A delicious twist on a classic thumbprint cookie, these Caramel Gingerbread Thumbprint Cookies are the perfect combination of spicy gingerbread and sweet caramel. Add a sprinkle of sea salt to the top to take these cookies over the top!
Caramel Gingerbread Cookie Recipe
Last year, I finally perfected my homemade gingerbread cookie recipe and this year I am having so much fun playing with different ways to make these gingerbread cookies.
First off, this dough is ah-mazing. Perfectly spiced gingerbread cookies made with the perfect ratios of molasses, brown sugar and classic Christmas spices that results in the perfect soft gingerbread with a satisfying chew.
PLUS, my favorite thing about my gingerbread cookie recipe is that it works perfectly for soft gingerbread cookies like this one or rolled gingerbread cookies like our glazed gingerbread cookies. So you can make one dough and have two completely different cookies with minimal effort.
Caramel and gingerbread are such an overlooked flavor combination, but once you try these cookies you’ll be wondering why more Christmas cookies don’t feature this amazing and decadent flavor profile.
One key thing to keep in mind with this caramel gingerbread recipe is the texture of the caramel. You don’t want it so hard that the rest of the cookie tears apart as you’re trying to chew through the caramel, but you don’t want it too liquid-y that it just makes a mess. We’re looking for a soft, chewy caramel that gives way when you bite into it.
To achieve the perfect caramel consistency, avoid overheating the caramels and be generous in your addition of the heavy cream to soften them. Make the caramel a bit softer than you think you’d like, as it will harden while setting.
Can you freeze these cookies? Gingerbread cookies are one of the few cookies that you can freeze (either decorated or undecorated) without a flavor or quality loss! You can also freeze the dough and just allow it to come to room temperature before baking, so choose whichever works best for you!
More Gingerbread Recipes:
- Old-Fashioned Gingerbread Cake
- Star Wars Gingerbread Wookie Cookies
- Gingerbread Layer Cake
- Instant Pot Gingerbread Cheesecake
- Gingerbread Rice Krispie Squares
- No Cook Gingerbread Fudge
- Crockpot Gingerbread Lattes
- Gingerbread Cupcakes
Caramel Gingerbread Thumbprint Cookie Ingredients
- Butter, room temperature
- Brown Sugar
- Fancy Molasses
- All-Purpose Flour
- Baking Soda
- Ground Ginger, or more to taste
- Coconut Sugar <– can use cane sugar or sanding sugar
- Caramel Squares
- Heavy Cream, as needed
Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.
Tip: add a 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg and cloves to the dough for a spicier gingerbread.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowl
- Electric mixer <– this is a great hand mixer if you don’t want to make the investment into a stand mixer
- Parchment Paper
- Cookie Sheets
- Cooling racks <– I have and love these tiered cooling racks, they save so much counter space and are also oven-safe
- Small bowl, for holding the sprinkles
- Cookie Scoop
How to Make Caramel Thumbprint Gingerbread Cookies
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar for 2 minutes.
Add the egg and milk and beat to combine. Add the molasses and beat until fully combined. Set aside.
In a medium-sized bowl, stir together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger and salt.
Beat the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until no dry patches remain.
Cover with plastic wrap and place dough in the fridge for 1 hour or overnight.
Preheat oven to 350F
Line two baking trays with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
Place the coconut sugar in a shallow bowl.
Use a cookie scoop to portion the dough into even 1 1/2 Tablespoon balls of dough.
Roll the dough in the sugar, and then place on the prepared cookie sheets, at least 2″ apart.
Use a half teaspoon to press down on the center of each cookie to make an indent.
Bake cookies for 10-12 minutes until spread and well browned.
Immediately press each cookie with a half or whole teaspoon to re-assert the indentation.
Allow to cool for 2 minutes on baking sheets before attempting to move to a cooling rack, if desired.
In a small microwave-safe bowl, combine the caramel squares and 2 Tablespoons of the heavy cream. Heat for 30 seconds, stir well, and reheat as needed, stirring well in between each reheating.
Add more heavy cream, as needed, to make the caramel smooth.
Working quickly, portion a teaspoon of the melted caramel into each indentation of the cookies.
Once all indents are filled with caramel, drizzle the remaining caramel over the cookies.
Allow the caramel to set for 10 minutes before serving or storing.
Grab your free printable for our caramel thumbprint gingerbread cookies recipe:
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases. Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 157Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 115mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 14gProtein: 2g
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
I hope you love these caramel gingerbread thumbprint cookies. They are the perfect easy and unique cookie to bring to your Christmas cookie exchange.