Salted shortbread cookies are easy enough to make for a quick sweet treat and special enough to make at the holidays. Whether you are looking for a Christmas cookie recipe or just an easy shortbread recipe, these salted butter cookies have got you covered.
About These Cookies:
Nothing is better in the entire world than these salted shortbread cookies! They are seriously the best shortbread cookies. I do not say this lightly - I really love them.
If you have never tried salted shortbread, you are in for a real treat. The salt just adds that little bit extra of a background note and really enhances the flavor of the shortbread. They are basically a salted butter cookie and they just melt in your mouth.
Aside from the salt, the other thing that makes these shortbread cookies so amazing is that they're perfectly balanced in terms of not being to dry or too chewy. They are just right!
This shortbread recipe uses two types of sugar to achieve that perfect consistency. I really think you are going to love it.
These buttery cookies make a great fresh milled flour cookie recipe:
To make this cookie even more special, I like to use fresh flour bought from my local flour mill (here in Austin it is Barton Springs Mill) when I get a chance or remember to buy the fresh flour. It really makes the best cookie!
If you are not familiar with fresh flour, it is flour that has been milled by local flour mills and purchased directly from the mill. The big difference between fresh flour and store bought flour is the flour in the store sits on the shelves for long periods of time and ends up drying out and loosing any and all nutritional value. There are many other reasons to buy fresh flour and I encourage people to read up on it if they can.
Now not everyone has access to a local flour mill but the good news is many will ship to you so you can still enjoy the benefits of a better quality flour even if you do not have a local mill.
If you do want to go the fresh flour route, the fresh flour that I use, is a blend of soft wheat and hard wheat. My local mill calls it Premium All Purpose Flour.
Either fresh flour or store bought flour will work fine! I promise this cookie is amazing both ways.
The ingredients are so simple for these salted butter cookies. There are just a few ingredients that you will need and you probably already have these in your house.
Ingredients Needed To Make These Delicious Shortbread Cookies:
- All purpose flour
- Unsalted butter
- Salt. I always use kosher salt.
- Granulated sugar
- Powdered sugar
About The Ingredients:
Make sure that you use both types of sugar in this recipe or it will not come out as amazing. Trust me on this.
Add Ins For the Shortbread:
Now I am a purist when it comes to my shortbread cookies. I really prefer that salty and buttery flavor on its own. They're delicious as is.
But, sometimes I do like to change things up a bit by adding in some goodies to this shortbread recipe. I also like to double this recipe and divide the dough into different bowls. I do this same thing with my Fall shortbread cookies and my holiday snowball cookies.
It just makes life easier if you want to make an assortment of cookies. I love making a double batch of these cookies to make my Christmas cookie giving even easier during the holidays.
Here are some add-in ideas for these shortbread cookies:
There are so many different things you can add to this shortbread cookie base if you want to get fancy. I love adding chopped toasted hazelnuts for a more sophisticated cookie at the holidays. A real crowd pleaser is chunks of chocolate. Whatever you prefer.
My family absolutely loves it when I add my golden milk mix to these cookies. I call them golden milk shortbread and they are really delicious. I do this same thing with my eggnog cookies. I have added instructions for the golden milk shortbread cookies below.
There are so many ways to embellish these salted shortbread cookies but they are also so absolutely amazing all on their own. This to me is the best salted shortbread cookie recipe around. They really make a great cookie to make anytime you have a craving for something sweet.
Freezing the shortbread dough:
The dough also freezes well so you can slice them up and freeze your cookie slices for when you need a quick sweet. Just follow the recipe the same up until the baking part and instead of baking just freeze them. When you are ready, just add a few minutes to the baking time since they are frozen and that is it.
I hope you give these a try and you will see how good they are!
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The Best Salted Shortbread Cookie
- 2 cups all-purpose flour I prefer King Arthur for store bought flour which is what most people have access to. If you are using fresh flour from a local flour mill, a mix of soft wheat (Sonora) and hard wheat(like a rouge de bourdeaux) milled at a "00".
- 1 teaspoon of kosher salt Using kosher salt is important here. Regular table salt will be too much and make the cookie too salty.
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup or 2 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
- ¼ teaspoon of vanilla extract optional
- Preheat oven to 350°
- Whisk together flour and salt in a small bowl.
- In a separate bowl with a hand mixer or stand mixer, add butter, and both sugars and mix on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
- Now add vanilla and mix until combined.
- Reduce speed to low and gradually add in flour mixture, mixing until the dough just comes together. This can take a while so be patient. I promise it will come together.
- Transfer dough to a clean surface, divide in half and and form into two balls. Wrap dough balls in plastic wrap and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Cutting your cookies into shapes
- On a lightly floured work surface, roll each dough ball out to a ¼-inch thickness. Use your cookie cutter to cut cookies.
- Place cookies on parchment lined baking sheets.
- Bake cookies for 8 -10 minutes, until just browned around the edges.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Hazelnuts : Add ½ cup of toasted chopped hazelnuts to the dough after mixing your ingredients together. Follow the recipe for rolling and cutting after that.
- Golden milk Shortbread: You use this base recipe but reduce the salt in the recipe to ½ teaspoon and then add 1 teaspoon of golden milk mix to your flour mixture and mix it well to get it nice and incorporated. Follow the recipe the same from there.
Nutrition Values are estimates only.See full nutrition disclaimer here