Chocolate Pecan Thumbprint Cookies

 

Nothing beats a classic shortbread cookie… except for a chocolate shortbread cookie with pecans and chocolate ganache.  These chocolate pecan thumbprint cookies are the perfect twist on a classic.

 


This recipe is perfect for the holidays, but you can make it all year round because chocolate never goes out of season.  It is guaranteed to please a crowd.

 

FAQ:

 

Do I need to use a stand mixer to make the cookie dough?

I find that it is easiest to make the cookie dough in a stand mixer with a beater attachment, but a hand mixer will work too if it is all you have.

 

Can I use a type of nut other than pecans?

Yes!  Any type of nut that can easily be chopped into small pieces will work.  Walnuts, pistachios, and hazelnuts are all good options if you don’t like pecans.

 

My dough is too crumbly.  Where did I go wrong?

The dough should be crumbly, but if it is so dry and crumbly that you cannot form it into balls, you probably added too much flour.  Don’t worry, you can easily fix this problem by adding an extra teaspoon of water to the dough.

 

 

 

3 tips for the best possible cookies:

  1. Measure the flour carefully.  Too much flour will give you a dough that is crumbly and difficult to work with.  When you measure flour, you want it to be light and airy, not packed down in the cup.  Try using a spoon to fluff the flour in its container before scooping it up with your measuring cup.
  2. If you want your cookies to look picture-perfect, do not use your thumb to make the indentations.  Use the back of a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon to make the indentations rounder and more consistent.
  3. Roll the dough balls in a bit of water before rolling them in the pecans.  This way more pecans pieces will stick.

 

 

 

Chocolate Pecan Thumbprint Cookie Recipe


 Prep Time:
30 minutes
 Cook Time:
12 minutes
 Total Time:
42 minutes
 Serves:
12-16 cookies

 


Ingredients:

For the cookies:

  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup pecans, finely chopped

For the ganache filling:


  • 4 oz. semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter, confectioners sugar, water, and vanilla extract.  Mix on low speed until combined (this should take 1-2 minutes).
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on medium-low speed until the ingredients start to come together in a crumbly dough (see notes).
  5. Form the dough into 12-15 tablespoon-sized balls.  Roll each ball around in the chopped pecans (see notes).
  6. Place the balls 2-3 inches apart on the baking sheet.  Using your thumb or the back of a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon, press an indentation into the center of each ball.
  7. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes.  The indentations in the cookies may flatten in the oven.  If this happens, just use the ½ teaspoon spoon the recreate the indentation while the cookies are still soft fresh out of the oven.
  8. While the cookies are cooling, prepare the ganache.  Add the heavy cream to a small, microwave safe bowl and microwave 30-45 seconds, until it begins to bubble.  Add your chocolate chips to the hot heavy cream and mix continuously until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.  Let cool for 10-15 minutes.
  9. When the cookies and ganache are both cool, scoop the ganache into a piping bag. Pipe into the center of each cookie.  If you have extra ganache, feel free to drizzle it over the surface of the cookies to make them extra pretty!

 

Recipe Notes:

 

  • The dough should be moist enough to stick together, but it may not come together in one big ball.  If there are crumbly pieces, that’s okay, as long as they stick to one another when you press them together.  If the dough is too dry to form together, add an additional teaspoon of water.
  • If the pecans are not sticking to the ball of dough, roll the dough around in a bit of water to dampen the outer surface before rolling it in the pecans.

Related Posts

Related Posts

Nothing beats a classic shortbread cookie… except for a chocolate shortbread cookie with pecans and chocolate ganache.  These chocolate pecan thumbprint cookies are the perfect twist on a classic.

 


This recipe is perfect for the holidays, but you can make it all year round because chocolate never goes out of season.  It is guaranteed to please a crowd.

 

FAQ:

 

Do I need to use a stand mixer to make the cookie dough?

I find that it is easiest to make the cookie dough in a stand mixer with a beater attachment, but a hand mixer will work too if it is all you have.

 

Can I use a type of nut other than pecans?

Yes!  Any type of nut that can easily be chopped into small pieces will work.  Walnuts, pistachios, and hazelnuts are all good options if you don’t like pecans.

 

My dough is too crumbly.  Where did I go wrong?

The dough should be crumbly, but if it is so dry and crumbly that you cannot form it into balls, you probably added too much flour.  Don’t worry, you can easily fix this problem by adding an extra teaspoon of water to the dough.

 

 

 

3 tips for the best possible cookies:

  1. Measure the flour carefully.  Too much flour will give you a dough that is crumbly and difficult to work with.  When you measure flour, you want it to be light and airy, not packed down in the cup.  Try using a spoon to fluff the flour in its container before scooping it up with your measuring cup.
  2. If you want your cookies to look picture-perfect, do not use your thumb to make the indentations.  Use the back of a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon to make the indentations rounder and more consistent.
  3. Roll the dough balls in a bit of water before rolling them in the pecans.  This way more pecans pieces will stick.

 

 

 

Chocolate Pecan Thumbprint Cookie Recipe


 Prep Time:
30 minutes
 Cook Time:
12 minutes
 Total Time:
42 minutes
 Serves:
12-16 cookies

 


Ingredients:

For the cookies:

  • ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup pecans, finely chopped

For the ganache filling:


  • 4 oz. semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
Directions:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the butter, confectioners sugar, water, and vanilla extract.  Mix on low speed until combined (this should take 1-2 minutes).
  4. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on medium-low speed until the ingredients start to come together in a crumbly dough (see notes).
  5. Form the dough into 12-15 tablespoon-sized balls.  Roll each ball around in the chopped pecans (see notes).
  6. Place the balls 2-3 inches apart on the baking sheet.  Using your thumb or the back of a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon, press an indentation into the center of each ball.
  7. Bake the cookies for 12 minutes.  The indentations in the cookies may flatten in the oven.  If this happens, just use the ½ teaspoon spoon the recreate the indentation while the cookies are still soft fresh out of the oven.
  8. While the cookies are cooling, prepare the ganache.  Add the heavy cream to a small, microwave safe bowl and microwave 30-45 seconds, until it begins to bubble.  Add your chocolate chips to the hot heavy cream and mix continuously until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth.  Let cool for 10-15 minutes.
  9. When the cookies and ganache are both cool, scoop the ganache into a piping bag. Pipe into the center of each cookie.  If you have extra ganache, feel free to drizzle it over the surface of the cookies to make them extra pretty!

 

Recipe Notes:

 

  • The dough should be moist enough to stick together, but it may not come together in one big ball.  If there are crumbly pieces, that’s okay, as long as they stick to one another when you press them together.  If the dough is too dry to form together, add an additional teaspoon of water.
  • If the pecans are not sticking to the ball of dough, roll the dough around in a bit of water to dampen the outer surface before rolling it in the pecans.

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