Chocolate Cherry Cordial Thumbprint Cookies

Chocolate, Christmas Recipes, Cookies, Dessert, Holiday Recipes | 4 comments

Our latest Christmas Cookie experiment was this recipe for Chocolate Cherry Cordial Thumbprint Cookies.

I won’t deny it. I love all the sweets this time of year! It is one time where it is perfectly acceptable to bake cookies and whip up a batch of caramels within days of each other. And then wash it down with a cup of hot cocoa or spiced cider.

Cherry Cordial Christmas Cookies

For these Chocolate Cherry Cordial Thumbprint Cookies I originally had Chocolate Thumbprint Cookiess with jam centers in mind.

During a stroll down the Christmas Candy aisle at Target I was reminder how much our family loves the Cherry Cordial Hershey’s Kisses – a special flavor available seasonally for Valentine’s Day and Christmas. Of course I tossed a bag or two into the cart.

Then on Pinterest I saw this fun recipe for Cherry Chocolate Kisses. I decided to combine the two ideas to create a Chocolate Cherry Cookie with a Cherry Chocolate Kiss in the center. The result was delicious!

Cherry Cordial Christmas Cookies

Flavor Customizations for Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies

If you don’t like cherries or can’t find this seasonal kiss flavor from Hershey’s you can totally customize the recipe. Really, you can put whatever you want in the center of the thumbprint, but here are a few ideas.

  • Add crushed candy cane to the batter and place candy cane Hershey’s Kisses in the middle
  • Add shredded coconut to the batter and place a Hershey’s Kisses filled with Coconut Creme on top.
  • Leave out the cherries from the batter and top with a Hershey’s Kisses filled with Caramel.
  • Add diced candied orange peel bits to the batter and fill the center with orange marmalade.
  • Leave out the cherries and add your favorite jam flavor to the center: raspberry, marmalade, strawberry, etc.

Cherry Cordial Christmas Cookies

I love how the heat from the cookies warms the cherry chocolate kisses, but they still hold their shape. Such a pleasant surprise when you bit into the cookie!

We already devoured one batch of these fun cookies and will most definitely be baking up another batch just in time for several members of our family to arrive in town this weekend. I think these would also be a huge hit for Valentine’s Day.

What new Christmas Cookie recipe have you tried this year?

Chocolate Cherry Cordial Thumbprint Cookies

Yield: 36 cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 10 - 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 - 30 minutes

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1 cup cool, softened butter
1 cup powdered sugar
2 teaspoons maraschino cherry "juice"
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
2/3 cups cocoa powder
1/2 cup chopped maraschino cherries
1/2 cup coarse organic whole cane sugar
36 unwrapped Hershey's Kisses Milk Chocolates filled with Cherry Cordial Crème


Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Place rack in the center most position of the oven.

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt, and cocoa powder. Whisk until combined. Set aside.

Fit your stand mixer with the paddle attachment. Add the butter to the bowl and beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Reduce speed to low, add the powdered sugar, and stir until mixed. Scrape down the sides with a spatula if necessary.

Add the cherry "juice" and vanilla extract. Mix until combined. With the mixer still on low, add the flour mixture a half a cup at a time, mixing in between additions and scraping the sides of the both with a spatula as needed.

Add the chopped maraschino cherries and stir until evenly incorporated into the dough. Transfer the dough to the refrigerator and chill for 15-20 minutes.

Shape the dough into 36 one inch balls. If the dough feels sticky, slightly wet hands will help with rolling the balls. Slightly flatten the rounded ball using the palms of your hands. Dip both sides of the cookie into the coarse organic whole cane sugar.

Place the balls on parchment lined baking sheets 2 inches apart. With your thumb or the back of a greased round 1/2 teaspoon measuring spoon (if you're a perfectionist like me and want perfectly symmetrical depressions), press into the center of the dough.

Bake cookies at 325 degrees F for 10 - 15 minutes. Remove cookies from the oven and immediate place a Hershey's Kisses Milk Chocolates filled with Cherry Cordial Crème in the center of each cookie. Transfer cookies to a wire rack and cool.

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    Renae M - December 22, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

    I made these today and they’re really delicious. Because my grandson cant have FDA Dye #40, I used Chukar Cherries’ Marashino Cherries and filled some of the thumbprints with Chukar Cherries’ Sour Cherry Preserves. I also used Special Dark cocoa powder. The cookies came out wonderfully.


  • 2
    Erin @ Texanerin Baking - December 26, 2012 @ 3:14 pm

    These look amazing! And I love all the different flavors of Hershey’s Kisses, M&Ms, etc. that have popped up the last few years. Not that we actually get any of that here in Germany. ;)

    I hope you and your family had a wonderful Christmas, Katie! And enjoy the rest of the holiday season. It’ll be over so soon (which I’m pretty happy about!)


  • 3
    Meagan Marion - December 29, 2012 @ 6:59 pm

    Sounds wonderful, I love the photos you have too. Snowballs are my holiday cookie this year, with a Hershey kiss in the middle. What a great idea to mix up the flavor a bit by adding a specialty Hershey kiss though. I’ll have to try that in my next batch of cookies.


  • 4
    vagabonde - December 30, 2012 @ 6:35 pm

    I had planned to bake some chocolate cookies with cherries marinated in brandy. I’ll try mine and also your recipe – sometimes my creations don’t work… I found your blog through the cookbook my husband gave me for Christmas. I made your cranberry crumb bars and showed the photos on my blog. I also created a link to your blog in case anyone would like to bake them. They are very good.


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