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Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies

Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies are fabulous for any special occasion or holiday, though especially at Christmas.

A couple of weeks ago I posted a recipe for Mexican Wedding Cookies and asked y’all what other Paleo Christmas cookie recipes you would like me to share. Here is a comment that was left by reader Marlene Placido requesting one of my all time favorite cookies:

I have been looking for years for a recipe for a raspberry thumbprint almond cookie… a traditional Christmas cookie from maybe one of the Scandinavian countries.

With only six ingredients total, my Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies are one of the easiest cookie recipes you can make during the busy holiday season. Looking for other gluten-free Christmas cookie recipes? Try my Star Cookies (which make wonderful rollout Paleo sugar cookies) or Gingerbread Men Cookies. Just be sure to use the recommended brand of almond flour –more on that below.

Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies


  1. In a food processor combine almond flour, salt and baking soda
  2. Pulse in coconut oil and honey until dough forms
  3. Scoop batter 1 tablespoon at a time onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet
  4. Press your thumb into the center of each cookie to make an indentation
  5. Place ½ teaspoon of jam in the center of each cookie
  6. Bake at 350° for 8-10 minutes until golden brown
  7. Let cool on the baking sheets
  8. Serve

Makes 20 cookies

Wondering which types of almond flour will yield perfect results in this (and my other Christmas cookie recipes)? Check out my almond flour page. Please note, that there are certain brands of almond flour that will not work at all in my recipes; for more information please view the aforementioned almond flour page.

I’ve been making these healthy, lightly sweetened Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies for years, and they’re one of my favorites. In Sweden they are referred to as hallongrotta, here they’re known by many names including: jam thumbprint cookies, almond thumbprint cookies, and shortbread thumbprint cookies. Whatever you call them, they’re absolutely delicious. Happy baking and Merry Christmas to you my dearest readers!

posted on December 22, 2013, 47 comments

  1. D @ The Kosher Cave Girl @ thekoshercavegirl.com

    You’re absolutely right! These looks so delicious, and with only 6 ingredients, how can you not make them!!

  2. Elizabeth

    You are my HERO! I was just sitting down to search for something like this, and your facebook post came across my news feed . My family always makes “marzipan bars” at Christmas time: cookie base, a layer of raspberry jam, a layer of almond paste, bake, and frost with chocolate frosting. We had to go egg free just a week ago, and we were hoping to find a way to fake-out that flavor profile. This is PERFECT. I’m going to make these and then cover them in chocolate frosting. Paleo/primal? Not so much. Still avoiding those darned allergens? You betcha.

  3. Trine

    I used to make these with my Mom, when I was little. They are called “husaren krapfen” Germany. Husaren are Hungarian/kroation cavalrie soldiers, so I think that’s where this recipe originated;)

  4. Sheryl

    Will bulk almond flour from Whole Foods work I’m these recipes?

    • zingara

      good, sweet, elana…I love your blog. I’m not on a G-free regime but some of my family are. my mother, [Italian, from Italy] used to make cookies very much like these but she rolled the balls in sesame seeds then added jam [usually fig, guava or apricot] then they were baked. the seeds then toasted & they were very tasty. can your fans eat seeds? I hope you & your dear family have a very joyful Christmas & new year. Z

    • Deborah Wilson

      I use the almond meal from the Bulk Barn and put it through a sieve. The little bit that won’t go through, I put in my spice grinder to make it finer. My baking has been turning out great and I’ve made many things from Elana’s (my fave) site.

      Does anybody know why Bob’s Redd Mill almond flour is not recommended? My hubby didn’t feel like going to the Bulk Barn today and brought me two bags of this stuff and I’m hesitant to try it. I wanted to make her Orange Cake, but now I don’t know if I should….

      • Deborah Wilson

        I took the Bob’s Red Mill Blanched Almond Meal/Flour and doing 1/2 cup at a time, pulsed it in my Secura spice grinder (a great little thing bought at Amazon). It only takes a few seconds to do and the flour is much less course. The cake I made turned out beautifully. I’m going to try the thumbprint cookies next.

        • Susan

          I use Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour all the time. All the recipes have turned out great anyway. Maybe with the other recommended flours they would have been even better. But so far I haven’t had any trouble. The raspberry thumb print cookies were the only ones that just seemed like they needed something more to bind them together so I added an egg.
          Happy Baking.

  5. Sandi

    Thanks so much for posting all these yummy recipes! I love your blog and cookbooks and often recommend them to others.
    I really appreciate the work you put in to making living Paleo a little easier for the rest of us!

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family!

  6. Alison @ Ingredients Inc @ ingredientsinc.net

    these look amazing!

