Peanut Butter and Jam Thumbprints

by Maggie on December 20, 2012

Callum and Liv are at the perfect age for holiday fun and we are making the most of it.  Seeing Christmas through the eyes of your children is pretty magical.

We’ve been playing (no snow yet), baking (lots of gingerbread cookies), and making lots of homemade cards.  My kids love finding toys from around the house and wrapping them up for friends and family.  It’s so sweet.  We are all pretty excited about Santa’s visit to our house.

Naturally, Santa will be welcomed with a plate of healthier cookies and some (organic) carrots for the reindeer!  As far as I know, Santa loves PB & J sammies so we made these cookies with him in mind.

Last year’s Cookies for Santa are just as good, but you have to try these gluten-free and vegan thumbprints.  They’ll be scooped up before you know it.  And let’s face it, Santa could use some healthier gluten-free treats (maybe he should read Wheat Belly).

Peanut Butter and Jam Thumbprints


  •  1 cup almond flour
  • ½ cup tapioca or arrowroot flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¾ cup natural peanut butter
  • ½ cup coconut oil, room temperature
  • ½ cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground white chia mixed with ¼ cup warm water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • ½ cup raspberry jam (I use Crofters Fruit Spread)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a cookie sheet with parchment.
  2. Combine almond flour, tapioca or arrowroot flour, baking soda, baking powder and sea salt in a medium sized bowl.
  3. Combine peanut butter, coconut oil, and coconut sugar in a large bowl (or the bowl of your mixer).
  4. Stir in chia-water mixture and vanilla.  Mix until combined.
  5. Gradually stir in the dry ingredients.  Your mixture will be a little bit crumbly.
  6. Use a tablespoon to scoop dough and roll into balls.  Place on the prepared cookie sheet, leaving 2 inches between balls.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes.  Remove from oven and use a teaspoon to press into each cookie.
  8. Return cookies to the oven and bake another 5 minutes.
  9. Let cool for 10 minutes, place on a wire rack to cool completely.
  10. Stir jam and add ½ teaspoon to each cookie.

Yield: 24 cookies for Santa

You should definitely listen to this amazing album while you’re baking your cookies.  This is my favorite song.

{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Hallie @ Daily Bites December 20, 2012 at 10:29 am

It’s snowing buckets here today and I could definitely go for some Michael Buble and baking! 🙂 These look delish.


Maggie December 20, 2012 at 10:36 am

Oh Hallie, I am so envious of your snow! Send some our way please. Or you could just come and do some baking and Buble-ing with us 🙂


Shirley @ gfe December 20, 2012 at 11:57 am

Beautiful cookies, Maggie! Love imagining you and your sweeties getting ready for Santa. 🙂 And laughed out loud when I read your last line!



Maggie December 20, 2012 at 7:07 pm

You’re sweet Shirley, thank you! I thought the last line was good too, for a fleeting second I considered deleting it in case of controversy 🙂
Happy holidays to you and your boys!
Enjoy your time with your son.


Alisa December 20, 2012 at 3:15 pm

I don’t think I’ve ever seen so much goodness packed in to a PB cookie Maggie!


Maggie December 20, 2012 at 7:08 pm

That means a lot coming from a girl like you Alisa!
Happy holidays!


kate December 21, 2012 at 11:37 am

What can I sub for the chia??? Do I even need it? I find when I add the xanthan gum to my flour mixes and make cookies, they are rubbery, like bisquits, but rubbery? I use a mix of tapioca starch, potato starch and sorghum flour, with only 1/2 t Xanthan for each two cups of the flour mix for “cookies or cakes”.


Maggie December 21, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Hi Kate – I use chia to act as a binder, like an egg. I try not to use xanthan gum either, I usually use psyllium instead. A mix like you’ve described will yield totally different results than using almond flour, as called for in the recipe. You can definitely try it, but I have no idea how the cookies would turn out.
Let us know how your version turns out!
Have a fabulous holiday,


Cara December 23, 2012 at 8:32 am

PB&J never gets old! One my favorite classic combos 🙂


Maggie December 23, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Thanks Cara – one of mine too 🙂 That’s what happens when you’re raised on it!


Susi December 23, 2012 at 9:34 pm

These cookies are tasty, but I couldn’t get mine to rise firmly like your photo. I followed the recipe except used brown sugar in place of coconut sugar. I tried extending the baking time, but with similar results. Any ideas? It’s my first holiday trying to bake gluten free! 🙂


Maggie December 24, 2012 at 6:19 am

Hi Susi – Thanks for your note. I’m guessing it’s the brown sugar, but I’m nut sure. It’s consistency is much different than coconut sugar. Did you press your cookies before putting them in the oven the first time? Or too much at the 8m mark? So many variables 🙂 I’m sure they taste delish though!
Happy Holidays,


gayle January 15, 2013 at 3:20 pm

Can an egg be used instead of chia if don’t need to be dairy free?


Maggie January 16, 2013 at 10:43 am

I think you could definitely try it – I haven’t made an egg version of these, so I’m not 100% sure. Please let us know!
Thanks Gayle,


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