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Christmas Shortbread Biscuits

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A traditional Christmas favourite here at the Kitchen Shed are my Christmas Shortbread Biscuits. Buttery melt in the mouth shortbread – delicious and easy to make. Perfect for a homemade festive gift!

You only need 4 ingredients to make these cute Christmas Shortbread Cookies. Pantry staples flour, sugar and cornflour and butter from the fridge.

This is such an easy no fuss recipe it will soon become your favourite Christmas shortbread.

Christmas Shortbread Biscuits arranged in Christmas tree stacks with ribbon and pine cones decoration


A yearly tradition here at the Kitchen Shed are my Christmas hampers. These are started during summer with homemade chutneys and jams and then topped up with Shortbread Biscuits just before Christmas. Along with the biscuits, I pop in slices of Mincemeat Crumble Shortbread traybake, a recipe born out of necessity. One year I was running out of time to make mince pies and shortbread was an easier option than pastry.

Shortbread dredged with icing sugar.

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • Best Christmas shortbread recipe: so buttery it’s impossible to resist. Once you’ve made this festive shortbread you’ll be making it time and time again.
  • Easy to make: This festive shortbread dough is so easy to work with. That’s one reason why it’s a perfect recipe for children to get involved with and share the fun.
  • Christmas shortbread gift: often given as a gift at Christmas, it’s even better when the shortbread is homemade.
Christmas Shortbread Biscuits arranged in Christmas tree stacks with ribbon and pine cones decoration

What equipment do I need ?

  • Optional – using a stand mixer or hand mixer means the shortbread is even easier to make. I used my Kitchen Aid.
  • Equally, a wooden spoon and a mixing bowl will do the job nicely.
  • 2 lined baking sheets/trays
  • Cookie cutters

What ingredients do I need ?

You only need four ingredients to make these Christmas shortbread cookies.

Plain flour, cornflour, various sugars and butter on a worktop.
  • Salted butter – at room temperature as this makes the creaming with the sugar so much easier. The key to the best shortbread is butter, it’s all about the buttery taste. Avoid any temptation to use margarine.
  • Caster/superfine sugar – a finer sugar helps prevent graininess whilst still delivering a crumbly, soft, and light shortbread.
  • Plain flour/all purpose flour
  • Cornflour/cornstarch – gives extra shortness for a lighter and more tender melt in your mouth shortbread.
  • Optional: Icing sugar/confectioner’s sugar and sprinkles for dusting or simply dust with caster sugar.

How to make Christmas Shortbread Biscuits

I use a stand mixer to make shortbread because it involves minimum mixing to ensure a tender crunchy shortbread. Alternatively, cream the butter and sugar together with a hand held mixer or a wooden spoon in a large bowl.

Creaming butter and sugar in a KitchenAid.
  • Add butter and sugar to the bowl of your KitchenAid fitted with a beater attachment and cream together on a medium speed for about two minutes.
Mixing shortbread dough in a KitcehnAid, flour and cornflour being added to butter and sugar and mixed.
  • Add the flour and cornflour in 3 or 4 batches and mix until the dough comes together.
  • Wrap in cling film and put your shortbread dough in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Treating it just like pastry results in excellent shortbread.
Dough being brought together by hand in the bowl and shaped into a block.
  • Dust your work surface with flour and gently roll out shortbread dough.
  • I’ve used cutters for star shapes and a moon but you can more or less make any shape you fancy.
Rolling out shortbread dough and using cookie cutters to stamp out cookies.
  • Bake in a low oven until pale golden in colour. Depending on the size and shapes, your seasonal shortbread goodies should take about 15 to 20 minutes to bake.
  • Leave for 10 minutes on the baking tray before transferring to a wire rack to completely cool.
  • Lastly, a finishing touch to your Christmas Shortbread Biscuits. Icing can be great but for me a simple dusting of icing sugar and gold sprinkles works a treat.
Shortbread in the oven, baked shortbread on a cooling rack and being dusted with icing sugar.

FAQs

How do you know when shortbread is done ?

Shortbread is done when it is pale golden in colour and starting to brown at the edges. There shouldn’t be any signs of raw dough. However, it’s important not to overbake shortbread because it will dry out and lose its soft buttery crumbly texture.

How long does homemade shortbread last ?

Stored in an airtight container Christmas shortbread biscuits will keep for up to two weeks.Open container to show cookies in a lidded airtight container.

Can you freeze Homemade Shortbread ?

