Thumbprint Cookies

These classic Thumbprint Cookies are lightly sweet with an almost shortbread-like texture, a coating of toasty coconut or pecans, and a center of your favorite jelly or jam.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword thumbprint cookie recipe
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 24 Cookies
Calories 185kcal
Author Samantha at Five Heart Home


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans walnuts, or your favorite nut (*see Tips & Tricks below for coconut variation)
  • Your favorite seedless jelly or jam about 1/4 cup


  • Preheat oven to 375°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or nonstick baking mats.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together flour and salt. Set aside. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and brown sugar until creamy. Separate eggs, placing whites in a small bowl, lightly beating, and setting aside. Add yolks to butter mixture and blend in. Add vanilla and beat until well incorporated. Gradually mix flour mixture into butter mixture, blending thoroughly but taking care not to overmix.
  • Pour finely chopped nuts into a bowl. Roll cookie dough into 1-inch balls. Dip each ball in beaten egg whites and then roll in nuts, gently pressing to coat. Space cookies 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheets.
  • Use your thumb or the tip of a spoon to make an indentation in the top of each cookie. Use a 1/2-teaspoon measuring spoon to carefully fill each indentation with jam. Bake cookies for 13 to 16 minutes or until lightly browned. Allow to cool on baking sheets for a few minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight container.


  • I use a food processor (or blender) to grind my pecans into tiny pieces, since it's quicker and easier than chopping nuts finely with a knife.
  • For a crunchier coating, I recommend toasting your nuts and allowing them to cool before chopping/grinding them. (To toast pecans, spread on a sheet pan and bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 7 to 10 minutes or until fragrant and lightly toasted.)
  • Instead of nuts, you may roll your cookies in sweetened shredded coconut. You'll probably need between 1 1/2 and 2 cups of coconut to coat a batch of these cookies. You can also roll cookies in a mixture of half nuts, half coconut.
  • I almost always make a double batch of these cookies since they quickly disappear. It takes only a little more time and effort to make twice as many cookies once you already have all of the ingredients and supplies out!
  • My favorite flavors of jam to use in this recipe are seedless raspberry, seedless blackberry, and peach, but I think just about any flavor of jam/jelly/preserves would be great (as long as it's not too chunky).


Calories: 185kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 34mg | Sodium: 99mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 260IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 0.9mg