Nanaimo Thumbprint Cookies on a wire cooling rack

Nanaimo Thumbprint Cookies

To celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary, we decided to take a classic and add the Redpath touch to it. What’s more Canadian than Nanaimo bars and what’s more comforting than a cookie? Do you see what we're getting at? Meet our Nanaimo Thumbprint Cookies, a dessert you can enjoy from coast to coast!


36 cookies


45 minutes


12 minutes


For the cookie dough:

  • 1 cup (125 g) all purpose flour
  • ½ cup (75 g) graham cracker crumbs
  • ¼ cup (25 g) cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 tsp (5 g) baking powder
  • ½ tsp (3 g) salt
  • ⅔ cup (151 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • ¾ cup (163 g) Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup (60 g) unsweetened shredded coconut
  • ½ cup (54 g) chopped walnuts

For the filling:

  • ⅓ cup (76 g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 tbsp (15 ml) heavy cream
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp (2 g) salt
  • 1 ¼ cups (150 g) Redpath® Icing Sugar

To decorate:

  • 1 cup (170 g) chopped dark chocolate or chocolate chips
  • 2 tsp (10 g) unsalted butter


For the cookie dough:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, graham cracker crumbs, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt.
  3. In a separate bowl, using an electric mixer, mix the butter on medium speed until smooth. Add the Redpath® Golden Yellow Sugar and beat until fluffy, about 4 minutes.
  4. Beat in the egg until fully combined, followed by the vanilla.
  5. Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir in the dry ingredients.
  6. Stir in the coconut and walnuts.
  7. Roll dough into 1 ½ inch (3.75 centimetre) balls and place on cookie sheets 2 inches (5 centimetres) apart. Flatten balls slightly and use your thumb, or the handle of a wooden spoon dipped in flour, to create an indentation about ½ inch (1 centimetre) in diameter.
  8. Bake cookies, rotating sheets halfway through, for 14 minutes. Remove and using the back of a small spoon gently press to reform the indentations.
  9. Transfer to a rack to cool completely (set aside the parchment lined baking sheets to cool for later use).

For the filling:

  1. Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter, cream, vanilla and salt in a large bowl until smooth. Reduce speed to low and beat in the Redpath® Icing Sugar. Return speed to medium and beat for 3 minutes.
  2. Place filling in a piping bag fitted with a ½ inch (1 centimeter) plain tip, or in a large heavy freezer bag with one corner cut off.
  3. Once cooled, pipe about 1 teaspoon (7 grams) of filling into the centre.

  4. In a small bowl, melt chocolate chips and butter in the microwave in 10 second increments, stirring in between; until smooth.
  5. Dip the cookies halfway into the chocolate to coat. Set back on the cooled baking sheets.  Allow chocolate to set for 1 hour before serving.
  6. Filled cookies will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. For best texture, allow to come to room temperature before serving.


*To make Nanaimo Thumbprint Cookies in advance, bake and fill thumbprints without dipping in chocolate and freeze in a single layer for up to 2 weeks. Thaw overnight in refrigerator before coating in chocolate and serving.

*Substitute walnuts for your favourite nuts (eg. almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, or cashews).