Italian Cookies Recipe


These Double Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies from Plays Well With Butter are the ultimate Christmas cookies!

Soft & buttery chocolate thumbprint cookies, made intensely chocolatey thanks to instant espresso powder, filled with a simple fudgy ganache filling.

Totally decadent & chocolatey, & they couldn’t be easier to make.




SERVES: Yield 22-24 Cookies

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 tablespoon Instant Espresso Powder
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces high-quality dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Combine flour, cocoa powder, salt, and espresso powder in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.
  3. Add butter to a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mixing for 1-2 minutes, until light & fluffy. Add both sugars and mix on medium-high speed until light & fluffy, 4-5 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the egg and vanilla, mixing to combine.
  4. Carefully add dry ingredient mix to wet ingredients. Mix on low speed, just until combined.
  5. Roll the dough into uniform 1-inch balls. Place the dough balls on prepared baking sheets, 1 inch apart. Using your thumb, press down on the center of each ball.
  6. Bake for 6-7 minutes, or until the edges are set. The cookies will spread slightly as they bake. If the center of the cookies puffs up a bit, use the back of a spoon to carefully press it back down.
  7. Meanwhile, add the chopped chocolate & heavy cream to a medium microwave-safe bowl. Melt the chocolate by microwaving in 30-second intervals, stopping to stir the mixture thoroughly after each interval. Spoon about 1 tablespoon of the ganache filling into the center of each thumbprint cookie. Set aside or chill to set.


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