Dark Chocolate Peppermint Macaroons

Will and I just got back from a lovely wedding weekend in Memphis for our friends Alex and Johnathan.  Our flight back to Chicago this morning was early so we had most of the day off today to catch up on grocery shopping, weekend food prep, and of course an annual tradition – watching Elf! I was in the mood to do a little bit of baking so I whipped up a batch of these macaroons. Macaroons are so easy to make and are absolutely delicious. I put a different spin on these by adding some peppermint extract and drizzling in dark chocolate. Macaroons are a great little treat for those working to stay healthy over the holidays. They are a lot lower in calories than other cookies, plus you have the added benefit of some fiber from the flaked coconut. Macaroons are also a great DIY gift for family and friends – even those with food allergies since they are gluten-free!

Peppermint Macaroons 2

Peppermint Macaroons 3

Peppermint Macaroons

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Macaroons 

(Makes 12-15; Gluten-Free, Low Fat)

Ingredients:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut flakes
  • 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Dash of salt
  • 1-2 ounces melted dark chocolate

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place egg whites in bowl and whip until they form soft peaks.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients except for chocolate to the whipped eggs. Stir gently until well mixed.
  4. Drop coconut mixture by teaspoons onto a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Bake for 15 minutes or until cookies begin to brown around the edges. Set on the counter to cool.
  5. Melt chocolate over the stove. Drizzle onto macaroons. Let cool and serve!

Holiday Gift Guide for Her

I love Christmas, but I get a bit anxious when it comes to Christmas shopping. It can be a lot of pressure, right? You want to get that “perfect” gift for the special people in your life. This means that I usually procrastinate when it comes to shopping since I spend so much time debating about what to buy. So, I haven’t started shopping for anyone on my list yet… Eek! Do any of you procrastinate on your Christmas shopping? In case you are like me and need a little inspiration before you do a little shopping this weekend, here are a few of the fun things I’ve come across online this week.

Holiday Gift Guide

  1. Knit boot socks from Etsy. These socks look comfy, cozy for keeping your toes warm in tall boots or just lounging around the house.
  2. African sunset necklace and matching accessories from Noonday. I love the current trend of large, colorful jewelry to add a pop of color to outfits. Not only does Noonday have beautiful jewelry, but they help provide a livable income to people in resource poor countries through their jewelry sales.
  3. Silhouette camera bag. After investing in a DSLR camera a few months ago, I have been on the lookout for a stylish yet functional camera bag. This silhouette camera bag looks like the perfect. If you have a photographer in your life, they would love this bag!
  4. Anchinalu scarf. Honestly, I feel that a girl can never have too many scarves. Any scarf like this one from Fashionable is a fun way to liven up an outfit. All scarves are hand crafted by women in Africa supported by this organization and includes a thank you note attached.
  5. A Bit Spotty Briggi lunch box. What better way to brighten up your workday than pulling this adorable lunch box out of the employee fridge?
  6. The Oh She Glows Cookbook. If you have a foodie, vegetarian, or vegan in your life – this is the cookbook for them! The author, Angela, is a fabulous blogger so I am more than excited to see what yummy recipes she has in store in her cookbook.
  7. The Simplified Planner by Emily Ley. I don’t know about you, but I could always use a little help to be more organized! This gorgeous planner looks like the perfect way to start 2014 off in perfect order.