The Can-Do Candida Diet: Thumbprint Cookies for the Candida Diet: That’s One Jam Good Shortbread
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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Thumbprint Cookies for the Candida Diet: That’s One Jam Good Shortbread

Half the joy of these jam-filled thumbprint cookies is in their rustic charm.

Though they’re entirely sugar-free and grain-free, these cookies are an almost spot-on match for the texture and flavor of shortbread. With just a tiny dab of no-sugar-added blackcurrant jam they won’t send your sugar level skyrocketing. This recipe is a great example of how you can take a classic dessert and remake it to suit your dietary needs.

The dough has a buttery, slightly salty taste that is perfect for eating raw out of the bowl (though there is raw egg in the mixture so eat at your own risk), but isn’t any less delicious when baked. After baking to a golden brown, the dough still holds together nicely, and is soft but slightly crumbly when bitten into, just like a good shortbread cookie should be.

Candida Alert: Jam is, strictly speaking, a candida no-no. At worst, it’s syrupy goo laden with sugars both natural and refined, and even at best it’s still full of highly concentrated fruit sugars that will feed your candida.

For this recipe I use a jam made of black currants, a low-sugar fruit, made with no additional sugars. A few stores will carry no sugar added jams if you look close enough at the labels. One brand that is particularly easy to find is St. Dalfour.

You can use any flavor of jam you like for this recipe, but be aware that some fruit jams will have higher sugar content than others.


3 cups almond flour
2 tbsp + 1 tsp coconut flour
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp baking soda
½ tsp cream of tartar
1 egg
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
3 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp liquid stevia

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large bowl, combine the almond flour, coconut flour, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Stir to thoroughly intermix the dry ingredients.

In a separate bowl, beat one egg. To the beaten egg, add the butter, vanilla, and stevia. Stir these to combine. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir to a combine them into a thick, malleable dough.

Grease a baking sheet. Take a piece of dough about the size of a heaping tablespoon and roll it quickly in the palm of your hand to form a ball about one inch across. Place the ball of dough on the baking sheet and flatten it slightly to make a mound. Press the center with your thumb to make a small, round indentation on the cookie. Be aware that the shape you make will not change significantly during baking. Repeat this process until all the dough has been shaped.
Place a small amount of jam, about ¼ tsp, into each of the wells shaped by your thumbprint.

Bake the cookies for 15-17 minutes, or until the bottoms start to turn golden brown, rotating the baking sheet once to ensure even baking.

These cookies are perfectly portable, and as such are a great candida diet friendly dessert to pack in a brown bag lunch picnic basket, or for any other version of eating on the go. Share them with your friends and family or wrap them up and give them as a gift.

If you’re looking for a sweet treat that’s easy to eat, look no further. Enjoy!


  1. I just made these and Instead of jam, pressed a walnut into half and an almond on others in lieu of jam. I also used about two teaspoons of stevia in the raw powder instead of liquid. They turned out amazingly delicious and candida friendly. Thank you so much for the awesome recipe! They are not sweet, but still a tasty treat. I might try more stevia next time for a slightly more sweet cookie.

    1. Hi Anonymous,

      Thank you for sharing your experience with this recipe! What a lovely idea to add walnuts.
      I can see how the shortbread would need more stevia in that case, since I modeled the recipe off of a Swedish shortbread, playing up the butteriness so as to compliment the sweet jam.
      I’m so glad to have someone’s personal take on these.

      Thanks for visiting, and happy baking!

  2. These turned out terrific! Thanks for a good recipe. Almond flour is so expensive, and I cannot tell you how many recipes I've followed only to feel like Imwasted such a valuable resource! So have no fear, this recipe is good and will not disappoint.

    These aren't 'sweet' in the traditional sense. Like the typical cookies we're all used to. But for a tongue/palate forceably refined by a strict candida diet, they actually taste like quite the treat! I followed the recipe exactly, including the 1 teaspoon liquid stevia. They were perfect for me.

    The only change was I added 1 teaspoon ground whole vanilla bean powder. And my vanilla extract is homemade and very tasty, so the vanilla flavor was pronounced in my batch. Love it!

    I split the dough in half. I made one half into the thumbprint cookies, even using the exact brand of St Dalfour black currant jam you recommended. Delicious!

    Next time I think I'll try using almond extract instead of vanilla. Also, I'm going to experiment with omitting the vanilla and adding a bunch of lemon zest! And then try a batch with chai tea spices. This recipe is a perfect base for SO many ideas!

    With the other half I made CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES!!

    Yes, you heard me correct.

    I was in Whole Foods and stumbled across Lily's Dark Chocolate brand STEVIA sweetened 55% cocoa chocolate chips! (They have bars too) They are very expensive, about $7 for a 9 oz bag, but a special treat if you can splurge. They are non gmo, vegan, and are only sweetened with stevia, absolutely no sugar in any form. Obviously, use them at your discretion. I don't want to tell anyone they're ok if you're on a candida diet. But for myself, I decided to do it.

    Anyway, thanks again for this blog and sharing your recipes!

  3. These look amazing but my dough is not wet enough to form a ball. I've double checked the ingredients and added another 1/4 cup butter mixed with egg and I'm still not able to have a ball stay together. Any suggestions?