Posted on November 23, 2012

Thumbprint Cookies


Firstly, I apologize dearly that there was not a Thanksgiving themed post. The holiday caught up with me far too quickly. So, in its place I offer you a tried and true classic holiday treat.

These have been a long time coming. They are the ready suggestion of so many visitors who stop by our store. Thumbprint cookies are little mounds of sweet sugar cookie, with a dollop of fruit preserves placed in a thumbprint indentation in the center of the cookie. When you bake these up, the preserves caramelize in the center in the most delightful way. During this time of year when visitors frequent many homes, these are an easy throw together cookie that gives variety and is sure to please everyone.


Thumbprint Cookies:


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1 large egg, separated
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup hazelnuts, pecans, or almost , toasted and finely chopped (these are optional… I opted out, but will tell you how to use them if you so desire.)
  • 1/4 – 1/2 cup McCutcheon’s Fruit Preserves (I chose Peach Melba, Triple Crown, and Strawberry Rhubarb for variety)


  1. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (2-3 minutes) either by hand or with your electric mixer. Add the egg yolk and vanilla extract and beat until combined.
  2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add the flour mixture to the batter and beat just until combined and refrigerate for about 30-60 minutes.
  3. Roll the dough into 1 inch balls.
  4. (If using nuts: In a small bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy. Place the finely chopped nuts on a plate. Taking one ball of dough at a time, dip first into the egg white and then lightly roll in the nuts.
  5. Place the dough balls on a prepared baking sheet spacing about 1 inch apart and then use your thumb to make an indentation into the center of each cookie.
  6. Spoon about 1/2 teaspoon of jam into the indentations
  7. Bake for about 12 – 15 minutes at 350 F, or until cookies are set and the nuts have nicely browned. Remove from oven and place on wire rack to cool.