  7. Judith Fine-Sarchielli @ glutenfreecuisine.weebly.com

    Elena, love your recipes and site..Have been using almond meal and coconut mixed with organic coconut sugar, which turns them beige.

    The cookies are heavy and not like they should look. I don’t like to use sugar, but some people don’t like the taste of stevia.

    Do you know of a brand for almond flour that soaks their raw almonds? Soaking, as you may now, releases the nut’s vitality. Are the almonds you recommend organic?

    Does anyone have a solution to these questions?

  8. Judith Fine-Sarchielli @ glutenfreecuisine.weebly.com

    Elena, love your recipes and site..Have been using almond meal and coconut mixed with organic coconut sugar, which turns them beige.

    The cookies are heavy and not like they should look. I don’t like to use sugar, but some people don’t like the taste of stevia.

    Do you know of a brand for almond flour that soaks their raw almonds? Soaking, as you may now, releases the nut’s vitality. Are the almonds you recommend organic?

  9. I love thumbprint cookies, and really look forward to trying Elana’s paleo version. While researching for my website I discovered that there are many versions of almond thumbprint cookies that are traditionally flourless.

    One version that is offered in French patisseries resembles the sun, with apricot jam centers and slivered almonds radiating out from the center like rays of the sun. It was invented by some enterprising baker who called them Nicois Suns, to remind customers of their holidays around the sunny Côtes d’Azur, where the rich would vacation.

    You can make them with raspberries or any kind of jam or creamy filling. The recipe isn’t Paleo, but is gluten free. You can check it out here: http://www.gluten-free-around-the-world.com/thumbprint-cookie-recipes.html

  10. Conni

    I made these with homemade olallieberry jam last night . My husband said they are the best gluten-free cookie i’ve made and they don’t taste like they are gluten-free. That is a huge compliment coming from my husband because his parent’s owned a bakery for 30 years. I will be making these again!

  11. sheryl jordan

    can Whole Foods bulk almond flour be used in these cookie recipes?

  12. Sophie

    I was so looking forward to trying these, but I have run into a problem and was hoping someone might have some suggestions. I made them as written, except omitting the honey (I don’t eat sweeteners). I baked them longer than suggested (my oven tends to take longer, and they weren’t browning at all). I finally took them out after about 20 min, let them cool, but they are mushy. My question is: could omitting the 2 T of honey make that much of a difference? Do you think they needed to bake longer? The edges did start browning as I took them out. I did taste them (using a fork)- I enjoyed the taste, but the texture was a bummer for my kids. Any thoughts would be appreciated!

  13. What a lovely, simple recipe.

    Thank you for your continued inspiration, healthy and thoughtful recipes.

    Wishing you and your family an amazing New Year!

    Be Well,

  14. Pat in FL

    Hi Elana. Thank you so much for this recipe. I just made them. Half were with raspberry jam, the other with apricot. I also added a tsp. vanilla and about 1/2 tsp almond extract. WOW. Just wonderful. They flew off the cookie sheet and were devoured with enthusiasm.

    It’s such a simple recipe for me to tackle because I’m not much of a baker, though I do make bread regularly.

    I so appreciate all the time and effort you commit to perfecting these goodies and sharing them with us.

    Thank you again and best to you and yours in the New Year.

  15. Terri

    Thank you SO much for posting these recipes! I have used almond flour for years based on your recommendation but just found out I can’t eat dairy or eggs either :( These are fantastic! I made them tonight and they are SOOOO good!

  16. Deb F

    Made your thumbprint cookie recipe yesterday & they were fabulous! They have always been my favorite cookie to make at the holidays , I am so happy to have this healthier version. Thank you for all your hard work and for sharing all your delicious recipes with all of us! Happy holidays to you and your family!

  17. Teresa

    Thought I would share some additions and substitutions…I added a 1/2 tsp of almond extract as well as 1/4 tsp vanilla extract. I also subbed out some of coconut oil for butter – used 1 tbs of coconut oil & 2 tbs of butter. The cookies were a big hit at our house!

  18. Kate @ Fit for Real Life @ fitforreallife.com

    Just wanted to tell you, Elana, that despite not having the right almond flour for this recipe, it worked out pretty dang well! The final product tasted great, and probably the main thing that was hard to do with my almond flour was the forming of the dough. Mine was crumbly and I had to work hard to make it into cookie shape, and I’m sure your recommended brands would have been easier to use. The final product though tasted great and was a hit with my family at Christmas! Thank you!!

  19. These probably are one of my favourite cookies to buy as a little treat. I just love the raspberry jam in the middle.

