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16 freshly baked Thumbprint Cookies (German Engelsaugen) with one cheeky bite taken out of one cookie

Thumbprint Cookies

Thumbprint Cookies are made with a simple German buttery shortbread cookie recipe that's filled with a dollop of jam. In Germany they are known as 'Engelsaugen'.
Course Baked Goods, Dessert
Cuisine German
Keyword Christmas cookies, cookies, easy baking
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 30
Calories 81kcal
Author Maike



  • cup preserve any flavor (raspberry, strawberry, or apricot preserves are delicious)



  • Preheat the oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Line a baking baking sheet with parchment paper (or a silpat).

Making The Dough

  • Add flour, salt, powdered sugar, butter, egg yolks, vanilla extract, and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl.
  • Knead ingredients into a smooth dough ball. You can do this by hand or start out with an electric mixer. Once the dough begins to clump it's easy to shape it into a smooth dough ball. Chill the dough for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  • Shape dough into tablespoon-sized balls and place onto the prepared baking sheet.
  • Use the back of a wooden spoon and gently press a hole into each ball (don't pierce all the way through). Use your fingers to shape each hole into a ¼ inch indentation.
  • In a small bowl whisk your favorite jam (or preserve) until smooth. Fill each cookie with about a teaspoon of jam.
  • Bake cookies for 12 to 15 minutes at 350 Fahrenheit. Transfer onto a wire rack. Let cool and enjoy.


  • You can use a stand mixer (or hand mixer) to knead the dough. 


Calories: 81kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 54mg | Potassium: 20mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 134IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg