These Slice and Bake Shortbread Cookies are everything you’ll ever want in a shortbread cookie. Buttery, crumbly, slightly salty, and super easy to make...your party guests will love them so much they might even stash a few in their pockets on their way out.
SHORTBREAD IS LIFE
Good butter, sugar, a little saltiness...shortbread might be my favorite type of cookie. It’s simple (like four ingredients simple), easy to make, and just a delight to eat.
I fell in love with shortbread years ago, but I didn’t realize how simple the recipe is, so I didn’t try making them until recently. Once I whipped up a batch and made a few tweaks did I find my new favorite cookie recipe.
It’s seriously so easy to make and such a crowd-pleaser. It’s a fantastic cookie to make when you know you’ll have friends over for a chill get-together. I’ve put a plate of these cookies out when a few friends stop on the weekend and honestly, people can’t stop eating them.
They are also great to make a batch of dough and keep them in the freezer so if you have a random party you need to bring something to you can easily bake up a batch from the frozen dough. These cookies have your back for those unexpected moments when you just don’t have the time to make something from scratch the day of!
JUST FOUR QUALITY INGREDIENTS
There are only four ingredients in this recipe, which blew my mind when I first started developing it. I mean...so much amazing flavor from a few ingredients. Since there are only a few ingredients, the most important thing you can do is to use quality ingredients. The flavors will really shine when you use good quality butter and vanilla.
Butter is the most important ingredient in this recipe. With shortbread, you really do get the flavor of the butter and if you want a really amazing cookie, use really good butter.
When I make these slice and bake shortbread cookies, I use Kerrygold Salted butter. Kerrygold makes a really great tasting product that I would eat on its own...that’s how good it is, so it’s obviously my choice. Another option is to pick up any other high-quality, splurge-worthy butter you can get at your local grocery store.
Keep in mind...you absolutely want to use salted butter when making these shortbread cookies. Shortbread doesn’t have a ton of liquid in it, so if you were to add salt, it most likely won’t dissolve in the cookie. You’ll end up with little pieces of undissolved salt in your cookies, which is not what you want. Instead, use salted butter, which already has salt dissolved in it.
Imitation vanilla extract is not welcome to this party. It’s just not the right flavor for these cookies. Instead, pick up some real vanilla extract, use some homemade stuff, or even use vanilla bean paste!
If you go with the vanilla bean paste, you can use the same amount as the extract, but keep in mind that it might be a little bit more intense than the extract.
HOW TO MAKE SLICE AND BAKE SHORTBREAD STEP-BY-STEP
Need a little extra help with making these cookies? Here are some step-by-step pics and make sure to watch the video (and subscribe to my channel!) for lots of guidance!
Step 1: Cream the powdered sugar, vanilla, and that delicious butter together.
Step 2: Add in the flour and beat together until it just starts to come together.
Don't overbeat it, for sure!
Step 3: Smush the dough together into a large log (don't kneed it, just smush it).
Then divide the log of dough into two pieces.
Step 4: Form each piece of dough into a six-inch log.
Then wrap it up in some parchment.
Pop the logs of dough into the fridge for at least 2 hours!
Step 5: Slice up the dough and evenly place it on two parchment-lined baking sheets.
Step 6: Then bake those babies until the edges are just starting to brown.
Let them cool completely and eat up.
Maybe share some with a friend or two!
SLICE AND BAKE SHORTBREAD COOKIES RECIPES TIPS
Looking to make these cookies ahead of time, freeze them, and store them properly? Here are some tips to help ya out!
Yup, shortbread can absolutely be made ahead of time. Even though it’s an easy cookie recipe, having some premade dough at your fingertips can save you so much time when you need to bring something unexpectedly to a party.
The dough can be made ahead up to three days before baking the cookies. Just make the recipe up to the step of chilling the dough in the fridge and wrap them up tightly. When you are ready to bake them up, follow the recipe as written!
HOW TO FREEZE SHORTBREAD
Love having frozen cookie dough in stock? You are so in luck because shortbread cookies and the dough freeze so well!
If you plan on freezing the shortbread cookie dough, follow the recipe to the step of chilling the dough. Wrap it up tightly and chill it until the dough is firm and holds its shape. Place the logs of dough in an airtight container and freeze up to three months!
When you need to bake some off some of the dough, let it thaw overnight in the fridge or leave it on the counter for about an hour. Either way, the dough should be easy enough to slice evenly, but still cold when you bake it.
Another fun tip is that the full baked shortbread cookies can be frozen! All you have to do is pop the fully cooled cookies into an airtight container and freeze. They will last in the freezer for up to three months. Any longer and you risk the chance of freezer burn.
If you’re like me, you may just pop a cookie or two out of the freezer and eat them ice cold...it sounds silly, but don’t knock it until you try it. If you’d like to be a little more sophisticated, you can let the cookies thaw before taking a bite or serving them to friends. They only take about thirty minutes on the counter to thaw, which is not bad at all.
STORING YOUR SHORTBREAD COOKIES
The best way to keep your shortbread cookies fresh is by storing them in an airtight container. They can live on the counter, in a tin, cookie jar, etc. and stay fresh for about five days...if they last that long.
Lastly, remember to let them cool completely before storing them!
IT’S TIME TO BAKE SOME SHORTBREAD!
Okay, friend! It’s time to grab your ingredients and bake up a batch of these slice and bake shortbread cookies.
When you do make them, please make sure to leave a review in the comments below so I can hear what you think about the recipe!
Slice and Bake Shortbread Cookies Step-by-Step
- 1 cup salted butter, softened
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract in a large bowl until it just becomes light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
- Add flour and on low speed, beat until the dough just starts to come together, about 3 minutes.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press together to form a log. Divide the dough in half and form each piece of dough into a 6-inch log. Wrap in parchment paper and chill for at least 2 hours, up to three days.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Slice each log into ¼-3/4 inch slices and evenly space on the baking sheets. You should have about 40 cookies.
- Bake until the bottom edges of the cookies just start to brown, 14-16 minutes. Allow cookies to cool and serve!
MORE PARTY FOOD RECIPES
Need more party food recipes for your next get-together? Check these out!