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Vegan Thumbprint Cookies: A Game-Changing Cookie Recipe

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These thumbprints have a nutty, oat, maple syrup, and jam flavor profile that is sure to delight vegan and non-vegan equally. Two or three of these cookies, along by a mug of hot, strong tea, is one of my favorite ways to start the day. They require minimal time in the kitchen, are simple to shape and fill, and will quickly go off your cookie platter.

Vegan Thumbprints were originally shown to me at a Zen Buddhist monastery in the middle of the Californian desert. When I spotted vegan cookies on the menu, I sighed in dismay, which is a brave admission of my not-very-blissful ignorance. But with just one taste, the fog of my ignorance lifted like a curtain. (Ha!) That’s how fantastic these cookies are. Given the isolation of our location, it’s safe to say that we developed a strong attachment to the kitchen’s cookies.

My life has been better since my Vegan Thumbprint Awakening many years ago when I stopped looking down on vegan baked products with disdain. I’m hoping you’ll find that these cookies help as well.

Results of Testing

After three years, it was a lot of pleasure to go back to this dish we first shared. There isn’t much more I can add to the original than this:

  • We only mentioned almonds at first, but other nuts like walnuts, cashews, and pecans work just as well. Blend together a handful of your favorite flavors!
  • After reading your feedback, I decided to try the recipe using coconut oil and was immediately won over. Coconut oil not only offers a higher nutritional value than canola oil, but it also results in a crispier cookie.
  • I found a small jar of apple butter at the back of the pantry and decided to use it in place of jam. In particular, if you’re seeking for a lower-sugar alternative to jam, I wholeheartedly endorse its use since it’s wonderful.


  • 2 cups of whole almonds, walnuts, pecans, pistachios, etc.
  • Four servings of traditional rolled oats
  • A Pinch Of Salt
  • Divide 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup of canola oil, coconut oil, or butter, melted
  • Maple Syrup, One Cup
  • Select one or more jams (note)


  1. Put in 2 racks to make 3 sections in the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Spread out parchment paper or silicone liners on two baking sheets.
  2. First, you’ll need a food processor with a blade attachment to process the nuts. Pulse until they are cut into little bits; a range of sizes is ok, but they shouldn’t be ground into a flour. I prefer to eat these cookies by biting into a big chunk of nut, so I leave them chunkier than most people do. However, they can be reduced to a fine powder. Put the nut crumbs in a big basin.
  3. Do not bother washing the oats before placing them in the food processor with the salt. Again, I prefer my oats with a little bit of texture. Put the oats in the same dish as the nuts.
  4. Mix in the oil and maple syrup with 1 1/4 cups of the flour. (All the maple syrup will pour out smoothly if you follow these steps in this sequence and use the same measuring cup.) Use a wooden spoon to stir everything together. If the dough is too wet, sprinkle in little more flour; if it’s too soft, don’t fret; it will firm up as it rests. Wait 15 minutes before proceeding.
  5. Make rough walnut-sized balls out of the dough. Wet, but surprisingly not sticky, dough is the expected result. Spread out on baking sheets at a uniform distance. They won’t spread much, so you may put them close together in the pan (though you might have to bake in batches).
  6. A 1/2 teaspoon measure with a circular bottom works perfectly for this. Once the depression has been cleaned, fill it with your preferred jam using the wiped-down spoon.
  7. Bake for about 15 minutes, or until the cookies have a light golden brown color. After 15 minutes, remove from baking pans and place on wire racks to cool fully. In between baking sessions, let the sheets cool fully.


Jam options: I like to add some flavor and color to my cookie plate by using a wide range of jams. Red raspberry, apricot, and quince are my top three choices.

Make-ahead: The dough may be made 2 days in advance and stored in the fridge for optimal freshness.

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