This is my all time favorite Christmas cookie. My Aunt Val used to make them every year to bring to my grandma's house, where we had trays and trays of Italian Christmas cookies. Thumbprints, wedding cookies, finger cookies, pizzelles, and so many others...but these were the best...in my opinion.
We made them twice this year and Nic has declared them his favorite now too. Kade still isn't a peanut butter fan. He likes it better when I make them with sunbutter, which you can definitely do, but just note that sometimes they get a greenish hue because of the reaction between sunbutter and baking soda. They taste exactly the same, but they'll be Christmas colored.
1 cup peanut butter (or sunbutter, almond butter, cashew butter)
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup almond flour (+ a little more if they're too wet)
2/3 cup coconut sugar
4 TBSP unsweetened apple sauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
sprinkle of pink Himalayan sea salt
HU Chocolate Gems or Vegan Chocolate of your choice
optional: powder sugar for sprinkling on at the end
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl, mix all ingredients except the chocolate and optional powder sugar.
Using a teaspoon, scoop out dough and roll into small ball. Lay it on the parchment paper and press it flat with a fork.
Bake 12 minutes
They will look soft and undercooked when you take them out.
Allow them to cool for 10 minutes.
Press 2-3 HU chocolate gems into the center and allow them to sit for 5 more minutes. The chocolate will melt slightly into the cookie center and the cookies will firm up.
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