During the fall of 5th grade, Mom signed me up for Girl Scouts. I loved the first two meetings! In November, we painted rectangular wooden boards with an undersea scene, complete with waving kelp and a pair of goldfish, and in December, we made little snowman figurines by painting miniature terra cotta pots white, gluing Styrofoam balls on top, and pressing on googley eyes and felt for their faces and clothing.
At my third meeting in January, the troop leader handed out Girl Scout cookie sales sheets. Each sheet unfolded multiple times, until it stood half as tall as me, and contained over a hundred lines for names, addresses, and boxes ordered. Before sending us on our way, the troop leader mentioned she had extra order forms for when we completed that first one.
When I walked out the door, I felt a growing pit in my stomach, and by the time I reached Mom’s car, I was nearly in tears. As an incredibly shy child, I completely dreaded what our troop leader instructed us to do: go door-to-door through our neighborhood to ask every family, friend or stranger, to buy boxes of Girl Scout cookies.
Mom immediately reassured me the world wouldn’t end if I didn’t walk door-to-door or fill up the entire form. When I handed it back at our troop meeting the following month, I had four orders: one for each set of grandparents, one for the sweet lady across the street who loved us like her own children, and one for my family.
For our own order, Mom inked in one of every flavor, plus an extra box of Tagalongs and Samoas (my brother and my favorites!) and multiple extras of Thin Mints. She and Dad loved those the most, and my brother and I still enjoyed them too!
Every time Girl Scout cookie season comes around, I remember what Mom did and how she reassured me that she and Dad would still love me, regardless of how many boxes I sold… And how she bought enough boxes to make it look like I sold some to every family on our cul-de-sac to the other girls in my troop. Thank you Mom! ♡
Since I haven’t had any Girl Scouts knock on my door yet this year, I decided to try baking my own… And these Ultimate Healthy Homemade Thin Mints taste just as good—if not even better!—than the ones in those green cardboard boxes! They’re perfectly chocolaty and crunchy, with lots of bright peppermint flavor, and they’re just 43 calories!
WHAT ARE THIN MINTS?
If you’ve never had a Thin Mint cookie, then… I hope that changes ASAP with these homemade ones! The Girl Scout originals were first introduced in 1951. They’re thin, round cookies, about 1 ½ inches in diameter, that are extremely chocolaty, crunchy, and full of peppermint flavor. After baking, they’re coated in a thin layer of melted chocolate. Many people swear that freezing Thin Mints and then eating them cold is the best way but… My boxes always seem to disappear before I remember to try that! 😉
HOW TO MAKE HOMEMADE THIN MINTS
Nerd alert! Because I want to make sure you can make the best homemade Thin Mints, I’m going to share lots of tips and information about the ingredients and instructions with you!
Before I started recipe testing, I researched what makes cookies crunchy… But I found very little information. Instead, I found lots of tips about how to make cookies chewy. It seems like many people, myself included, tend to gravitate towards those soft and chewy varieties! So instead, I made notes on how to make chewy cookies… And then tried to do the opposite to make these crunchy homemade Thin Mints!
Nearly every source agreed that eggs contribute to soft and chewy cookies, especially the yolks, so… I omitted them. Yup—no eggs in these cookies! (Plus they aren’t an ingredient in Thin Mints either!) Instead, I added a touch of milk to give the cookie dough the correct texture.
I also came across multiple articles stating that melted butter contributes to chewier cookies (that’s one reason why I use melted butter in nearly all of my cookie recipes… and because it’s easier!), so I decided to beat softened butter with coconut sugar (like this!) to aim for a crunchy texture.
Tip: If you’d like to make these homemade Thin Mints vegan and dairy free, see the Notes section of the recipe for my recommendations on how to do that!
Coconut sugar is exactly what it sounds like: an unrefined sweetener that comes from coconuts! However, it does not actually taste like coconuts. It has a rich caramel-like flavor, similar to brown sugar, but it has the same dry texture as granulated sugar. If you can’t find coconut sugar, then use granulated instead!
Before we continue with crunchy tips, we can’t forget the rest of the ingredients! You’ll need peppermint extract (like this!) to get that true Thin Mint flavor. It’s pretty strong, so you only need a little bit!
