Homemade Thin Mints (Low Carb and Gluten Free)

Growing up in Canada, I was a part of that rite of passage common for little girls in North America. I was a Brownie, and then I was a Girl Guide. Yes, I said “Guide” and not “Scout”, because that’s what we called it up there in the great white north. Apart from the name, and perhaps the uniform, it is essentially the same organization, providing the same activities and fostering the same core values. Every week in my little blue uniform, I would be dropped off at some local church basement, led through various songs and encouraged to work on my various badges. And every year we were charged with the task of selling cookies, just like little girls in America.

But here’s where there is a glaring difference. A huge difference. A staggering difference. We only sold one sort of cookie. Or rather, two sorts, chocolate and vanilla, contained in the same box. They were sandwich cookies, and they were boring. People bought them from us because we were sweet little girls and they felt that they had to, not because the cookies were any good. After I moved to the US, I was taken aback by how excited people were by the impending Girl Scout cookie season. It was as if I was on the other side of a huge cultural divide, wondering if Americans were soft in the head for getting so worked up about boring sandwich cookies. Imagine, then, my surprise and delight at discovering the vast array of cookies that the Girl Scouts had to offer. And also my infinite sorrow that as a child, I was sent out into the world to peddle boring sandwich cookies to my kind neighbours when I could have been enticing them with Samoas, Thin Mints and Tagalogs. It’s just not right. Poor little Canadian girl guides.

This year, we made it through Girl Scout cookie season relatively unscathed, my husband purchasing a single box of Thin Mints. For which he apologized profusely, claiming that the little girls and their mothers had looked at him so beseechingly, he had to buy something. But I was okay with it, because I actually already had a plan to create a low carb, gluten free version of my own. Thin mints aren’t my favourite Girl Scout cookie, that honour belongs to the caramel-laced, coconut-crusted Samoa. But mint and chocolate is always a good combination in my books and I was pretty sure I could make a decent approximation from diabetic-friendly ingredients.

The Results: I may risk offending some die-hard Girl Scout cookie fans when I say this, but I honestly think my version is as good as, or better than, the original. For one thing, they taste a far sight fresher, and for another, they contain no hydrogenated anything. They are crisp and chocolatey and minty, just ast they should be. They are the perfect low-carb treat to help diabetics and other low carbers not feel deprived. And they were remarkably easy to make! Go ahead and buy some Girl Scout cookies to support the organization…and then feed them to someone else while you enjoy your own homemade, better-for-you version.

Homemade Thin Mints

Cookies:
1 3/4 cups almond flour
1/3 cup cocao powder
3 tbsp granulated erythritol
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 large egg, slightly beaten
2 tbsp butter, melted
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
10 drops stevia

Coating:
1 tbsp butter
7 oz 85% cacao gluten-free chocolate bars
1 tsp peppermint extract

For the cookies, preheat the oven to 225F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, combine almond flour, cocao powder, erythritol, baking powder and salt. Add in egg, butter, vanilla and stevia and stir well until dough comes together.

Roll out dough between two pieces of parchment paper to desired thickness (I rolled mine very thin, about 1/8 inch thick). Lift off top piece of parchment and set aside. Using a 2-inch diameter cookie cutter, cut out circles of dough and lift gently. Place cookies on prepared baking sheet. Gather up scraps of dough and reroll until too little is left to roll out.

Bake cookies until firm, 40 minutes to an hour. Turn off oven and let cookies continue to crisp up.

For the coating, place a metal bowl over a pot of gently simmering water, not allowing the bowl to touch the water. Melt butter and chocolate together in the bowl, stirring until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in peppermint extract.

Dip cookies into chocolate, using two forks to turn over and fully coat cookie. Gently pass chocolate-coated cookie back and forth between forks to remove excess chocolate, then place on waxed paper to cool and set.

Makes about 40 cookies (if you roll out dough as thin as I did). Each cookie has a total of 3.2g of carbs but only 2.3g if you subtract erythritol. This carb count may change depending on what chocolate you use to coat the cookies. I use Lindt 85% cacao because it has the lowest number of carbs (and I like it!).

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Comments

  1. I can imagine how the almond flour would make these cookies more delicious. I was a Brownie once too, but somehow never made it to the Girl Guides! LOL, those were the good old days…

  2. Lauren at KeepItSweet says:

    I love thin mints and so does my gf sister, I can't wait to try this recipe!!!

  3. ravienomnoms says:

    I love Thin Mints, they are one of my favorites (besides the caramel delight cookies with the coconut). I have always wanted to try and make these at home and now I have a recipe to help!

