Nutella Thumbprint Cookies

These Nutella Thumbprint Cookies are made with a shiny Nutella ganache dolloped into a chocolate almond cookie base. They’re the thumbprint cookie for you if you love the nutty chocolate taste of Nutella.

Read on to learn all the detailed tips and tricks for making this recipe. Or just grab your jar of Nutella, hit that Jump to Recipe button, and let’s make thumbprint cookies with Nutella!

Nine brown thumbprint cookies filled with Nutella on a cooling rack.
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Ingredients

nutella, cocoa, butter, eggs, flour, heavy cream, and other ingredients on a countertop.

Nutella is, of course, the classic Italian chocolate hazelnut spread. I’ve been in love with Nutella since I traveled to Europe after college.

 

If you want to reduce or eliminate the palm oil and sweetness, you can make a homemade Nutella. And if you love these Nutella thumbprint cookies as much as I do, try my Nutella banana bread, Nutella waffles, Nutella pop tarts, or even a Nutella babka!

I added almond flour to the chocolate thumbprint cookies to give them a little nutty flavor. Similarly, like in my Nutella blondies, I use Frangelico, a hazelnut liqueur, in the thumbprint cookies. Frangelico and vanilla have similar alcohol by volume, so you can sub vanilla if you don’t have Frangelico and don’t love Frangelico sours!

Please see the recipe card below for complete information on ingredients and quantities.

Variations and substitutions

Recipe tips and tricks

This Nutella thumbprint cookie recipe has three parts: making and baking the thumbprint cookies, making the filling, and then putting the Nutella thumbprints all together.

Making the thumbprint cookies

Step 1: Sift or whisk the dry ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

Step 2: Cream together the butter, dark brown sugar, and granulated sugar until well mixed. Then add the egg and Frangelico and beat for another minute.

Step 3: Stir in the dry ingredients.

light brown dough in a mixing bowl with the paddle.
cocoa colored dough in a mixing bowl with the stand mixer paddle.

Step 4: Scoop out 1.5 tablespoons of chocolate thumbprint cookie dough onto two lined cookie sheets using a #40 cookie scoop or two spoons. Then use your thumb to make an imprint, being careful not to go through the entire ball of cookie dough. If needed, lightly wet your thumb between cookies to minimize sticking.

eleven balls of chocolate colored cookie dough on a baking sheet lined with silicone mat.
thumb pressing down into ball of chocolate cookie dough on a baking sheet.

Step 5: Please don’t skip this! Chill the cookies on the cookie sheets to minimize spread.

I’d recommend chilling in the freezer for at least an hour. You can also make the chocolate thumbprint cookie dough ahead of time and freeze the thumbprinted cookies for three to six months.

Step 6: When you are ready to bake, heat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. When fully heated, bake the chocolate thumbprint cookies, one sheet at a time, for 10 to 12 minutes. Depending on your oven, you may want to rotate the cookie sheets halfway into baking.

Step 7: The cookies are fully baked when they are just starting to be firm to touch. Remove them from the oven, immediately use the back of a spoon to press down the thumbprint again, and let cool completely.

eleven chocolate cookies with center thumbprints on a baking sheet lined with silicone mat.

Making the Nutella ganache

In developing this Nutella thumbprint recipe, I wanted a Nutella filling for thumbprint cookies that was firmer than Nutella straight out of the jar. Taking lessons I learned making my chocolate ganache cake, I started with a ganache ratio of two parts Nutella to one part heavy cream.

Step 8: While the chocolate thumbprint cookies are cooling, make the Nutella ganache filling. Combine all of the ingredients in a small pot over low heat and stir until completely smooth.

cream, butter, and Nutella in a small pot on the stove top.
thick dark brown liquid in a spoon over a pot.

Putting it all together

Remove from the Nutella ganache from the heat and let cool about 5 to 10 minutes so the ganache isn’t totally runny. Spoon a teaspoon or so into the thumbprints and let set the Nutella thumbprints set at room temperature.

eleven filled chocolate thumbprint cookies on a baking sheet.

Recipe FAQs

How should I store Nutella thumbprint cookies?

The Nutella thumbprints can be kept at room temperature for about one day, and the ganache will stay shiny at room temperature. Longer than a day, and they should be stored in the refrigerator because of the cream in the ganache.

Do these Nutella thumbprints transport well?

These Nutella-filled thumbprint cookies are pretty sturdy, but I would definitely transport them in a single layer, especially if they’ve been at room temperature. Once refrigerated, the Nutella filling becomes firm to touch, but I still wouldn’t recommend stacking the cookies.

Can I freeze these Nutella thumbprint cookies?

Yes, put them in a single layer on a lined cookie sheet in the freezer overnight so the Nutella ganache sets, and then transfer them to a freezer bag. You can also store the thumbprint cookies without the Nutella after you’ve put the thumb print in them.

