Save on Pinterest

Red Velvet Thumbprint Cookies

These festive sugar-coated red velvet cookies are perfect for Christmas. They're just as delicious as they are beautiful. —Colleen Delawder, Herndon, Virginia
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. Bake: 20 min./batch + cooling
  • Makes
    2 dozen


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon red paste food coloring
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 1/2 cup coarse sugar
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg white, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Preheat oven to 300°. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes. Beat in egg yolk, vanilla and food coloring. In another bowl, whisk flour and cocoa; gradually beat into creamed mixture. Roll into 1-in. balls; roll in coarse sugar. Place 2 in. apart on parchment-lined baking sheets. Press a deep indentation in center of each with the back of a 1/2-teaspoon measure.
  • Bake 10 minutes. Meanwhile, for filling, beat cream cheese, sugar, egg white, vanilla and salt until blended. Reshape indentations in par-baked cookies as needed. Fill each with 1 teaspoon filling. Bake until filling is set, 10-12 minutes longer. Remove to wire racks to cool completely.
Nutrition Facts
1 cookie: 166 calories, 10g fat (6g saturated fat), 33mg cholesterol, 39mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate (10g sugars, 0 fiber), 2g protein.
Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links.


Click stars to rate
Average Rating:
  • Neal
    Feb 13, 2021

    After reading these reviews, I’m apparently much better at baking than I realized. I thought these turned out fantastic. I didn’t modify at all, and they didn’t flatten out in the least. I’m making these again for Valentine’s Day and will probably continue to seek out red-themed events so that I have more excuses to make them.

  • Autumn
    Jan 27, 2021

    Not good. These cookies were simple to make, but taste was lacking. We had to add lots of extra food coloring because they were pink, not red. After baking and tasting, we threw them all out. I think its the baked cream cheese that just didn't taste very good to us and we normally like cream cheese. The cookies had a weird texture too and didn't have any flavor to them. Followed the recipe exactly.

  • Teresa
    Dec 29, 2020

    Tender, festive cookie, that brightens any cookie tray! Others have commented about flat cookies, but I had no trouble with them going flat. Im guessing the "creaming butter and sugar"step is important to keep them the right shape. The dough tastes a bit bland because it has no salt, but the sweet and salty cream cheese filling makes up for that in the combined final product. The filling was lumpy, but a minute in the food processor smoothed it right out. Plan to add these to my Christmas cookies in future years!

  • Lauren
    Dec 17, 2020

    it was really good the dough was a little dry but probably because we did not add any sugar, the icing was soo good but other than that this dessert was really good!

  • Penny
    Dec 15, 2020

    Made these cookies and they came out flat out of the oven. Next time I will try adding baking powder. The cookies had a good flavor just wasn't able to give to friends.

  • F
    Dec 14, 2020

    These are delicious! Ok you need some modifications. You need 1/2 tsp baking soda with the dough, and a 1/4 tsp salt. Otherwise you'll have flat flavorless cookies. Also, red food coloring isn't necessary. You also need to whip the cream cheese, and make sure it's completely softened before you mix it with liquids. I softened it in the microwave on 30% power for 15 seconds because I forgot to leave them out. I would add more chocolate next time.

  • Butcher2boy
    Dec 13, 2020

    My friend and her granddaughter made these with me, we were teaching Bella how to make cookies. She had so much fun by sticking her thumb in each cookie. We all thought these cookies were delicious. They freeze well and Bella wants to make these for Valentines Day. VFE

  • bakermom58
    Dec 13, 2020

    I didn't read any reviews until my cookies were in the oven. As I was giving these cookies to friends, I got nervous they'd be horrible. Not sure why people thought this recipe was bad. I thought they were a flavorful, tender bite - and I'm not a huge red velvet/cream cheese fan. I'd make them again.

  • Mnicolio
    Dec 9, 2020

    No comment left

  • Dee Ann
    Dec 6, 2020

    No comment left