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traditional shortbread recipe for wedges or cutout cookies
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Traditional Shortbread Recipe

My traditional shortbread recipe relies on just a handful of ingredients to make a sandy, buttery, perfectly textured cookie every time.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Afternoon Tea, Food Gift, Morning Tea
Cuisine: Scottish
Keyword: shortbread cookies, the best shortbread, traditional shortbread, traditional shortbread recipe
Servings: 24 cookies
Calories: 129kcal



  • Preheat oven to 300°F/150°C, conventional setting (no steam!). Line a couple of cookie sheets or baking trays with parchment and set aside.
  • Put the butter, sugar and salt into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium speed until light and creamy looking. The time this takes will vary depending on how soft your butter is to begin with, and how strong your mixer is.
    1 cup unsalted butter, 1/2 cup superfine sugar, ½ teaspoon fine salt
  • While the butter and sugar are creaming, put the all-purpose/plain flour and the rice flour into a bowl and stir to combine.
    1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup fine rice flour
  • Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in 2-3 batches, mixing on low speed just to combine each time. When all the flour has been added and the dough just comes together, turn it onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly until it’s smooth. Don’t go overboard, you just want a cohesive mass that’s all the same color and consistency.
    1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup fine rice flour
  • If you want traditional shortbread wedges, divide the dough into two portions and form each into a disc about ⅜”/1cm high and 7”/18cm in diameter. Put the discs onto the lined trays and score each one into 8 wedges with a sharp knife. Use a fork to prick holes all over each disc.
  • If you’d like cut-out cookies or stamped cookies, roll portions of dough out between two sheets of parchment paper to your desired thickness. Remove the top sheet of parchment and either cut out or stamp cookies. Place on lined trays, leaving ½”/1½ cm between each cookie.
  • Bake the shortbread until dry, firm to the touch and just beginning to color at the edges. Discs will take 30-40 minutes and smaller cookies will take anywhere from 15-25 minutes, depending on their size.
  • Cool the shortbread on the baking trays for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack. When completely cool, store in an airtight container.


  1. The number of shortbread cookies this recipe makes will vary depending on the sizes you create.
  2. Shortbread will keep for a couple of weeks sealed at room temperature, or can be frozen for up to 6 months if well wrapped.


Calories: 129kcal | Carbohydrates: 14g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 20mg | Sodium: 50mg | Potassium: 15mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 236IU | Calcium: 4mg | Iron: 1mg