Then to make these cookies taste just as chocolaty as the originals, you’ll use one part unsweetened cocoa powder (like this!) to two parts white whole wheat flour (like this!) Do not use Dutched or special dark cocoa! Their flavors are faint and dull compared to the robust chocolatyness of regular unsweetened cocoa powder. (I think Webster’s should add chocolatyness to their next dictionary edition, don’t you??)
As for white whole wheat flour, such a thing actually exists—and it’s not a combination of white (aka all-purpose) flour and whole wheat flour! Regular whole wheat flour comes from a coarse and hearty variety of red wheat, whereas white whole wheat flour is made by finely grinding a special type of soft white wheat (hence the name!). This gives white whole wheat flour a lighter taste and texture, which is perfect for these healthy homemade Thin Mint cookies!
Tip: Whole wheat pastry flour is a perfect substitute! And if you’d like to make your healthy Thin Mints gluten free, then see the Notes section of the recipe. I’ve included my favorite option there!
Okay, back to crunchiness! You’ll sift those dry ingredients into the creamed butter and coconut sugar, along with a pinch of salt and tiny bit of baking soda. I checked the Thin Mint ingredient labels, and one manufacturer includes baking soda, but the other does not! So I tried both versions, and I preferred the ones with baking soda. It provides just enough lift and tiny air pockets that the cookies aren’t as dense as rocks—and those air pockets also help with the crunchiness!
Once you’ve mixed up the cookie dough, you’ll put the cookie dough in the fridge to chill. Remember how melted butter = chewier cookies? We want that butter to be nice and cold to help with that crunchy texture!
Then you’ll roll it out to be 1/8” thick. I tried 3/16” to start, and that was a bit too thick compared to the original Thin Mints. To cut out the cookies, use a cookie cutter with a 1 ½” diameter. It’s sometimes hard to find that size individually, but you can usually get that size in a set like this!
Tip: If you can’t find one, then use a glass spice jar’s metal lid. Those tend to be a good size too!
Time to bake! To get chewy cookies, you typically remove the baking sheet from the oven after about 7-9 minutes… But to get crunchy cookies, you leave them in the oven longer—closer to 14 minutes! There’s a sweet spot between chewy cookies and burnt cookies, and that’s exactly what we’re aiming for. Crunchy, chocolaty, minty cookie bliss!
Still with me?? I know this is a lot of info… I want to make sure you bake the BEST homemade Thin Mint cookies!
Once your cookies are at room temperature, it’s time to dip them in melted chocolate! I originally used 70-72% dark chocolate (like this from Ghirardelli or this from Lindt!), and while I absolutely loved those cookies… They tasted much darker in flavor than the Girl Scouts’ Thin Mints. Therefore, something like Hershey’s special dark chocolate or Cadbury dark chocolate tastes much closer. (Both of those are milkier in flavor than 72% dark chocolate!) My taste testers slightly preferred the flavor of Cadbury dark chocolate.
Tip: Do NOT use chocolate chips! Those contain a stabilizer, which prevents them from melting properly.
I recommend using a small shallow bowl. This is the exact one I used! It means you’ll need to melt your chocolate in batches because it won’t all fit, but that smaller bowl size makes it much easier to dip and coat all sides.
My friend Dorothy shared an incredible tutorial on how to coat treats in melted chocolate here! She suggests putting the bowl on top of an electric griddle set to its lowest temperature, with a washcloth or dishtowel in between. I don’t own a griddle so… I used the metal top of my panini press instead! It gets hot while plugged in, so with a folded washcloth set on top, that kept my bowl of melted chocolate warm—so the chocolate wouldn’t harden and reset!
I used one fork to dip each cookie into the melted chocolate. Then I lifted out the fork, turned the fork + cookie at a 45° angle, and held another fork against the cookie’s side (so it wouldn’t slip back into the bowl!). This allows the excess chocolate to drip off. Then put your chocolate-dipped cookie onto a baking sheet covered with a sheet of wax paper and continue with the rest! Once all cookies have been dipped, slide that baking sheet into the fridge for a few minutes so the chocolate sets.
