Thumbprint Cookies

These thumbprint cookies are the ultimate holiday treat! Filled with vibrant pools of apricot and raspberry jam, they're melt-in-your-mouth delicious.

thumbprint cookies recipe

It’s holiday baking season! I can’t think of a better way to kick it off than with these jam thumbprint cookies. Of course I’m biased, but I think this could be the best thumbprint cookie recipe out there. The cookies have a delicious melt-in-your-mouth texture and warm, buttery flavor. They’re rich and delicate, with a pop of brightness from the melty jam. As an added bonus, they’re super easy to make! This thumbprint cookie recipe calls for just 8 ingredients, and there’s a good chance you have all of them on hand already.

Thumbprint cookie recipe ingredients

Thumbprint Cookie Recipe Ingredients

Ready to bake? Check to make sure you have these ingredients in your pantry first:

  • All-purpose flour and almond flour – This combination makes the cookies extra-rich and tender.
  • Butter – It adds rich, buttery flavor and gives the cookies a yummy crumbly texture.
  • Sugar – For sweetness.
  • Vanilla and almond extract – They fill the cookies with warm flavor.
  • And sea salt – Don’t skip it! Even though these cookies are sweet, the salt is essential for sharpening their delicious buttery flavor.
  • Jam – Choose your favorite flavor of jam, or use a mix. I love to make my thumbprint cookies with apricot and raspberry jam.

Find the complete recipe with measurements below.

Balls of dough on a parchment-lined baking sheet

Start by whisking together the flour and salt in a medium bowl. Then, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the vanilla, almond extract, butter, and sugar until fluffy. Gradually add the flour and mix until combined.

Next, shape the cookies. Use a 1-tablespoon cookie scoop to scoop rounded tablespoons of the dough, and roll them into balls. Place the balls on two large bakings sheets lined with parchment paper. Use the back of a 1-teaspoon measuring spoon to make an indentation in the middle of each cookie. Finally, spoon a little jam into the indentations.

shaping thumbprint cookies

Bake one sheet at a time in a 350° oven until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned. They’ll be fragile when they come out of the oven, so let them cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

Jam thumbprint cookies

Best Thumbprint Cookies Tips

  • Plan ahead. This recipe calls for room temperature butter, so when you make it, you’ll need to plan ahead. Remove the butter from the fridge or freezer a few hours before you start baking. Yes, a few hours. Don’t try to speed up the process in the microwave. If you do, there’s a good chance that the butter will start to melt, and your cookies will spread. Trust me, I speak from experience!
  • Don’t use your thumb. Maybe it’s just me, but whenever I press these cookies down with my thumb, I end up with funky-looking indentations. In order to get even indentations that can hold a good amount of jam, I like to press them down with the back of a 1-teaspoon measuring spoon instead. It creates a round, wide cavity for the jam, making for prettier and more evenly filled cookies.
  • Think about the jam:cookie ratio. There’s nothing sadder than thumbprint cookies with a tiny smidgen of jam inside! When you’re considering the jam:cookie ratio, two things matter: the size of the cookies and the amount of jam. I keep these cookies on the small side, using a rounded tablespoon of dough for each one. Then, I fill them with 1/2 teaspoon jam. That way, there’s plenty of jam for the amount of dough. Yum!

thumbprint cookies

More Favorite Cookie Recipes

If you love these thumbprint cookies, try one of these yummy cookie recipes next:

Thumbprint Cookies

rate this recipe:
5 from 10 votes
Prep Time: 30 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Serves 30 cookies
These easy thumbprint cookies are perfect for the holidays! I love to make them with apricot and raspberry jam, but feel free to substitute any flavor of jam you like.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour,

    spooned and leveled

  • 1 cup almond flour,

    spooned and leveled

  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temp
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ cup raspberry and/or apricot jam

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F and line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours and salt.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, vanilla, and almond extract until fluffy. Gradually add the flour and mix until combined.
  • Scoop rounded tablespoons of the dough, roll into balls, and place on the prepared baking sheets. Gently press down to form disks and use your thumb, or the back of a 1 teaspoon measuring spoon, to make an indentation in the middle of the cookies. Spoon ½ teaspoon of jam onto each cookie.
  • Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the bottoms are lightly browned. Let the cookies cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring them to a wire rack to cool completely.