Yes, you can. Christmas Shortbread Biscuits can be stored frozen for up to three months.
Open freeze shortbread on a flat surface for two hours before transferring to a freezer bag or container.
Defrost thoroughly at room temperature.

Shortbread dredged with icing sugar.

More Shortbread Recipes

More DIY Foodie Christmas Gifts

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A traditional Christmas favourite - Christmas Shortbread Biscuits. Buttery melt in the mouth shortbread - delicious & easy to make. Perfect for a homemade gift!
Christmas Shortbread Biscuits dredged with icing sugar and sparkles

Christmas Shortbread Biscuits

A traditional Christmas favourite – Christmas Shortbread Biscuits. Buttery melt in the mouth shortbread – delicious & easy to make. Perfect for a homemade gift.
4.99 from 66 votes
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Course: Christmas Baking
Cuisine: British
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 36
Calories: 94kcal
Author: Sarah James

Equipment

  • Large baking sheet
  • Cookie cutters

Ingredients

  • 225 g softened butter
  • 110 g caster sugar
  • 225 g plain flour
  • 110 g cornflour
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • Icing sugar/confectioner's sugar & sprinkles for dusting

Instructions

  • Warm the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, not too hot though.
  • Add butter and sugar to the bowl and beat until creamed, which should take between one and two minutes depending on how soft your butter is and your mixer speed; number 4 to number 6 speed.
  • Sift flour and cornflour into a separate bowl and then add half to your creamed butter and sugar.
  • Start your mixer on slow (number 2 speed) to prevent the flour flying out of the bowl – mix for a few seconds. Add the remainder of the flour mix and combine until it all comes together around the beater – about 1 minute.
  • Alternatively, you can cream the butter and sugar together with a hand held mixer or a wooden spoon in a large bowl. Add the flour and cornflour in 3 or 4 batches and mix until the dough comes together. Don’t overwork it.
  • Wrap your dough in cling film and place in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  • Preheat your oven to 150℃/130°C fan/ 300°F/Gas Mark 2
  • Remove the dough from the fridge and transfer to a floured work surface.
  • Roll out the dough to just less than 6 mm (¼ inch) thick.
  • Cut the dough using shaped cutters and then place your stars, trees, bells, etc on a baking tray.
  • Bake in the oven until pale golden in colour. Depending on the size and shapes you have cut, your seasonal shortbread goodies will probably take about 15 to 20 minutes to bake.
  • If the shortbread begins to turn brown before it is cooked, turn your temperature down by 10 ℃
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack.
  • Sprinkle with icing sugar/confectioner's sugar & gold sprinkles or decorate with icing.

Notes

  1. I use a stand mixer to make shortbread, it keeps mixing to a minimum and ensures a tender crunchy shortbread.    
  2. Makes approximately 24 to 36 depending on size and thickness – there was enough to make two Shortbread Christmas Trees.
  3. Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only.
 
Calories: 94kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 13mg | Sodium: 55mg | Potassium: 8mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 156IU | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 1mg

I’m entering Christmas Shortbread Biscuits into a few challenges this month:

Teatime Treats, hosted this month by Karen at Lavender & Lovage and co-hosted by Janie at the Hedgecombers.

Ren’s Simple & In Season Challenge over at Ren Behan Food.

Christmas Shortbread Biscuits have been entered into Treat Petite created by Stuart over at CakeyBoi & hosted by Kat at The Baking Explorer.

Recipe Rating




Kristy @ She Eats

Monday 7th of December 2020

Things are getting a bit hectic around here too, but these cookies look just like what I need to calm down. They're gorgeous! I'll take 12 please ;)

Sarah James

Wednesday 9th of December 2020

Thanks for the compliment Kristy. Hope things get less hectic for you soon.

Mary

Monday 7th of December 2020

These are excellent classic shortbread! And they're so pretty!

Sarah James

Wednesday 9th of December 2020

Thanks Mary.

Emily Flint

Monday 7th of December 2020

I love how easy these are to make and they bring back memories every year. Thanks for sharing!

Sarah James

Wednesday 9th of December 2020

Thanks Emily, it's a pleasure to share my recipe.

Carrie Robinson

Monday 7th of December 2020

I just love shortbread... especially for the holidays! :)

Sarah James

Wednesday 9th of December 2020

Thanks Carrie, shortbread is a firm family favourite here at the Kitchen Shed too.

Priya Lakshminarayan

Monday 7th of December 2020

These look so pretty and they are amazing to taste! Thanks for this recipe

Sarah James

Monday 7th of December 2020

You're most welcome Priya, it's a pleasure to share the recipe.