Tip: Once melted, bars of Hershey’s special dark chocolate and Cadbury dark chocolate tend to be thicker compared to bars of 72% dark chocolate, which results in a clumpy or uneven layer. I recommend adding a bit of oil to the melted chocolate so it coats the cookies in a more even layer!
FAQS ABOUT HEALTHY HOMEMADE THIN MINTS
Are these homemade Thin Mints vegan, egg free, dairy free, or gluten free?
Yes! As written, the recipe for these healthy homemade Thin Mints is egg free. I’ve also included options to make them vegan, gluten free, and dairy free in the Notes section of the recipe. Just look below the Instructions for those modifications!
What’s the best chocolate for dipping?
Bars of chocolate! If you scroll up, I covered the four different chocolate bars that I tried and the results. I don’t recommend using chocolate chips because they often contain stabilizers that prevent them from melting as well or as smoothly.
How did you get such a thin and even coating of melted chocolate?
I have a couple of tricks for this! First, keep your melted chocolate warm during the dipping process. I use a panini press with a folded washcloth to do this, but something like an electric pancake griddle would also work. (See my blog post above for more information!)
Second, go slow and be patient! Don’t rush the process. Let the chocolate drip off of the cookie after dipping for a few extra seconds (yes, even more than you think you might need!) before setting it down on the baking sheet.
Third, use higher percentages of dark chocolate. The higher the chocolate percentage, the thinner and more liquidy it is when melted. (That’s why I almost always use 70% and above for chocolate coatings. I’ve even used 90% or 95% chocolate!) However… I realize not everyone is a huge dark chocolate fan like I am (and that these homemade Thin Mints tasted exactly like the originals with lower percentages!), so if using bars that are less than 70% dark chocolate, add a bit of neutral-tasting oil to it to help thin it out and make it easier to coat your cookies in a thin, even layer.
How should I store homemade Thin Mints? And how long do they keep?
Store your homemade Thin Mints in an airtight container. If stored like this at room temperature, they should keep for at least a week. If you’d like them to last longer, pop your container in the refrigerator. These healthy Thin Mints freeze quite well too!
Regular Thin Mints are only 40 calories, but yours are 43 calories. Why is that?
Because my homemade version has a thicker layer of melted chocolate on the outside! And as a huge chocolate lover, I’m a-okay with that. 😉
Then it’s time to eat! I shared these with family and friends, and they all unanimously agreed… These truly are the BEST homemade Thin Mints—and they don’t taste healthy at all! And to me, that’s the best compliment there is. ♡
Then when you make your own, remember to snap a picture and share it on Instagram using #amyshealthybaking and tagging @amyshealthybaking IN the photo itself! (That guarantees I’ll see your picture! 🙂 ) I’d love to see your cookies!
The Ultimate Healthy Homemade Thin Mints
- ⅔ cup (80g) white whole wheat flour or gluten free* flour (measured like this)
- ⅓ cup (27g) unsweetened cocoa powder (measured like this)
- ¼ tsp baking soda
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp (28g) unsalted butter, softened (see Notes!)
- ½ cup + 2 tbsp (120g) coconut sugar
- 2 tbsp (30mL) unsweetened cashew milk
- 1 tsp peppermint extract
- ¾ cup (168g) chopped chocolate (see Notes!)
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Sift them at least once to ensure no clumps of flour or cocoa powder remain. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter and coconut sugar with an electric mixer. Beat in the milk and peppermint extract. Gradually beat in the flour mixture.
- Transfer the cookie dough to the center of a large sheet of plastic wrap. Using a spatula, shape the cookie dough into a ½”-tall rectangle. Top with another large sheet of plastic wrap. Fold up the excess plastic wrap, and chill the cookie dough for at least 3 hours. (The cookie dough may be chilled for up to 2 days.)
- Preheat the oven to 350°F, and line two large baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
- Leaving the cookie dough between the sheets of plastic wrap, roll it out to ⅛” thick. Using Using a 1 ½”-wide round cookie cutter, cut out circles of cookie dough, leaving as little unused dough as possible. Pull the unused dough away from the cut-out shapes, and transfer the cookie dough circles onto the prepared baking sheets. Gather the unused dough, squish it into a ball between your palms, and roll it out between the sheets of plastic wrap again. Continue to cut out circles until all of the dough has been used.
