Cheesy Thumbprint Appetizers with Hot Pepper Jelly Recipe -
Cheesy Thumbprint Appetizers with Hot Pepper Jelly Recipe
  • READY IN 55 mins

Cheesy Thumbprint Appetizers with Hot Pepper Jelly

Recipe by  

"Beautiful and delicious, these savory but sweet little appetizer 'cookies' are easy to make and sure to be a huge hit at your next party!"

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 20 cookies Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    10 mins

    55 mins


  1. Blend Cheddar cheese, flour, and butter in a food processor until dough is a coarse-meal texture and forms into a ball. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).
  3. Shape dough into 1 1/2-inch balls and place 1 inch apart on a baking sheet.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 5 minutes. Remove from oven; press thumb into top of each ball, creating an indentation. Spoon about 1 teaspoon pepper jelly into indentation. Bake until edges are golden brown, about 5 minutes.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Aug 22, 2012

I didn't think the dough was going to come together. It just looked like, well, cornmeal or something. I kept running the food processor and then suddenly the dough began to form. I needed to bake three extra minutes. And my jelly didn't seem hot enough so I VERY LIGHTLY sprinkled with some cayenne pepper. These are better after they are totally cooled. I have also made them with pepper jack cheese. Also good.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Jan 08, 2013

The first time I made these I followed recipe exactly and found the cheesy cookie part to taste a bit too much like flour. Next go round I added a squirt of brown mustard, some garlic powder and a couple drops of hot pepper sauce to the mixture before mixing in the food processor. Personally I felt it had a much better flavor. These are simple and beautiful appetizers, and go very fast. Definately try this recipe!

Jul 15, 2012

I made half a batch of this recipe and took some to a friend's house for an appetizer. Everyone loved these. The cheese I used was Tillamook Sharp Cheddar. I bought mild pepper jelly, and when I make these again, I'll have to add some chili paste to it to make it hotter. I was thinking that if the hot jelly is red that it would make a really nice appy for Christmas by using both kinds. I did use my food processor, and the mixture came together well and handled well. I got 16 thumbprints using my small cookie scoop. The directions were right on, except I did let them bake for two minutes longer after putting in the jelly. Talk about an easy appetizer! Thanks so much for the recipe because I'll be sure to make these again!

Jul 20, 2012

This was originally published by Cabot Cheese. I use their Seriously Sharp. I also wait till closer to the end to flll, but that may be because my home made blackberry hot pepper jelly isn't as stiff as a comercial brand.

Aug 12, 2012

This was very good! I made it exactly as written. The dough came together nicely in the food processor. I got 24 cookies out of this recipe using a small melon baller. For some reason the dough never browned around the edges. I even baked them for a few minutes longer. I couldn't leave them in the oven too long because the jelly would have totally dissolved! Next time I'll bake them much longer than 5 minutes before adding the jelly. Very tasty though!

Jul 15, 2012

These were so easy to make. I didn't run through a food processor but rather cut the mixture together with a pastry blender. I also added a little bit of hot pepper relish to the jam for a little more zing. You might want to explain that it's cheese and not a sweet cookie as looks are deceiving.

Jan 09, 2013

I was looking for an appetizer that didn't need to stay warm and was a little unique. This was definitely it! I took the advice of those who added some additional spices (garlic powder, salt, and paprika). This is a quick recipe and the final product looks very attractive. I also had to bake them for about 2-3 mins longer. The only pepper jelly that I found at the grocery store was an amber color. When I first opened the jar, I was a bit nervous that it wouldn't look appetizing, but since the cracker is golden, the amber colored jelly looked "sparkly". I would absolutely recommend this appetizer and have shared the recipe with several friends. Next time I may try the suggestion of the brown spicy mustard and hot sauce. Yes, there will definitely be a next time!

Dec 13, 2012

I thought this was a good base recipe - but I found the cheese cracker part to be a bit bland. The second time I made the recipe, I added 3/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon paprika, and 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder, and I thought the crackers tasted much more savory. I also had to cook them a bit longer, but that may be because I'm in Denver (high altitude) Makes a great Christmas party appetizer if you have red and green pepper jelly!


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  • Calories
  • 119 kcal
  • 6%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 10.2 g
  • 3%
  • Cholesterol
  • 21 mg
  • 7%
  • Fat
  • 7.3 g
  • 11%
  • Fiber
  • 0.2 g
  • < 1%
  • Protein
  • 3.5 g
  • 7%
  • Sodium
  • 97 mg
  • 4%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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