Thumbprint cookies on a plate filled with strawberry jam and Nutella Chocolate
Desserts

Thumbprint Cookies Recipe

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Thumbprint cookies are a classic; although they are most sought after during the holidays, soft on the inside, sweet, jam, or chocolate-filled, bite-sized pieces of goodness are all year-rounders in my books!

Thumbprint cookies on a plate filled with strawberry jam and Nutella Chocolate

Thumbprint cookies Ingredients:

This Thumbprint cookie recipe requires only six ingredients, usually available in any pantry. It’s easy to make and tastes incredibly smooth!

  • All-purpose Flour
  • Unsalted butter: The butter should be softened at room temperature but not melted. It should still be solid enough to cut through with a knife.
  • Powdered Sugar
  • One whole Egg: I believe that a whole egg is better because it gives the dough a better texture. Make sure that your Egg is at Room temperature. If you forgot to take it out before baking, place it in a bowl of warm water for 5 to 10 minutes.
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Salt
A bowl of flour, an egg, a plate of 2 slices of butter, a cup of vanilla extract, a cup of sugar and a teaspoon of salt

Baking tips for perfect Thumbprint cookies

Don’t over bake: Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C) and stick to 12 -15 minutes baking time or until the cookies are set and the bottoms are lightly browned.

How to prevent cookies from spreading?

Measure your ingredients correctly (Especially flour): Measuring flour gets a bit tricky when using measuring cups. Adding too much or too little flour will cause your cookies to be too hard or spread when they shouldn’t.

If you are not sure about it, use weight instead of cups. I have been using scales since we started our restaurant, and they were a game-changer for me, check out this scale; it’s inexpensive and super accurate.

If you don’t have a scale make sure you use a dry measuring cup. Also, make sure to spoon the flour into the measuring cup rather than just dipping the measuring cup directly into the flour sack  (To avoid overfilling)  and level it off with the back of a knife.

Never place your cookies on a hot cookie sheet! Make sure that your cookie sheet is completely cold before placing the next batch of cookies. Adding your dough to a hot cookie sheet will get them to melt before they start baking, and they are more likely to spread.

How to avoid cracking?

Chill your dough: Wrap it in plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes so it will be easy to shape and helps prevent spreading and cracking.

Use a measuring spoon: If you are like me and want to have consistency in size and shape, then measuring the amount of dough that you are rolling using a tablespoon cookie scoop or a measuring tablespoon is a must!

Roll till smooth and firm: Roll the balls between your hands until they are really smooth and do not show any lines or cracks. (I have noticed that the smaller the ball, the easier it is to roll without lines or cracks)

Press Gently: After rolling the balls, gently press using your thumb or the bottom handle of a wooden spoon till you have the perfect indent. If your dough starts to crack, just press it back together gently.

A circular sheet pan filled with thumbprint cookie dough ready to be baked

Thumbprint Cookie Filling

The only limit is your imagination when it comes to filling these delicious baked goodies, and that’s why they are all year rounders for me. I used strawberry jam and Nutella chocolate for this recipe, but a few common examples are:

  • Any Jam or Preserve that you enjoy consuming (strawberry, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, and apricot jam are just a few ideas)
  • Nutella Chocolate (My family’s favorite)
  • Melted chocolate
  • Caramel filling
  • Homemade lemon curd
A thumbprint cookies filled with jam and nutella on a sheet rack

Storing Thumbprint Cookies

Baked cookies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. Still, if your cookies are jam-packed with filling (Pun intended ?), then refrigeration is a better option.

Can I freeze baked thumbprint cookies?

Yes! Just place them in an airtight container or a Ziploc bag and freeze them for up to 3 months. When ready, thaw out at room temperature and enjoy!

Can I refrigerate the dough ahead of time?

Yes! Just make sure it’s tightly covered, so your dough doesn’t dry out. Dry dough = Cracking ?

Can I freeze my dough?

This dough will freeze well for up to 3 months, but you still need to make sure that it’s in an airtight container when you are ready to bake it, thaw overnight in a refrigerator.

Thumbprint Cookies Recipe

5 from 4 votes
Recipe by Raneem Course: DessertsCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Medium
Prep time

15

minutes
Cooking time

15

minutes
Calories

100

kcal
Total time

1

hour 

Thumbprint cookies are a classic; although they are most sought after during the holidays, soft on the inside, sweet, jam, or chocolate-filled, bite-sized pieces of goodness are all year-rounders in my books!

Ingredients

  • 2 3/4 Cups 2 3/4 All purpose flour (300 Grams) (Spooned and leveled)

  • 1 Cup 1 Unsalted butter (200 Grams or 2 sticks)

  • 3/4 Cup 3/4 Powdered Sugar (100 Gram)

  • 1 1 1 Egg at room temperature

  • 1 Teaspoon 1 Vanilla Extract

  • 1/4 Teaspoon 1/4 Salt

Directions

  • In a large bowl using a handheld mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter and the powdered sugar together on medium speed until combined and creamy for about 2 minutes. Make sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Beat in the egg and vanilla extract on medium speed until combined. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
  • In a separate bowl, mix the flour and salt. Add gradually into the wet ingredients, beat on low speed until combined. The cookie dough will be slightly thick, and that’s fine!
  • Cover dough with plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes.
  • Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow it to sit at room temperature for 5 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C).
  • Measure out the cookie dough using a one tablespoon cookie scoop or a measuring tablespoon, roll into balls, then use your thumb or the handle of a large wooden spoon, to gently press an indentation into each ball of cookie dough. Then place it on a baking sheet.A circular sheet pan filled with thumbprint cookie dough ready to be baked
  • Bake in the preheated oven for about 12-15 minutes or until the cookies are set and lightly browned at the bottom.
  • Remove from the oven, cool for 5 minutes, then carefully transfer them into a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Once it is cooled, fill the middle with strawberry jam or Nutella (or any kind of filling you prefer)
  • Sprinkle some powdered sugar (Optional)

Recipe Video

Notes

  • Please, do not over mix the dough after adding the flour; that will cause it to dry out and stretch.
  • Chilling for 30 minutes is mandatory for easy to shape dough.

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P.S. The calorie content is an estimate, and it counts only for the recipe, not the fillings ?

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