Pecan Pie Thumbprint Cookies

Pecan Pie Thumbprint Cookies.

It’s December, and that means time to start Christmas cookie baking!

These cookies are a wonderful version of pecan pie in a cookie!

They are similar to Pecan Tassies, but a lot easier.

The cookie is buttery and shortbread-like, while the filling is nutty and sticky and sweet and AMAZING!

I had a little bit of extra filling left that I just couldn’t throw away, so I spread it on a sheet of crescent roll dough, rolled it up, and sliced it into 8 easier-than-pie pecan “sticky buns!”


Hope you will give these yummy cookies a try for something new on your Christmas cookie baking list.  I do believe these will become a regular in our home!

Here is the recipe I found at  Crazy for Crust, which I only slightly altered.  Thanks for a great recipe, Dorothy!

Pecan Pie Thumbprint Cookies


Cookie Batter:

  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 4 cups flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Pecan Pie Filling:

  • 2 cups pecans, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. coarse or flaked salt
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 4-5 Tbsp. Half and Half or Heavy Cream
  • 2 tsp. vanilla

Optional:  Powdered sugar for sprinkling on top of cooled cookies.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Beat brown sugar, butter, egg, and vanilla in electric mixer until creamy.   Add in baking powder, salt, and flour, and mix on low speed until well combined.

Shape dough, two tablespoons at a time, into balls, and place the balls two inches apart on a baking stone or cookie sheet.  Indent a hole in center with your thumb.

Prepare filling by stirring pecans, salt, brown sugar, and vanilla with cream until it forms a thick mixture.  Spoon approximately one teaspoonful into thumb indentation of each cookie.

Bake for 10-12 minutes.  Cool for 5 minutes on stone or cookie sheet before removing to rack to cool completely.

Sprinkle with powdered sugar if desired.

Cookies freeze well for up to a month.


Cheers & Hugs,

Carrot Cake Thumbprint Cookies

Carrot Cake Thumbprint Cookies.

I tried a new cookie recipe this weekend to add to the wedding cookie table.

And OMG – if you ever dreamed you could have your cake and eat it in a cookie too – well – your dream has come true with this recipe.  Seriously… carrot cake delightfulness in a cookie!

The frosting filling alone…… well…. all I can say is it makes me think of what a cloud might taste like in heaven….  sweet creamy, buttery, cream cheesey delight with a swirl of apricot.  Can you even imagine?!

A nutty, crunchy, shortbread-like cookie with a delightful apricot cream cheese filling.  If you are looking for a beautiful, sweet treat for a special occasion like perhaps – a wedding cookie table – these lovely little morsels are just the ticket!

Carrot Cake Thumbprint Cookies


  • 4 sticks butter, melted, plus 2 sticks, room temperature, for frosting
  • 1 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 1/3 cup sugar
  • 4 large egg yolks
  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  • 3 cups finely grated carrots
  • 1 cup chopped dried apricots or golden raisins
  • 2 cups chopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 8 oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • 6 tsp. apricot jam


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large mixing bowl, beat melted butter, sugars, and egg yolks until light and creamy.  Blend in ginger, cinnamon, and salt.  gradually beat in flour.  Mix in oats, carrots, and chopped apricots or raisins.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Roll dough into 1 1/2 inch balls.  Roll into chopped nuts.  Place on baking stone or cookie sheet, and bake for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven, and quickly press an indentation into center of each cookie ball.  Return to oven and bake for 8 more minutes until lightly golden brown.

Transfer to a cooking rack and cool completely.

In a mixing bowl, beat remaining 2 sticks of softened butter and confectioner’s sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in cream cheese.  Gently swirl in apricot jam.

Place frosting in large Ziploc bag.  Snip corner and pipe into each cooled cookie.


Cheers & Hugs,

*Adapted from Martha Stewart


Twix Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

twix cookies 1

It’s Christmas cookie baking time, and I always like to try cookies that are a little different, a little more decadent, a little fancier, a bit more festive than usual for holiday baking.

I think I am on a chocolate caramel kick (Rolo Hot Chocolate Recipe Monday)!

I found a ton of different cookies with these ingredients, but ended up trying one posted by The Recipe Critic and tweaking it very slightly.