- Bake the cookies at 350°F for 13-16 minutes. Let them cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Line two large baking sheets with wax paper. Melt the chocolate in a small bowl. (This size is perfect! I also highly recommend keeping the melted chocolate warm while dipping – see Notes!) Carefully dip each cooled cookie in the melted chocolate using two forks, and let the excess drip off. Place onto the prepared baking sheets. Let the chocolate harden completely before serving or storing.
View Nutrition Information + Weight Watchers Points
You may also like Amy’s other recipes…
♡ Healthy Mint Chocolate Cupcakes
♡ Healthy Samoa Cookie Scones
♡ The Ultimate Healthy Chocolate Sugar Cookies
♡ Healthy Flourless Peppermint Mocha Brownie Bites
♡ Healthy Fudgy Peppermint Mocha Cookies
♡ Healthy Fudgy Peppermint Mocha Brownies
♡ Healthy Dark Chocolate Peppermint Truffles
♡ Healthy Triple Chocolate Peppermint Cookies
I’m not sure why you say don’t use chocolate chips as they don’t melt properly due to added stabilizers. I use chocolate chips for all my baking projects, including melting to coat baked goods many times, and have never had any issue. They work just the same as the baking chocolate bars. I plan to use chocolate chips for this recipe and am sure it will come out just fine. I also do not use the “correct” flour measuring method. I never have and never have had any issues with any of my baking. I’ve tried a comparison in the past where I used this new so called “correct” way to measure vs the regular scoop it out of the container method and there was no noticeable difference 🤷♀️. I know what they say as far as the reasoning behind this “correct” way, but I have never seen or tasted any difference and I bake a lot! Anyone else have similar feelings or thoughts?
I’m honored that you’d like to try my recipe, Tea! You’re welcome to use chocolate chips for the coating of these homemade thin mints if you prefer. However, your melted chocolate will be much thicker in consistency compared to using high-quality bars of dark chocolate, like the ones I recommend, which result in a very thin, almost water-like consistency. As a result, the chocolate layer on your cookies will most likely be much thicker, you’ll probably need more chocolate to fully cover all of your cookies as a result, and the nutrition information will be very different (if that happens to matter to you!).
Then for your question about the “correct” way to measure flour, it actually makes a BIG difference in healthy baking recipes, especially mine! This is because I specifically design my healthy recipes to use just enough fat and sweeteners for the correct taste and texture — but no more. In contrast, many “traditional” recipes use a lot more butter, oil, and/or sugar. That excess of these ingredients in “traditional” recipes will often mask the effects of adding more flour with the scoop-directly-from-the-container measuring method that you describe. Since my recipes don’t have that same excess, your doughs or batters will end up really dry, sometimes to the point of making it impossible to fully incorporate all of the flour, cocoa powder, oats, etc.
If you scoop your flour and cocoa powder directly from the container with your measuring cups to make these homemade thin mint cookies, that will likely be the case. Your cookie dough will be fairly dry and crumbly, and you won’t be able to incorporate all of the dry ingredients. Your cookies will also taste more bitter due to the excess cocoa powder that results when you scoop it directly from the container.
I hope that helps, and I’d love to hear what you think of these cookies if you end up making them! 🙂
PS The reason my comment form asks for your email address is because I send you a courtesy alert with my response as soon as I reply! When filled it out in the manner in which you did, I’m unable send that courtesy message with my reply to you, so I have no way of alerting you that I’ve responded to your questions. 😉
Thank you for replying to my message and answering my questions! I finally found some time to make these cookies tonight and wanted to reply with an update. I used my scoop from the container method of measuring flour and chocolate chips to coat. The cookies turned out delicious! I honestly still don’t understand the issue with scooping from the container, my batch turned out great. Texture and taste are good and got thumbs up from everyone who tried them. I know flour and other dry ingredients can get packed in the bottom of measuring scoops, so I do shake my cup a bit to keep everything loose, maybe that made a difference!
