Nut-Free, Gluten-Free, Jam-Filled Shortbread Cookies

Does anyone else remember these beauties?

gluten free knott's berry farm cookies

The vending machines at my junior high school sold these delightful cookies, and I ate them pretty much every day for two years. Because I was healthy like that. I haven’t had them since then, but my memories of their flavor and texture are embedded forever.

I can’t say I set out to make these exact cookies. In fact, I’d totally forgotten about them. I was actually looking to make something a little smaller and more dense, but the dough spread more in the oven than I was expecting and ended up a bit fluffier and clumblier (new word), and I swear in my first bite I had flashbacks of these Knott’s Berry Farm tasties. So I guess that turned out pretty well.

Disclaimer: these are by no means Paleo nor healthy, but I was riding a sweet tooth and needed some damn cookies without nuts in them. I am now in a sugar hiatus for the next few weeks to make up for my sugar-eating ways, but these were totally worth it.

gluten free thumbprint cookies with jam

Nut-Free, Gluten-Free, Jam-Filled Shortbread Cookies


1 cup tapioca flour

¼ cup coconut flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup butter, softened but not melted

⅔ cup sugar

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

~¼ cup jam of your choice (I used homemade blueberry)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. (Note: I didn’t line mine in the picture, but I wish I had. If the jelly leaks out it makes a mess of your pan. Learn from my mistakes, people.)

In a small bowl, mix the tapioca flour, coconut flour, baking powder and salt with a fork. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat the butter and sugar with a fork or in a stand mixer until it’s creamy and smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and beat more until it’s a bit fluffy and a consistent texture.

Add half the dry ingredient mixture to the butter and sugar mixture and mix until it’s well combined. Then add the last of the dry ingredients to the batter; mix and scrape the sides until well incorporated.

Using a tablespoon, plop little scoops of batter evenly spaced onto the lined cookie sheet. Once all your cookies are dropped on the sheet, go back and use your thumb or the back of the spoon to make a small depression into the top of the cookie. This will be the little well for the jam.

gluten free thumbprint cookies

Using a teaspoon, drop little puddles of jam into the cookie wells. Try to keep it contained so the jam doesn’t go all over the place in the oven.

Once all the cookies are ready to go, pop the sheet in the oven. Check them after 12 minutes. They’ll be golden brown when they’re done and the jam will set. It may take a few more minutes. Be patient. It’s worth it. Nom nom nom.

gluten free shortbread jam cookies

5 Responses to Nut-Free, Gluten-Free, Jam-Filled Shortbread Cookies

  1. Melissa October 26, 2015 at 4:27 pm #


    Can you use coconut sugar or honey? I do not use refined sugar with the Paleo plan. Just wondering if it would turn out the same. Thank you for your blog, I am nut dairy free paleo and its hard to find recipes without nut flours and some form of dairy.

    • Amelia E November 5, 2015 at 9:34 pm #

      Hi Melissa. I don’t see why not, though I haven’t tried. Good luck! 🙂

  2. Beth December 16, 2015 at 1:39 pm #

    How well do these cookies store? Can I bake and then bag them as Christmas presents? Do you feel refrigeration is best? I plan on baking a batch later today.

    • Amelia E December 18, 2015 at 3:31 pm #

      Howdy Beth. I doubt I’m replying in time, but hope whatever you tried worked out. I’ve never attempted to store them longer than a day or so. Good luck!

  3. Kate April 12, 2016 at 9:27 pm #

    I used coconut oil instead of butter and a bit less sugar and omg these are sooooo good!

Always 100% Nut Free