Buttery shortbread cookies with a dollop of perfectly tart lemon curd baked into the center, these lemon curd thumbprint cookies are perfect any time of year. Try them with homemade lemon curd to make them extra special.
Table of contents
❤️ Why you’ll love this recipe
- Not too sweet, not too tart. These lemon shortbread cookies are the perfect recipe for anyone who loves a good buttery cookie.
- Easy to make. The dough is easy to make and comes together quickly with no chilling required.
- A classic cookie with a twist. These cookies are a fun twist on the classic thumbprint cookie, and they’re sure to be a hit with lemon lover
This is an overview of the ingredients. You’ll find the full measurements and instructions in the printable recipe at the bottom of the page.
- granulated sugar
- egg yolks
- lemon zest
- all-purpose flour
- lemon curd
- powdered sugar
- parchment paper
- baking sheets
- cookie scoop
- large mixing bowl
- hand mixer or stand mixer
Step one: prep
Prepare the oven and baking sheets. Preheat the oven to 350°F with two racks positioned equally on each side. The parchment paper should be used to line two large baking sheets.
Step two: make the cookie dough
Cream the butter and sugar in a stand mixer or a large mixing bowl with a handheld mixer for 2-3 minutes, until well combined. Add the egg yolks. Beat for 1-2 minutes more until lightened in color and fluffy.
In a medium mixing bowl, combine the salt and flour. Add one cup at a time to the butter-sugar mixture, stirring just until completely combined after each addition.
Step three: shape and fill
Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon, portion out the dough and roll into balls. Place one inch apart on all sides on baking sheets using your palms to smooth them out. Indent each cookie ball with your thumb, 1/4 teaspoon measuring cup, or a big wooden spoon handle. Carefully place a tiny amount of lemon curd in each cookie.
Step four: bake
Bake at 350°F for 12-14 minutes or until set. The bottoms and edges of each cookie should be slightly golden brown when done. Allow to cool on a wire rack until completely cooled before enjoying. The lemon curd will be hot! If desired, glaze with a mix of powdered sugar and milk after they’re totally cool.
🥫 Storage instructions
You can store the cookies in an airtight container on the counter for up to three days.
If you want them to last longer, place them in a freezer-safe bag and freeze for up to two months. Thaw on the counter before enjoying. (Or eat frozen! It’s surprisingly good.)
You can also make the dough ahead of time and defrost, shape, fill, and bake.
Just leave it out, no big deal.
Any kind you like! If you want to make your own lemon curd, try my recipe. If you’re short on time, any store-bought variety will do.
Nope, the cookies are delicious without one. But if you want to add a little extra sweetness and decoration, go for it.
👩🏻🍳 Expert tips
- Make sure your butter and eggs are at room temperature before beginning.
- Keep in mind the cookies will still look quite pale when you remove them from the oven. The bottoms and edges will be light golden brown.
📘 Related Recipes
- Lemon curd pound cake is a classic cake with plenty of citrus flavors.
- This lemon sheet cake with lemon buttercream frosting is a must-make if you love sheet cakes.
- And since lemon curd makes such a good filling, why not put it in these delicious coconut cupcakes.
📖 Here’s the recipe
Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookies
- Baking Sheet
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup lemon curd
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons milk
- Prep the oven and baking sheets. Preheat oven to 350°F with two racks spaced equally. Line two large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Cream the butter and sugar. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a handheld mixer, cream together the butter and sugar for 2-3 minutes or until well combined. Add the egg yolks and lemon zest and beat 1-2 minutes more until lightened in color and fluffy.
- Add the dry ingredients. In a small mixing bowl, combine the salt and flour. Add it to the butter-sugar mixture, one cup at a time. Mix on low after each addition and stir just until the flour is combined.
- Shape and fill the dough. Using cookie scoop or tablespoon, portion out the dough and roll into balls. Roll them smooth in your palms and place them onto the baking sheets one inch apart in all directions. Indent each ball of cookie dough using your thumb, or the handle of a large wooden spoon. Carefully place a small amount of lemon curd into each cookie.
- Bake. Bake at 350°F for 14-16 minutes or until the cookies are set. The bottoms and edges will be slightly golden brown. Allow to cool on a wire rack until cool. Glaze if desired. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days.
These delicious lemon curd thumbprint cookies are the perfect recipe for anyone who loves a good buttery cookie. They’re easy to make, and come together quickly with no chilling required. The dough is also simple to make and doesn’t require any special ingredients.