Skip to main content

Peanut Butter Thumbprint Cookies

I come from a family that likes to be creative in the kitchen. I enjoy dreaming up new recipes, as well as putting a spin on old favorites.

Peanut butter thumbprint cookies

Peanut butter thumbprint cookies

Peanut butter cookies are one of my favorite types of cookies. I prefer ones that are more on the dense, crumbly side as opposed to soft and moist, so that is how I have made mine in this recipe.

While making these cookies, I thought that turning some of them into thumbprint cookies with a little jam in the middle sounded good. I did so, and the result is that I now have a two-in-one recipe. The thumbprint version, in particular, was well-received by both a family member and a friend who tried them out. I hope you enjoy them as well!

Cook Time

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

10 min

12 min

22 min

Approximately two dozen cookies


  • 1/2 cup peanut butter, (crunchy peanut butter is best)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/8 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup jam or jelly, (grape, cherry, or a berry kind work best)


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Stir peanut butter and oil together in a bowl. Add the brown and white sugars and blend until well combined.
  3. Add the egg and vanilla to the peanut butter and sugar mixture and stir.
  4. Add the salt and baking powder to the bowl and blend these in well.
  5. Add the flour about 1/4 a cup at a time, stirring in each addition thoroughly before adding more. You may find it easier to work the last 1/2 cup or so in with your hands.
  6. Roll the dough into balls that are just over one inch in size and place the balls on an un-greased cookie sheet. Flatten the balls slightly, then use your thumb to make an indentation in the center of each cookie. You may have to shape the sides a bit if they split too much while you are making the indentations.
  7. Place the cookie sheet in the oven and allow the cookies to bake for eight minutes. Pull the pan out of the oven for a moment and drop 1/2 teaspoon of jelly or jam into each indentation. Return the cookies to the oven for four more minutes.
  8. When the cookies are done, let them rest on the cookie sheet for a minute or so, then transfer them to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Tips and Notes

  • I use extra-light-tasting olive oil when baking because it is healthier than some other types of vegetable oil. This type of olive oil does not adversely affect the taste of the cookie.
  • Use parchment paper on the pan for easy clean-up.
  • Actually using a 1/2 teaspoon to put the jam in the indentation is a bit of a pain since the jam does not necessarily want to slide out of the measuring spoon on its own. I just estimate the amount and use a small, regular spoon instead. If you are uncertain about estimating the proper amount, use the measuring spoon for the first couple of cookies to get an idea, then switch to the regular spoon. The reason you want to work quickly is that you do not want to allow the cookies to cool too much, since they are not done baking at the time you are adding the jam.
  • This dough is on the crumbly side and forms balls better when it is at room temperature. If you refrigerate the dough at all, allow it to sit out for 15 to 20 minutes before attempting to shape it.
  • This recipe can also be used to make traditional peanut butter cookies. Simply press the dough balls down with a fork in the typical criss-cross pattern and bake for 12 minutes.
One may also use this recipe to make a traditional peanut butter cookie.

One may also use this recipe to make a traditional peanut butter cookie.

© 2013 Rhosynwen