Old-Fashioned Butter Mints

One of the highlights of going to my grandma’s house when I was growing up, in addition to playing Gin Rummy for money at age six, was raiding her candy dish.

She used to have Jolly Ranchers, butterscotch candies, and after dinner mints in that little white dish with the lid. When you’re six,”after dinner” means the minute you can get your sweaty little mitts on the mints, you do.

I decided it was time to make my own meltaway mints since I have such fond memories of them.

Skylar told me the pink mints taste better. But of course.

In actuality, same batter but that concept wasn’t fully registering. All that was registering was pink food.

They are so smooth and just melt in your mouth. I wanted to call them Mint Meltaways but that name is already taken.

Normally with mints, one is all you need. Maybe two. With these, you want at least 17 because they are cool yet sweet, firm yet melty. Plus they’re tiny.

It may not have been the brightest idea to make a recipe that needed to be sliced into 250 little pieces (just a guess) and I am not one for extra steps and monkey business and fussy recipes, but I rolled the dough into long skinny logs in between my hands and it felt like I was playing with Play-Doh.

I lined up the logs and sliced through them with a pizza cutter. Back and forth, back and forth. The whole process took about 20 minutes and wasn’t that bad. I did it after Skylar went to bed (no lighting, no pictures) because I didn’t want her eating gobs of the Play-Doh.

Scooping cookies with a cookie scoop so they’re all uniform can take just as long as Project Mint Roll Out.

Now, instead of just memories of raiding my grandma’s candy dish, I can raid my own.

You will never want a storebought after dinner mint again. If you’ve never had the mints I speak of these or these are the ones but now I can make my own.

These will make a perfect holiday gift and one batch makes enough to gift to a few people.

I used red and green food coloring but you could make these for Easter, Mother’s Day, a baby or bridal shower and use pastels. The un-dyed dough is stark white and a blank canvas.

I also thought about dipping these in melted chocolate for chocolate-covered mints but didn’t know if the dough would hold up as it took a searingly warm chocolate bath, so I skipped the dipping and that little what if.

*Note: Mint extract cannot be undone and if you plan to make these, make sure you read my mint cautionary tales in the recipe section. You want to eat mints. Not eat a bottle of Listerine.

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Old-Fashioned Butter Mints (no-bake, gluten-free)

Makes about 200 bite-sized mints

1/4 cup butter, softened

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar plus 1/4 cup+, if needed

1/3 cup sweetened condensed milk

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract*

food coloring, optional

To the bowl of stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and salt and beat for 1 minute on medium-high speed. Add 3 1/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, milk, peppermint, and beat on medium-low speed until a dough forms. If the dough seems wet, add additional confectioners’ sugar until dough combines (I use 3 1/2 cups sugar). The dough will be crumbly but will come together when pinched and squeezed into a ball.

Taste the batter. If you want a more intense mint flavor, add additional mint extract, to taste.* Be very careful how much mint you add; you cannot un-do this. I repeat, be very, very careful with how much you add. Even 1/8th teaspoon peppermint extract can change flavors, dramatically.

Remove dough from the mixer, separate it into 1 to 4 smaller balls, and add one ball back into the mixer. Add the food coloring of your choice to the ball by squirting the droplets on top of the dough (careful when you turn on the mixer), and paddle on low speed until coloring is well-blended. Coloring will not blend completely into each and every speck of dough if examined extremely closely, but overall, mix until color is uniform. (I separated approximately two-thirds of the dough and made it green using about 15 drops green food coloring and made one-third of the dough red-pink by using about 7 drops red food coloring).

Wash the mixing bowl and the paddle in between each color change and repeat until all the balls are colored. After the dough has been colored, either wrap it with plastic wrap and place it in an airtight container in the refrigerator to be rolled out later or roll it immediately.

Place a golf-ball sized amount of dough in your hands and roll dough into long thin cylinders about 1 centimeter wide. Place cylinders on countertop and with a pizza cutter (or knife – be careful of your counter), slice cylinders into bite-sized pieces, approximately 1 centimeter long. Store mints in an airtight container in the refrigerator where they will keep for many weeks.