The chocolate chips were a bit thicker but I only used a handful extra to cost the cookies than stated in the recipe. I thought about adding a small amount of milk to create the runnier texture you described as this method always works well for me when I want a thinner chocolate, but I tested one out and liked the thicker texture so decided to go with it!
I really enjoy and appreciate this recipe because it doesn’t use an excess of ingredients and still tastes amazing! Thank you so much for what you do!
(I tried to give this recipe five stars but it won’t let me, it keeps showing four stars only. So if anyone is wondering, this recipe is five stars for sure! Highly recommend!)
I’m so glad you enjoyed these cookies and truly honored that you’d give this recipe five stars, Tea! That’s the best kind of compliment there is. Thank you so much for taking the time to let me know and share your experience — it truly means a lot!! 🙂
Amy these look delicious!!
My only question is if we can sub finely ground oat flour for the white whole wheat flour?
Thank you so much in advance, and especially for all of the helpful notes!!
I’m honored that you’d like to try my recipe, Sierra! Although I don’t usually recommend substituting oat flour in most of my recipes, it should work in this one. Just be extremely careful when measuring it because it tends to be a bit more absorbent than wheat-based flour, so even a little bit too much can dry out your cookie dough! 😉 I can’t wait to hear what you think of these homemade thin mints of you try making them!
Lisa N says...
Hi!! I’m sorry but these cookies were a complete disaster!! They were raw on the inside and totally burned on the bottom! They were in the oven for about 10 minutes when I can smell the burn! I love your recipes but I think I’ll stick with Girl Scout Thin Mints! 😞 They’re only 40 calories!!
It means a lot that you tried making my recipe, Lisa! That sounds frustrating and not like how these cookies are supposed to turn out, so I’d love to work with you to figure out what happened. 🙂 In order to do so, I have some questions for you!
Did you make any modifications to the recipe, including those listed in the Notes section?
Did you use a kitchen scale or measuring cups/spoons, especially for the flour, cocoa powder, coconut sugar, and cashew milk?
What was the consistency and texture of your cookie dough like after chilling for 3 hours?
Did you use the exact same size cookie cutter as I did?
Did you roll out your cookie dough to be ⅛” thick? Or was it thicker than that?
Did your cookies spread at all while baking?
And just to check… You baked your cookies at 350°F, correct?
I know I just asked a LOT of questions, but I’ll have a much better idea of what happened once I know your answers to all of them!
I was very excited to make these, I’ve been craving girl scout cookies (and I’m pregnant). I did everything to the T (or so I think). Measured the flour the way it states, chilled the dough overnight even bu the dough get so sticky I can’t even work with it. I get maybe 3 cookies cut out and I can’t get them off the plastic wrap without them sticking to it so much that they rip. I finally had to keep putting them in the freezer ever 3 or 4 cookies and it took me over an hour just to get them cut out and onto the baking sheet. What did I do wrong? I really want to make these more because the dough is simple to make but not if they are going to take this long to make every time 🙁
I feel like its probably a very easy fix on my part, I just wish I knew what I could do better next time.
It means a lot that you tried my recipe, Miranda! That sounds really frustrating and not like how this cookie dough is supposed to be at all, so I’d love to help figure out what happened. 🙂 In order to do so, I have some questions for you!
Did you make any substitutions or modifications to the recipe, including those listed in the Notes section?
Did you use a kitchen scale or measuring cups/spoons for all of the ingredients, especially the flour, cocoa, coconut sugar, and milk?
How soft and/or wet was your cookie dough before chilling? Was it sticky yet solid? Closer to the consistency of muffin batter (ie where it would slip off the sides of a spoon if you scooped it from the bowl with a spoon)? Something in between?
How about after chilling overnight?
How thick was your dough after rolling it out?
When transferring the cut-out cookies from the plastic wrap to the baking sheet, did you peel away the “unused” dough from around the circles first?
I know I just asked a lot of questions, but I’ll have a much better idea of the culprit once I know your answers to all of them!
