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Heavenly shortbread with just 3 ingredients!

Updated on December 23, 2017
Blond Logic profile image

Mary loves cooking from scratch using natural ingredients. Here she shares some of her favorite recipes and products.

Shortbread | Source

Scottish Shortbread

Have you ever made shortbread? I hadn't until recently and I can tell you it was gorgeous. The rich buttery goodness makes me wonder why I ever settled for store bought cookies.

What you may not know is just how easy they are to make. There are only three ingredients in the mix, how simple is that.

Traditionally they are referred to as Scottish Shortbread, don't worry you don't have to be Scottish to make them or to enjoy them. Let me show you just how easy it is to make this wonderfully rich cookie.

Because it is only for myself and my husband I make a small portion. You can easily double this recipe if you wish to do so.

Simply Delicious

Don't fall into the trap of thinking that because this recipe has so few ingredients or because it is easy to make that it isn't good. Its simplicity and richness will surpass many of the exotic concoctions that so many top chefs try and get you to create.

I like an easy life and if you read a lot of the recipes out there I think they tend to over complicate things. This is going to give you a wonderfully rich cookie (biscuit) perfect for an afternoon treat or even a flavorful gift.

Many shortbread recipes say you need to knead the mixture. I justed stirred mine thoroughly in the bowl.That way I didn't have too many things to wash up afterwards.

5 stars from 3 ratings of Shortbread

Cook Time

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 40 min
Ready in: 50 min
Yields: 10 pieces


  • 2 Cups All-purpose flour
  • 1/2 Cup Sugar, white granulated
  • 1/2 pound (250 g) Butter room temperature, I used salted

Shortbread Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 160°C (325°F) Begin by placing your flour and sugar in a large bowl. Stir to combine.
  2. Next add your butter and blend.
  3. You are going to want to stir this thoroughly. We are going to do this in the bowl in place of kneading it on a board.
  4. I simply placed this mixture in a shallow pie plate pressing down lightly. With a fork make holes in the dough.
  5. Place this on a baking tray and take to the oven. Cook for 40 minutes. Check with your finger to see if the surface is firm. This will not spring back like a cake.
  6. Leave to cool slightly before cutting. The cookies will firm up as they cool.
Making shortbread petticoat tails
Making shortbread petticoat tails | Source

Notes about Shortbread Baking

Some things worth mentioning are the cookies should not brown on the bottom, which mine did slightly. My oven, isn't terribly accurate. We are aiming for a consistent color from top to bottom. This is the reason why the oven temperature is lower than normal and baked slightly longer.

Although I have made mine circular in a pie plate, they are often baked in shallow rectangular dishes as well and cut into fingers.

Below are examples of different ways to use the same dough. If you are making individual cookies, reduce the cooking time. They should be firm but not brown.

Traditionally a fork is pressed in the surface. I found that this helped to keep the dough from rising allowing the steam out.

Store Bought Scottish Shortbread

Store bought Scottish Shortbread
Store bought Scottish Shortbread | Source

Cookies as Gifts


I was brought up that you don't go visiting without bringing your host or hostess something. It doesn't have to be anything much, but do you know anyone who doesn't love to receive homemade cookies?

These also make wonderful birthday gifts. Simply place in a basket or box which is lined with fabric for a stunning display.

For friends who love to cook, why not make a basket of home made shortbread cookies and include a cookie press as well. This is often something people would love, but perhaps not purchase for themselves.

© 2014 Mary Wickison


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    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      Yes, it does take a lot but that is why it tastes so rich. Also if you compare it to the price of a pack of up market cookies, it isn't so much. Also because they are so rich, you can be satisfied with just one.

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 3 years ago from Taos, NM

      I love shortbread! I have never made it and I appreciated you sharing your recipe with us. It does take a lot of butter doesn't it? I will have to try this recipe and thanks so much for your tips and suggestions. Vote up+

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 3 years ago from California

      Absolutely my favorite cookie! Thank you!

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      I hope you have the opportunity to make it, you won't be disappointed. They are so heavenly rich.

      Thanks for reading and sharing.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 3 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Oh how wonderful to be able to make homemade shortbread - thanks for the great instructions here! Sharing :)

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      Hi Teaches,

      They are so simple yet so tasty. Thanks for your visit and comment. Enjoy

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 3 years ago

      Ever since I was a young child I loved shortbread cookies. They have such a wonderful taste. Thank you for sharing this recipe idea.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      Hi Ms Dora,

      You're welcome, I am sure you will enjoy them and so will the receive of the gift.

      Thanks for stopping by.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks for the recipe, also the suggestion to use them as hostess gifts. Very practical.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 years ago from Brazil

      Hi Ghaelach,

      I hope you enjoy them. Thanks for the share.

    • NMLady profile image

      NMLady 3 years ago from New Mexico & Arizona

      Oh yes, homemade shortbread is delicious. I will never forget the first time that I made it.... I was stunned how simple it was and also how much sugar and butter it used! That is why it tastes good and I cannot eat it as much as I would like to! Thanks for the article!

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 3 years ago from England

      Hiya, how did I forget that it was so simple to make? lol! I haven't made these in years, and I just took a look in my cupboard and guess what? yep, got all the ingredients! thanks for the recipe, this is great!

    • profile image

      Ghaelach 3 years ago

      Hi Mary.

      This recipe is going down on my list of things to do during the week.

      Thanks for sharing, and I'll be doing the same.