Espresso Thumbprint Cookies

Make your mark with coffee-flavored Espresso Thumbprint Cookies. The shape is classic.

Espresso Thumbprint Cookies

Success: To prevent too deep of an indentation, press with just the tip of your thumb.

How To: To crush the peppermint candies, place in a resealable plastic food-storage bag and lightly crush with rolling pin.



  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup shortening
  • 3/4 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso coffee (dry)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 1/4 cups Gold Medal all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Espresso Filling

  • 1/2 cup whipping (heavy) cream
  • 2 tablespoons instant espresso coffee (dry)
  • 1 bag (11 1/2 ounces) milk chocolate chips (2 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon coffee-flavored liqueur, if desired


  • About 1/3 cup crushed peppermint candies, if desired


  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In large bowl, beat brown sugar, shortening, butter, cocoa, 1 tablespoon dry espresso, the vanilla extract and egg yolks with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon, until creamy.
  3. Stir in flour and salt.
  4. Shape dough into 1-inch balls. Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Press thumb into center of each cookie to make indentation, but do not press all the way to the cookie sheet.
  5. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until edges are firm.
  6. Quickly remake indentations with end of wooden spoon if necessary. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to wire rack.
  7. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  8. Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, heat whipping cream and 2 tablespoons dry espresso over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until steaming and espresso is dissolved.
  9. Remove from heat; stir in chocolate chips until melted.
  10. Stir in liqueur.
  11. Cool until thickened, about 10 minutes.
  12. Spoon rounded 1/2 teaspoon filling into indentation in each cookie. Top each cookie with 1/4 teaspoon crushed candies.

Yield: 6 dozen cookies

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft) No change.

Classic Thumbprint Cookies: Omit baking cocoa, espresso coffee, Espresso Filling and peppermint candies. In medium bowl, beat 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup shortening, 1/2 cup softened butter or margarine, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 2 egg yolks. Stir in 2 cups flour and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Shape dough into 3/4-inch balls. Slightly beat 2 egg whites. Dip balls into egg whites; roll in 1 cup finely chopped nuts. Place about 1 inch apart on cookie sheet. Press with thumb as directed above. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until light brown. Remake indentations as directed above. Remove from cookie sheet; cool. Fill each indentation with about 1/2 teaspoon jam (you'll need about 3/4 cup jam or preserves).

Nutrition Information: 1 Serving: Calories 100 (Calories from Fat 60); Total Fat 6g (Saturated Fat 3g, Trans Fat 1/2g); Cholesterol 15mg; Sodium 35mg; Total Carbohydrate 9g (Dietary Fiber 0g, Sugars 6g); Protein 0g

Percent Daily Value*: Vitamin A 2%; Vitamin C 0%; Calcium 0%; Iron 2%

Exchanges: 1/2 Other Carbohydrate; 0 Vegetable; 1 1/2 Fat Carbohydrate Choices: 1/2

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Recipe and photo used with permission from: Betty Crocker