*A few notes about mint extracts: They are much more intensely flavored and potent than vanilla extract; 1 teaspoon of mint extract has an extreme amount of potency compared with 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. You cannot un-do mint once added so be very, very careful to not over-do it and end up with a bottle of Listerine-tasting food. There are different kinds of mint extracts available and are labeled as “mint, “peppermint”, “spearmint” and more. For this recipe I used store-brand (Kroger/Ralph’s) “peppermint extract” sold in a small 1 ounce bottle. Select the version of “mint” you think sounds best as not all types are available in all areas.

Recipe variations and thoughts: I suspect this recipe would be nice with cinnamon extract, lemon or orange extract, or many other specialty-flavored extracts from butter to rum to coconut to coffee extract. I have not tried making the dough first into a ball and then adding the extract after the dough has combined, thereby making it easier to customize the flavors from one big batch of mints into 50 pieces of orange, 50 pieces of cinnamon and so forth. Unfortunately, I have a feeling that extract added after the dough has combined would not disperse well and some pieces would be insanely strongly flavored and others would hardly be flavored at all. Working in an even smaller batch size is an option, although a bit challenging because less than one-quarter cup butter begins to be challenging.

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Related Mint Recipes:

Girl Scout “Thin Mint”-Inspired Fudge (Raw, Vegan, GF)

Chocolate Peppermint Donut Holes (Raw, Vegan, GF)

Creme de Menthe Bars (No-Bake, Vegan, GF)

Peppermint Patties (Raw, Vegan, GF)

Mint Chocolate Coconut Snowballs (Raw, Vegan, GF)

Triple Layer Fudgy Mint Oreo Brownies

Do you like mint-flavored foods?

I do, but I go in spurts with it. Normally it’s a holidays and winter flavor for me but these are not strongly flavored.

If an Altoid mint is a 10, the old-fashioned butter mints are a 3 on the mint intensity scale. You can make them stronger but I wanted smooth, creamy, melty, buttery, as well as minty.

Do you have any favorite recipes using mint?

Most people do but they tend to be Christmas baking season type recipes but link them up. It’s never too early to start thinking about Holiday Baking Season 2012, right?  Just six months early.

The winner of the Silpat Baking Mat Giveaway is sally @ sallys baking addiction

 

   

264 Responses to “Old-Fashioned Butter Mints”

  1. #
    101
    Cassi — November 24, 2012 at 5:46 pm

    I love the old-fashioned butter mints they sell at Cracker Barrel, these look almost identical in the pictures you posted. The color isn’t as deep on theirs but I like the bright colors better. Will definitely try these. We make our Christmas gifts for everyone outside our immediate family and it’s usually jams, jellies, candies and baked good. Definitely have to add these to my repertoire. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

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    sheri — December 6, 2012 at 1:37 pm

    I do not have a paddle attachment for my mixer, will that mess these up? I really want to make them for Christmas giveaways but am now worried I won’t be able to. They look so good.

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — December 6th, 2012 at 1:40 pm

      Then mix it by hand – elbow grease will work just fine :)

      Reply

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    Amelia — December 18, 2012 at 7:14 am

    I made these last night. They required significantly more powdered sugar and then we let them dry, uncovered, in the fridge overnight. Next time I’ll use even more powdered sugar. I think the climate difference between San Diego and North Carolina on a rainy day made a big difference in the recipe. So if anyone reading the comments finds their mints won’t dry or set up, try more powdered sugar and some drying time.

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — December 18th, 2012 at 7:17 am

      Just like with bread-making, humid climates require far more flour to get a workable dough, not surprising that you required more powdered sugar in your humidity than I do in my dry climate. Glad you tried the recipe!

      Reply

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    Aly — December 19, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    I remember my grandmother having these too! Thanks for posting! I just made two batches to give with Christmas gifts. They are yummy and my house smells so fresh! Happy Holidays!!!!

    Reply

    • Aly replied: — December 19th, 2012 at 12:56 pm

      Ps I did every thing by hand as I do not have a stand-mixer and it worked out well.

      Reply

      • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — December 19th, 2012 at 1:45 pm

        That’s awesome you did it by hand AND that you made two batches and are giving some away. No doubt people will remember that gift! Thanks for trying the recipe & coming back to LMK you had success!

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    the_rising_phornix — December 21, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    I haven’t made these since the 90s. I keep telling my NannyJean I’m gonna make em. This year I will. Thanks for reminding me how fun these r to make.