  4. We are on the same wavelength!!! I made Samoas and Thin Mints this week!! Yes – they are delicious!! :)

  5. We are on the same wavelength!!! I made Samoas and Thin Mints this week!! Yes – they are delicious!! :)

  6. The Souper says:

    Enjoy the annual GS Thin Mints, but homemade Thin Mints sound like a must try. Looking forward to preparing your recipe. Thanks for posting it.

    The Souper

  7. Ok Mrs. Guide:) these look awesome, perfect and so tasty!! Stunning photos!!!

  8. Emily @ A Cambridge Story says:

    What a fantastic idea!! I have such fond memories of Thin Mints…

  9. Brandie@thecountrycook says:

    Where can I find erythritol? I would love to make these for my Mom – she would go crazy for these!! :)

  10. Fresh and Foodie says:

    Cool! These look great. I love keeping my Thin Mints in the freezer — they're so good cold. I'd love to try making them myself.

  11. Pretend Chef says:

    Hands down my favorite Girl Scout cookie! Thin Mints make me giddy. These look so delicious and I have to make these now. Never would have thought to make my own. How will I ever be able to walk into my local grocery store now without having to see the sad little looks on their faces when I tell them "Tough luck. Carolyn's are way better!" It'll look as if I kicked their puppy.

  12. Kim - Liv Life says:

    Well done, Carolyn!! My family always chooses the Thin Mints, and I'm thrilled to have not hydrogenation in the little guys. That was always one of my biggest frustrations with the cookies when I was a leader, here I was doing meetings on nutrition and the dangers of hydrogenated oils and then I asked my girls to sell cookies with the oils in them! And not just a little oil, lots.
    One year our troop had 40 boxes left over and not wanted the Cookie Mom who had worked so hard and thru no fault of her own to get stuck with them I wrote a check. Yep… 40 boxes of cookies in my pantry! We gave most of them away, but I might add that they freeze well and the Thin Mints in particular are somewhat addiction frozen!

  13. Cheryl and Adam @ pictureperfectmeals.com says:

    Thin Mints are among our favorite cookies and this is a great recipe especially free of the hydrogenated oils. Thankss for sharing this!

  14. Brian @ howtobaker says:

    Wow…now I'm feeling better about not yet buying Girl Scout cookies this year! These look amazing and the fact that they are gluten free adds a very interesting twist. I'll have to make these next time our gluten-intolerant friends come over.

  15. I'm a samoa girl myself, but my daughter loves any and everything mint/chocolate and would love these. Your version looks so much better to me and I doubt the girl scouts use Lindt chocolate (yum) in their coating :o)

  16. I am loving the fact that i can eat these without having to worry too much about gaining weight! Thanks for sharing this healthified recipe :)

    Btw, i really like your second picture!

  17. Turmericnspice says:

    home made think mints…it is a must try…looks amazing!!

  18. Wow, those look amazing!! Fantastic job! At least you had the Brownies, we had nothing but boring school fundraisers that we sold for. :P

  19. These Thin Mints look scrumptious and definitely give those little green boxed cookies a run for their money. :) So glad you made it over the divide and discovered the Samoa. Those are my favorite too!

  20. I'd like to place an order for two boxes, please. :-)

  21. Wow these look good. I would be all over these.

  22. These look so yummy!! I LOVE thin mints and miss them. I am going to whip these up this weekend. Thanks!!

  23. These sound amazing. I love mint and chocolate together. I definitely want to try this recipe.

  24. Ooh, totally gorgeous. Nothing more to say…! :)

  25. Lisa, motyok says:

    I would feel even less deprived it you would make them for me! When do you find the time?

  26. Another of your recipes I must do, I really want to do! So fantastic and yummy and low carb and chocolatey…

  27. I had no idea girl scout cookies were different in Canada, so interesting! I am so glad you posted these! We love our thin mints, and when we did have our local girl scouts go around this year they were sold out :-( Now I can make my own!! YAY!!

  28. Gorgeous rendition, Carolyn! I'll keep your recipe for when our freezer is emptied of Thin Mints :)

  29. Lynn @ I'll Have What She's Having says:

    I've always been so curious about Girl Scout cookies. I love mint chocolate, so I'm pretty sure I would be a thin mint addict. Maybe it's best that I live in Canada…
    Yours look awesome :)

  30. I really do need to try these thin mints – sweetened with stevia & all that almond flour. They have gotta be great!

  31. Ooh those look good! Your post made me laugh because I too was a Girl Guide and sold the boring cookies!

  32. A Little Yumminess says:

    Gosh, these look AMAZING – home-made delights!!!!

