Candy Cane Thumbprints

Melt in your mouth buttery thumbprint cookies with peppermint frosting and crushed candy canes! A must make holiday cookie!

Melt in your mouth buttery candy cane thumbprint cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Saving the best for last. I’ve been making these for years. These babies are my favorite. I truly thought I was done sharing Christmas treats for the year. But then I remembered these. And remembered how I still hadn’t shared them yet. This one is the last Christmasy treat, promise. I meant to share them last year but ran out of time. I swear December is the shortest month of the entire year. No, it’s not February. The calendar lies. It was Thanksgiving last week. I have absolutely no idea how it is already Christmas! I’m not alone, right? Please tell me I’m not alone.

Even if you already have your dessert table planned, squeeze out an extra couple of hours and make these. You’ll be so glad you did. They’re a perfect addition to any winter dessert table. Even days later, stored properly of course, these are amazing. The cookies are so light and basically melt in your mouth. The peppermint frosting is insanely delicious. Best of all, they’re bite size! Seriously. They’re more of a two bite cookie for kids but for an adult they can absolutely be one biters. And who doesn’t love mini desserts?

They’re seasonally perfect with white fluffy frosting that looks like snow but flavored like peppermint, and of course the crushed peppermint candies. Which if you’re making this or this you’ll need crushed candy canes anyway! ;) See… I’ve got you covered.

Candy Cane Thumbprints

Soft and fluffy homemade thumbprint cookies with peppermint buttercream frosting and crushed candy canes. A must make holiday cookie!
Prep Time1 hour
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time1 hour 10 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cookie
Servings: 24


Cookie dough:

  • 2/3 C unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 C granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 C all purpose flour


  • 1/4 C unsalted butter softened
  • 1/4 tsp peppermint extract
  • 1 1/2 C powdered sugar
  • 3-5 Tbsp milk
  • 2 Peppermint candy cane crushed


  • In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Add salt, vanilla and egg. Mix on medium/low speed. Gradually add flour one spoonful at a time. Mix until fully incorporated. Transfer to a medium bowl. Cover and chill for at least 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F. When dough is chilled and easy to handle. Form 1 inch balls. Place on an un-greased and unlined baking sheet 1-2 inches apart. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until the bottom edge is just turning golden.
  • Remove tray from oven and immediately make an indentation with a measuring spoon (1/2 tsp size seems to work best). Let cookies rest for 1 minute before transferring to a cooling rack.
  • When cookies are completely cooled prepare icing. In a medium bowl, cream butter. Add peppermint extract and gradually add powdered sugar until it has all been added. Mixture will be chunky and dry. Begin adding 1 tsp of milk at a time until you reach desired piping consistency.
  • Add icing to a piping bag fit with a small star tip (I used #22 Wilton). Carefully fill cookie cavity with icing. Sprinkle with crushed peppermint candies.
  • Store in a single layer in a covered container.


*Recipe makes roughly 2 dozen cookies
An original recipe from Baked by Rachel
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23 Responses to “Candy Cane Thumbprints”

  1. #
    Katrina @ In Katrina's Kitchen — December 20, 2011 at 8:31 am

    No way! I love these too! I tore out the recipe long ago lol! No wonder we get along ;) Yum!!!

    • #
      Rachel — December 20, 2011 at 8:35 am

      Me too! I had to go hunting online for it because my page doesn’t say who it’s from. :)

  2. #
    amanda @ fake ginger — December 20, 2011 at 9:12 am

    I don’t love peppermint but these are so cute!

    And btw, December is the LONGEST month of the year. I wish it would hurry up!

  3. #
    Kathy — December 20, 2011 at 9:13 am

    I know what I’m baking tonight!! So glad you posted this. Merry Christmas!

    • #
      Rachel — December 20, 2011 at 11:14 am

      Kathy – If you do, would love for you to share a picture of them on my facebook page! :) I hope you enjoy them. Keep me posted and have a wonderful Christmas.

  4. #
    Cassie @ bake your day — December 20, 2011 at 9:23 am

    Are these not the cutest?!?! I am desperately searching for some easy, festive desserts for this weekend…so much on my menu already but somehow I left out desserts. This sounds fabulous!

  5. #
    Michelle Collins — December 20, 2011 at 9:43 am

    These look fantastic. I just made thumbprint cookies last week!

  6. #
    natalie (the sweets life) — December 20, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    these are so cute! I have never made a thumbprint cookie!

  7. #
    Tracey — December 20, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    What a great twist on thumbprints, I love that they’re bite-sized. I’m not sure I’ll have time to make them this year, but definitely next :)

  8. #
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts — December 20, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    Love these! So cute with the candy canes on top!

  9. #
    Krissy @ Krissy's Creations — December 20, 2011 at 6:34 pm

    I can’t believe I haven’t made a thumbprint cookie this Christmas season! Yours look delicious & so adorable! I must try them :)

  10. #
    Lauren at Keep It Sweet — December 21, 2011 at 5:58 am

    These sound wonderful and kind of look fun to make!

  11. #
    Chris @ TheKeenanCookBook — December 21, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    These look gorgeous! I’ve never made a thumbprint cookie.

  12. #
    foodwanderings — December 21, 2011 at 7:17 pm

    How adorable Miss rachel. Wanted to wish you a Happy Holiday season and all the best in 2012.

  13. #
    Rachel @ Not Rachael Ray — December 22, 2011 at 10:46 am

    I’m in love with anything candy cane. These look like the best thumbprint I’ve ever seen.

  14. #
    Country Girl in the City — December 22, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    These look wonderful! I found your blog recently while on Pinterest when I saw the cranberry-orange cookies. I made them, loved them, and blogged about them.


  15. #
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen — December 23, 2011 at 3:01 am

    No you are certainly not alone, I have no idea how December has already flown by. Time must speed up between Thanksgiving and Christmas. ;-)

  16. #
    Cheri | Kitchen Simplicity — December 23, 2011 at 3:38 pm

    These are so cute and look so delicious! I agree Christmas comes far to fast. I always feel like it should be at the end of January so the rest of winter isn’t so depressing. Next year these cookies will be on my to make list. Merry Christmas Rachel!

  17. #
    Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} — December 24, 2011 at 7:56 am

    I love these cookies, crushed candy cane, yum!!
    Happy Holidays Rachel!

  18. #
    Lindsey @ Gingerbread Bagels — December 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    I want all these cookies, now! I love anything with candy canes. :)

  19. #
    kyleen — December 29, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    These are adorable! The crushed candy cane sprinkled on top makes the cookies look so festive.

  20. #
    Judy — December 20, 2015 at 10:11 am

    How long can you store these in the fridge? Can they be frozen?

    • #
      Rachel — December 20, 2015 at 12:50 pm

      I’ve never stored them in the refrigerator, so I can’t be completely sure. However, they’ll keep at room temperature for at least several days. If you were to freeze them, be sure to frost them after they are fully thawed.

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