    Reply

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    Chloe — December 23, 2012 at 12:55 am

    I made these for christmas gifts not really sure what butter mints are since i’m from Australia and they don’t have them here. Mine turned out tasting like mint icing? Are they suposed to have the texture of icing? When I keep them in the fridge they are kind of hard, but after just 2 mins out of the fridge they start sweating and melting again? It’s been 48hrs in the fridge so far. It probably doesn’t help that it’s 30 degrees celcius, I’m guessing they’re more of a winter recipe.

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — December 23rd, 2012 at 8:39 am

      They should be much firmer than icing. Icing to me is still soft like…toothpaste. Or maybe a bit harder. Mints should be well, solid at room temperature. And although there’s butter in them so yes, if you brought them outside in very warm temps, it will ultimately melt, but in normal household temps they should stay fairly stable. I think you probably need to add more sugar in order to get them to firm up more and bulk up the dough.

      Reply

  7. #
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    pixie — January 5, 2013 at 11:16 am

    Ohhh, I love this! I can’t wait to try it. I used to love to eat these.

    Reply

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    Patty Virginia — January 6, 2013 at 8:14 am

    I never knew what ingredients made up these goodies. Will have to try the recipe, sounds so easy. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

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    Kendra — January 25, 2013 at 11:38 pm

    These are a childhood favorite of mine. I take them to the movies sometimes too. haha I was wondering if you absolutely have to refrigerate them? Or if they would be okay in an airtight container on the counter? Thanks!

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — January 25th, 2013 at 11:46 pm

      As long as it’s a cool-ish room and not the dead of summer, you’re fine on the countertop. There are little old ladies who keep butter out indefinitely on the counter…my grandma was one of them. Some may not be comfortable with this, but it’s really personal choice. But the buttermints will be fine at room temperature for awhile; it will depend how warm the room is before they start softening.

      Reply

      • Lynne replied: — August 4th, 2013 at 11:14 am

        Oh, so they are suppose to be soft? I was waiting for them to dry to be like the little pillow after dinner mints, you know the ones that were always at baby and bridal showers.

        • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 4th, 2013 at 11:23 am

          “waiting for them to dry to be like the little pillow after dinner mints, you know the ones that were always at baby and bridal showers.” <– YES they get like that. Add powdered sugar & air dry until that happens. It will!

  10. #
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    Rachel — February 5, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    I made these today and they are delicious! The only change I made was at the end I put them all in a container and added a bit more confectioners sugar and shook the whole thing to give them that soft powdered finish. AND it kind of rounded them. :>

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — February 5th, 2013 at 9:43 pm

      Rachel – thanks for the feedback and so glad you loved them! Your shake-method sounds perfect. If I do things like that on my blog, people get upset about ‘all that sugar’ that I’ve used :) But I think you made a super smart call and one that saves time, coats them all at once, and now they won’t stick together as much either! Smart girl :)

      Reply

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    Ashlyn — February 8, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    Hi! I (of course) waited until the last minute and now I need to make these for a shower tomorrow at 3pm. Do these take time to dry out? If I make them in the morning, will they be edible by 3? I’m going to attempt either way, because they will be edible at SOME point and they look fantastic! Thanks so much for your help!

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — February 8th, 2013 at 6:49 pm

      You know I live in San Diego and it’s incredibly dry here and they would be fine for me, but I suggest making the RIGHT NOW. Like stop what you’re doing, start them! Like now!! That is your best chance and let them sit in the fridge overnight, uncovered to the cold air. And no, if you make them in the a.m. I really don’t think that’s enough time for them to properly firm up by 3p. I mean maybe…but…I wouldn’t chance it since it’s for someone’s special event :) LMK how it goes!

      Reply

      • Leese replied: — February 17th, 2013 at 10:23 pm

        I live in San Diego, too! (And when I was out at Mayo it cracked me up that the first thing everyone said to me was, “San Diego, oh my goodness it’s SO humid there!’ – Uh, I guess compared to Scottsdale it’s humid, but, really people, San Diego is NOT humid! ha!)

        I love your blog but hadn’t seen this recipe until today – which is so funny because just yesterday I was complaining about not being able to find after dinner mints and how much I love them, and that the closest thing I can get is chic-fil-a or melting pot’s mints…but there’s only so many of those you can manage to get – especially since they’re individually wrapped. Ha ha!

        I can’t get over that these aren’t baked or anything. Are they sticky? I’m so curious…and totally going to have to try this! So fun!