  33. Unbelievable! You made them so cute that they look almost like unreal :) are they really baked not plastic? :)))

  34. Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen says:

    I never knew that they were called Girl Guides in Canada. You know the funny thing is, I was just eating a Thin Mint before I started reading this!

  35. scratch-made wife says:

    I was so happy to find this recipe! I'll have to bookmark it. The husband recently challenged me to make him Thin Mints. We both love them, but we somehow missed the boat when it came to ordering Girl Scout cookies this year. All of the copycat recipes I looked up called for Ritz crackers, and I thought that was weird. Your recipe looks so much better!

  36. Pure genius! They look wonderful, too-and I'm sure they're way better than the mass produced version. So strange that they only have that one variety in Canada!

  37. Rachel C - thinladysings says:

    What? How have I never come across your blog before? These look GREAT! Can't wait to try! What kind of liquid stevia do you use??

  38. Brandie@thecountrycook says:

    Thank you for the info. Carolyn!! My Mom is not diabetic – yet. But the Dr. has her on a diet that is basically a restricted diet and reduced sugar. So any great tasting recipe I can make or pass on to her is so appreciated!!

  39. My husband and I love buying the thin mints from the "girl scouts" when it's available, but yours looks so much better.

  40. Torviewtoronto says:

    you have done a beautiful job with this delicious

  41. Looks so good. I can't wait to try these!

  42. Kate @ Diethood.com says:

    These look so delicious! Those photos are amazing. I love thin mints but rarely make them/buy them because they will be gone in no time. I can't resist them!

  43. Amy Bakes Everything says:

    OMG you are a genius. That's all I have to say about this. Genius.

  44. These cookies look amazing. My neighbor's granddaughter, who is 7 has Type I diabetes, so I'm saving the recipe for her. Do you buy almond flour at a health food store?

    Unfortunately, we're not close to a Whole Foods.

  45. Of all the girl scout cookies, the thin mints are everyone's favorite.
    Never had them home made, and with the true goodness of the Lindt chocolate, this blows any thin mints cookies away…even the girl scouts ones…but then again, we are avid supporters of the girls scout cookies. Love their peanut butter cookies, as well.

    Wonderful cookies, Carolyn, so chocolatey, and bursting with mint flavor! Beautiful!

  46. Cake Duchess says:

    Carolyn-Gorgeous Thin Mints! Those are our favorites. I will try your recipe. We love to eat them when Girl Scouts start to sell them .:)

  47. Don't these look delicious? Yum!

  48. Mike @theflavorjunkie says:

    Carolyn, these looks ridiculously good! My mouth is watering because I know how good these cookies are I bet yours are even better.

    Good news, the Canadian girls only sell the good cookies now. No more stale vanilla and chocolate garbage cookies! Hooray!

    Great post!!

  49. I wouldn't be surprised if these are much better than the originals. Nothing beats a homemade version of processed foods, especially with high quality chocolate :) I've been meaning to try making homemade versions of Girl Scout cookies for a while and I think this will be the recipe I try! Thanks for sharing.

  50. Lindsay and James Cotter says:

    oh these are 10x better than the girls scout cookies! More nutrients and GLUTEN FREE! yes!
    LC

  51. Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels says:

    Wow homemade thin mints, I'm so impressed! Your cookies are just gorgeous. :)

  52. Laurel {Make and Takes} says:

    Wow, these look and sound amazing! We're featuring cookies this week at the M&T Spotlight and I'd love for you to submit this. http://www.makeandtakes.com/spotlight

  53. Melissa@EyesBigger says:

    I LOVED the vanilla sandwich cookies!! I can't believe you thought they were boring! They changed the supplier a few years ago and they're totally lousy now. But, they do sell the mint ones now and they are my favourite (although they are a bit different than these). Yours look wonderful!

  54. Romantic Dinner says:

    I loved this recipe and very nice details in the post. Great idea for Food and I Think very testy its food. interesting and beautiful recently post . really i loved that and thanks for nice sharing

  55. A SPICY PERSPECTIVE says:

    Oh honey, I loved you before, but NOW… blowing air kisses your way!

    Good-bye Girl Scouts. :)

  56. Since I started low-carbing, when the cute little kids ask me to buy a box of cookies or a candy bar, I just give their leader/guide five bucks and tell them to keep their carbs; that if they tell HQ to start selling low-carb treats, I'll buy them by the truckload.

  57. Ok, so my foodbuzz inbox kept 'timing out' when I wanted to check out this recipe, it also wasnt letting me go to your profile for whatever reason – so I just want you to know my love of girl scout cookies just made me spend a solid 10 minutes getting here via cranky Foodbuzz today! And Im glad I made it! These look and sound great – thin mints are one of my favorites!! I cant wait to try these.

