All Butter Shortbread Biscuits – discover the secret to making a deliciously crumbly and buttery traditional shortbread. This timeless classic is popular all over the world and rightly so.
The best news is … it’s also one of the easiest biscuits to make. And who can resist a shortbread finger with a good cuppa ?
You only need a few ingredients to make the Best All Butter Shortbread Biscuits. And yes, you’ve guessed it, butter is the key ingredient. The best shortbread uses the best quality butter so no other flavouring is needed.
The secret to the best shortbread is cornflour. Shortbread with cornflour creates a crumbly melt in the mouth feel and makes these popular treats extra tender.
Whether you call them shortbread biscuits or shortbread cookies you’ll love this All Butter Shortbread. We’ve always got a batch in the biscuit barrel and you can choose from rounds or fingers. My recipe makes 15 round shortbread biscuits or 12 shortbread fingers.
As well as being a biscuit barrel staple, shortbread features as Christmas Tree Shortbread in seasonal hampers for family and friends.
Why you’ll love this recipe
Here’s why this is the Best Ever Shortbread Recipe
- Guaranteed favourite – shortbread is by far my most requested bake. Whether customers in France, Kitchen Shed visitors or distant family and friends, it’s even made an appearance at several weddings as wedding favours.
- Easy to make – it’s a foolproof shortbread recipe made with only 4 ingredients you’ll probably have at hand.
- Make ahead – shortbread dough can be kept in the fridge overnight or up to three days. The shortbread dough or baked biscuits are freezer friendly and can be frozen for up to three months.
What equipment do I need ?
- Stand mixer (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.
- 1 lined baking sheet / tray – I use a Lakeland baking sheet which has a great non stick surface. Also, because it’s thicker than many baking sheets you can buy, your biscuits get a good even bake.
- Cookie cutter – I used a 6 cm fluted cutter.
What ingredients do I need ?
- Salted butter – at room temperature for easy creaming. The key to the best shortbread is butter so buy the best quality you can. If using unsalted butter add half a teaspoon of salt.
- Caster / superfine sugar – a finer sugar helps prevent graininess whilst still delivering a crumbly, soft, and light shortbread.
- Plain flour / all purpose flour
- Cornflour / corn starch – using cornflour reduces the gluten in the shortbread which is essential for a light tender crumb.
How to make All Butter Shortbread Biscuits
I use a KitchenAid stand mixer to make my shortbread dough as it makes quick and easy work of mixing. The short mixing time helps to give a tender crunchy shortbread. You can easily use a hand held mixer or a wooden spoon and a large mixing bowl instead.
- Cream the room temperature butter and sugar until nice and smooth.
- Add the cornflour and flour and mix on slow speed until the dough starts to come together.Bring the dough together with your hands and shape into a rectangle.
- Wrap in cling film and pop in the fridge to firm up the dough.
- Roll out the dough to around 6 mm thick on a floured work surface.
- Use a cookie cutter to cut the dough into rounds and place them on a baking tray.
- Pop the tray of biscuits back in the fridge for the butter in the dough to firm up.
- Bake for 15 minutes until a pale golden in colour.
- Dredge with caster sugar whilst still hot and leave to cool.
How to make Shortbread Fingers
A traditional shortbread shape, shortbread fingers are a popular choice.
- Make the shortbread dough and pop in the fridge for 15 minutes.
- Roll out the rectangle of shortbread dough to about 1/2 inch.
- Cut into 12 fingers and prick with a fork for even baking.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
Use a good quality butter, it really does make a difference to the flavour and don’t be tempted to use margarine.
Handle the dough as lightly as you can, overworking makes the shortbread tough.
Using a small amount of cornflour or corn starch is the key to a tender melt in the mouth shortbread.
Chilling the shortbread dough before baking firms the butter up and prevents the butter melting straightaway. The result is perfect shaped biscuits and a shortbread that is light and flaky.
Shortbread is cooked when the biscuits start to look golden around the edges and are pale in the centre. It is still soft when it comes out of the oven and will firm up as it cools.
How to Store
Stored in an airtight container shortbread biscuits will keep for up to two weeks.
More Shortbread Recipes
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All Butter Shortbread Biscuits
- Stand Mixer fitted with paddle attachment – I used my KitchenAid
- Rolling Pin
- 6 cm (2 ½”) fluted cookie cutter
- Baking tray lined or greased
- 175 g softened salted butter
- 75 g caster / superfine sugar plus extra for dusting
- 175 g plain flour / all purpose flour – sifted
- 75 g cornflour / corn starch – sifted
- Add sugar and room temperature butter to the bowl of your stand mixer. Beat for a couple of minutes until creamy and smooth.
- Add half the cornflour and plain flour and mix on low (number 2 speed) until it forms clumps. Then add the remaining flour and cornflour.
- Mix for about 1 minute on a low speed until it starts to come together as a dough. Don’t over beat or you will have tough shortbread.
- With your hands, bring the dough mixture together and shape into a rough rectangle.
- Wrap in plastic wrap and pop in the fridge for 15 minutes to firm the shortbread dough.
- Remove the dough from the fridge and transfer to a floured work surface.
- Roll out the dough to just less than 6 mm (¼”) thick for rounds or 12mm (½”) for fingers.
- For rounds, cut the dough using a 6 cm (2 ½”) round fluted cookie cutter. For fingers cut to approximately 10 cm (4“) x 2.5 cm (1”)
- Place on a baking tray, leaving space between each biscuit. For fingers, prick with a fork to allow for even baking.
- Pop your baking tray of shortbread into the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Preheat your oven to 170℃/150°C fan/ 300°F/Gas Mark 3.
- Remove your baking tray of biscuits from the fridge and bake in the preheated oven until pale golden in colour. This will take about 15 minutes for round shortbread biscuits or 25 to 30 minutes for shortbread fingers.
- Leave biscuits to cool on the tray for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Optional: Dredge with caster sugar while shortbread is still hot.
- For US cup measures, use the toggle at the top of the ingredients list.
- I use a stand mixer to make shortbread, it keeps mixing to a minimum and ensures a tender crunchy shortbread. Alternatively, you can cream the butter and sugar together with a hand held mixer or a wooden spoon in a large bowl. Then add the flour and cornflour in 3 or 4 batches and mix until the dough comes together. Don’t overwork it.
- Stored in an airtight container all butter shortbread biscuits will keep for up to two weeks.
- 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.
- Nutrition information is approximate and meant as a guideline only. Calculated per round biscuit.