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Thumbprint Cookies

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  • Prep 40 min
  • Total 1 hr 20 min
  • Servings 36
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They say that good things come in small packages, and these jam-packed Thumbprint Cookies are proof. Fill yours with apricot, raspberry or even mint jelly—whatever suits your palate. You can’t go wrong. This Thumbprint Cookies recipe won’t let you! It’s been tested to perfection. The shortbread-style cookie dough is a breeze to throw together and work with. It also bakes up deliciously, making some of the best Thumbprint Cookies you've ever tasted. It’s not too sweet, which allows the jam to shine through. But the best part about these jam-filled cookies has got to be the almonds. Each ball of dough is rolled in finely chopped almonds before baking, which enriches the dough and adds a nubby texture that’s truly delightful! So if you’ve been looking for classic Thumbprint Cookies that taste just like grandma’s, search no more—you’ve found them!
Updated Nov 12, 2021
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  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 1 cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped nuts
  • Jelly
Make With
Gold Medal Flour


  • 1
    Heat oven to 350°F.
  • 2
    Mix brown sugar, shortening, butter, vanilla and egg yolk in medium bowl. Stir in flour and salt until dough holds together.
  • 3
    Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Beat egg white slightly. Dip each ball into egg white. Roll in nuts. Place about 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Press thumb deeply in center of each.
  • 4
    Bake about 10 minutes or until light brown. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely, about 30 minutes. Fill thumbprints with jelly.

Tips from the Betty Crocker Kitchens

  • tip 1
    These cookies were often called Thimble Cookies in older cookbooks because bakers used a thimble to make the indentation.
  • tip 2
    You'll be done in a flash if you use a food processor to chop the nuts.
  • tip 3
    Be sure to make a deep imprint with your thumb to account for the rising that will happen in the oven.
  • tip 4
    Making Thumbprint Christmas Cookies? Give them a bright seasonal look with mint jelly alongside raspberry or strawberry.
  • tip 5
    It’s helpful to warm jam or jelly with a quick zap in the microwave and a vigorous stir to loosen it up. This will make filling the jelly Thumbprint Cookies a little easier.


85 Calories, 5 g Total Fat, 1 g Protein, 9 g Total Carbohydrate

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 Cookie
Calories from Fat
Total Fat
5 g
Saturated Fat
1 g
10 mg
30 mg
25 mg
Total Carbohydrate
9 g
Dietary Fiber
1 g
% Daily Value*:
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
1/2 Starch; 1 Fat;
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

More About This Recipe

  • Classic thumbprint cookies are a festive addition to holiday cookie trays. This shortbread-style cookie is incredibly easy to make. Cookie dough gets rolled into balls and then dipped in finely chopped nuts. If the dough is too soft to roll, refrigerate it for a few minutes before handling. For an even bake, make sure each dough ball is the same size and shape and spaced evenly on the baking sheet. When adding your thumbprint to each one, make sure to create a deep indentation, so you’ll have a nice spot to spoon the jelly after the cookies come out of the oven. Classic thumbprint cookies add a touch of personalization to your holiday cookie tray. If you want more cookie ideas to make your own, check out Betty’s cookie cheat sheet and don’t forget about the rest of her thumbprint cookie recipes.
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