        And now I’m relooking at all your recipes since I missed this before I’m afraid I missed more treasures! ha!

        • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — February 17th, 2013 at 10:36 pm

          No – not sticky. Hope you try them!

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    Patricia — February 24, 2013 at 6:42 am

    Great recipe! Perfect timing for me (sort of). I saw these mints at the checkout of a retail store the other day, and had to have them (knowing full well they’d be about 10 years old and stale). I ate half the bag on my ride home! This could be dangerous!
    Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

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    Mary — March 29, 2013 at 7:09 am

    Good Morning, Averie! I made these a few days ago and blogged them today. Thanks for the fabulous recipe! (I still can’t believe how addictive they are! They taste 100x better than store-bought too.)

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — March 29th, 2013 at 9:07 am

      I’m so glad you enjoyed them and yes they are so addictive and way better than storebought!

      Reply

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    Berni — March 31, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    I was looking for one receipe and stumbled my way to your other receipes and am looking forward to trying to make so many of them Thank You, whats not to Love all the best, natural, ingrediants in the world and good for you too!

    Reply

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    Karen — September 14, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    Awesome! FYI — these are absolutely delicious dipped in chocolate fondue. They hold up ok in the warm chocolate but then just melt in your mouth. Mmmm.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — September 14th, 2013 at 7:47 pm

      Oh wow, that’s great to hear that stand up to chocolate fondue! I bet the combo of the buttery mints, against the warm chocolate sauce, is just heavenly! I have to try – thanks for the tip!

      Reply

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    Bobbie — October 15, 2013 at 10:43 pm

    My dad loves butter mints so I just made him some blue ones. I can’t wait for him to try them out. They would be great to make with children also. It’s like playing with play doh. Thanks for sharing!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — October 15th, 2013 at 11:07 pm

      Oh I am so glad to hear you made these for your dad! And yes, the recipe is great for kids – like edible Play-Doh! :) Hope your dad enjoys them!

      Reply

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    Kimberley — October 17, 2013 at 7:05 pm

    Hi there, how long will they store for? Thanks!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — October 17th, 2013 at 8:10 pm

      It was written in the recipe section of the post:
      ” Store mints in an airtight container in the refrigerator where they will keep for many weeks.”

      Reply

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    Anita Sharp — December 1, 2013 at 11:32 pm

    Just a note I though of….first- I will definitely be making these! And second- I make mint and cinnamon hard candy each year, and I have learned the hard way that you need to make sure to use EXTRACT and not FLAVORING. Flavoring is artificial and will not taste nearly as good. For my hard candies, I use cinnamon oil or peppermint oil. I am not sure how those would work in this recipe.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 1st, 2013 at 11:35 pm

      I am very clear in the post about using extacts – so that’s covered. As far as using cinn or peppermint oil, I cannot personally vouch for either but based on reader feedback and those who have tried p-mint oil not extract, they were very, very strong. I would just make the recipe using the ingredients I called for and then after you have a feel for it, you can start playing around with oils, etc.

      Reply

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    Stacey — December 5, 2013 at 5:42 am

    Hi there! Just made these. Love them. I posted about them my blog! Thanks for sharing!
    juststaceyj.com

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 5th, 2013 at 12:02 pm

      Thanks for trying my recipe. Glad you liked them!

      Reply

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    Kate — December 9, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    Made them with Maple Extract – Tasted like fudge! MMM…

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 9th, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      Oh wow, I bet that was TASTY! good idea!

      Reply

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    Joan — December 12, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Yum…yum…yum!! I just found your recipe on Pinterest and made a batch for a Christmas gift…but, I just had to try them myself, too! They tasted great! And, they were fun to make, especially when it came to the rolling out part. I felt like a little kid making “snakes” out of clay! lol Anyway, thanks for posting this! I’m going to make a lot more!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 12th, 2013 at 7:51 pm

      I felt like a little kid making “snakes” out of clay! = I had my then 5 yr old help me with that. She loved it :)

      Glad you’re loving the recipe!

