Gallery: 7 Peppermint Desserts We Love in Chicago

Terry's Toffee's Peppermint Pistachio Crunch Ice Cream ($6.99 a pint)
Terry's Toffee's Peppermint Pistachio Crunch Ice Cream ($6.99 a pint)

Skip the one-note peppermint pistachio toffee in favor of its premium ice cream counterpart. It's simply a mild peppermint ice cream with substantial chunks of peppermint-flavored toffee—some half melted and others retaining their hearty crunch.

Terry's Toffee‎, 1117 West Grand Avenue, Chicago, IL 60642 (map); 312-733-2700; terrystoffee.com‎

Andy's Frozen Custard's Candy Cane Concrete ($4.38)
Andy's Frozen Custard's Candy Cane Concrete ($4.38)

Custard can be a heavy, albeit heavenly, treat, but the candy cane pieces make this concrete lighter—almost refreshing. The vanilla and peppermint flavors shine through equally in a creamy and crunchy concoction not comparable to many other desserts.

Andy's Frozen Custard‎, 108 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60602 (map); 312-422-9800; eatandys.com‎

Bittersweet Pastry Shop & Cafe's Chocolate Peppermint Cake Pop ($2.00)
Bittersweet Pastry Shop & Cafe's Chocolate Peppermint Cake Pop ($2.00)

You could easily write off a cake pop as a fad unworthy of serious consideration, but the pastry chefs at Bittersweet won us over. The pop has a dense, fudgy core with a crunch from both the chocolate shell coating and the candy cane pieces. This is a good option if you want to celebrate the season without ruining your appetite for one of Bittersweet's myriad other quality treats.

Bittersweet Pastry Shop & Cafe‎, 1114 W Belmont Ave # 8, Chicago, IL 60657 (map); 773-929-1100; bittersweetpastry.com‎

Fannie May's Peppermint Bark ($24.99 per pound)
Fannie May's Peppermint Bark ($24.99 per pound)

There's nothing revolutionary about the peppermint bark from this Chicago original, but it is done well. Equal parts high-quality white and dark chocolates combine to make a thick bark that has a surprisingly easy bite with just a smattering of crushed peppermint sprinkled on top.

Fannie May Fine Chocolates‎, 343 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60601 (map); 312-578-0360; fanniemay.com‎

Bobtail Ice Cream Company's Peppermint Stick Ice Cream ($3.19)
Bobtail Ice Cream Company's Peppermint Stick Ice Cream ($3.19)

If you really want to go all out for that it's-Christmas-and-I-just-ate-half-a-dozen-candy-canes-off-the-tree kind of feeling, stop by one of Bobtail's three Chicagoland locations for a scoop of their seasonal Peppermint Stick ice cream. We're fairly certain a one-scoop serving includes an entire candy cane. Luckily the peppermint is tempered by their ultra creamy ice cream base.

We also tried Bobtails' Peppermint Ice Cream Latte ($3.49). The lack of chocolate in this latte is a welcome variation, making a drink that can easily seep into cloying territory (read: Starbuck's) seem lighter. For an even more refreshing treat, pour a little of the latte on top of the candy cane ice cream for a seasonal affogato.

Bobtail‎, 2951 North Broadway Street, Chicago, IL 60657 (map); 773-880-7372; bobtailicecream.com‎

The Walnut Room's Frango Mint Chocolate Ice Cream Pie ($4.95)
The Walnut Room's Frango Mint Chocolate Ice Cream Pie ($4.95)

The Frango Mint Chocolate Ice Cream Pie at the most famous department store restaurant in town is a simple indulgence. The ice cream is a smoother version of mint chocolate chip with a nice textural contrast from the hearty graham cracker crust. The whipped topping is a decorative afterthought and almost makes you wish for a generous dollop of real whipped cream, but the extra creaminess really isn't necessary. Consider this a cool alternative to the ubiquitous after-dinner mint.

The Walnut Room, 111 North State Street, Chicago, IL 60602 (map); 312-781-3125; visitmacyschicago.com‎

Bleeding Heart Bakery's Vegan Chocolate Cupcake with Peppermint Frosting ($2.50)
Bleeding Heart Bakery's Vegan Chocolate Cupcake with Peppermint Frosting ($2.50)

The cake at Bleeding Heart is remarkably moist with a delicate but not overly-fragile crumb. The peppermint frosting tastes great, even if it doesn't provide as smooth of a bite as other non-vegan cupcakes. Luckily, the combo works well, and it gets bonus points for being vegan. Better hurry though, it's the December flavor of the month.

Bleeding Heart Bakery‎, 1955 W Belmont Avenue, Chicago, IL 60657 (map); 773-327-6934; thebleedingheartbakery.com‎

Peppermint Pistachio Crunch Ice Cream
Peppermint Pistachio Crunch Ice Cream

From Terry's Toffee in West Town. —Lindsey Becker