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Easy Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies With Sugar Glaze

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The perfect cookie for the holiday season or any occasion!


Thumbprints are a delicious buttery shortbread cookie rolled in sparkling sugar and filled with your favorite jam.

I mean, what’s not to love about this classic cookie, it’s easy to make with basic ingredients and are delicious!

Easy Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies With Sugar Glaze

Other Names For Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

  • Hallongrotta – “raspberry cave” in Swedish
  • Bird’s nest cookies
  • Butterballs
  • Polish tea cakes
One large white bowl with flour in it. Six smaller clear bowls with ingredients in them. One has raspberry jam, the second, mango jam, the third, white sugar, the forth, light brown sugar, the fifth, coarse sparkly sugar, and the sixth has cornstarch in it. There is a small bottle of pure vanilla extract, a brown egg and a stick of butter laid amongst the bowls. The bowls are sitting on a wood surface.

Ingredients For Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

For The Shortbread Cookie Dough:

  • All-purpose flour
  • Granulated sugar
  • Light brown sugar
  • Butter (softened)
  • 1 egg yolk (room temperature)
  • Cornstarch
  • Pure vanilla extract

For the Sweet Extras:

  • Coarse sugar (for rolling cookie dough balls in)
  • Seedless raspberry jam (for center filling) at room temperature
  • Confectioners’ sugar (powered sugar)
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons of milk

Tools You Will Need

  • Hand mixer or a stand mixer with paddle attachment
  • Large bowl
  • Medium bowl
  • Spatula
  • Sheet pan
  • Parchment paper or baking sheet
  • Oven mitt
  • Measuring cup
  • Teaspoon measurer
  • Wire rack / cooling rack

How To Make Easy Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies With Sugar Glaze

Large white mixing bowl with creamed butter in it. There is a red rubber spatula in the bowl resting on the side. Bowl is on a wood surface.
  1. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter until smooth.
Large white mixing bowl with butter , white sugar, and light brown sugar blended together. The bowl is on a wood surface.

2. Add both sugars to the butter and cream together until well combined.

Large white mixing bowl with butter , white sugar, and light brown sugar blended together. There is an egg yolk and vanilla extract on top of the mixture. The bowl is on a wood surface.

3. Add the egg yolk and vanilla to the mixture and blend throughly.

Medium size white mixing bowl with sifted flour and cornstarch in it. There is a metal sifter in the back ground. Items are on a wood surface.

4. In a medium bowl, sift or whisk the flour and cornstarch together.

Large white bowl with flour mixture poured on top of creamed buttery mixture. There is a red rubber spatula resting inside the bowl. The bowl is on a wood surface.

5. Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture.

Large white bowl with sugar cookie dough in it. The bowl is on a wood surface.

Mix until fully combined. The mixture will be crumbly but will come together as you continue mixing it.

There are seven sugar coated 1-inch cookie dough balls on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. There is a small white bowl with sugar in it as well as a ball of cookie dough in the bowl. The bowl is in the fore front of the baking sheet.

6. Shape dough into 1-inch balls using the palm of your hand.

7. Roll dough balls in coarse sugar and place on prepared cookie sheet.

8. Using your thumb or the back of a 1/2 teaspoon measurer, press an indentation into the center of each ball.

There is a dozen of sugar coated baked cookies with indentions in the center of each ball on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. The pan is on a wood surface.

9. Bake 11-13 minutes or until the cookies are set and the bottoms are lightly brown. Remove from the oven using an oven mitt and cool on the pan for five minutes. Transfer cookies to a wire cooling rack.

There is a dozen of sugar coated baked cookies with raspberry jam in the center of each ball on a black wire cooling rack. The rack is on a baking sheet.

10. Before the cookies are completely cool, spoon in or use a piping bag and fill each indentation with jam.

There is a dozen of sugar coated baked cookies on a black wire cooling rack. Six of the cookies have mango jam in them and the other six have raspberry jam in them. The rack is on a baking sheet.

Often Asked Questions

Can I Use Other Flavors Jams?

Yes, you can use any of your favorite jam flavors to make Thumbprint cookies.

I used two different jams in the center of the cookies as shown in the above photo. A raspberry jam and a mango jam.

Three jars of jam sitting on a wood surface. One jar is labeled Mango Jam, the second is labeled Raspberry Mango Jam and the third jar is labeled Strawberry Mango Jam.

