Date Filled Drop Cookies

date drop cookies
Diana Rattray
  • Total: 30 mins
  • Prep: 20 mins
  • Cook: 10 mins
  • Servings: 36 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
90 Calories
3g Fat
15g Carbs
2g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 36
Amount per serving
Calories 90
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3g 4%
Saturated Fat 1g 4%
Cholesterol 25mg 8%
Sodium 174mg 8%
Total Carbohydrate 15g 5%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Protein 2g
Calcium 24mg 2%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Known as "nature's candy," dates are a wonderful source of nutrition, from vitamins and minerals to outstanding levels of dietary fiber. Although not low in calories, dates are a great replacement for sugar, as their natural flavor can help cut back the amounts of other sugars needed in a recipe.

Our take on this classic 20th-century recipe for drop cookies uses naturally sweet dates as a filling and is an excellent alternative to date bars or other kinds of filled cookies or turnovers, as drop cookies are much easier to prepare and bake.

Keep in an air-tight container for up to a week.


  • For the Date Filling:
  • 8 ounces dates (pitted, chopped)
  • 3/4 cup water (warm)
  • 1/4 cup​ ​sugar (granulated)
  • For the Cookie Batter:
  • 1/2 cup butter (or margarine, softened)
  • 1 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • 1 large egg (beaten)
  • 1/4 cup water (warm)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour (all-purpose)
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease baking sheets or line them with parchment paper.

  3. Put the filling ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, stirring frequently, until the date mixture is thickened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Set the date filling aside to cool.

  4. In a mixing bowl, beat the butter with the sugar until light and fluffy with the help of an electric mixer. Add the egg, water, and vanilla extract. Beat until well blended.

  5. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir with a spoon or whisk to blend.

  6. Stir the flour mixture into the butter mixture until the dough is smooth, malleable, and well blended.

  7. Using a teaspoon, drop the cookie dough onto the prepared cookie sheets.

  8. Place about 1/2 teaspoon of the date mixture on the top of each drop cookie and then place a small dab of cookie dough on top of the date mixture to "close" the cookie.

    date drop cookies in the pan
    Diana Rattray
  9. Bake the cookies in the preheated oven for 10 to 12 minutes.

  10. Remove the cookies to racks to cool completely.

  11. Enjoy!

Make-Ahead and Freeze

If you want to have cookies ready to bake all year round, follow these simple steps:

  • Prep the dough and drop it onto the cookie sheets and freeze until solid.
  • Transfer the frozen filled cookie dough to freezer containers with wax paper separating layers.
  • Freeze for up to 6 months.
  • When baking, leave the cookies at room temperature for 1 hour. Bake according to instructions.

Parchment Paper 101

  • Parchment paper doesn't require greasing, making it an excellent way to line baking pans. To cut parchment paper to fit your pan, set the pan on a sheet of parchment paper (bottom side down), trace a line around it with a pen or pencil, and then cut it out.
  • To keep parchment paper from slipping or sliding on a rimless baking sheet, grease the pan lightly before lining it.

Other Filling Ideas:

  • Fig Filling: Chop 9 ounces of dried mission figs and put them in a saucepan with 1 cup of water and 1/4 cup of granulated sugar. Bring the figs to a boil over medium heat and cook for about 6 to 10 minutes, or until the figs are tender and the mixture is thick. Use to fill the cookies as instructed in the recipe.
  • Dried Fruit Mixture: Measure 9 ounces of chopped dried fruit out of dried apricots, raisins, and/or currants, or choose 9 ounces of just one of the suggested dried fruits. Cook with 1 cup of water and 1/4 of granulated sugar to make the filling.
  • Chocolate-Currant: Cook 5 ounces of chopped currants or tart cherries with 1/2 cup of water and 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar until you have a thick paste. Add 5 ounces of semi-sweet dark chocolate and mix to form a paste. Use this paste as your filling and bake the cookies as directed.