Thumbprint Cookie Recipe with Buttercream Icing

My mom used to have us help her with thumbprint cookies when I was a kid. They are very buttery, and are topped with a rich buttercream icing. It’s a real treat that I continue making to this day for the holidays. This thumbprint cookie recipe with buttercream icing is an extra special treat that freezes well for any time of year.

This thumbprint cookie recipe with buttercream icing is an extra special treat that freezes well for any time of year.

The recipe makes a little more than three dozen cookies, depending on how big you make the dough balls. They need to be rolled in egg whites, then walnuts. Make sure you chop your walnuts pretty fine or else they tend to fall off.

This thumbprint cookie recipe with buttercream icing is an extra special treat that freezes well for any time of year.

After 5 minutes in the oven you take them out and use your thumb to “print” the center of the cookie, thus the name. However, if your thumb gets too hot, a finger works just as well.

This thumbprint cookie recipe with buttercream icing is an extra special treat that freezes well for any time of year.

Also, if you’d like you can skip the butter in the icing. Using just powdered sugar and milk works also,  but I like this recipe because it freezes well, and it’s how my mom made them.

Thumbprint Cookie Recipe with Buttercream Icing
Ingredients
  • Cookie
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 c butter (2 sticks) softened
  • ½ c sugar
  • ½ t salt
  • 1 t vanilla
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1½ c walnuts, finely chopped
  • Icing
  • 4 T butter, softened
  • 1½ c powdered sugar
  • 1 T milk
  • food coloring
Instructions
  1. Chop walnuts and place in a shallow bowl.
  2. Separate eggs and place yolks in a large mixing bowl and the whites in another shallow bowl.
  3. Combine butter, sugar, vanilla and salt with the egg yolks.
  4. Gradually add in the flour.
  5. Using a small cookie scoop or teaspoon make balls of dough.
  6. Roll each ball first in the egg whites.
  7. Then roll in the walnuts.
  8. Place on a cookie tray and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 5 minutes.
  9. Remove and using your thumb make an impression in the center of each dough then return to the over for 7-10 more minutes.
  10. Remove from oven and let cool.
  11. Make the icing by combining all ingredients adding enough milk to give you a smooth, workable consistency. Keep some of the icing white and portion out the rest for as many colors as you'd like and add food coloring. Top each cookie with icing.
  12. Makes approx. 3 dozen cookies
Notes
This is a good recipe for freezing because the richness of the butter and egg yolk keeps the cookie tasting fresh.

If you liked this recipe, you definitely should check out this group of great bloggers and cooks, who are sharing their best Christmas cookie recipes today, at The Everyday Home. Much thanks to Barb Garrett for organizing this event. I knows I need to make many more cookies before Christmas and am excited to see what everyone is making.

Virtual Cookie Exchange button

This handed down Christmas cookie recipe is buttery and delicious and it's the only one I've found that tastes just as good after it's been frozen. A must for busy bakers at the holidays.

About Patti Estep

Patti is the creator of Garden Matter, a home and garden blog filled with projects to inspire your creative side. She loves crafting, gardening, decorating and entertaining at her home in Pennsylvania. When she is not working on a project at home or searching for treasures at nurseries and thrift stores with her girlfriends, you’ll probably find her with family and friends, at a restaurant, or home party enjoying new and different food adventures.

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Comments

  1. The old recipes are the best! Thanks for sharing this special family recipe. I’ve never made thumbprint cookies with icing in the center! I’ll have it try it,

  2. These are so yummy. I love the almonds in the cookies. I am going to give these a try.

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