This easy & basic recipe produces tender, chewy thumbprint sugar cookies topped with melted white chocolate and crushed candy cane that are a perfect addition to any holiday event.
Warning: this recipe is for soft, tender sugar cookie lovers….these are chewy bundles of sweetness and you’ll find no crunchy/hard cookies here. Every year for the past 10 years my girlfriends and I get together, sometime just before Christmas, pop a bottle of champagne (or two) and bake. We mix, we sift, we stir, we laugh when we forget about cookies in the oven and we exchange what we make. And every year I make sugar cookies. I love cookies (particularly thumbprint sugar cookies) and I love decorating them. It helps that one of my best friends is a pastry chef; she knows all the tips & tricks of making petit fours – “little oven goods” in French. Recently I learned the term cookie comes from medieval Dutch, meaning “little cake”.
Come Christmas time, everyone needs a little sugar cookie in their life. So here’s a recipe I’ve worked hard at perfecting – with the self-sacrificing act of taste testing many, many, many scrumptious “little cakes”. 😉
A Note on White Chocolate.
Because it contains more milk solids than dark chocolate, white chocolate needs to be melted gently, over a lower heat, stirred constantly to avoid burning. Chocolate in general, is a poor heat conductor; if you buy a bar of white chocolate, be sure to chop it into small pieces before melting.
Thumbprint Sugar Cookies with White Chocolate
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 2½ cups flour
- ¾ tsp baking powder
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ cup white chocolate chips
- 1 candy cane
- In a large bowl & using a hand mixer, cream the sugar and butter until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla to the butter/sugar mixture, creaming for 1 minute. In a separate, smaller bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together. Slowly and while the hand mixer is running, add the flour mixture to that of the butter/sugar. You’ll end up with chunks of dough. Using your hands, knead the dough into a solid mass in the bowl. If your dough is too crumbly, add a tiny amount of water.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pull off a 1 inch-by-1 inch section of the dough and using your hands, roll it into a ball. Put the balls on the baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch between. Roll the rest of the dough into balls.
- When you’re done ballin’ like a baller, use your thumb to gently press into each ball, flattening the cookie slightly.
- Toss the cookies in the oven, baking for 12-13 minutes, until the cookies spread slightly. Not all ovens are created equally, so pay attention to your cookies, no browning necessary. When you take the cookies out, they’ll still be slightly pliable to the touch. Allow them to cool completely. While your cookies are cooling, put the candy cane in a small ziplock bag and using a mallet, gently crush the candy cane into tiny pieces.
- In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the white chocolate, stirring constantly to make sure it doesn’t burn.
- Spoon about 1 tsp. of melted chocolate into the thumb print of each cookie and sprinkle with crushed candy cane. Let cool for 2-3 hours or until the chocolate has hardened.