25 comments

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  1. Lisa
    11.29.2020

    Hi there. Do you recommend a sub for the almond flour? I’m inclined to just use another cup of all purpose but was wondering if you had a suggestion. We have an almond allergy at home. Thank you very much! I really enjoy your recipes.

  2. Judith VanAllen
    11.29.2020

    Any shortbread gluten free recipes

  3. coco
    11.29.2020

    these look divine. can I make them for gifting? how long do they keep?

  4. Kathy
    11.30.2020

    Can I use a vegan butter? Or other substitute?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      11.30.2020

      Hi Kathy, I haven’t tried a vegan version but I have some vegan Christmas cookies coming up soon.

  5. Sabrina from newkitchenlife.com
    11.30.2020

    haven’t had these since, forever, love the jams too and almond flour, thank you!

  6. dena
    12.01.2020

    I would like to have green and red colors for Christmas, I could use strawberry jam for the red color, what could I use for the green color?TIA

    • Gyasi Barber
      12.13.2020

      You could use lemon filling and then green food coloring!

  7. Rahul Yadav
    12.02.2020

    5 stars
    It is one of the favorites at our house. My 10-year-old daughter makes them and we joke that after Thumbprints come out of the oven, fingerprints are the only thing left behind!

  8. Pooja
    12.05.2020

    5 stars
    I made these for my mom and she LOVED them! I followed the recipe to a T except I chilled the cookies for about 20 minutes before adding jam and baking out of fear of butter leaking. It was perfect! This is now my go-to thumbprint cookie and the almond flour adds a really nice texture.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.05.2020

      I’m so glad you both loved them!!

      • Kim Doran
        12.05.2020

        These look almost like the ones my mom used to make! She rolled in egg whites then chopped nuts before making the indentation. Can’t wait to try these!

  9. Martha
    12.05.2020

    These look beautiful and delicious. Can I freeze them?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.05.2020

      yep you can! Let them thaw at room temp for a few hours afterward.

  10. Kelly
    12.05.2020

    We have almond allergy in our household, what other flour can you recommend?

  11. Shae Talalelei
    12.06.2020

    Can I use just Almond Flour or any other type of gluten free flour, also would coconut sugar or lakanto work in substitution for the sugar?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.07.2020

      Hi Shae, we haven’t tested a gluten free version, so I’m not sure.

  12. Daniela
    12.07.2020

    5 stars
    Made these cookies last night and they came out amazing! Super easy to follow, and delicious! Followed the recipe exactly (including the room temp butter) with no modifications. Great way to use up the almond flour sitting in my cupboard! Can’t wait to make again and enjoy that I can swap between jam flavours.

  13. Dani
    12.08.2020

    Hi! If I want to freeze these before baking, at what point should I freeze them? Before adding the jam? Thank you!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.08.2020

      Hi Dani, you could make them all the way through and then freeze them with the jam. Just let them thaw at room temp for awhile before you’re ready to enjoy.

  14. Erin
    12.12.2020

    5 stars
    These were so easy and delicious! I will use this recipe for many years to come!

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.13.2020

      Hi Erin, I’m so glad you loved them!

  15. Barbara
    12.21.2020

    How far ahead of time can I make these?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      12.21.2020

      Hi Barbara, they’ll keep at room temp for a few days. They can be frozen after that.

  16. Lacey
    12.21.2020

    5 stars
    YUMMMMM! I made these with apricot and strawberry jellies and they were divine! I’m not a huge almond extract fan, but these were very subtle and perfect. I rolled my cookies slightly small and ended up with 25- I mixed my jellies for just a few of them at the end but should have done the whole batch this way. Will be sprinkling with powdered sugar after they cool and bringing along to a Christmas gathering. Thanks for the lovely recipe.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.