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Chocolate Hazelnut Thumbprints

Yield: makes about 2 dozen
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cookies, chocolate, thumbprint cookies
Author: Maryanne Cabrera


  • ½ cup unsalted butter room temp
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg separated
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup toasted hazelnuts skinned, roughly ground
  • 3 Tablespoon turbinado sugar

Chocolate Filling:

  • 1 cup dark chocolate finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter


  • Beat butter and salt until smooth. Add sugar and mix until incorporated. Add egg yolk and vanilla extract. Mix until combined. Add flour and stir until dough comes together.*
  • Cover dough with plastic wrap and allow to chill in the fridge for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone mat.
  • Toss together roughly ground hazelnuts and turbinado sugar. Set aside. Whisk egg white until foamy and set aside.
  • Scoop tablespoons of the chilled cookie dough. Roll into a ball. Dip cookie ball into egg whites and then coat in hazelnut-sugar mixture. Place on prepared baking sheet, spacing cookie balls about 2-inches apart. Indent the center of the cookie ball with your thumb or the bottom of a wooden spoon.
  • Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and indent the center of the cookie ball once again. Continue to bake for another 6-8 minutes until the edges of the cookie are golden brown and set.
  • Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool to room temperature.
  • To make chocolate filling: Gently melt chocolate over a double boiler. Once chocolate has melted, remove from heat. Add butter and stir until butter has melted. Allow to chocolate to cool and slightly thicken. Transfer chocolate filling to a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip. When cookies have completely cooled, pipe chocolate filling into the cookie cavities. Enjoy immediately, or allow chocolate to set up.


*If dough seems crumbly, knead with your hands until soft and pliable.