Same here!! (And also pregnant 😂). I was so frustrated with how I could not get these cookies up. Mine chilled overnight and still so sticky they couldn’t come off the plastic wrap or wax paper when I tried that. Mine are just all weird globs. Oh well. I probably won’t make this again because it was so much work and didn’t really work out well,
It means a lot that you tried my recipe, Rachel! I’m really sorry I’m just now getting back to you; I had to take a lot more time off than I anticipated to take care of some family things, but I’m still happy to help if you’d like!
That sounds disappointing and not at all like how these cookies should turn out, so I’d love to work with you to figure out what happened. In order to do so, I have some questions for you! (Some are the same as the ones I asked Miranda! 😉 )
Did you make any substitutions or modifications to the recipe, including those listed in the Notes section?
Did you use a kitchen scale or measuring cups/spoons for all of the ingredients, especially the flour, cocoa, coconut sugar, and milk?
Did you use white whole wheat flour or the gluten-free flour blend I linked to in the Notes section of the recipe?
If neither, what did you use instead?
Did you end up baking any of the cookie dough? If so, how was the flavor of your baked cookies?
I know I just asked a LOT of questions, but I’ll have a much better idea of the culprit once I know your answers to all of them!
Hello!! So they were delicious… it was just working with the dough that was so tough! I used whole wheat flour (not white) and I may have used a T or 2 of maple syrup which could’ve made it stickier. The cookies themselves were SUPER crunchy. Anyway! We loved eating them. They just took me a lot of work to make… I liked the flavor so much I may make them again 🙂
Hope you’re doing well and your family is well.
Thanks for this additional information, Rachel! Did you use 1-2 tablespoons of maple syrup in addition to the coconut sugar? Or in place of?
If you used the maple syrup in addition to the ingredients listed in the recipe, then unfortunately, that’s exactly why your cookie dough was so wet and hard to handle. The maple syrup added too much liquid and threw off the ratio of wet to dry ingredients. 🙁
So if you’d like to include maple syrup in any future batches, then substitute it for the milk! That will maintain the correct ratio of wet and dry ingredients, so your cookie dough will be stiffer and actually hold its shape when you use the cookie cutters. 🙂
If you do end up making them again, I’d love to hear whether that future batch turns out any better!
Hi! I can’t wait to try out this delicious recipe – just had a question about the peppermint. I have something called “peppermint flavor” from Frontier co-op and the ingredients are sunflower oil and peppermint oil. Can this be used in place of peppermint extract?
It means a lot that you’d like to try my recipe, Fleta! From what I understand, your “Mint Flavor” product should be more concentrated than peppermint extract since it’s mainly peppermint oil, whereas extracts are the oils that have been mixed with some type of alcohol. Because your product should be more concentrated, I’d recommend starting with ¼ teaspoon instead. If the cookie dough doesn’t taste minty enough to you, you can easily add more! Or if you’d rather not taste the raw cookie dough, and the baked cookies don’t taste minty enough, then try stirring a drop or two into the melted chocolate before coating your cookies. 🙂
I can’t wait to hear what you think of these homemade Thin Mints!
Thank you so much for your response, this was very helpful!
My pleasure, Fleta! I’m so glad! 🙂
So glad you love these homemade Thin Mints, Anita! 🙂
I made these and was really happy with how they turned out. Crisp and delicious! Used the 72% chocolate that I had on hand and really enjoyed the darker flavor. The mint from the cookies was subtle and super popular with my BF. Thanks for making these delicious cookies less of a ‘guilty’ pleasure!
It’s my pleasure, Jennifer! I’m really glad you and your BF enjoyed them. Thank YOU for taking the time to let me know — it means a lot!
I love these cookies! They turned out perfectly. I was wondering how to store them, do I need to keep wax paper between them? Do they need to be stored in the refrigerator? Thanks in advance for your input. I give it 5 stars!
I’m so glad you enjoyed these homemade Thin Mints, Dena! I’m honored that you’d give this recipe 5 stars. Thank you for taking the time to let me know — it means a lot!
I’ve actually covered the best way to store them in the paragraph of text directly underneath the recipe title in the recipe box. I know it can be easy to miss! 😉
The cookies shouldn’t stick together, but if you’re concerned, putting wax paper between them should definitely prevent that. Room temperature is fine, but your cookies will last a few days longer that what I shared in the recipe box if you refrigerate them instead!