Make these cute peppermint pig cookies for good luck in the New Year! Based on a Victorian holiday hard candy tradition, but in cookie form.
Have you ever heard of The Famous Peppermint Pig? It’s a Victorian holiday tradition in the form of hard candy molded to look like a pig. The candy is accompanied by a little pouch and hammer so it can be broken it into pieces and shared with friends and family. This tradition has come to symbolize good health, happiness and prosperity. Even though the hard candy pigs are still in production today, I thought a cookie version would be cute, too!
I purchased the cookie cutter here, but if you don’t have time to order it (or just don’t want to!) you can print the template I made here. Just print the PDF at 100%, cut out the shape and trace it onto heavy card stock (like scrap-booking paper). Then cut the pig shape out of the card stock. Lay the paper piggy onto your chilled, rolled cookie dough and use a small paring knife to cut around the shape. It’s a little more work, but easy enough!
The icing recipe for this cookie is so easy to make and the decorating is hardly any work at all. The piggy’s eye is a mini chocolate chip (point-side-down) and I used these holiday sprinkles to add holly berry motif at the collar.
I decided to stick with the tradition of gifting the pigs in a little velvet pouches (I found a 10-pack here). You can fit about three cookies in the small 6-inch pouches, or you can buy larger pouches to fit more cookies.
Even though these pigs aren’t the hard candy version, you can still share them with the people you love for good luck in the coming year!
Want more giftable goodies?
Last year’s fifth day advent recipe was
Peppermint Pig Cookies
- 1/2 lb. two US sticks unsalted butter
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons 225g granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3 cups 380g all-purpose flour
- Pinch of salt
- 2 1/4 cups 260g confectioners’ sugar, sifted
- 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 2 drops red food color
- 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
- 1 to 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/2 cup 85g mini chocolate chips
- Holly berry and holly leaf sprinkles
- Make the cookies: In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter and sugar together until just incorporated. Do not over-mix at this stage, or the cookies may spread while baking.
- Add the egg and vanilla extract. Mix again on low speed, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl intermittently as needed.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add to the butter and egg mixture. Mix on low speed until a dough is formed and there are no longer any streaks of butter in the mixing bowl. The dough will often clump around the paddle attachment while being mixed. This is normal and a good sign that your dough is the right consistency. If your mixture does not come together and is crumbly, add ice cold water 1 tbsp. at a time until the dough clumps. Roll the dough flat between sheets of parchment paper and chill until ready for use, at least 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Use a 3.75-inch pig cookie cutter to stamp shapes from the dough, or use the printable PDF as a template (see blog post). Transfer the shapes to the prepared pans and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown around the edges. Re-roll dough scraps and repeat process. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely after baking.
- Make the glaze: Whisk the first four ingredients together and 1 tablespoon milk until smooth. The glaze should be very thick but soft enough to settle into a perfectly smooth surface on the cookie. If the glaze is too thick, add additional milk drops at a time until it becomes the correct consistency. Transfer the glaze to a piping bag and pipe it on the cookies, or gently spoon the glaze neatly onto the cookies.
- Decorate! While the glaze is still wet, place a mini chocolate chip flat-side-up onto a pig face for the eye. Add holly berries and leaf sprinkles at the neck. Repeat with remaining cookies. Let stand until dry, about 2 hours. Gift peppermint pigs in velvet pouches.