Buttery Shortbread Biscuits Recipe
Traditional all butter shortbread biscuits that are buttery, melt-in-the-mouth and perfectly sweetened. They taste absolutely incredible and pair exceptionally well with a nice cup of tea (or coffee).
Shortbread fans raise your hands!!!! This is the ultimate recipe for all butter shortbread biscuits that will leave you wanting more and more – I’m on my fourth as I write this!
Shortbread has always been one my favourite type of biscuits EVER, they’re buttery, crumbly and incredibly easy to make too. It’s a simple yet tasty bake that you wouldn’t believe only requires 3 ingredients.
If you’ve ever wondered how to make shortbread biscuits, wonder no more – this recipe will guide you through the whole process. These biscuits are so quick to make that you’ll find yourself tucking into them in no time!
A Quick Note On Shortbread
Shortbread is a type of biscuit (or cookie if you’re in the US) originating from Scotland. Shortbread biscuits are typically made from flour, butter and sugar – that’s it.
The texture is quite crumbly as butter first coats the sugar before flour is added forming the shortbread dough. This process is called ‘shortening’ and helps to create a delicious crumbly texture.
Why You’ll Like This Recipe
- It’s perfect for Christmas and all year round
- Easy to decorate and equally amazing plain
- It’s so versatile, you can add extra flavours like chocolate chips
- Perfectly crumbly, buttery and crisp
- Naturally vegan if you use margarine instead of butter
Watch How To Make It
Below are the few ingredients needed to make this recipe:
- Butter (or Margarine): As this is an all-butter shortbread recipe, you’re going to need some butter! Unsalted butter is generally used as you can control the amount of salt added, though I like to use salted butter. You can use margarine instead of butter (especially if you want it vegan), but butter is what gives these biscuits its authentic shortbread taste, you will taste the difference.
- Sugar: Use caster sugar, this is my go-to for making desserts. However, you can use icing sugar or granulated sugar instead.
- Flour: Use plain flour when making shortbread biscuits, it helps to create its iconic crumbly texture. Avoid using self-raising flour as this will alter the texture and make it rise.
- Optional Additions: You can add vanilla extract (or any extract) and salt to this recipe for even more flavour.
Do I Need To Chill The Dough?
Yes and no… you don’t have to chill the dough but I recommend that you do. It makes the dough easy to work with and it’s less likely to stick to the cookie cutter breaking apart.
If your dough is not sticky and is easy to roll, then you can skip chilling it in the fridge or freezer. Using cold butter straight from the fridge is a great tip to prevent the dough turning warm and sticky.
How To Make All Butter Shortbread Biscuits
Below is a step-by-step guide on how to make buttery shortbread biscuits. Full recipe instructions are on the recipe card. I used a food processor, but you can also make this recipe by hand using a mixing bowl.
Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C Fan, gas mark 4) and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. You can do this with a food processor, electric whisk or by hand using the ‘rub-in method’.
TIP: Dice the butter into small cubes to ease the mixing process.
Add plain flour to the mixing bowl or food processor and mix together until a dough has formed. Use your hands to gather the dough together to form a ball.
Tip: The dough shouldn’t be sticky, but if it is, add more flour or cover the dough in cling film and chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes.
Lightly flour your work surface and place the dough on top of it.
With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out until it has a 0.5cm (5mm) thickness. Use a cookie cutter to cut-out circles. I used a 6cm cookie cutter.
Place the cut-out dough onto a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 10 minutes or until it’s starting to turn golden brown around the edges.
Leave the biscuits to cool down before moving it, otherwise it will break and crumble. The biscuits will harden as they cool.
TIP: Press the shortbread biscuits halfway with a fork to help remove any air bubbles that form whilst it’s baking in the oven. I only tend to do this if I’m giving them away and want them to look perfect.
Add Some Spice: Cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg would be tasty additions to this shortbread biscuit. You can even add a touch of ginger for extra warmth like in these Chunky Gingerbread Cookies or these gingernut biscuits.
