Lemon Thumbprint Cookies

These Lemon Thumbprint Cookies are super simple and very tasty. The lemon zest and lemon curd make these cookies zesty and fresh. 

What are thumbprint cookies?

Thumbprint cookies I believe are based on a Swedish biscuit that’s name translated to ‘raspberry caves’. Thumbprint Cookies was the name adopted by America and it is the most widely used name for them. If you’re from the UK, don’t be confused. Although they are referred to as cookies, we would know them as a soft biscuit.

These Lemon Thumbprint Cookies are an adaptation of my Jam Thumbprint Cookies which are more traditional. 

A lemon lover’s dream

Lemon is such a popular flavour with cakes and bakes. Whenever I ask people what flavours are their favourites, lemon is always one of the top choices. I was making a batch of my Jam Thumbprint Cookies when I saw the lonely lemon in my fruit bowl and decided Lemon Thumbprint Cookies would be delicious!

I use the grated lemon zest in the cookie dough. It adds a lovely flavour throughout the cookies. I then use lemon curd instead of the traditional jam to fill the cookies. Together they give these cookies such a delicious lemon flavour. 

What kind of lemon curd is best to use?

If you want to keep these quick and simple, you can use shop bought lemon curd. This is what I tend to use because I usually have some in the cupboard.. I would recommend buying a good quality lemon curd if you can because you will taste the difference. 

Alternatively, you can make you own lemon curd. It is definitely on my to-do list! If you would like to have a go at making your own take a look at Charlotte’s Lively Kitchen’s Lemon Curd recipe. She includes so many tips and tricks for you to make the perfect lemon curd. 

Lemon Curd Thumbprint Cookie baking tips

Although these cookies are easy to make, there are a few tips to help you get perfect looking cookies. 

After you have added the egg, if the dough looks a little sticky you can add a sprinkle more flour. I think this is the easiest method to get the right consistency. You will be able to tell if the dough is too stick jut by touching it. 

I like to use a tablespoon measure to get equal sized cookies. I think this is the perfect size for them. Any bigger and the cookies would be huge! 

When it comes to making the indentations for the lemon curd, there are a number of ways you can do this. As the name of these cookies suggests, the indentation is meant to look like it has been done with your thumb. You obviously can do this but it is not my preferred method! I like to use a teaspoon measure which I lightly flour and press into each cookie. I think this is the perfect size. Press about half way into the cookie, you don’t want the indentation to go all the way to the baking tray!

When adding the lemon curd, try not to get too carried away and add too much. If you do it could run out over the biscuits. This doesn’t affect the taste at all, but it will make them look a little messier.

5 from 8 votes

Lemon Thumbprint Cookies

These Lemon Thumbprint Cookies are super simple and very tasty. The lemon zest and lemon curd make these cookies zesty and fresh. 

Course Snack, Cookie
Cuisine American
Keyword Lemon curd, Lemon, Thumbprint cookie
Servings 18
Calories 120 kcal
Author Curly


  • 200 g self raising flour
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • 100 g margarine
  • 1 lemon zested
  • 1 egg
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 70 g lemon curd


  1. Preheat the oven to 160ºC (fan assisted, 180°C non fan) Line 2 baking trays and set aside

  2. Rub the flour, sugar and margarine together until you have a breadcrumb texture
  3. Add the lemon zest, egg and vanilla extract to form a stiff dough

  4. Use a tablespoon measure to scoop out balls of dough. Roll them between your palms to get a round balls. Place them on the baking trays leaving enough space for them to spread when they bake
  5. Make a small indentation in the middle of each biscuit
  6. Fill each indentation with a small amount of lemon curd

  7. Bake for 12-15 minutes until they are just golden brown
  8. Cool on a wire rack

Recipe Notes

Keep in an airtight container for 2-3 days. 

Nutritional information is given as a guide only and my vary.

Nutrition Facts
Lemon Thumbprint Cookies
Amount Per Serving
Calories 120 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Fat 5g8%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Cholesterol 9mg3%
Sodium 68mg3%
Potassium 25mg1%
Carbohydrates 17g6%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 8g9%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 212IU4%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 6mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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