy melts in the oven and stir every two minutes.
Keep close watch on your candy melts and on your chocolate in the fridge. You want to pull your pan of chocolate out as soon as the chocolate loses its glossy look, and becomes matte. Place it on the counter, and remove your candy melts from the oven. Add 4 drops of mint oil to your candy melts and briefly stir. Test to see if it is sufficiently minty (remember that there will be two layers of non-minty chocolate, so it should be decently strong).
With a clean rubber spatula, quickly pour the candy melts over the chocolate on the pan, and--as fast as you can--spread the melts out evenly over the chocolate layer, paying particular attention to getting the corners. The chocolate may begin to melt and mix with the candy melts, but if you work quickly and gently, you can probably get it all layered before your chocolate starts melting.
Place your cookie sheet with the chocolate and mint layers back in the fridge, and fill your chocolate bowl that you set aside earlier with the remaining 12oz of dark chocolate and place it in the warm oven. Stir every two minutes until it is melted.
Keep a close eye on your chocolate filled cookie sheet in the fridge, and as soon as it become matte, remove from the fridge. Remove your bowl of chocolate from the oven and quickly pour it over the candy melt layer on the cookie sheet, and, with the spatula you used for the first batch of chocolate, quickly spread the chocolate in a smooth layer over the mint layer.
Return to the fridge and let it cool for 5-7 minutes. Right as the top layer begins to turn matte, remove from the fridge. Then, with a sharp knife, gently outline the mint shapes in the chocolate, cutting off the rounded edges and uneven corners, creating outlines of small, rectangular mints. At this point, you don't have to cut all the way to the bottom layer (especially because you don't want to leave scratch marks in your pan).
Put the pan back in the refrigerator for 5 more minutes or so. Then, once the chocolate has firmed up a bit, remove the pan from the fridge. Pull the chocolate covered wax paper onto the counter or a cutting board and cut down through the outlines to separate the chocolates. Refrigerate or freeze until you gift or eat them! Enjoy!