Caramelized Pecan Pie Thumbprint Cookies {Vegan + Gluten Free}

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A tender, flakey, nutty, shortbread style cookie base topped with sweet, crunchy, caramelized pecan pie filling….These pecan pie thumbprint cookies are decadent, quick and easy to make, and perfect to serve to guests or to enjoy on your own. 

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If you love pecan pie but don’t want to take the time or effort to fiddle with pie crusts, then these cookies are for you! With only 10 ingredients, they’re fast and simple and so caramelly and delicious. They’re also vegan, gluten free and naturally sweetened with maple syrup.

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Pecan Pie Thumbprint Cookies
 
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A shortbread style thumbprint cookie topped with a deliciously sweet and caramelly filling reminiscent of pecan pie.
Author:
Serves: 12 large cookies
Ingredients
  • Cookie Base
  • 1¼ cups ground almonds
  • 1 cup rolled oats ground into flour
  • ½ tsp ground vanilla
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • pinch of sea salt
  • ¼ cup coconut oil
  • 3 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp almond milk
  • Pecan Pie Filling
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 10 soft dates
  • ⅓ cup maple syrup
  • ¼ cup melted coconut oil
  • ¼ tsp ground vanilla
  • pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Put dates into a bowl and cover with boiling water.
  3. In a bowl, combine almond and oat flour, vanilla, baking soda and salt. Use a fork to cut in the coconut oil until it's evenly distributed and the mixture is slightly crumbly.
  4. Add maple syrup and almond milk and use your hands to mix until well combined.
  5. Take about 2 tbsp of dough, use your hands to flatten it into a thick cookie shaped disc, and place on your baking sheet.
  6. Use your thumb to make an indentation in the middle of each cookie.
  7. To make the filling, take the dates out of the water (they should have softened quite a bit), and put them in a blender with the maple syrup, melted coconut oil, vanilla and sea salt. Blend until you have a thick, sticky, caramel like mixture.
  8. Spoon into a bowl and stir in the pecans.
  9. Place heaping spoonfuls of the filling into the indentations you made in the cookies.
  10. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges of the cookies start to brown.