How does almond flour change the chocolate thumbprint cookies?

You can substitute almond flour for up to one quarter of the amount of flour in most cookies without impact on the cookie chemistry, like I did in my shortbread Linzer cookies. However, because it impacts the fat content, larger amounts of almond flour will make a cookie spread more, like you can see in my almond flour peanut butter cookies compared to the double peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.

Can I make these cookies with hazelnut flour?

Hazelnut flour does exist, but it’s less commonly available than almond flour. It has an even higher fat content, which would make the cookies spread more.

Love this recipe? Please leave a 5-heart 💜💜💜💜💜 rating in the recipe card below. Let me know how much you loved it, or any problems you had, in the comments section further down.

Recipe

Nutella Thumbprint Cookies

5 from 1 vote
Category: Cookies
Cuisine: Unspecified
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Chilling time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings: 20 cookies
Calories: 227kcal
These Nutella Thumbprint Cookies are made with a shiny Nutella ganache dolloped into a chocolate almond cookie base. These thumbprint cookies with Nutella are the chocolate thumbprint cookies for you if you love the hazelnut taste of Nutella.
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Ingredients

Chocolate thumbprint cookies

  • cup (188 grams) all purpose flour
  • ½ cup (48 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup (26 grams) almond flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 16 tablespoons (1½ sticks or 170 grams) unsalted butter softened
  • ¾ cup (144 grams) dark brown sugar
  • ¼ cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Frangelico or other hazelnut liqueur or substitute vanilla extract

Nutella ganache

  • ½ cup (148 grams) Nutella
  • ¼ cup (60 milliliters) heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon Frangelico optional

Instructions

Chocolate thumbprint cookies

  • Sift or whisk together the flour, cocoa, almond flour, baking powder, and salt into a small bowl and set aside.
    1½ cup (188 grams) all purpose flour, ½ cup (48 grams) unsweetened cocoa powder, ¼ cup (26 grams) almond flour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon salt
  • In a mixing bowl or the bowl of your stand mixer, cream together the softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until well combined.
    16 tablespoons (1½ sticks or 170 grams) unsalted butter, ¾ cup (144 grams) dark brown sugar, ¼ cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
  • Scrape down the bowl with a spatula, then beat in the egg and Frangelico for one minute.
    1 large egg, 1 tablespoon Frangelico or other hazelnut liqueur
  • Stir in the dry ingredients or mix on low until just incorporated.
  • Line two cookie sheets with parchment or silicone mats, and use a #40 cookie scoop or two spoons to scoop 1½ tablespoon sized balls of cookie dough, leaving two inches between the balls.
  • Use your thumb or the round base of a wooden spoon or spatula to make a thumbprint in the center of each cookie ball, making sure not to go all the way through. Wet your thumb slightly if the chocolate cookie dough sticks.
  • Chill the sheets of cookie dough in the freezer for at least 30 to 60 minutes to minimize the thumbprint cookies from spreading. When ready to bake, heat the oven to 375℉.
  • Bake the chocolate thumbprints for 10 to 12 minutes, one sheet at a time, rotating the cookie sheets around if you need to about halfway. They should be just slightly firm to touch. When done, immediately remove the pan from the oven and use the back of a spoon to press down the thumbprint again. Let cool.

Nutella ganache

  • While the chocolate thumbprints are cooling, combine the Nutella, heavy cream, unsalted butter, and optional Frangelico or vanilla in a small pot. Stir these all together in a small pot over low heat until uniform.
    ½ cup (148 grams) Nutella, ¼ cup (60 milliliters) heavy cream, 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, 1 tablespoon Frangelico
  • Remove the Nutella ganache from the heat and let it cool about 5 to 10 minutes so the ganache is no longer totally runny.
  • Spoon a teaspoon or so into the thumbprints and let the Nutella thumbprints set.

Notes

This Nutella thumbprint cookie recipe will make 20 cookies using a #40 cookie scoop, which is about one and a half tablespoons.
Almond flour gives the chocolate thumbprint cookies a nuttier taste, but you can substitute the same amount of wheat flour.
Frangelico adds more hazelnut flavor to the cookies and Nutella ganache. It has a similar alcohol by volume to vanilla extract, which can be substituted in its place.
The chocolate cookies will spread without sufficient chilling, so please don’t skip this step or reinforcing the thumbprint when the cookies come out of the oven.
These Nutella thumbprints can be stored at room temperature for one day. For longer storage, or for transportation, I recommend refrigeration, although the Nutella ganache may become less shiny.

Nutrition

Calories: 227kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 37mg | Sodium: 91mg | Potassium: 93mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 353IU | Vitamin C: 0.02mg | Calcium: 40mg | Iron: 1mg
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