December 13: Buttery Jam Thumbprint Cookies


This week seems to be a weird mix of super busy and “Oh I have plenty of time until Christmas.” Today I decided to use the preserves I purchased a week ago and make Buttery Jam Thumbprint Cookies. 

I made these a few years ago, and learned the important lesson that jelly won’t cut it for these. My classy red currant jelly ended up looking like a murder scene on a cookie sheet. So when I was grocery shopping, I made sure I chose preserves. 

The recipe is a simple one, which I love, and these bake up pretty quickly. I’m still not great at filling the thumbprints, but they didn’t overflow and I dust powdered sugar over them anyway. 

Through the magic of television, I mean the internet, my cookie balls were transformed into thumbprint cookies. I used strawberry preserves and mango-peach preserves. And I filled a few with almond pie filling, but those are just for me. 

When it came to dusting with powdered sugar, I apparently have a heavy hand. 

It reminds me of the scene in Annie Hall where Woody Allen sneezes into the cocaine. 

These are a crowd pleaser, and makes your house smell amazing!

Buttery Jam Thumbprint Cookies



  • 1 cup salted butter, softened
  • ½ cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar, plus ¼ cup more for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp table salt
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • ½ cup fruit preserves


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, blend butter and sugar until fluffy and light, 2 minutes. Add vanilla and salt, scraping down bowl as needed. Switch to low and gently mix in flour, just until combined. Don’t over mix.
  3. Roll tablespoonfuls of dough into 1-inch balls. Place dough balls on parchment lined baking sheets. Press down the center of each ball with a spoon (or your thumb!) making a slight depression.
  4. Fill cookie centers with a teaspoonful of preserves. Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown and puffy, but take care not to overbake. Let cool a few minutes on baking sheet, then transfer to finish cooling on wire rack.
  5. When cookies are completely cooled, dust with confectioners’ sugar. Cookies can be kept in airtight container at room temp for a few days.

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