These Vanilla Shortbread Cookies are crisp and buttery. They make the ideal sidekick for a cup of hot tea or coffee for any time of day sweet fix.
Scottish Shortbread is a Classic
I've been a lifelong fan of Scottish shortbread. It's one of those "keep it simple" type of sweets to make. The bonus is not only the sweet buttery flavor but, I always have the ingredients on hand. To basic shortbread, you can add citrus zest, nuts, any flavor of baking chips or use different extracts to easily change the flavor profile.
- Start with butter that's been allowed to soften so that it's easier to incorporate with the sugar.
- There's no need to be concerned about over whipping the butter when creaming with the sugar. Allow a couple of minutes of whipping to get it right.
- Shortbread has no leavening included which means the dough expands less while baking. That said, do leave space between to avoid touching.
- When measuring the flour for this or any recipe, remember to always spoon the flour into the measuring cup and level. Never scoop, or it can become packed.
- Before baking, it's important to chill the dough to give the softened butter time to solidify after incorporating with the flour. Otherwise, it will melt too quickly in the oven and affect the end result.
- Classic shortbread is often pricked with a fork on top before baking. This has a purpose, it's meant to keep the butter from bubbling up while baking. I don't typically do that with this recipe but, you can, if you'd like to.
- This shortbread can be cut into any shape you like.
Other Cookie Recipes to Try
Whether you choose to whip-up a batch of these easy shortbread cookies or bake a pan of loaded cookies with lots of mix-ins, they're forever a favorite for kids of all ages to eat.
Other recipes you may like to try:
- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
- Easy Peanut Butter Cookies
- Loaded Butterscotch Toffee Pecan Cookies
- Lemon Crinkle Cookies from Lauren's Latest
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Helpful Kitchen Items:
Vanilla Shortbread Cookies
- 1 cup salted butter softened
- 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp sugar in the raw or coarse sugar for sprinkling
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Using an electric mixer, cream together butter, sugar and vanilla for 2 minutes, or until fluffy.
- Lower speed of mixer adding flour ½ cup at a time. Beat on medium speed until fully combined and a soft dough forms.
- Turn dough out onto plastic wrap. Knead gently just until smooth. Form into a disc and chill for 30 minutes.
- On a non stick surface roll dough into roughly an 8 x 8 square, ⅓-1/2 inch thick. (Lay a piece of wax paper on top to prevent it sticking to the rolling pin, if needed.)
- Cut into 2 inch squares. Place onto pan, at least 1 inch apart. Sprinkle tops with coarse sugar. (You can also cut into 2 x 1 inch rectangles or use cookie cutters to make into any shape you wish.)
- Bake for 22-25 minutes until the bottoms are very lightly golden. Cool on the pan for a few minutes then remove to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature.