August 4, 2021

Berry Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

I have been loving the combination of berries and chocolate this year. Berries and chocolate are a natural pairing - I mean, chocolate covered strawberries are amazing, right?! During the summer, I made a blackberry chocolate sauce, which I canned in jars for holiday gifts. The combination of the dark, sweet berries and the rich cocoa powder intensified the flavors of each ingredient into a delectable combination that is out of this world over vanilla bean ice cream.

Thinking about that jam, I wondered about other ways to combine berries and chocolate, and bringing them together into a cookie felt appropriate and festive for the holidays. Growing up, I made thumbprint cookies with my grandma using the variety of jams we canned during the summer - apricot, raspberry, blackberry. I know some people put frosting in their thumbprint cookies, but in my family, thumbprints = jam.

Use any berry jam you like in these cookies - chocolate + strawberry is a classic flavor pairing, but raspberries and blackberries are amazing, too - or cherry! Cherry jam would also be delicious. I used blackberry jam that I made this summer, because that’s what I often have in abundance. Whatever combination you use, these cookies make an indulgent and unique addition to your holiday cookie plate!

Ingredients assembled for Berry Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies
Assemble your ingredients.

Cookie ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer
Add chocolate pudding mix and cocoa powder to wet ingredients to thoroughly combine.

Forming the thumbprint cookies by rolling dough in small balls, then making an indentation to hold the jam using a tablespoon
Roll dough into balls, then roll in chopped almonds, then use a teaspoon to press a "thumbprint" into the dough before baking.

Pressing the baked cookies once more with a tablespoon to finish the indentation to hold the jam
When cookies come out of the oven, use a tablespoon to finish forming the well, or "thumbprint," to hold the jam. Guest hand appearance by my brother!

Hand with a spoon filling the thumbprint cookie wells with jam
When cookies are cooled, spoon about a teaspoon of jam into each thumbprint. My brother says that you have to be cute about it, so that you don't overfill or miss the mark!

Finished Berry Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies on a wire rack
Enjoy your Berry Chocolate Thumbprints!

Original publication date: December 17, 2020

Berry Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

Use any berry jam you like in these cookies - chocolate + strawberry is a classic flavor pairing, but raspberries and blackberries are amazing, too!


Kira Freed - The Joyful Plateful











1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

3/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

1 tsp. vanilla extract

3.9-oz. package INSTANT chocolate pudding mix

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. sea salt

1 cup chopped, sliced almonds

8 oz. berry jam of your choice - recommend blackberry, raspberry, or strawberry


  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or in a large bowl plus a hand mixer), cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until fluffy.
  2. To the bowl, add the eggs and vanilla, and mix again to combine well.
  3. Add instant chocolate pudding mix and cocoa powder, and mix again until well combined.
  4. Add flour, baking soda, and salt to the mixer, and mix again until dough is well combined.
  5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  6. Scoop dough by the tablespoon, and roll into a ball using your palms. Roll each dough ball in chopped almonds, and place on the lined baking sheet. Using a teaspoon measuring spoon, gently press an indentation into each dough ball (this will help form the “thumbprint” to hold the jam!).
  7. Bake cookies at 350 degrees F for 10-12 minutes.
  8. After removing cookies from the oven, while they are still hot and on the baking sheet, use a tablespoon measuring spoon to gently press the center of each cookie, forming your thumbprint to hold the jam.
  9. Transfer cookies to a wire baking rack to cool completely.
  10. Once cookies are cooled, fill each “thumbprint” with about 1 teaspoon of berry jam.
  11. Allow cookies to set at room temperature for several hours, which will allow the jam to set and form a light skin on top, making them easier to store. Store in an airtight container.
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