Twix Cookies

If you are a fan of Twix Candy Bars, you are going to go BONKERS over these awesome thumbprint cookies.

Twix Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

  • Servings: Approx. 4 dozen
  • Print
Ingredients:twix cookies 1
Shortbread Layer:
  • 4 sticks (1 lb) Butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 6 Eggs (yolks only)
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Caramel Filling:

Chocolate Topping:


  • Shortbread Cookies:  With electric mixer, combine butter, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla. Beat at medium speed until creamy.   Add flour, and beat at low speed until well mixed. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour or until firm.
  • After dough has chilled, shape into 1-inch balls. Place 2 inches apart onto ungreased cookie sheets or baking stone. Make indentation in center of each cookie with thumb or end of wooden spoon handle. Bake at 375 degrees F for approximately 8 minutes or until edges begin to brown. Cool completely.
  • Caramel filling: Melt the caramel and cream in the microwave stirring every 30 seconds until fully melted. Using a teaspoon fill each indentation with the caramel.
  • Chocolate: Melt the chocolate in the microwave stirring 30 seconds at a time until smooth.  Spoon into a ziploc bag.  Cut a tiny snip in the corner of the baggie to pipe the chocolate onto the cookies.

I bet these would taste wonderful with a steaming mug of Rolo Hot Chocolate!   Can you even imagine!?!  ‘Tis the season!

Cheers & Holiday Hugs,


Pittsburgh-Style Sprinkle Thumbprint Cookies

Pittsburgh Sprinkle Thumbprint Cookies Cover

So – we have already discussed that we Pittsburghers do cookies for weddings.  Right?

Massive cookie tables that serve as appetizers, desserts (along with cake!), and take-home treats/gifts/doggie bags.

Pittsburgh is also kinda famous for our twist on the traditional thumbprint cookie, which is typically filled with jam or fruit preserves and rolled in nuts.

Nope – in the Burgh, we do sprinkles and icing on our thumbprints!

blue sprinkle thumbprint cookie stack top down

Many of the local bakeries as well as our large grocery store chain, Giant Eagle, make and sell these by the hundreds of dozens.  They come in a variety of colors of icing and sprinkles and there is also a chocolate icing version.

The ones I made this week are blue because, well – they are for an upcoming wedding (WOOHOO Jackie and Matt – only a little over a week to go!) – and I wanted to match the wedding color theme (as close as possible with sprinkles and icing – there are only so many shades of blue sprinkles available….)

blue sprinkle thumbprint cookie stack1

Here are the ones I made last year for Jake and Colleen’s wedding in yellow.

yellow sprinkle thumbprints

I must give credit to two great baking bloggers for this recipeMichelle – Brown Eyed Baker and Chelsea – Chelsea Bakes.

Pittsburgh-Style Sprinkle Thumbprint Cookies:

2½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup butter, at room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Sprinkles of your color choice

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, cream together the butter, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the flour and salt. Once it is mostly incorporated, slowly increase the speed back to medium-high and beat for another minute or so until a dough forms.

3. Form tablespoons of dough into balls and roll in the sprinkles.  If dough is a bit dry, you can add a little bit of milk or cream or put on your hands when rolling the balls to allow sprinkles to stick.

4.  Place on baking stone about 1 – 1/2  inches apart. Make a slight indentation with your thumb or finger on the tops of all the cookies.

5. Bake for 8 minutes, then make a deeper indentation in the middle, and bake for an additional 7-8 minutes. The cookies should not brown much at all around the edges. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tablespoon corn syrup
1 1/2 tablespoons milk or cream
Pinch salt
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 tsp butter, room temperature
food color of your choice

Stir together all ingredients until smooth, then drop a spoonful into each cooled cookie.

pittsburgh sprinkle thumbprint cookies

I liken the taste of this buttery cookie to that of shortbread.  It is thick and moist and dense and tender flaky all at once.

You need to allow these cookies to cool for quite a long time for the icing to “set.”  I leave mine on racks overnight and then place in Ziploc Freezer bags.

To make the chocolate frosting version, see Michelle’s recipe on her Brown Eyed Baker Blog here.

Enjoy these Burgh style cookies.

Cheers & Hugs,