There is no better Christmas dessert than a beautiful tray of cookies. I love a cookie tray with incredible variety. Just one type of cookie will not due. Cookies with dried fruits, nuts, chocolate, or caramel are all welcome on my Christmas cookie tray - the more the merrier.
I remember making cookies as a little girl with my mom, sister, and brothers. My mom would always make a large variety of cookies so that all of our favorite flavors were represented. The kids were typically in charge of the decorating which involved lots and lots of sprinkles and icing.
One of my favorite holiday cookie flavors is ginger. It pops up in gingerbread houses, gingerbread men, and often with some unexpected flavors. That is the type of cookie I wanted to make this year. Ginger cookies with a twist.
These Ginger Caramel Thumbprints are reminiscent of a gingerbread cutout cookie, but combined with the filling style of a beloved Christmas thumbprint. They are soft and buttery in texture, featuring Challenge Diary’s unsalted butter. Instead of a traditional jam filling, these cookies are filled with a generous dollop of melted caramel and drizzled with chocolate. The cookies themselves are slightly spiced and not overly sweet in order to allow the ginger flavors to shine through and the caramel to add the necessary sweetness to these delightful little cookies.
These cookies will be at home on any Christmas cookie tray this season. I am planning on making a big batch to exchange with my family at our annual cookie exchange. I know everyone will be wowed by these sweet little cookies and their new twist on classic holiday favors.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon ground cloves
- ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 sticks (1 cup) Challenge Unsalted Butter, softened
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons molasses
- 16 soft caramel candies
- 1 teaspoon water
- ¼ cup dark candy melting wafers or semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
1Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick baking mats. Set aside.
2In a large bowl, whisk together flour and spices. Set aside.
3In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together butter and sugar until light and creamy; about 2 minutes. Add egg, vanilla extract, and molasses. Beat on medium/high until well combined; about 2 more minutes. Turn off mixer and add in flour mixture. Beat on medium/low until just combined.
4Roll dough into 1 inch balls and place on prepared baking sheets. Use your thumb or the back of a teaspoon to make indentations in the dough balls. Bake for 15-16 minutes. Allow cookies to cool slightly.
5Add unwrapped caramels and water to a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 30 seconds, watching carefully to avoid caramel bubbling over. Stir and repeat if necessary until caramel is melted. Carefully spoon a small amount of caramel into each cookie. Chill cookies for 10 minutes to set caramel. Drizzle with melted chocolate. Store cookies in an airtight container.