      Reply

  22. #
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    Jolynn — December 16, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    Just made these. I’m letting them air dry for a few hours before I put in the fridge. However, I need to move out of the kitchen so I’ll stop eating them. Hopefully the neighbors will love them as much as I do.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 16th, 2013 at 6:22 pm

      Well that’s awesome that you’ve been sampling and quality-assurance testing & that things seem a-okay :)

      Reply

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    Shannon — December 17, 2013 at 10:07 am

    Could you make these with a cookie press, air dry, then do the “coat & shake” with sugar? Was hoping for cute little shaped mints for xmas gifts.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 17th, 2013 at 10:17 am

      I have only made them like I described so any other methods would be new to me. Feel free to try & get back to me with your results!

      Reply

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    Caitie — December 18, 2013 at 8:32 am

    In your recipe did you use salted or unsalted butter? Will it make a difference if I use salted?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 18th, 2013 at 8:35 am

      I used unsalted and it’s up to you whether you want your mints to taste saltier or not depending on the butter you select.

      Reply

      • Caitie replied: — December 18th, 2013 at 8:39 am

        I got the salted. :( Do you think it would be alright to omit the 1/4 teaspoon of salt, or do you think it would still be too salty?

        • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 18th, 2013 at 8:43 am

          I would keep it out, taste, and if you think it still needs salt, add it, and hope it incorporates.

          Or, avoid any of this guesswork and just go buy unsalted butter before you start, which is a sure thing.

  25. #
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    Hector Wahlquist — December 18, 2013 at 10:05 pm

    this is an excellent recipe! but i found that instead of rolling the dough out into cylinders, its easier to roll it out with a rolling pin, and then cut the dough into a grid pattern with a pizza cutter

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 18th, 2013 at 10:28 pm

      Great and glad you found what works best for you!

      Reply

  26. #
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    lori — January 7, 2014 at 6:47 pm

    Thank you for sharing this recipe with me:-)

    Reply

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    Barb B — February 4, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    Made these this evening by hand….only took 2 hours to make dough and roll and cut…lol …wanted to do trial run as I want to make these for my Daughters wedding. I will definitely find someone who has a kitchen aide and make in larger batches!!!!!

    Reply

  28. #
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    Laura I — April 15, 2014 at 11:06 am

    just a thought – could you roll these out flat – like a really thick pie crust – and then cut them with a pizza cutter? they’d be cubes instead of having a more round shape, but it could be a big time saver.

    Reply

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    Johanna Gerke — May 23, 2014 at 3:25 am

    I loved these as a child and I can’t wait to make these even though its going to be June. Maybe I will do all the colors for a summer .

    Reply

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    Amy — June 28, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Just made these and they are so yummy! Good mix of the butter and mint flavor.
    I ended up yielding 480 of these things, 1 cm long by 1 cm wide (plus a couple pieces of dough that I ate and didn’t count).
    I used 3 1/2 c of sugar and 1/4 tsp Watkin’s brand peppermint extract. I also used some blue food coloring so they’d look pretty when I give a bunch out as gifts!
    Just put them in the fridge; looking forward to trying them cold.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — June 28th, 2014 at 5:16 pm

      Thanks for trying them and for the feedback about what you did and your yield! Glad you’re happy with the recipe!

      Reply

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    Holly — June 30, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    I tried making these as presents and they wern’t thick enough to cut into shapes. Did I do something wrong?????-please help

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — June 30th, 2014 at 2:53 pm

      Sounds like you maybe just rolled them too thin. I’ve never tried making ‘shapes’. I just make little mints in typical mint shape format.

      Reply

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    Holly — June 30, 2014 at 3:10 pm

    Hi, I am a young cook and I tried to make these mints for my mom as a gift, because they were one of her childhood favorites. I tried to put the dough into shapes and found that it would not keep its shape. It was too runny. Please help her birthday is soon. Thank you

    Reply

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    Karen Pruneau — June 30, 2014 at 7:50 pm

    I make mints that are very similar to these, and yes- I have coated them in chocolate. Yum.
    I also switched out the butter for cream cheese once, ooohhh that was good too.

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — July 1st, 2014 at 2:31 am

      Love the chocolate dipped idea and the cream cheese idea, too!

      Reply

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    Galaxy Girl — July 18, 2014 at 11:37 am

    Oh, I remember these! My Mom and aunt would make these, but they used a marble slab and they were called “Pulled Butter Mints”. I remember watching them work – twisting and pulling the “dough”. I have looked high and low for the recipe, so if anyone knows what I’m talking about, please let me know.

    Thanks.!

    Reply

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