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Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Cookies

These Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Cookies are a delicious twist on a classic recipe made with chocolate dough, filled with cherry pie filling, and more chocolate drizzle on top. Perfect for a cookie exchange, holiday treat, or an anytime sweet dessert!

Thumbprint cookies are classic cookies that are such an enjoyable dessert, especially during the holidays! Combining fruit and a cookie together is such a perfect pair. So why not switch them up with some chocolate! These cookies have an incredible flavor with a soft chocolate cookie batter, rolled and then indented with a thumbprint, then filled with a sweet cherry pie filling, and topped off with a drizzle of chocolate. Not only do they taste amazing but they are a beautiful cookie too! These will definitely be a crowd favorite at your next cookie exchange or Christmas party!


  • Butter– I tend to use lightly salted butter in almost all of my dishes. I enjoy the flavor that salt brings out of sweet dishes. However, feel free to use unsalted if you prefer.
  • White and brown sugar– this combination seems to help bring a balance of slightly chewy and softness to the cookie.
  • Egg
  • Vanilla extract
  • All-purpose flour
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder– this brings a deep chocolate flavor to the cookie. The better the cocoa, the better the taste.
  • Baking soda
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Cherry pie filling– I typically use store-bought. It has a nice thick glaze that holds up well when baking. It also makes this so easy to put together.

How to make it

This is an easy recipe to make. All you have to do is:

Cream butter and sugars together in a medium bowl. I like to mix until the butter starts to turn almost white in appearance so that there are plenty of air pockets- maybe around 6-7 minutes. It doesn’t seem like this is an important step, but it helps the cookies have a good texture and appearance.

Addegg and vanilla until combined.

Whiskflour, unsweetened cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl.

Mix– the dry ingredients into the butter/sugar mixture until combined. The batter will be thick.

Scoop – the batter using a cookie scoop or one heaping tablespoonful into your hands and roll into a ball.

Place– the balls on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. I highly recommend using parchment paper for even cooking and easy clean-up.

Indent– the cookie dough with your thumbprint two times making a cross. This will help make the hole large enough for the cherries to fit inside.

Fill– the hole with one cherry and pie filling, around 1 teaspoon.

Bake– for 8-10 minutes or until cooked through. Chocolate cookies are a little harder to determine when they are cooked. Look for any shiny uncooked parts. If you see it, return it to the oven and bake an additional minute and check again. But be sure not to cook too long so it doesn’t burn.

Cool– for 5 minutes on the baking sheet before removing to a cooling rack to finish cooling.

Melt– chocolate and butter in a double boiler or microwave on 50% heat. Be sure not to over-heat or the chocolate will separate and become grainy.

Drizzle– chocolate over completely cooled cookies. Enjoy!

How to store thumbprint cookies

These cookies are great make-ahead desserts since they are best stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator in an air-tight container for up to 5-7 days. To freeze the cookies, flash-freeze them first by placing cookies on a baking sheet in an even row and freezing them for around 2 hours until the pie filling is firm. Then place the cookies in an air-tight container or a freezer bag and freeze for up to 1 month.

What type of pie filling do I need?

Store-bought or homemade cherry pie filling can be used in these cookies. Just be sure there is plenty of thick pie filling so that the cherry has something to rest on and does not absorb into the cookie dough.

Do I need to chill the dough before baking?

The short answer is no. However, you will find that the cookies hold their shape a little better if the dough is chilled a few hours before baking. But these cookies have been made several times without chilling beforehand with much success.

Can chocolate thumbprint cookie dough be frozen?

Yes! Thumbprint cookie dough freezes very well. It can be indented with the thumbprint before or after freezing. Flash freeze on a cookie sheet until each ball is firm before storing in an air-tight container.

Special equipment for this recipe

Kitchen Aid Stand Mixer– This is one of my most used kitchen appliances. It is well worth the money and can be used to make a variety of recipes like cookies, cakes, and homemade whipped cream!

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More delicious cookie recipes

close up of chocolate cherry thumbprint cookies on a cooling rack

Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Cookies

These Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Cookies are a delicious twist on a classic recipe made with chocolate dough, filled with cherry pie filling, and more chocolate drizzle on top. Perfect for a cookie exchange, holiday treat, or an anytime sweet dessert!
4.19 from 11 votes
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 24 cookies
Calories 169 kcal


  • 1/2 cup butter softened
  • 3/4 cups white granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 21 ounce can cherry pie filling

Glaze (optional)

  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugars until it becomes light and fluffy. Mix in egg and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix until blended. Scoop dough using a tablespoon or cookie scoop and roll into balls around 1 inch in diameter. Place on ungreased or parchment paper-lined cookie sheet. Using your thumb, press down in the center of the ball to make an indentation. Add one cherry and pie filling to fill each of the indentations on the cookie dough.
  • Bake for 8-9 minutes or until the cookie is just cooked through. Allow to cool on a cookie sheet for 5 minutes before removing to a cooling rack to finish cooling.

Glaze (optional)

  • Melt chocolate chips and butter in a double boiler or microwave on low power. Be careful not to overcook or the chocolate will harden too quickly. Drizzle over each cooled cookie. Enjoy!


*Nutritional value and cook times vary due to differences in appliance temperatures and product selection.


Serving: 24gCalories: 169kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 1gFat: 8gSodium: 32mgSugar: 14g
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Nutrition Facts
Chocolate Cherry Thumbprint Cookies
Serving Size
24 g
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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  1. They look like some good looking cookies! I will definitely try them out for the holidays this year. I wonder how they would turn out doing them with gluten-free flour? Definitely going to check out some of your other recipes.

  2. Ohhh…. these look lovely! Any idea if modifying these to vegan (flax egg and vegan butter) would work? Looks like it could be successful.

  3. I am wanting to double this recipe. It seems all the ingredients are doubled except for the flour, is that a typo? How much flour to go in this to double this recipe?

  4. 5 stars
    Made these and they’re delicious! I had about a half cup leftover of a can of cherry pie filling, and this recipe was perfect, since you only need 24 cherries! I baked mine for 9 minutes and they still had a somewhat soft underbaked middle, which is perfect if you ask me, since I was making these because I couldn’t make brownies, ha! Just a note, the adding of the cocoa powder appears to be omitted in the recipe card, so I had to check the preamble to confirm when it got added.

4.19 from 11 votes (10 ratings without comment)

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