  58. Montanna Honc says:

    You have a beautiful blog and I love reading!

    I would like to present you with the “One Lovely Blog “Award. Please drop by my site to pick it up when ever you are free.

    http://slab2626.blogspot.com/2011/02/one-lovely-blog-award.html

  59. Charlie @ SweetSaltySpicy says:

    I love the chocolate & mint combo and these thin mints look delicious!
    I practically always use Lindt 85% chocolate when I bake, it's so good!

  60. hey Carolyn, can I use unsweetened bakers choc?

  61. Anonymous: you can definitely make the coating with unsweetened baking chocolate, but you will probably want to sweeten it somehow. That unsweetened can be mighty bitter! And if you can get ahold of the Lindt bars, I recommend them because they actually have less carbs than unsweetened. I know that sounds crazy, but according to the package, there are 8g of carbs per serving, and 2.5 servings. It's a 3.5oz bar so that works out to 5.7g of carbs per oz, whereas most baking chocolate has 7-8g of carbs.

  62. FamilySpice says:

    I have a box of GS thin mints in my freezer right now. I knew there was a GF version coming out somewhere! You saved me from trying to figure it out myself!

  63. sweetpeaskitchen.com says:

    OH I love thin mints!! I can't wait to give this a try! :)

  64. LOW CARB THIN MINTS??? You have created the greatest food ever. And with super dark chocolate. I'm dying to make these, they sound fabulous!

  65. Spicie Foodie says:

    I never knew the difference in the Girl Scout cookies between Canada & the US. I was one of those who couldn't wait for them to show up at the house. My husband & I love thin mints, but they are not to be found here in Europe. Thanks for the recipe I can't wait to try it. They sound delicious and no junk in them:)

  66. A little bit of everything says:

    since I've tried in the past some of your goodies I take your word for granted with this thin mints.

    i'd like to ask you, if possible, to write also the amount of sugar needed for people like me.
    thanks Carolyn.

  67. Magic of Spice says:

    Interesting background on these cookies. They have always been a favorite of mine, and I must say I am sure to prefer yours :)

  68. If you REALLY want to cheat and not make these beautiful cookies …….. dip a ritz cracker in melted choc. chips after you melt stir in a few drops of mint extract. EASY and quick!

  69. The Mom Chef says:

    Good grief, I had to scroll forever just to find the comment link! These are definitely a bestseller. I'll be giving them a try because Dudette and Hubby love them and I like the fact that they're home made. Many thanks for creating the recipe!

  70. Anonymous says:

    Can you make these with regular sugar?

  71. Anonymous – yes, you could make these with sugar. I'd probably replace my sweetener (erythritol and stevia) with about 1/2 cup of sugar, or more to taste.

  72. Anonymous says:

    I made these, but rolled it out to make 120! yikes! Still came out delicious, but I think I may add the peppermint to the cookie 'dough' next time! give it more mint oomph! Thanks for this fabulous creative recipe..I love your blog!

  73. Wow, 120, that's impressive! I considered putting mint in the actual cookie base but I decided to just go with it in the coating. I love a lot of mint but some people don't so I didn't want to go overboard at first. Have fun with it and tailor it to suit your fancy, that's what recipes are for!

  74. Anonymous says:

    I'm sure you checked the ingredients for the Lindt but as far as I can find Lindt isn't considered gluten free. They use barley malt in many of their chocolates so I never eat it. Maybe this has changed but I looked it up online and could only find info that says they can't say GF because of cross contamination. Do you have more info about Lindt? There are other GF chocolates so people should be able to find them and make these yummy looking cookies.

  75. Elizabeth says:

    There is a happy girl in Japan tonight thanks to this recipe…AMAZING!

  76. Mo 'Betta says:

    I made these for my diabetic husband over Thanksgiving (Thin Mints were always his favorite!) and he loved them! Thanks for the great recipe! Posted abt them today and have a giveaway starting today for NuNaturals Stevia if you are interested!

  77. Carolyn, can you tell the sugar equivalent of the 10 drops of Stevia? I have Sweetzfree (liquid Sucralose) where 1 drop equals 1 tsp. sugar. How much of the Sweetzfree should I use to replace the 10 drops of Stevia? Thanks.

  78. Oh, wow, I am not sure of this one. But I think the sweetness of Swwetzfree is significantly less than that of stevia extract. So I would start with 10 drops, then taste and adjust as you go.

  79. So how much sugar is one drop of your Stevia extract equal to? That way maybe I can figure out how much sugar you are replacing in the recipe with your 10 drops of Stevia extract and then I can go from there with my sweetener.

  80. So Carolyn how much sugar are you replacing in your recipe with the 10 drops of Stevia extract and maybe I can go from there to figure out how much of my sweetener I need to use? Since there are so many different sweeteners, everyone needs to put the sugar equivalent out to the side of their sweeteners.

  81. Tricky, because I do so much of it by taste and stevia is really not a consistent exchange with sugar. But here's the way I do it. And for me, it's the interaction between erythritol and stevia that gives the sweetness I want. But I'd say that for these cookies (the cookies themselves), I am replacing about 1/2 cup sugar TOTAL between the erythritol and stevia. Does that help?

  82. To be truly gluten free, the maker needs to take care in the vanilla they use. Vanilla is made with alcohol, which may be made from a grain. Tricky little things that sneek into a diet. ;o)

  83. 1/3 cup cocao powder? Do you mean cocoa powder or cacao powder?

  84. What is erythritol and what is its’ purpose? Where can I find it or what can I substitute for it? here in NC, no one has heard of it. Also what amount of granular stevia can be substituted for liquid? thanks! Hesse sound great.

    • I had to look up erythritol – it goes by the name Truvia in the US.

      • No, not exactly. Truvia is an erythritol based sweetener that also contains stevia. There are many brands of erythritol-based sweeteners and my favourite is Swerve.

  85. HELP! I tried to make these for some christmas cookies. My dough would not come together. I did use regular flour because I don’t need them to be gluten free. I also used Truvia baking blend for the erythritol as I have many different forms of non-sugar and I wasn’t going to buy another one. How will this change the recipe? It was way too dry wouldn’t make a dough. I tried adding vanilla, mint extract, more butter, another egg trying to get it to make a dough. Any ideas?

    • I am sorry but you cannot replace almond flour with regular flour. Almond flour has far more fat and moisture than wheat flour. You can never, ever make a direct exchange. So that was your problem right there.

  86. Mary Canaday Gray says:

    Where are the nutritional numbers on these? Calories, carbs, etc???

  87. thank you is not enough to be able to have away to make these. To be honest I use to be the service leader for the cookie sale. The smell of those thin mints when I would first open the door would just over power me to the point of not being able to eat,smell or even look at thin mints for 19 years, yes I have not eated a Girl Scout cookie for almost 20 years. NOW I AM READY TO EAT THEM AGAIN AND THANK YOU FOR MAKING THEM BETTER. WE MADE A WOPPING 35 cents per box. Don’t know what they make now but I bet their not up to $1.00 yet. Do you have the TRIFOLDS (SHORTBREAD)they are so good when you dunk them in hot tea. However where in the USA do I find almond flour granulated erythritol, the 7oz cacao bars never heard of them. maybe you could put the items to make these cookies in a box and sell the box so we all would have what it takes to make them. now with a recipe. I can try a choc gunnash covering them
    thin mints at least 1 batch then I’ll be a good girl scout and make them the healthy way. I have not seen a girl scout in my area in over 8+ yrs. We use to be the largest service unit in San Antonio, TX . THANKS AGAIN FROM ALL OF US CHOC. FANS!!!

    • You’re welcome. Almond flour is widely available at most grocery stores now, but definitely you can find it at Whole Foods, Amazon, etc. The erythritol I like to use is Swerve brand and you can definitely get that online. And the cacao is just Lindt or another brand in very dark chocolate 70% or higher.

  88. Amazing – Amazing – cookies – instead of pepermint extract – I used Doterra Essential Oils 6 drops – To die for!!!!!

  89. My son has an allergy to nuts and I am wondering if I could possibly use coconut flour instead of the almond flour?

  90. Carolyn, My son has an allergy to nuts and I am wondering if I could possibly use coconut flour instead of the almond flour?

    • Not in this recipe, I am afraid. It just behaves so differently. How about sunflower seed flour?

      • Caroline,
        Hmm I didn’t know that was even available. I’ll get some and try it.
        Thin mints (cookie) were always his favorite so want to surprise him
        I’ll let you know if it works!

  91. Meg Russell says:

    There’s no way this recipe makes 40 cookies and no way they need to cook 40 minutes. With only one and three quarter cups flour, I barely got 15 cookies. Is something wrong with the recipe?

    • If something was wrong with the recipe, a lot of people would have had the same issue. They should be rolled pretty thin, so the only thing I can think is that yours wasn’t rolled thinly enough.

Trackbacks

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