Very good friends of mine gave me a jar of homemade mango jam from their Jumpin Chicken Ranch. It is so incredibly delicious, I just had to use it in the centers of half of the cookies!

How do you freeze this delicious cookie?

You can freeze thumbprint cookies two ways:

First, is after you form dough into round balls. They can be stored up to a month in an airtight container or freezer bag.

Secondly, is to freeze the baked cookies without the jam filling. Wait until you are ready to serve them to fill with sweet raspberry jam.

Why Use Cornstarch?

Cornstarch, which is often used as a thickening agent in sauces, doesn’t do that in cookies.

What cornstarch does, is help provide structure which is what you want for this type of cookie.

Can I Use Almond Extract Instead Of Vanilla Extract?

Yes, you can use almond extract instead of vanilla extract if you prefer.

All the other ingredients would remain the same but your cookies will have an almond flavor.

They would be called, Raspberry Almond Thumbprint Cookies.

There is a dozen of sugar coated baked cookies on a white rectangular. Six of the cookies have mango jam in them and the other six have raspberry jam in them. All of the cookies have a white sugar glaze drizzled on the top of them.The plate is on a wood surface.

11. For glaze, in a medium bowl, combine confectioners’ sugar and milk together. Mix with a fork until you make a good consistency easy for drizzling.

Use a fork to drizzle each cookie with glaze.

Helpful Tips

  • When forming the cookie dough balls with the palm of you hands, be sure to make a really tight compact ball.
  • Always use a cool baking sheet when preparing your cookies for baking. This will help lessen the cracking of the cookies.
  • Use jam and not preserves. I learned the hard way when I used raspberry preserves my first time making these holiday cookies.
  • Preserves have pieces of fruit in it which may spill out on to the cookies and cause a mess.

Other Delicious Cookies

If you’re looking for a fudge recipe this holiday season, check this one out! It’s not only amazingly delicious, but it is also an easy chocolate fudge recipe from Back To My Southern Roots: Fudge That Will Make All Your Friends Jealous

Yield: 24 cookies

Easy Raspberry Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies With Sugar Glaze

One dozen of round sugar cookies on a white rectangular plate. Six of the cookies have raspberry jam in the center of them. The other six cookies have mango jam in the center of them. All of the cookies have a white glaze drizzled on them. The plate is on a wood surface.

Delicious classic shortbread sugar cookies filled with raspberry jam and drizzled with a powered sugar glaze.

Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 11 minutes
Additional Time 15 minutes
Total Time 46 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 -1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup light brown sugar (tightly packed)
  • 1 cup butter (2 sticks) - softened
  • 1 egg yolk (room temperature)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup coarse sugar (for rolling cookie dough balls in)
  • 1 cup seedless raspberry jam (for center filling) at room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar (powdered sugar)
  • 3 to 4 teaspoons milk

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or baking sheet.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the softened butter until smooth.
  4. Add both sugars to the butter and cream together until well combined.
  5. Add the egg yolk and vanilla to the mixture and blend throughly.
  6. In a medium bowl, sift or whisk the flour and cornstarch together.
  7. Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix on medium speed, pausing occasionally to scrape the sides of the bowl until fully combined. The mixture will be crumbly but will come together as you continue mixing it.
  8. Shape dough into tight 1-inch balls using the palm of your hand.
  9. Roll dough balls in coarse sugar and place on prepared cookie sheet.
  10. Using your thumb or the back of a 1/2 teaspoon measurer, press an indentation into the center of each ball.
  11. Bake 11-13 minutes or until the cookies are set and the bottoms are lightly brown.
  12. Remove from the oven using an oven mitt and cool on the pan for five minutes. Then transfer cookies to a wire cooling rack.
  13. Before the cookies are completely cool, spoon in or use a piping bag and fill each indentation with jam.
  14. For glaze, in a medium bowl, combine confectioners' sugar and milk together. Mix with a fork until you make a good consistency easy for drizzling.

Notes

  • When forming the cookie dough balls with the palm of you hands, be sure to make a really tight compact ball.
  • Always use a cool baking sheet when preparing your cookies for baking. This will help lessen the cracking of the cookies.
  • Use jam and not preserves.
  • Store cookies in a single layer.
  • Cookies can be stored in an airtight container for 4-5 days.

Did you make this recipe?

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