These Peanut Butter Turtle Thumbprint Cookies are a new twist on a classic Christmas cookie — with a peanut butter cookie base, a simple caramel filling, a drizzle of chocolate and a sprinkling of peanuts, they’re sure to be a new holiday tradition! Plus a recipe video.
To be totally honest, I feel a little like I dropped the ball on the whole Christmas cookie thing this year.
I’ve got a ton of holiday themed desserts — candies and pies and a danish and more pies — but not many cookies. And I don’t have a bunch of cookies coming your way in December (although I have one more coming your way in a few days that I snuck in at the last minute out of guilt — keep your eyes peeled!).
Rest assured, I will be doing a whole lot of Christmas cookie baking in real life — I hope.
I’m planning to skim through some of my favorite old holiday cookbooks, try some recipes from my Grandma’s cookbook that I haven’t had a chance to try yet, and just enjoy getting the girls back in the kitchen with me without having to worry about meticulous recipe testing.
But when the Peanut Bureau of Canada asked me to come up with a cookie swap-worthy peanut butter cookie, my mind immediately went “turtle”. That combination of nuts, caramel and chocolate is one I know you all love, and it’s one I love too!
These Peanut Butter Turtle Thumbprint Cookies are taking things up a notch though, because they start with a peanut butter cookie base — I used the Classic Peanut Butter Cookies recipe from the Peanut Bureau’s web site. They have a super simple caramel filling, a chocolate drizzle and a sprinkling of chopped peanuts — I like to use salted, roasted peanuts for that crunchy, salty contrast to all the sweetness!
I want to know: what’s your favorite Christmas cookie?!? For me? I love anything mint and chocolate, but these Thumbprint cookies are on my must-make list for years to come!
*This post is sponsored by the Peanut Bureau of Canada and I couldn’t be more excited about it! I hope you’re enjoying all of the peanuty treats 🙂
- 1 cup peanut butter
- ½ cup butter, room temperature
- ½ cup brown sugar, lightly packed
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1½ cups all purpose flour (fluffed, scooped and leveled)
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 15 chewy caramel candies, unwrapped (about 115 grams)
- 3 tablespoons milk
- ½ cup chocolate, chopped (about 75 grams)
- ¼ cup finely chopped peanuts
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line 3 baking sheets with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine peanut butter, butter, and sugars and beat with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.
- Add egg and vanilla and beat until combined.
- Add flour, baking soda and salt and mix until combined -- you may have to do this with a spoon or your hands.
- Roll into 1" balls and place about 2" apart on baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes (I bake mine for 9) until puffed and dry looking on top. After removing from the oven, use the back of a ½ teaspoon measuring spoon to make an indent in the center of each cookie. Set aside to cool completely.
- In a small pot, combine caramels and milk over low heat. Cook, stirring regularly, until melted and smooth. Spoon ½ teaspoon into the center of each cookie.
- In another small pot, heat 1" of water over medium heat until simmering. Place a glass bowl over top, ensuring that the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water (you are making a double boiler). Place chocolate in the glass bowl and heat, stirring constantly, until melted and smooth.
- Pour chocolate into a plastic bag and snip one of the corners. Drizzle chocolate over cookies and immediately sprinkle with chopped peanuts.
- Let set until chocolate is set before storing in an air tight container on the counter for 1 week or in the freezer for 3-4 months.