The Ultimate Shortbread

  • prep time20 min
  • total time 50 min
  • serves 24

This no-fail recipe will help you make the perfect shortbread cookie, every time, but it can go beyond the classic round, too. Use this ultimate recipe to form the base of holiday tarts and squares, or decorate the cutout discs with royal icing and sprinkles.

260 Ratings
Directions for: The Ultimate Shortbread


1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature

½ cup icing sugar

1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped

2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling

½ tsp salt


1. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream butter with icing sugar and vanilla until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. In a medium bow, combine flour and salt.

2. With mixer running on low, add flour mixture into butter mixture until just combined, being sure not to overwork. Divide mixture into 2 discs, wrap in plastic and chill in refrigerator for 1 hour, until firm.

3. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

4. On a lightly floured surface with a rolling pin, roll out 1 disc into a sheet 3/4-inch-thick. Cut cookies using desired cutter and carefully transfer to prepared baking sheets. Return cookies to refrigerator to firm up for 10 minutes if the dough appears too soft.

5. Bake until cookies are firm and begin to turn golden around the edges, about 12-15 minutes, rotating pans halfway through. Cool on pan for 5 to 10 minutes to firm up before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely, at least 15 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough. Once cool, decorate cookies with icing of choice, if desired. Store baked cookies in a tin or covered glass dish at room temperature up to 1 week, or freeze unbaked dough discs up to 2 months.

Source and Credits

Courtesy of Michelle Rabin

See more: Bake, Christmas, Cookies, Holiday/Event

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