Witch Finger Cookies

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These Witch Finger Cookies are my favorite Halloween treat recipe ever! The “fingers” are a gruesome and spooky addition to a Halloween party, and kids absolutely love them too. Unlike most Halloween novelties, these are actually a delicious cookie—a buttery shortbread with a hint of almond.

Witch Finger Cookies

You really need to use blanched almonds to create a realistic look for the nails on these Witch Finger Cookies. You can sometimes find blanched almonds in bulk bins at specialty markets.  If you have trouble locating them, follow these instructions for how to blanch almonds.

How to Blanch Almonds:

Place the almonds in a bowl. Pour boiling water over to barely cover the almonds. Let sit for just 1 minute (if you wait longer than that then the almonds will begin to break apart). Drain, rinse quickly under cold water, and drain again. The skins should slip right off. Pat dry.  They’re ready for making Witch Finger Cookies!

If you’re looking for more creepy Halloween party recipes, you might also like my Spider Web Eggs or these Mummy Heads. Bloody Eyeball Brownies, Halloween Sangria, and Bloody Good Cheesecake are all fun Halloween party choices!

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Witch Finger Cookies

These Witch Finger Cookies are incredibly creepy and cool to display at a Halloween party.  They also happen to be a delicious almond shortbread cookie!
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Chill Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 60 cookies
Calories 65kcal
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cookies, halloween, witch


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 2/3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup whole blanched almonds
  • 1 tube red decorator gel


  • In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to combine the butter, sugar, egg, almond and vanilla extracts.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add to the wet mixture and beat just until moistened. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper (or lightly grease them.)
  • Working with one quarter of the dough at a time and keeping the remainder refrigerated, roll a heaping teaspoonful of dough into a finger shape for each cookie. Press an almond firmly into 1 end to create a nail. Squeeze in the center to create a "knuckle" shape. Using a small knife, make slashes in several places to complete the look of the knuckle.
  • Place on prepared baking sheets and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until pale golden. Let cool for 3 minutes. Lift up the almond, squeeze red decorator gel onto the nail bed and press the almond back in place, so gel oozes out from underneath. If you want to get really gross, you can also make slashes in the finger and fill them with "blood."
  • Remove from baking sheets and let cool on racks (and let the red gel set).


Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 65kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 67mg | Potassium: 18mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 100IU | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.3mg
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  • Julia wrote:

    Is it any secret how they keep the same shape? Mine became giant’s fingers ?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Hmmmm, I’ve never had that happen before! They should remain pretty much the shape that you make them with very little spreading. Make sure the dough is refrigerated well.

  • Kris wrote:

    I made these last year and they came out great!!
    Questions – Would it be OK to mix up the dough tonight, leave it in the fridge for a day and bake them tomorrow night?
    Or better yet, mold them all tonight, and keep them in the fridge overnight and throw them in the oven tomorrow night (if I have the fridge space..)? Should I increase the bake time in this case?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Should be okay. Might have to let them sit on the counter for a bit to get a little bit softer.

  • Kim wrote:

    I love making these and it’s been a looooong time. Just watch that you don’t overbake them. I found mine were a little too brown – or maybe it was the type of baking sheet I used (clay) and I should have used a metal one. The paler they are the more creepy they look.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Good tip- thank you!

  • Holdthegross wrote:

    We made similar ones using coconut – but yours look so much better!

  • jessica wrote:

    Your cookies look great! I would like to try this recipe today, would it be okay to cut the recipe in half but still use a whole egg? Thx

  • Kiva Quezada wrote:

    I made these cookies using my own sugar cookie recipe. I also added green food coloring to the mix. They expanded quite a bit but still looked great. I also went a little heavy with the “blood”. They looked soo cool and creepy! I will be making these again next year. Wish I could post a picture.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Glad they worked out! The cookie recipe included is more of a shortbread recipe, which does not spread out much at all. Might be a better choice than a sugar cookie.

  • John Barrie wrote:

    Nice. I’ve seen more than a couple food bloggers making similar cookies, but yours are far and away the best looking ones.

  • sue wrote:

    My fingers turned out a little wide. Next time I will roll thinner and make the knuckles more pronounced before baking. I used some black frosting gel on the knuckles, which turned out well. An easier way to blanch is to boil the almonds for exactly one minute, then pour into a colander and rinse immediately with cold water. Skins slipped right off.

  • Nancy Valdez wrote:

    I can’t wait for Halloween so I can make these and the eyeball cookies for our office party! Sooooo Gross! And as I was looking at the list of recipes, there were a couple more that I want to make too

  • Megan wrote:

    I made these for Halloween and they came out great and everyone loved them! They tasted so good! I used the same recipe for cut-outs on Thanksgiving and once again – a hit! Thank you so much for sharing!

  • annie nalewak wrote:

    what a great idea and so kiddy inspired…my grandkids will love these .Thanks for a timely idea and the chance on a kitchenaid. annie in texas

  • Amy wrote:

    These are fantastic, Lori.

  • Maggy@ThreeManyCooks wrote:

    Oh my goodness, those are so gross-looking! LOL. So clever though, haha.

  • Marie wrote:

    Very kewl! I did a double take at the little picture on my Facebook newsfeed! This will be served at our Halloween Party for sure! Thank you!!!!

  • Hannah wrote:

    these were a hit, both at the office and our Halloween party at home! i added a couple drops of black food coloring for a “decaying flesh” effect… THANKS! (tasty, too!)

  • DianaHayes wrote:

    These are so cool looking.

  • aurora wrote:

    I just finished making them. I’m taking them to work for tomorrows Halloween party. They were very easy to make!! And they look great! However, I wish they were a little tastier (they are not very sweet). Next time I’ll add some green food coloring and maybe some chocolate somewhere!

  • BethieofVA wrote:

    I make these tinted green. Yours looks so much more realistic.

  • Jill wrote:

    That’s the perfect recipe for Halloween!