Shortbread Cookies – The Cookie Rookie®

These classic shortbread cookies are so easy to make and are a must for the holidays! Buttery and crumbly, they are always a hit and are perfect for gifting!

shortbread cookies in basket

Come holiday season, baking is on my mind, and these shortbread cookies are a must have!

So simple to make and they come out perfectly every time. I always like to make a couple of batches to give to friends and neighbours for Christmas.

For more cookie recipes, be sure to try my Soft Sugar Cookies and Chocolate Thumbprint Cookies.

Why you’ll love this Shortbread Cookies Recipe:

  • ingredients: This simple recipe only requires sugar, flour, butter and vanilla, meaning you can bake up a batch on a whim!
  • Easy: It’s so quick and easy to make these cookies and it’s a great recipe to get the kids to help you with!
  • So delicious! This is my go to shortbread cookie recipe each year. Beautiful in their simplicity and they really do melt in your mouth!
how to make shortbread cookies
overhead image of shortbread cookies

How to make shortbread cookies from scratch

Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!

  • Whip the butter until smooth.
  • Whip in the powdered sugar until fluffy.
  • Mix in the vanilla.
  • Sift in the flour and combine.
  • Wrap the dough in a cylinder shape in plastic wrap and chill.
side shot of shortbread cookies
stacked shortbread cookies

How long do shortbread cookies keep?

Homemade shortbread cookies have a great shelf life, so be sure to make a double batch! Once the cookies have cooled completely, place them in an airtight container and they will keep well for 2 weeks at room temperature.

Can you freeze shortbread cookies?

You can freeze shortbread cookies, but they can be a little delicate once thawed, they will still taste great though! Place the cooled cookies in freezer safe containers, with the layers separated by parchment. They will keep well for up to 3 months.

Thaw frozen cookies at room temperature for an hour or two before enjoying.

Decorate them!

These cookies are delicious as they are, but if you like, you can frost or ice them to make them super festive. Try adding some red and green sprinkles so that they are super Christmassy!

We have some fun icing ideas on our Christmas Butter Cookies post!

inside of shortbread cookie
shortbread cookies on parchment


  • Don’t over mix the cookie dough. If you do your shortbread cookies will turn out chewy. Use the lowest speed on your mixer when you incorporate the flour, and stop when it is just combined.
  • Use softened, warm temperature butter to make the cookies. If it is cold, it won’t incorporate well and you will over mix the dough.
  • Allow time for the dough to chill. It will help the cookies to keep their shape and the butter will melt more slowly during baking.
shortbread cookies on parchment

More Classic Cookies

These Shortbread Cookies are such a holiday classic. Check out all of our favorites!

See All Cookies

If you make this recipe be sure to upload a photo in the comment section below or leave a rating. Enjoy!