Chocolate Caramel Thumbprints Recipe
Chocolate Caramel Thumbprints Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Chocolate Caramel Thumbprints Recipe

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5 18 24
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Covered in chopped nuts and drizzled with chocolate, these cookies are delicious and pretty, too. Everybody looks forward to munching on them during the holidays. -Elizabeth Marino San Juan Capistrano, California
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
MAKES:30 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + chilling Bake: 10 min./batch
MAKES: 30 servings


  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 2 tablespoons 2% milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 12 to 14 caramels
  • 3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon shortening

Nutritional Facts

1 cookie: 128 calories, 8g fat (3g saturated fat), 17mg cholesterol, 55mg sodium, 14g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 1g fiber), 2g protein.


  1. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg yolk, milk and vanilla. In another bowl, whisk flour, cocoa and salt; gradually beat into creamed mixture. Refrigerate, covered, 1 hour or until easy to handle.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°. Shape dough into 1-in. balls. In a shallow bowl, beat egg white. Place pecans in a separate shallow bowl. Dip balls in egg white, then in pecans, patting to help pecans adhere.
  3. Place 2 in. apart on greased baking sheets. Press a deep indentation in center of each with the end of a wooden spoon handle. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set. Remove from pans to wire racks to cool.
  4. In a large heavy saucepan, melt caramels with cream over low heat; stir until smooth. Fill each cookie with about 1/2 teaspoon caramel mixture. In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies; let stand until set. Store in an airtight container. Yield: about 2-1/2 dozen.
Originally published as Chocolate Caramel Thumbprints in Taste of Home December/January 2004, p31

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Mctheknife User ID: 8696287 241644
Reviewed Jan. 13, 2016

"These are so good. Instead of melted caramel for the filling, I made it with store bought dulce de leche....YUM!"

MrsGoodrich User ID: 7704397 239550
Reviewed Dec. 16, 2015

"Does anyone know if the butter in the recipe should be salted or unsalted?"

Teribee4 User ID: 8658619 239196
Reviewed Dec. 11, 2015

"Rich and chocolatey! I mixed things up a bit. Made half with Hershey kisses and toasted almonds. The other half I omitted the nuts, rolled them in turbinado cane sugar, used the caramel filling and lightly sprinkled the caramel with sea delicious!"

sugarcrystal User ID: 5836839 235452
Reviewed Oct. 22, 2015

"I made a batch of these for coworkers. They were all gone by the end of the day!"

kaymarie70 User ID: 8199024 216951
Reviewed Jan. 4, 2015

"I made these cookies for Christmas and they were a definite hit. Sweet chocolate cookie base filled with warm, gooey carmels surrounded by pecans and drizzled with white chocolate and milk chocolate...oh so very good. To enhance the taste, i toasted the pecans and doubled the vanilla. Next time, I'll double the recipe to make more. These are great with vanilla ice cream or simply with a glass of milk."

SusiePendro User ID: 7685023 205803
Reviewed Feb. 22, 2014

"This is the best Thumbprint cookie I ever ate. Big success as Christmas."

BrownieQueen2 User ID: 1836231 103532
Reviewed Dec. 28, 2013

"I just made these as part of my Christmas cookie baking. They were awesome! I have a family member with a nut allergy so I rolled them in chocolate sprinkles which turned out fine."

kdwarren User ID: 3452511 103483
Reviewed Dec. 19, 2013

"like everyone says, they take time to make but the outcome is well worth it. it is on our Christmas must have cookie list every year. Everyone who has tried them, loves them!"

Billco User ID: 5672650 75860
Reviewed Nov. 23, 2013

"Time consuming to prepare, but they are now our favorite cookies for Christmas! They don't last long."

nightskystar User ID: 1034705 143421
Reviewed Oct. 17, 2013

"Takes a bit of time to make but WELL worth it!!! Wonderful fancy cookie!!! I use finely chopped walnuts as that's what I had on hand the first time I made them.

Holly Balzer-Harz
Volunteer field editor"

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