Chopped Nuts: You can add almonds, walnuts, pecans and peanuts chopped into small chunks.
Dried Fruit: Dried fruits are great for adding a slightly chewy texture and sweet flavour. Dried raisins, apples, currants and apricots are a few examples.
Honeycomb Or Butterscotch: Oh, this is such a tasty shortbread flavour that I absolutely love!
Liqueur: A splash of liqueur will take these shortbread biscuits to a whole new level. You can add Bailey’s or bourbon just to name a few.
How To Know When Shortbread Is Done?
These shortbreads take around 10 minutes to bake in the oven at a 0.5cm thickness, though oven temperatures can vary so keep an eye on them.
Edges that turn slightly golden brown is a good indication that the biscuits are done. If the bottom looks wet underneath, then the biscuits are underdone and need 2 to 3 more minutes in the oven.
Dip Half Of The Biscuits In Chocolate: This will create a very simple yet stunning design (like I did in my pictures). You can also sprinkle grated chocolate or orange zest whilst the chocolate is wet for extra design.
Drizzle Melted Chocolate: Either use a spoon to drizzle melted chocolate across the biscuits or add chocolate to a piping bag and drizzle it across.
Patterned Rolling Pins: Use patterned rolling pins or biscuit stamps to imprint a variety of designs onto the biscuit dough before baking it in the oven.
My Top Tips For Making All Butter Shortbread
Flour your cookie cutter and work surface to prevent the biscuit dough from breaking apart. If it does break, you can use your fingers to mould it back together or re-roll it with leftover dough and cut again.
Try to roll the dough as evenly as possible to ensure even-baking throughout the biscuit. Otherwise, you’ll find that thinner parts of the biscuit will brown and crisp whilst other parts cook perfectly.
If you’re using block butter and not using a food processor, then you might want to use butter at room temperature. This will help you cream the butter and sugar together easily. Though, you’ll probably have to chill the dough later on. before rolling the dough out.
Double the recipe ingredients to make a large batch for parties, events or to gift away.
Hot Drinks To Serve With Homemade Shortbread
Shortbread served with a nice hot drink is a guaranteed moment of bliss. So of course, I’ve listed a few tasty hot drinks for you to make too!
How To Store And Freeze Shortbread Biscuits
Storing shortbread cookies is super easy, simply allow the biscuits to cool down completely before placing them into an airtight container. You can keep the biscuits for up to 5 to 7 days, but I find that after 2 to 3 days they start to soften.
If you want to freeze the biscuits, place the cooked biscuits into an airtight and freezer-safe container and place it into the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow the biscuits to defrost before eating.
If you want to freeze the dough, wrap the dough in cling film, you can also additionally place it into an airtight container and keep it for up to 3 months. Allow the dough to defrost before using it.
More Biscuit & Cookie Recipes
Here are a few more recipes for you to try!
- Condensed Milk Cookies
- Mary Berry Fork Biscuits
- Soft Cinnamon Cookies
- Coffee Kisses
- Empire Biscuits
- Gypsy Creams
- Oat Biscuits
- Custard Creams
All Butter Shortbread Biscuits (Cookies)
- 170 g Plain Flour
- 110 g Butter
- 55 g Caster Sugar
- Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C Fan, gas mark 4) and line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Cream butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. You can do this with a food processor, electric whisk or by hand using the ‘rub-in method’.110 g Butter, 55 g Caster Sugar
- Add plain flour to the mixing bowl or food processor and mix together until a dough has formed. Use your hands to gather the dough together to form a ball.170 g Plain Flour
- Lightly flour your work surface and place the dough on top of it.With a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the dough out until it has a 0.5cm (5mm) thickness. Use a cookie cutter to cut-out circles. I used a 6cm fluted cookie cutter.
- Place the cut-out dough onto a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 10 minutes or until it’s starting to turn golden brown around the edges.
- Leave the biscuits to cool down before moving it, otherwise it will break and crumble. The biscuits will harden as they cool.
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