Almond Thumbprint Cookies with Lime Frosting

It’s almost St. Patrick’s Day, and if you’re like us, you’re looking for fun, healthy treats. We all have a sweet tooth sometimes, but we don’t want to eat too much sugar! If you can relate, this recipe is perfect for you. These almond flour cookies don’t use any grain, and the sweetener is just honey—no refined sugar! These cookies are yummy, but not so sweet that they leave you feeling sick. These are cookies you can feel good about feeding your kids! Add the Lime Frosting to the cookies to increase their flavor—and add the health benefits of lime essential oil. You can even dye the frosting green to kick off St. Patrick’s Day!

Almond Thumbprint Cookies

  • Servings: 18
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:

  • 2 1/4 cups (215 g) blanched almond flour
  • 1/2 tsp. (2 g) baking soda
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) vanilla
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) honey
  • 4 Tbsp. (57 g) butter, softened

Instructions:

  1. In a medium bowl, combine the almond flour, baking soda, and salt.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients, and stir until combined completely.
  3. Cover the bowl, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C).
  5. Once the dough is chilled, use a cookie scoop or a tablespoon to form the dough into balls, and place on a cookie sheet.
  6. Using your thumb, make a dent in the center of each cookie, being careful not to poke entirely through.
  7. Bake for 9–11 minutes, or until slightly browned.
  8. Remove the cookies from the oven, and immediately press the dents back down using a teaspoon.
  9. Allow the cookies to completely cool before filling each hole with Lime Frosting (recipe below).

If you don’t want to use the Lime Frosting, you can also fill the holes with some jam for a fun, fruity dessert.

Lime Frosting

  • Servings: Yield=8 oz. (250 ml)
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. (225 g) cream cheese, softened
  • 3 Tbsp. (45 ml) honey
  • 1 tsp. (5 ml) vanilla
  • 1–2 tsp. (5–10 ml) milk
  • 8–10 drops lime essential oil
  • Green food coloring or spinach powder (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine cream cheese, honey, and vanilla.
  2. Using a hand mixer, beat the frosting on medium speed.
  3. Slowly add in the milk until the desired consistency is reached.
  4. Add the lime oil and food coloring.

For easier use, place the frosting in a small zip-top bag, and cut the corner off. Squeeze the frosting through the corner of the bag to frost the cookies!

Alcohol-Free Glycerin Extracts

Making homemade extracts is pretty easy to do, but we’ve figured out a shortcut—essential oils—to make some extracts even easier. Normally, extracts are achieved by steeping vanilla beans, citrus peels, fresh herbs (such as peppermint leaves), dried herbs/spices (including cinnamon sticks), or coconut meat in alcohol for several months. As it steeps, the alcohol takes on the flavor of the added substance and an extract is produced. The longer you let it sit, the stronger the flavor tends to be.

We used the alcohol extract method to create this Homemade Vanilla Extract. Since then, we’ve learned that there are alternate solvents, such as vegetable glycerin, that can be used instead of alcohol. By using vegetable glycerin, we can create an extract that is alcohol-free and has a more pleasant taste. However, it is important to keep in mind that these extracts may only last about 14–24 months (whereas alcohol extracts can last 4–6 years).

Vegetable glycerin extracts usually use a glycerin/water combination and need to have at least 70% glycerin with 30% (or less) distilled water (if you are making extracts from fresh herbs, you’ll need to account for the water in the plant). The common ratio for herb to glycerin/water is 1:8.

To make most extracts, it is important to let the substance steep in the glycerin for a minimum of 4–6 weeks (preferably 10–12 weeks or more for a stronger flavor). However, we’ve found that if you use essential oils for some extracts, you can use the extract within days of steeping.

Essential Oil Glycerin Extracts

  • Servings: Yield=2 oz.
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 3 Tbsp. (45 ml) organic liquid vegetable glycerin
  • 10–15 drops essential oil (such as lemon, orange, peppermint, cassia or cinnamon)
  • 1 Tbsp. (15 ml) distilled water
  • 2 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid

Instructions:

  1. Add glycerin and essential oils to the bottle. Screw the lid on, and shake to combine. Remove the lid, and add the distilled water. Replace the lid, and shake once more.
  2. Let steep for at least 24 hours before using.

Extra Idea:

  • If you would rather use alcohol for the longer shelf life, just add the essential oils to the bottle and fill it up with vodka (80-proof).


You can also use glycerin to make other extracts such as vanilla, almond, and coconut extracts.

Glycerin Extracts

  • Servings: Yield=4 oz.
  • Difficulty: Easy
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Ingredients & Supplies:

  • 2 vanilla beans (sliced open lengthwise and cut in half or chopped into smaller pieces),
    1/4 cup (21 g) coconut meat (freshly grated),
    OR 10 sweet almonds (skins removed and cut in half or chopped)
  • 6 Tbsp. (90 ml) organic liquid vegetable glycerin
  • 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) distilled water
  • 4 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid

Instructions:

  1. Place vanilla beans, coconut meat, or sweet almonds in the bottle. Add glycerin and water to the bottle. Screw the lid on, and shake to combine.
  2. Let steep for at least 4–12 weeks before using. Shake as often as possible. The more you shake, the sooner it will be ready. (Your extract can be ready as soon as 2 weeks if you shake it at least once every day.)
  3. After 12 weeks, strain out the vanilla beans, coconut meat, or sweet almonds, and pour the liquid back into the bottle.

Extra Ideas:

  • You can make this recipe in bulk using mason jars and then place the final liquid extract in smaller bottles (such as the 2 oz. Glass Bottle with Black Lid) for gifting.
  • Check out these cute vinyl labels for vanilla extract.
  • If you would rather use alcohol for the longer shelf life, just replace the glycerin and water in this recipe with vodka (80-proof).

Don’t forget about gift giving during this holiday season! These little bottles of extract make a perfect neighbor gift!