Cranberry Thumbprint Cookies

I love when December rolls around, and I can think about Christmas cookies 24/7. One of these years, I'm going to try to bake a different Christmas cookie every day in December because I love cookies so much!

This year, I have been trying different cookies in preparation for cookie plates for the neighbors. I still haven't completely finalized the list, but one thing is for sure - I am totally in love with the orange/cranberry combination this year. It is a flavor combination that totally screams "holiday" to me.

I have tried various cookies over the years with this flavor combination, but I decided that I wanted to create a different cookie featuring these flavors that I hadn’t tried before. I wanted a cookie that would hold up well on a cookie plate, but that would be packed with these festive flavors.

I think I nailed it with these cookies. The buttery cookies are filled with orange flavor from orange zest and orange juice, and then a dollop of cranberry sauce tops the cookie, making a sweet and tart cookie that my family couldn't stay away from.

You want to add these cookies to your baking list this holiday season. They are the perfect Christmas cookie!!


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) Challenge Butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 Tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
  • powdered sugar, for dusting, optional


  • 1
    Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • 2
    In the bowl of a mixer, beat the butter and the sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the yolks, orange zest, orange juice and salt. Add in the flour and beat just until the mixture comes together.
  • 3
    Shape the dough into 1-inch balls. Place on the prepared baking sheets, at least 1 inch apart. Using the end of a wooden spoon or a floured finger, make an indentation in the center of each ball. Bake until lightly golden brown, about 18 minutes.
  • 4
    Remove the cookies from the oven, and if necessary, use the wooden spoon to press down any indentations that may have puffed up. Fill each cookie with about 1/2 teaspoon of cranberry sauce, then return the cookies to the oven for 2 minutes.
  • 5
    Let the cookies cool completely, then dust with powdered sugar, if desired.

Recipe By

Taste and Tell

Deborah loves cookbooks, creating recipes, and traveling. She is the inspiration behind the popular Taste and Tell food blog, where you can find more easy, fast, and family friendly recipes.