Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly for #cookieweek

Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly | from

I agree, that the combination of chocolate and spicy sounds super weird at first.  I mean, it should be an either-or question, right?  Do you like Chocolate things or Spicy things?  Butterscotch or Caramel? To-may-to or Tom-ah-to?

But when you add a bit of spicy heat to chocolate, it suddenly tastes more…  chocolate-y.  Almost like I’m tasting chocolate for the first time all over again.

Chocolate Cookie thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly

So I’m asking you- don’t shy away from the strange sounding combo of chocolate and sweet pepper jelly. Yes, the jelly is made with jalapenos, but it’s not burn-your-mouth-off hot.  It’s more like a background heat, made even better by snuggling up next to a schmear of cream cheese frosting.

Also, there’s something about making a thumbprint cookie that just brings out the kid in me.  I don’t know what it is- I like playing with my food, so rolling raw cookie dough into small balls before shoving my thumb down into the center has to be one of the most satisfying feelings ever.  And since I’m now (sort of) a grown-up, there’s no one around to tell me not to touch my food with my hands. Ha!
Chocolate Cookie thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly
It’s my last recipe of Cookie Week, and I saved the best (and strangest sounding) for last – Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly.  They’re perfect for a holiday party or for standing over the sink in your kitchen, eating them one by one with a huge glass of milk.  You know, like how grown-ups do.

Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly
For the cookies:
1 stick (1/4 cup) butter, melted
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
Sift together the cocoa powder, flour and salt into a large bowl.  Combine the butter, egg, vanilla, sugar and melted chocolate chips in a smaller bowl and whisk until no lumps remain.  Slowly pour the wet ingredients into the dry, mixing as you go, until the batter is completely combined.  Stir into a large ball and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350*F and remove the cookies from the fridge.  Using a cookie scoop or a tablespoon, remove sections of the batter and roll into balls.  Press your thumb or forefinger down into the center of each ball, to form a deep indent.  Do this with all the cookie and then bake for 15 minutes.  Remove from the heat and let cool.
Once cooled, spread a thin layer of the cream cheese frosting in the indentation and follow that with a dollop of the sweet pepper jelly. Keep covered between servings or the cream cheese frosting will crack.
Sweet Pepper Jelly:
7-8 large hot peppers, minced (when cut, those should be the equivalent of 1 cup, including the seeds.  I used orange   habaneros, but the heat and flavor of chile is up to you)
2 cup sugar
5 cups water
1oz powdered gelatin
In a medium-sized pot over medium heat, cook the peppers till sizzling, then add the sugar and stir evenly distribute.  Add the water and continue to stir until the sugar has dissolved, then bring to a boil.  Allow to boil for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook until the liquid has reduced by at least one third.
Remove from heat and strain out the peppers, reserving the liquid.  Sprinkle the remaining liquid with the gelatin.  Allow the gelatin to “bloom” slightly for 1-2 minutes, then stir into the liquid.  If canning, now is the time to jar and process the jelly.  If not, pour the liquid into a glass jar and allow to set in the fridge for at least one hour.

Cream Cheese Frosting
½ cup cream cheese
¼ cup powdered sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Whisk the ingredients together until completely combined and smooth.


 This is my last addition for Cookie Week!  Susan from Girl in the Little Red Kitchen and Kim from Cravings of a Lunatic put together such a great week of blogger recipes, I have to hand it to them for their hard work. We have goodies to giveaway and recipes and photos to share- all in time for getting your holiday baking skillz ON.  Check out my Monday post, Extra-Chewy Peanut Butter and Oatmeal Cookies, for more details on the giveaway, and don’t forget to enter below for your chance to win!  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Check out all the other Cookie Week recipes for today!

Bethmännchen cookies by Masala Herb
Chewy Brigadeiro Pecan Bars by Food Lust People Love
Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly by Omeletta
Chocolate-Stuffed Gingerbread Cookies by i heart eating
Earl Grey Icebox Cookies by Crumb
Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies by Frugal Antics of a Harried Homemaker
Homemade Thin Mints by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
Malted Chocolate Chip Cookies by Like Mother Like Daughter
Miso Sesame Cookies by
Peppermint Cream Thumbprint Cookies by Beyond Frosting
Salted Caramel Stuffed Toffee Chip Cookies by The Cooking Actress
Sandwich Cookies by Texana’s Kitchen
Shortbread Christmas Mouse Cookies by Cravings of a Lunatic

12 thoughts on “Chocolate Cookie Thumbprints with Sweet Pepper Jelly for #cookieweek

  1. I adore pepper jelly and I applaud your use of same in what is ostensibly a sweet cookie. Bold flavor choices yield great rewards, Ruthy! You win!

  2. I am SO intrigued by these cookies! So impressive and unique. I love the pairing of chocolate with pepper jelly. I seriously need to give these a try. Wow!

  3. Oh my gosh, I completely agree! I put cayenne in some chocolate fudge cookies a few weeks ago and could not get over it. Now I just want to put it in everything chocolate… But using jalapeno jelly in a twist on thumbprint cookies is definitely way more creative than that! I LOVE this, it’s so genius. Thanks so much for posting!

  4. It’s something I totally would have turned my nose up at a few years ago but I’m telling you- I’ve seen the light of spicy and chocolate! I’m just like you lately, now I keep looking for ways to sneak heat into all the chocolate things.

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