    However, I haven’t had them in a long time. The ones in stores are usually full of far too much butter.

    I’m glad I can now make a butterless and healthier version at home!

    I will be bookmarking this recipe and trying it soon.

  20. I’m loving this whole cookie series, and seriously impressed you had the time to make all these!

  21. Rita @ purerita.com

    Oh my, these are certainly one of my new favorites, thanks!

  22. Monica

    These were a hit at my house! So simple. So delicious. I played with different flavors of jam, but raspberry ended up being the favorite. At 9 minutes, the cookies were still under-cooked so I cooked them for an additional 2 minutes. Thanks for ANOTHER great recipe!

  23. Wow. No joke, you are a culinary genius. I actually tell most of my patients about this site because it’s so consistent. I can always count on really good tasting recipes that are grain free. Keep up the great work!

  24. Deborah Wilson

    I was wondering how many cookie recipes are in Elana’s Gluten Free Almond Flour cookbook? My husband and I are newly on Dr. Perlmutter’s healthy brain diet which is very low carbs (gluten and starch free) and high protein with the all important healthy fats added in. My husband is the original cookie monster, however, and I’m looking for those cookie recipes specifically made with almond flour.
    I’ve gotten a few off this sight and thank Elana soooo much for that!

  25. robs

    what can be used instead of almond flour? as it is a scarce comodoty

  26. ana

    cant wait to bake these!

    Should i liquify the coconut oil first? I love in Detroit, and its always solid during the winter months.



  27. Jamie

    Thank you so much for this recipe. These cookies are easy and a nice change from the chocolate chip cookies that we make ALL the time! I made this recipe at least 4 times over the holidays. These were the cookies that we left for Santa :) The only change I had to make was to add an additional Tbsp. of honey for the dough to stick together better. Thanks for making my holidays easier with this recipe!
    Kansas City, Missouri

  28. Ann

    I loved these! I used Bob’s Red Mill flour and they cam out simply delicious!

  29. Maria

    I was excited to try these cookies, but had a very hard time getting the dough to come together… very crumbly and hard to form into balls. I wish I had seen the comment that suggested adding an egg!
    Is there a reason Elana recommends using a food processor? I don’t have one and used a hand mixer, but maybe that would have helped the dough to bind together better?

    • Ryan Louise

      I think the food processor is a must have when it comes to GF baking, as a lot of the recipes are going to be crumbly. I added a “dash” of water of mine and they turned out fine.

  30. Lisa

    Can I substitute maple syrup for the honey?

    I’m not sure if that will change them sticking together.

    Thanks :)

  31. Rowan Riley

    :) Making these darlins up right now! They look and smell yummy! Because we are in our camper, we are making them in the electric skillet at a lower temp and with the lid and they are turning out great! Thank you for such wonderful recipes!

  32. Gabrielle

    These were amazing!!!! Best biscuits ever, however… They are only good for the day they’re baked, they go so soggy and soft by the next day! Or could that be rectified if they were kept in the fridge do you think??

  33. Lisa

    I made these cookies tonight. I decided to add an extra step so that they would be like the ones I purchase at my favorite cookie store that I no longer visit. Followed recipe, then rolled the ball of dough in egg white and rolled in chopped almonds. These were very good! Thank you so much for the wonderful recipe. I used Bob’s Red Mill because that is all that I had. Dough was kind of dry and crumbly and this was probably why, but they turned out great.

  34. Zabar

    My grandmother called these thimble cookies and they were my favorites.

  35. Made these cookies tonight! They are really delicious. Can’t believe how few ingredients, and how easy they were to make!
    **Side note: I had to add nearly 1 full Tbsp more of coconut oil to my first batch… it was not forming into dough until I did that. Not sure why, as all the other ingredients were correct.
    I also had to reduce the baking temp to 325 due to using a dark non-stick pan (my first pan got slightly overdone at 350 for 7.5 minutes). Did 325 for 8.5 minutes second pan, and they were PERFECT. :-) I have a crazy oven too, so there’s that…

    Thanks for another fantastic recipe. I am finding your Paleo recipes are the simplest ones out there; no major fails with them, and they are super easy to follow.

  36. Jen

    These are so delicious. I made them with Bob’s Red Mill Almond flour and apricot jam (apricots and apple juice). Perfect with a cup of tea in the afternoon. Thank you Elana for your dedication to healthy eating and sharing that with everyone.

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Comments are greatly appreciated! Unfortunately Elana is not able to answer substitution questions, as the only way to know if something works is to test it, and she does not provide this service. If you have a substitution question, please don't hesitate to leave a comment here, and another reader may jump in to answer. ↑ back to top